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Cherry Pop

Rob Zombie   ('Halloween 2') Rob Zombie ('Halloween 2')

Musician and filmmaker Rob Zombie continues to tap into his dark side in 'Halloween 2,' which Zombie originally had no interest in!

Picking up right where the first film left off, Laurie is taken to the hospital after supposedly killing the man who was responsible for the deaths of several people in the town of Haddonfield, Illinois. However, her stay at Haddonfield General becomes very brief when a very much alive Michael appears once more, brutally murdering everyone in the hospital to find his sister.

Michael disappears, and Laurie survives the infamous Halloween massacre, but is still haunted by it years later. Laurie struggles to come to terms with her dark past, or at least forget it. But the supposedly dead Michael Myers has other plans, and as the anniversary of his massacre approaches, he returns to Haddonfield once more, with a family reunion planned that Laurie will never forget.

It's been said that you originally had no interest in 'Halloween 2' - so what changed you mind? "Many things changed my mind. I mean, yeah. When I talked to anyone after the movie was done – you know, because usually you finish the movie, then you do press. And the first question is like, “Are you going to do Halloween II?” And I was like, “No.” I was so burnt out after making Halloween. Halloween was a very difficult shoot. It was not particularly enjoyable. And the thought of doing anything Halloween again just seemed like, no way."

"But then time went by. You know, a year and a half went by. And I had passed on it. Weinstein Company didn't even ask me about it, because I was so clear that I didn't want to be part of it. And then – you know, actually I had heard they were making the movie with somebody else, so I didn't even think about it. And then I ran into one of the executives at something and I asked him, I said, “How’s filming on Halloween II going?” Because I was curious, because all the actors are my friends, and I was curious how things were going. And he said, “Oh, man. We haven’t even started yet. We don’t even have a script. We don’t even have an idea what to do".”

"So at that point, I had gone on tour, finished a record, been around – you know, around the country, touring, and stuff. And I didn't have my next movie. And I was – you know, recuperated for sure. And I was like – the idea of coming back to it seemed really interesting to me at that time. Because I had missed all the actors, and I really – you know, I liked what we had started, and I really, at that point, wanted to continue it on."

Now, what was important to you in developing the script for the sequel, that had been not prevalent when they were developing it in the first place? "Well, what was important to me is, I wanted it to play different than anything had played before, because usually with movie franchises like this, it’s very rare that the same director returns, with the same cast. You know, usually it changes hands, and the whole thing changes direction. But since I was coming back, I really wanted to pick it up like part two. Like, completely follow it logically."

"What would be – because I thought – you know, the events of the first film are pretty traumatic, are pretty big. What would be the outcome of the first film, and the lives of all the characters – and really follow it through, as a real dark, human drama. You know? That’s the way I looked at it."

How much more horrific did you want to make this film? I mean, how much more violent did you want to make it, or did you want to step up, pump it up? "I wanted to expand every aspect of it. You know, when I went back and looked – I’m always really critical of my own work, so I don’t have a problem with that. You know, I went back and looked at Halloween, and I thought – you know, to me, this film looks a little too clean. It looks a little too safe. It looks a little bit claustrophobic. Everything’s confined in this suburban neighborhood, in these suburban homes. I really wanted to open up the scope of the movie."

"And to me, this film, Halloween II, is very much – this seems like the logical follow-up to Devil’s Rejects. I went back, I went for a different approach, just from the film stock to the lighting. You know, just – it’s much darker, grainer, grittier, dirtier film. And it seemed appropriate this time, because in the first Halloween, you have these characters like Laurie Strode. And they’re very, like, happy-go-lucky all-American girl characters. They’re not dark and damaged. But now, all the characters have survived this horrible night of murder."

"So, all the characters are scarred inside and out. So it made it much easier to concoct this sort of darker, nastier vision of Halloween. And I thought that – you know, you really want to take it to new places. You know, and make the violence more extreme, make the – just make everything more extreme. Because you just don’t want to feel like, “Oh,” you’re going and you’re getting less of what you got the first time. So. And you’re amping it up all the way around."

So, would you say this is much more a Rob Zombie film than the first Halloween? "I would. I would say that the first half of Halloween is very much a Rob Zombie film. And that was one thing I took away from it, too. That every – basically every single person I’ve ever talked to about the movie likes the first half of the movie better. And that was the part that was original. When it became sort of re-makish of John Carpenter’s stuff – you know, it has – that was the part that people liked less. So, that’s – when I went to do this, I wanted to be real conscious, “This is my movie"."

"The characters, the scenarios, the settings, everything. This is just so me, all the way through.” That was very important. And I think for that reason – you know, I mean, the film just came out last night at midnight. But everyone I’ve talked to who’s seen it, the response has been so overwhelmingly positive, because this is like – they feel it’s more me, and that’s what they always liked in the first place."

Did you get any feedback from Carpenter after your first film came out? "No, I didn't talk to him about it. I talked to him before I made the movie, and I haven't talked to him since. I mean, I didn't really want to call him up and say, “What did you think?” He probably never even saw it. Because – I mean, I’ve known John for a while. And sometimes I get the feeling like – you know, talking about Halloween 30 years later is not that high on his priority list. So – you know, if he ever wanted to talk about it, I’d talk about it. But I certainly wasn’t about to pester him about it."

Now, how important is it for you to balance your music with your movie-making career? "I mean, it’s incredibly important, because both are equally important to me. And they’re a great balance, because I have – you know, having a music career, which – obviously there’s no other director I know of that has this sort of dual career. It’s really helpful to me. Because – you know, you make a movie, you make it very much in a vacuum. Just you and the crew. It goes out there. You get feedback, but it’s not the same as, like, playing a live concert. And what’s great is, once the movie’s done and in the can and done – you know, I’m going to go on tour for my record, and tour and go out and you meet thousands and thousands of kids every day, and be surrounded by the public."

"And you really get a sense of what is going on out there, with your fan base. I mean, you can do that somewhat on-line. But on-line is – it’s so faceless. You don’t really get a true sense. I feel like it’s always really distorted, what’s on-line. But when you go out there, and you really get amongst people – I mean, I found that out this year when I went to Comic-Con. Because they were always asking me at Comic-Con, “Wow. What is it like to be surrounded by all these fans?”

"And like – it’s no big deal. Because this is what it’s like being on tour. But I can tell for the actors and the other directors, they’re like – “Whoa! I’ve never been in a room surrounded by thousands of fans of what I do.” So, it’s a really good balance. It really gives you a good gauge of what’s going on out there."

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