Halloween: Interviewing the mind behind For the Love of the Boogeyman

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For the Love of the Boogeyman: 40 Years of Halloween — Courtesy of Bloody Flicks

With For the Love of the Boogeyman: 40 Years of Halloween on the way, we’re sitting down with the mastermind behind the upcoming doc. Trick ‘r treat…

With the new Halloween hitting in a matter of months, everyone is talking about Michael Myers and his return to Haddonfield. The first new film in nine years — over a decade not counting the Zombie years — the iconic series is once again becoming a hot topic in horror. 1428 Elm is already ready with costumes fully on.

So already costumed from head to toe, we were thrilled to bring you guys an early review of a new documentary on the legacy of Halloween a few weeks back. Titled For the Love of the Boogeyman: 40 Years of Halloween, it’s a pure love letter to a series still going strong. Even even more thrilling, we recently sat down with its director, Paul Downey, to discuss the doc and all things Haddonfield. Ready to get back to the sleepiest little town in Illinois?

1428 Elm: Do you remember the first time seeing a Halloween film?

Paul Downey: My first recollection of watching Halloween was at quite an early age, probably seven. My older brother had recorded it off BBC1 the night before (Halloween) and I put the TV on downstairs in the morning and it was the scene where Michael is smashing his hand through the door in pursuit of Laurie. I was so frozen with fear, I’d never seen something so scary, but at the same time it intrigued me. The image of the mask stayed with me for days afterwards and I suppose you could say my fascination with Halloween was born.

1428 Elm: What made you want to make a documentary on the franchise?

PD: Well I was actually watching the brand new Arrow release of The Thing on New Year’s Eve last year and having had a couple of drinks I had this crazy idea, I could do something like for Halloween. It almost seemed like fate as the 40th anniversary would be coming up, so I began messaging some friends I know who work in independent horror just to gauge if the idea had legs and everyone was really positive, so I started to map it out.

1428 Elm: Fans are the lifeblood of any franchise, almost keeping it alive themselves. What drove you to focus on fandom?

PD: One thing I always found quite warming was the fact that once the internet come along in the 1990s, was the discovery that there was people all over the world who had the same thoughts as I did about Halloween and horror films in general. The driving factor is that Halloween is 40 years old and to me it has never been bettered, certainly in horror realms, it’s a work of art. I think the fans zone in on this and we all share an equal passion for the film and the franchise. We could all talk about Halloween all day long but I think everyone looks at different elements of the film and studies them and to me that’s fascinating.

1428 Elm: I know series legend P.J Soles is on board. Are there any other Halloween vets coming to talk?

PD: We have approached a number of the cast and crew from the original film and some of the sequels but unfortunately they declined our offer. I believe that Trancas Films may have something lined up with the cast and crew.

1428 Elm: Who are some other people fans may find exciting come to talk all thing Shape?

More from Halloween

PD: We have quite a wide array of award winning directors such as Dave Hastings, who did the superb fan film One Good Scare a few years back. Troy Escamilla, who’s recent slasher, Party Night, has just won another award, as well as Nathan Thomas Milliner who has worked on artwork for the Halloween series as well as plenty more projects. There’s Volumes of Blood Director P.J Starks and Justin Seaman, who created the Halloween season homage The Barn; both of which are well worth checking out. Rocky Gray, who used to be part of Evanescence, is also on board having just made his directorial debut with anthology 10/31, and he’s also contributed some stunning music.

There’s plenty more I could mention too but you will see them all in the documentary. It’s a very eclectic but passionate crowd.

1428 Elm: If you had a mission statement for the documentary, a thesis if you will, what would it be?

PD: I think the mission or aim has always been to do something to pay tribute to this stunning piece of cinema. This is why I made the active choice to focus solely on the original because although some of the sequels are entertaining, they never quite shape up to Halloween; it was the perfect storm.