Wednesday, 30 October 2013

Trick or Treating at the Myers' - An interview with Tony 'Michael Myers' Moran

The date was the 31st October, I grabbed my broom and my pointy hat and called the children... We loved Halloween and hell, you can't have Halloween without trick or treat...

My daughter, pulled her sheet over her head, sweet, I thought, my little ghost... I called my son to come down, he wanted to keep his costume a secret and had kept me guessing all week... What possible scary costume could he come up with with just an old Captain Kirk mask and some white paint... But then he appeared at the top of the stairs and I swear, for a second my blood stopped pumping round my body... There was my precious little boy dressed as Michael Myers... 

The film "Halloween" was made in back 1978, during the heyday of the horror genre and tells the story of Michael Myers, the living embodiment of the bogeyman, a silent, remorseless killer, incarcerated in a mental institution as a kid for killing his sister... He can't be stopped, he can't be killed, there is no escaping the wrath of Michael Myers... And here he was standing in front of me... I shook the feeling off... No this was my son, not that killing machine.

After an hour or so our buckets were full and there was just one house to go... The last house on the left on Lampkin Lane, I didn't know the owners but the pumpkin outside the door invited us to call, but something inside me screamed run... 

We rang the bell... after a minute a shadow appeared through the frosted glass of the door, a familiar shadow... The door swung open and the kids shouted "Trick or Treat!" and held out there buckets, the man held out a bowl of sweets and the children readily made their choices. I studied the face of the man at the door... Was it? Could it be? I must be... It was! It was Tony Moran, the original Michael Myers... Oh my god! I took this as a sign, I asked him if he wouldn't mind if I asked him a couple of questions... He said sure and I started...

The first one was a no brainer. So, Tony, How did you get the part of Michael Myers? 
 "My agent gave me an interview time and I talked to John Carpenter and Irwin Yablans for about 15 or 20 minutes, and then later that afternoon I found out that I got the job."

Cool, So what did you do then?
"I celebrated by going to a pizza joint."

You were directed by the great John Carpenter, What direction did he give you to play the part of Michael?
"He didn't give me much except that we both agreed that I was going to be feeling kind of lost without the mask on."

And is it true that you only got paid $250 dollars for playing the part?

I felt a bit bad for taking so much of his candy...

My son chipped in and from behind his mask he asked, It was revealed that Michaels mask was in fact a inside out Captain Kirk mask, like this one... Were you aware of this?
He answered quite simply
Oh... Ok... I did hear that another choice of mask was a clown with red hair... 
"I don't ever remember hearing that..."
Do you think this would have changed the feel of the movie? 
"...but yes it would of definitely changed it."

Did you keep a Michael Myers mask?
"No I didn't and I have no idea what happened to it."

I shot him a look, that was enough of his questions, I had more of my own to ask...

You only appear in the first film? (Apart from the recap in the 2nd) didn't you fancy another?
"Because I didn't want to wear a mask again. Plus they figured it would've been cheaper to use a stuntman than an actor."

What was it like working with a young Jamie Lee Curtis? It was her first film, but her parentage must have made her amazing to meet and work with? I heard that she thought she was terrible and would be sacked at anytime, did you ever notice this about her?
"It was great working with her. She's very down to earth. Great sense of humor."
I heard that she thought she was terrible and would be sacked at anytime, did you ever pick up on this?
"No, I didn't notice that about her."

The film went on to make a staggering 8 sequels, did you ever believe that the film would become such a huge franchise? 
"No, I had no idea. I figured it would play in the drive-in theatre for a couple of weeks, and that's it."

And is it true that you wore your own clothes as the budget was so small? 

I'm going to stop listening to gossip I vowed.

Out of the three actors approached to play Dr Loomis, Cushing, Lee and Pleasance, do you think that Donald Pleasance was the best choice?
"He was perfect for the part."

So, why do you think the film is so popular? 
"Combination of the idea, the music and the suspense that John Carpenter created."

Now, Halloween was voted the 5th scariest film of all time, in your opinion, what do you think is the 1st?

Ahh interesting... Now for a test...

So you must be a Michael Myers expert, do you know Michael's supposed middle name? 

That's right, but I suppose you would know!

Was it true that John Carpenter created a 'fear meter'? If so, what the hell was it?
"I don't remember hearing about that."
Just a rumour then..? Well that could still be true I suppose...

Now, you shared the role with 2 other actors, obviously you couldn't play a 6 year old, but why did Nick Castle also join the cast as Michael? 
"Because it was cheaper. He was part of the crew. I believe it's a total of 5 though."

5?! But Tony was still the first...

Have you ever read the Curtis Richards book that the film was based on? 

You must go to loads of conventions? How many do you attend every year?
"Anywhere between 5 to 10 a year."

And what's the best question you've ever been asked?
"There's really no best particular one."

Your fans must love you? Does it ever weird? 
"No, they don't get weird. They're fantastic."

I suddenly felt a tug on my skirt, it was a tiny ghost, covered in chocolate and clutching her stomach, I was time to go. Thanking Tony I turned to leave, he was quiet man, but an interesting one... I started off but then thought of one last question, Tony had already started to close the door, but I had to ask... I called back...
So Tony, what do you think Michael Myers would be doing now if he'd never been caught? 
The door stopped and without any movement at all, Tony spoke softly but purposefully and said... 

The door finally closed but not before I saw the flash of a silver blade by his side and

noticed something red and fresh dripping from it... I looked at my son, he looked at me... We grabbed the little ghost and ran as fast as we could all the way home.... 

Happy Halloween everyone!

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