"Jody Doesn't Like George…And Neither Does MGM."
PART 2 (Continued) - By B. Alan Orange
LUTZ: I found it for the first time yesterday in God knows how long. It's $79 dollars for a VHS version.
O: Well, going back to what I said earlier, and this is a tough question to ask, but I have to ask it because of the way it's dealt with in the film. Were you ever abusive to the children? Because that's a very strong character point in this new version…
LUTZ: You have to understand, before and after; the discipline was done by the children's mother. And Kathy's not an abusive person.
O: The film has it right, that you were their stepfather?
LUTZ: Yeah, at that time. And I adopted the children after I moved to California. The part of the story that's not true is that the children's father had died. He's still alive. That's a really terrible thing to be alleging.
O: Do they ever claim that he died in the first movie?
O: I wasn't sure. Like I said, I'd only made it halfway through the DVD. I got up to the point where the nun walks into the house.
LUTZ: That was Kathy's Aunt in real life.
O: And she was a nun?
LUTZ: Yup. At that point, she was an ex-nun.
O: I listened to the commentary on that part of the film, and Holzer claims a nun never went into the house. But your wife's Aunt was a nun, and she actually was in the house?
LUTZ: And she came over to Kathy's mom's after we moved out.
O: I was told that one of the scenes that takes place in the new version actually happened. But now I'm having my doubts. The daughter goes up on the roof of the house.
LUTZ: That is not true. Would you like to know that it is true? Would that make it easier for you?
O: No. I'm just trying to dispel some of this stuff for myself. The people at the junket kept saying this stuff was true, and that it was in the book.
LUTZ: The list of what's true in that movie is a very short list. I'd be glad to give you the list.
O: Please do. That's what I'm interested in.
O: Like I said, there were a lot of claims going around that some of the stuff in the film actually happened.
LUTZ: I think that list will help you.
O: That list helps greatly. So, basically, the whole movie is horseshit.
LUTZ: Your words, not mine. But I don't think they're inappropriate.
O: Next, lets talk about the Warrens (an interview with Lorraine Warren, conducted by Paulington, appears elsewhere on the site) and Kaplan.
O: I recently met Lorraine.
LUTZ: She's cool. She's really something. I love her.
O: I got the sense that she liked to tell stories.
O: One of the things I'm wondering about…She says she left the Amityville house, and the spirits followed her and her husband back to their home. I have a little bit of a problem believing that part of the story, just from my knowledge of ghosts. What do you think? Do you believe those spirits could have left your home and followed them?
LUTZ: Yes. That's happened too many time; I've heard about it too many times.
O: Just from people being in the house?
O: Okay, can I tell you a story?
LUTZ: Of course.
O: I don't know if you're going to believe this or not, and this probably has nothing to do with anything, but as soon as I hung up the phone with you the other day, like seconds after I hung up the phone, a car spun out of control in front of me. And hit another car. And the bumper went flying into the road. I was just like, "Wow." I just thought it was a weird coincidence. It happened just seconds after I hung up the phone with you.
O: I just thought it was weird, because it literally happened after hanging up the phone with you. My street isn't like a highway, or anything. I think the speed limit through there is fifteen miles an hour. I didn't even see what the car did. I just heard a smash. I turned around, and the bumper was in the street. The kid got out of the car and was wondering around, asking for a phone.
LUTZ: Was he okay?
O: Yeah, he was fine. He was okay. Like I said, he must have been going ten, fifteen miles an hour. He wasn't going very fast.
LUTZ: And it was dry out?
O: Yeah, completely dry. It's sunny-hot here. I don't know what happened, or what that means. I just thought it was weird.
LUTZ: It is. It's not surprising, it happens. (Laughs) Sorry about that.
O: That's quite all right. I've had a few experiences with the super natural that I can't explain. Speaking of which, how do you feel about Ouija boards?
LUTZ: I think they're kind of like a radio. And what you are tuning into is not what you actually think you're tuning into. I think they're pretty dangerous.
O: I believe they're dangerous also.
LUTZ: I think very few people have the strength of character and mind to operate them properly. And I don't understand why the FDA allows them. (Laughs)
O: You would never play with one, especially after all the things that have happened to you?
LUTZ: No, I haven't ever since spending time with the Warrens back in 76. That was twenty-eight years ago, or whatever it was. I've learned never to say never. Does that make sense? If anything were to ever take place, it wouldn't be done as a parlor game, and it wouldn't be done without real thought ahead of time.
O: Yeah, you've really got to know how to use those. I know about opening and closing the door. If you let something in, you have to make sure it gets out.
LUTZ: When you're on drugs or alcohol, your inhibitions are dulled. I think doorways work in the same way. It can be incredibly dangerous.
O: Do you think you, as a person, are more accessible to spirits? Some people are very accessible…Does that make sense?
LUTZ: I think it does. I think, the way I look at it, I pay more attention to the things going on around me. And I pay more attention to the things that are said, just in general, than I did back then.
O: Do you think, back then, you were more accessible?
LUTZ: (Laughs) I think I was more susceptible.
O: You never were possessed while you were in the house.
LUTZ: No, sir.
LUTZ: Of the Defeo family? No, that's not true.
O: When I heard that, I was like, "Who in their right mind would let their kids sleep in a bed like that?"
LUTZ: That's not true.
O: I understand why you would never go back into the house to get the stuff that was left there. But as far as sending movers back in to get your stuff? Was it because you felt everything in the house was tainted?
LUTZ: Wood is not a conductor for that kind of stuff. Everything else is. Wood will not hold the energy that other things will.
O: The one thing you took was the wood chest, right?
LUTZ: Yes, as a matter of fact, I'm sitting in front of it right now.
O: It held all of your family pictures. I would assume that's a pretty important thing to have, those pictures of your family?
LUTZ: We did get some, but we didn't get them all by any means.
O: What eventually happened to all that stuff?
LUTZ: It was auctioned off in May of 1976.
O: So people just came in and took the stuff?
LUTZ: We had an auctioneer go in and run that.
O: So you were able to get reimbursed for all that stuff. It's not like someone went in there independently and claimed it all.
LUTZ: We still owned the house until August of that year.
O: Have you ever heard of anything happening to the people that bought some of the stuff at that auction? Are there any stories about people that had taken things out of that house?
O: I don't even know how to respond to that. It's just weird.
LUTZ: It really is. It's sad. Some people have put items on eBay, and said they came from the auction. And that they've had trouble with them ever since. Some of the stuff I've seen them put on there, I don't remember ever being in the house. But that doesn't mean they weren't. My memory's not that good about that stuff. You know? Little trinkets, and that kind of stuff? Who the Hell remembers what they had twenty-five years ago? Sometimes you do. Sometimes you don't.
O: I was talking about the Warrens and Kaplan a minute ago. I realize there's kind of a thing going on between these two parties. Do you really believe that Kaplan is a fraud?
LUTZ: There's no doubt about it.
O: What was his deal with the Vampires? I didn't get it. The History Channel DVD didn't really get into that aspect of the story.
LUTZ: He had a background as a Vampirologist.
O: What does that mean?
LUTZ: He was someone that actually believed and studied vampires.
O: He wasn't actually going and trying to catch some, or something?
O: Did Kaplan actually show up on your lawn with a bunch of witches in tow?
LUTZ: That's what the news reported.
O: Did he actually do that?
LUTZ: I wasn't there. It was reported on the news. I was not there.
O: This really has to be difficult for you, just considering all the wrong information out there?
LUTZ: (Laughs) That's a real nice way to look at it. Thank you. There's so much of it, you cannot police it. All you can do is put up some websites and try to inform people. Policing all the wrong information can't be done…I just learned yesterday that the book's going to be republished now. I was told in January that that wasn't possible, because MGM interfered with the publishing rights. The story about this stuff just goes on, and on, and on.
O: That's what it sounds like.
LUTZ: I did put a PDF file on the MGM section of the website. I don't know if you saw that?
O: No, that was something I was looking for, and I actually did not find that (court documents concerning the litigation between Mr. Lutz and MGM are available on Lutz's Amityville Horror site).
LUTZ: If you go to the website, and click on the MGM icon at the top, there is a PDF file there.
O: Yeah, I was looking for that, and missed it.
LUTZ: That is the latest thing we've filed with the court. It will give you an idea about what is going on with the lawsuit itself. It is a public document. It's not under seal, so anybody can see it.
O: I've only got a few more questions, and these are lighter questions. Since everybody asked Ryan Reynolds about you, I figured I'd ask you about Ryan Reynolds. How do you feel about him portraying you on-screen, just as an actor in general?
O: He could have contacted you, right? You would have been okay with him talking to you about the role?
LUTZ: That's easy for me to say now, isn't it? That time has passed.
O: If he had of approached you, you wouldn't have turned him away?
LUTZ: That's my point. It's easier for me to say "yes" now. Okay.
O: I get you. Can I ask what you think about James Brolin?
LUTZ: I liked Jim. I met him after the movie was done. We weren't allowed access to that movie site either. However you want to look at it. I understand Jim to be a gentleman. And a really nice guy to be around. I met him two times. Once in England, and once on the Merv Griffin show.
O: You guys went on the Merv Griffin show together?
O: That's kind of cool.
LUTZ: Kathy and I, James Brolin, and Rob Steiger.
O: One last question. You told me about this on the phone the other day. You fell asleep during the Ring. Which I thought was kind of funny.
LUTZ: I'm an old guy. I'll fall asleep during anything.
O: Going back to that, do any movies scare you at all? Or does anything scare you, now?
LUTZ: I can't recall the last time I was frightened. Part of that comes with faith. Part of that comes with genuine belief, not the childhood belief I had back then. I'm not saying I'm fearless. I'm certainly not. I'm constantly concerned for the well being of those I love and care about. Fear is not something that is part of my life.
O: All right. Well, I think that does it for right now.
LUTZ: You can call me back anytime.
O: Thank you for talking to me today.
LUTZ: Thank you for allowing me an opportunity to clear some of this stuff up. I really appreciate it.
O: It was great talking to you. Bye.
And that was my conversation with George Lutz. An exceptionally nice person with a Hell of a story to tell. Hopefully, in the near future, I can bring you George's review of the new film. Until then, stay safe. And leave the Ouija board alone.