Jamie Lloyd herself relives personally being stalked by Michael Myers!
Having starred in Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers and Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers when she was 11 and 12, actress Danielle Harris found an unlikely place to call home in the horror genre. In fact, she recently played a part in Rob Zombie's 2007 redux of Halloween. With October 31st right around the corner and in honor of MONSTERS HD Halloween Movie Marathon, we sat down with Harris to talk about why we all still love these films so much.
What was it like being so young and doing Halloween 4 and Halloween 5?
Danielle Harris: (Laughs) It was fun for me. I knew we were making a movie and I knew that it was make believe. I was more worried about being a good, little actress and being able to cry and scream really good. I think everybody made such an amazing effort to make sure that I knew that it wasn't real. In between takes we would joke around and it was just fun. It didn't really bother me until I got to be older. Doing the new Halloween was a lot harder for me, emotionally, than when I was a kid for some reason.
What was it like doing Rob Zombie's Halloween considering your history with the original franchise?
Danielle Harris: Rob is such a filmmaker. He's so completely different from anyone else that I've ever worked with. He's so confident and laid back and so trusting that you could just show up and do whatever you want to do. He's really good about pulling an amazing cast together that he doesn't have to tell them to do anything. It's very different from the other Halloween movies. It was brutal. It was brutal physically on me, it was brutal emotionally on me. It wasn't Rob pushing me it was me pushing myself because I really wanted to do it the best that I possibly could. A) Because I didn't have a whole lot to work with and and I knew that all of my fans were anticipating seeing what I could do as an actress 20 years later.
I think it was taking my clothes off and being, for the first time ever on film, in a movie where I'm being attacked. In the other Halloween's Michael never got me. I couldn't understand why it was so hard for me to shake it off when I would leave work. I was in my car going, "I've done this before. I've done this exact thing for two movies! It's the same guy in the mask! Why is this a problem for me?" It was just hard for me to get out of character. It was awesome. I think Rob's a rock star and I think he did a really great job.
Before doing Halloween 4 had your parents let you see the other movies?
Danielle Harris: My parents were pretty open about that stuff, because I was an actress, I started at 7, they knew that I knew that it wasn't real. It didn't really bother me. I always sort of viewed movies as "Oh, that's a cool scene" or "I want to do that!" Instead of watching it as if it was really happening. I think I saw pieces of it. I think I saw pieces of Halloween III maybe. Even when the movies are on TV, even my movies, and I have the lights off in my house or they're there, the music still freaks me out. Even though I know that it's fake, as I get older I have more of an issue with it than when I was a kid.
What did your friends think about it when you where in the early Halloween movies? These weren't kids movies you were doing...
Danielle Harris: Right, I think, myself included, had no idea about what that meant to be in a Halloween movie. We were what, 2 or 3 when all of this really started. I was a year old when Halloween came out. I had no clue what it was going to do. I had no idea that it was going to be a phenomenon. I just knew that it was going to be this movie and I was playing this character Jamie Lloyd. I knew that my mom had left me, or had died and I had foster parents. I knew that I was going to do some cool stuff on a fake roof. I really didn't understand the phenomenon until I got a little bit older.
My friends were like, "Cool, you're in a movie." They had no idea what Halloween was all about.
Do you have a favorite Halloween film?
Danielle Harris: You know, I really dug Rob Zombie's version of it. I think that Halloween 4 was maybe a better movie than Halloween 5. I had more fun doing Halloween 5 because I was in a lot more of it. I think I was a little bit older too and I was like, I had already done one and it was the second movie and I felt like I was the sh*t (laughs). I love the new take on it but I think that I'm a big fan of Halloween 4.
Why after all these years do you think we're still talking about these movies?
Danielle Harris: I think that Michael Myers is an icon. The bad guys, it's always the bad guys that everybody loves. It's Michael Myers, it's Freddy, it's Jason, they're like the Dracula and Frankenstein of our generation. I think it started a new wave of horror films. They're cult classics and they're something that everybody wants to watch on Halloween. I love the Saw movies but if it was a chance of sitting down and watching all of the Saw's or all of the Halloween's, of course I'd watch all of the Halloween movies. It just goes with the territory. It's just part of what you do. It's what you did with your friends when you were a kid.
Monsters HD that's got the Halloween Movie Marathon, what a great idea! That's exactly what I would be doing if I wasn't working. These are classics and people watch them over and over and over again. They actually know more about them, even the ones that I was in, than I do.
What do you have coming up next?
Danielle Harris: Well, I'm actually getting ready to direct my first feature film. I am starting pre-production in January. I am getting my cast together, my script is written, I'm basically financed and I'm going to be directing a slasher film. I don't know if I'm going to be in this one yet, I may do a little cameo. It sort of came about because I was wondering why there are no female serial killers. Why is it always these guys? I personally think women are crazy? Women kill people for different reasons than men do. I was always kind of fascinated by that. The tagline is basically, "What will you do to make it in Hollywood."
What is it called?
Danielle Harris: It's untitled right now.
The First Six Films in the Legendary Halloween Series Unspool on October 31 from 1:30-9:45PM ET; Backstory: Halloween, a Special One-Hour Doc Preceeds at 12:30PM ET.