Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers
Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers (a.k.a Halloween 666: The Origin of Michael Myers, Halloween 6: The Curse of Michael Myers, and Halloween 6: The Producer's Cut) is the sixth installment of the Halloween Series of horror films. This film actually attempts to explain the reason behind Michael Myers's madness and his motive. The film was released in 1995 to mixed reviews. This film marked the last time Donald Pleasence would appear on screen, as he died during the lengthy production period. When they went back for reshoots and edits, the Dr. Loomis role was largely reduced.
It turns out that the events of Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers were just a dream that Jamie Lloyd (Played by Danielle Harris then, now played by J.C. Brandy) was having one night in the sanitarium in 1989. Later that year, Jamie and her murderous uncle, Michael Myers, were abducted by the Man in Black. No, not Johnny Cash, Will Smith or Tommy Lee Jones; Dr. Terrence Wynn (Mitch Ryan from Dharma and Greg). Jamie Lloyd has a baby, which is to be Michael's final sacrifice, and Jamie is killed off. The baby's name is Stephen Lloyd and his father is either Michael or Wynn, depending on the version you watch. More people named Strode take Stephen and protect him from Michael. Tommy Doyle (Paul Rudd, in his film debut; yes, even before Clueless), one of the kids Laurie was babysitting in 1978 (played back then by Brian Andrews, not that anyone cares), returns to keep the baby away from Michael, and briefly explains what makes Michael Myers tick. It is revealed that Michael Myers is a pawn in a weird cult known as Thorn. Michael has no choice but to kill off his bloodline for the benefit of Thorn, and all this crazy mumbo-jumbo that you'll never understand in a billion years.
Many Strodes get killed off in this film, but Tommy Doyle survives. Dr. Loomis has one final showdown with Michael Myers toward the end of the film and is killed off. This is one of the most famous scenes in this underrated film.
Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers has one of the worst production histories of any film in the Halloween franchise. They had more problems than Jaws, a movie that featured a mechanical shark that wouldn't work, a drunk co-star, problems filming on the ocean, a delayed schedule, and an inflated budget.
Halloween fan and nerd Daniel Farrands wrote the screenplay, and felt he needed to tie all of the films together, whether the endings from 4 and 5 made any sense or not. Donald Pleasence called the script the scariest of all the Halloweens. Unfortunately, it was rewritten drastically.
Director Joe Chapelle's vision didn't mesh well with the producers or cast. He literally had no interest in making a Halloween film. Like at all. Where is he now? The same place all failed Halloween directors go, CSI.
In the original version, called the Producers Cut, Michael Myers is Stephen's father. Another major difference is that the scenes are longer, there is more Loomis, and the Thorn stuff is explained a bit more and a lot better than its theatrical counterpart. The ending is also radically different. In the ending, Loomis unmasks Michael to reveal Wynn. Wynn grabs Loomis's arm and gives him the mark of Thorn. Loomis screams, intercut with Michael Myers walking away dressed as Wynn.
The producers, Moustapha Akkad, Malek Akkad, and Paul Freeman (not the guy who played Ivan Ooze in Mighty Morphin Power Rangers: The Movie) were quite happy with the original cut of the film, but this was the first time Halloween had to contend with a major studio—Miramax. The Weinsteins weren't happy with the cut, especially the ending, and made several suggestions.
The Producer's Cut was test screened to 15-year-old boys in 1995, at which point Donald Pleasence had died. These kids told the cast and crew immediately afterwards, "the ending sucked." The studio panicked. The film was rushed back into production. It had to be edited, reshot, Photoshopped, and mutilated to minimize the role of Dr. Loomis, and to remove almost all references to Thorn.
Alan Howarth's musical score was changed radically. Rather than the traditional piano-and-synthesizer arrangement, the Theatrical Cut opted for a hard rock/heavy metal electric guitar arrangement and the song "And Fools Shine On" by Brother Cain. Hey, at least it's better than Creed in Halloween H20! But you have to remember that this was the 90s and grunge was still fashionable, despite every effort made not to be.
Michael Myers's psychiatrist and protagonist. This was Pleasence's final film appearance.
The guy with the white mask, coveralls, and knife. Not the one named Jason.
Paul Rudd as Tommy Doyle
Previously played by Brian Andrews, Tommy Doyle is the little boy from the original film. Now an adult, Tommy reveals Michael's secret and gets paid to smirk a lot.
J.C. Brandy as Jamie Lloyd
Previously played by scream queen Danielle Harris in Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers and Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers, Jamie Lloyd is Laurie Strode (Jamie Lee Curtis in Halloween, Halloween II and later Halloween H20)'s daughter and Michael's niece. Pregnant with baby Stephen.
Stephen Lloyd... Some baby
He cries, giggles, and poops his pants. He's also Michael's next target.
Mitch Ryan as Dr. Wynn
Greg's Dad from Dharma and Greg is revealed to be the Man in Black from Halloween 5. Turns out he's the leader of some cult called Thorn that controls, or—wait for it—curses, Michael Myers. He wants Loomis to come out of retirement and return to Smith's Grove-Warren County Sanitarium to take over the reigns. Previously appeared as a throwaway character in the original film, played by Robert Phalen.
Marianne Hagan as Kara Strode
Another protagonist in the film. She was kicked out of her house to raise her young son, Danny, but now she's moved back in.
Devin Gardner as Danny Strode
Kara Strode's son and intended successor to Michael Myers after Myers is to kill off the rest of his bloodline.
Bradford English as John Strode
Kara's abusive asshole father. Danny's abusive asshole grandfather. Michael's abusive asshole, um... uncle? Step-uncle? Perfect knife fodder. The Strodes live in the Myers House, seemingly ignorant of its history and notoriety.
Kim Darby as Debra Strode
John's long-suffering wife. Blind as a bat without her glasses. Easy for her to bump into Michael Myers while hanging clothes up on the clothes line.
Leo Geter as Barry Simms
Obnoxious, irreverent, crude shock radio personality. Makes jokes about Michael Myers being in space and Loomis being dead. "Not dead, just very much retired." Celebrates the first Halloween in Haddonfield since its 1990 banning. Originally written for Howard Stern.
Mrs. Doubtfire as Mrs. Blankenship
Old lady who claims to have babysat Michael Myers the Halloween night he killed his sister in 1963, even though she was never in the original film. Her name is a Halloween 3 in-joke. She's supposed to be a member of the Thorn cult.
The film was an enormous flop, reaching Number 19 at the box office and grossing roughly $15 million on a $5 million budget. Not even enough to break even, let alone turn a profit. Remember, studios and theaters split the profits 50-50.
This film was highly criticized by the people who actually bothered to see it. Roger Ebert wondered why Michael Myers was so fat. Gene Shalit said that he, "didn't understand the logic at all. I mean, did Michael order cheeseburgers every minute of every day to get that fat? What's that funny mark on his wrist? Why did it take so long to get this film made? What's with that cult? What's with the dad from Dharma and Greg being this bad guy controlling Myers?"
Yet fans loved the film because of the plot twist and the fact that this was the last time we'd ever see Dr. Loomis or Jamie. But they did wonder what was next for the Halloween Series.
Home video releases
The film has been released in only a few editions. They include VHS, DVD, Echo Bridge Blu-ray with weak transfer, and Canadian Alliance Blu-ray with somewhat better transfer.
The film is part of the Halloween: The Complete Collection Blu-ray box set, released September 23, 2014 by Anchor Bay and Scream Factory.
Bootleg copies of the Producers Cut eventually started circulating on the internet, in video stores, and on television. People who have seen the Producers Cut claim that it is "way better than the theatrical version. They took this version and barfed it into theaters." These bootlegs have terrible picture and sound quality, but fans had put up with them for almost 20 years.
On October 27, 2013, Los Angeles's New Beverly Cinema screened—for the first time ever—the Producer's Cut. Daniel Farrands was present for a short Q&A, in which he stressed that there was still a major push in the works to get this version a proper release. He also said that the studio allowing this version to be screened ("reluctantly," Farrands adds) in public for the first time, and the overwhelmingly positive response, were both huge steps in the right direction.
In May 2014, Scream Factory and Anchor Bay Entertainment announced that the Producer's Cut would be included in their upcoming 15-disc release titled Halloween: The Complete Collection. It was released September 23, 2014. Only the 15-disc version contains the Producer's Cut. You only get the theatrical cut on the standard, 10-disc version. The Producer's Cut is loaded with extras, whereas the theatrical cut is more or less bare-bones.
This version was long rumored to be lost in a fire or some other mishap, but miraculously, Daniel Farrands had a 35mm copy in pristine condition. This was used for the Producer's Cut Blu-ray transfer. The picture quality is leaps and bounds better than any unofficial bootleg.
The box set is currently the number one bestselling title on Amazon.