'Halloween' Sequel: Is Michael Myers Alive? The Original Star Has a Theory
Nick Castle has never met William Shatner. The retired 71-year-old stuntman, actor, and filmmaker who famously played Michael Myers in John Carpenter’s enduring 1978 horror classic, Halloween, has never met the Star Trek actor whose face he wore to genre stardom.
“I’d like to meet him, because I think he’s a good actor,” Castle tells Inverse. “And I want to apologize for screwing up his face.”
Four decades after Halloween became a classic, Castle returned in October 2018 to breathe new life (literally) back into Michael Meyers in David Gordon Green’s sequel Halloween, hitting DVD and Blu-ray on January 15.
Set 40 years after the original, the new sequel sees a post-traumatic Laurie Strode (Jamie Lee Curtis) squares off with Michael (played onscreen by James Jude Courtney) after he escapes from a sanitarium to wreak havoc on Hallow’s Eve once again.
Castle emerged out of retirement for the new film to partially reprise his role of Michael Myers, providing the killer’s breathing as well as wearing the mask for one scene — the first time Michael and Laurie meet in 40 years.
“He breathes a lot like me,” Castle jokes of Michael’s breathing, which can be heard throughout the film and in the post-credits. “I didn’t take much direction other than breathe into my hand, simulating what it would be like to breathe under a mask. It was a matter of doing rests and efforts where it seemed logical. No special acting necessary.”
Regarding the fate of Michael Myers, Castle is confident in his theory as to why “The Shape” may still be alive even after his thrilling, seemingly definitive showdown against three generations of Strode women.
“I’ll tell you why he’s alive,” Castle says. “$175 million. No one’s going to let this thing not happen again. From the predatory position of a capitalist company, I’m sure they’ll want to continue this.”
“How they’ll manage to do it, remains to be seen, but I hope they do another one, and I hope they find a clever way to extend this franchise because I think fans have a lot of fun with this.”
Although a sequel is on the way, fans shouldn’t expect Castle back in the ghostly mask of Captain Kirk. Comfortable in retirement — “I have a lot of interests,” he says — the actor saw his work as a symbolic passing-of-the-torch, allowing him one last ride while bequeathing it to the new generation.
“He was a really good choice for this,” Castle says of his successor, James Courtney. “He also comes from stunt work. James told me he wanted to channel my work from the first one. We didn’t talk much about the differences, I left that to him. He took the job really seriously and I know he’s having a lot of fun.”
After the original Halloween was released in 1978, Castle turned to writing and directing; he co-wrote 1981’s Escape From New York with Carpenter, drafted the story of Steve Spielberg’s Hook, and directed the 1984 cult sci-fi classic The Last Starfighter. His last directorial effort was the 2006 direct-to-video feature Connors’ War, and his last screenplay credit was 2007’s August Rush.
“I’ve been retired now for eight or nine years. I haven’t been on a set in a while,” he says, which made his short-lived return “fun.” Reuniting with Curtis on the “pleasant” set in South Carolina was also “really special.”
“She spotted me and screamed ‘Castle!’ and gave me a big hug. It was quite a time. Just to be part of the show was really special.”
With Halloween and the film industry behind him, Castle kept a key memento from his legacy: Michael’s mask. “I have it right behind me in my house,” he says over the phone.
But it’s more than just a souvenir. For Castle, that mask is what makes the Halloween movies so powerful, and the thing that keeps them fresh and exciting to new audiences all these years later.
“I think what makes that movie work, and it is kind of the bottom line of that movie, is this weird mask,” he says. “As much as it is the music, the direction, the story, and everything else, I think if you didn’t have the right blank face that people read so much into, I think [the movie] wouldn’t have been what it was. All these things came together to make it a very interesting movie.”
Halloween hits Blu-ray and DVD on January 15. The film is available now on Digital HD.