Jordan Peele first rose to prominence in the comedy world with his sketch series Key and Peele, though his directorial debut Get Out became one of the biggest genre sensations of the decade, establishing him as a compelling horror filmmaker. With the premiere of his follow-up film Us, his upcoming reboot of The Twilight Zone, and working on a Candyman reboot all in the future, Peele chatted with WSJ. Magazine about some of his favorite aspects of the horror genre, which you can see above.
When it comes to his favorite horror movie villain, Peele admitted, "I'm gonna say Michael Myers [from Halloween]. He's not even evil, he's just curious. You know you can't talk him out of whatever he wants to do and he'd always do that thing where he'd stab somebody and he's sort of turn his head like that, which is the international symbol for 'fascinating.'"
Of course, when it came to assembling a supergroup of deadly characters, Peele represented a variety of different franchises for his sinister squad.
Peele explained, "If I was assembling an Avengers-style motley crew, I'd get Freddy [Krueger from A Nightmare on Elm Street] in there, I'd get Candyman in there, one of the little silver balls from Phantasm, you gotta throw Chucky [from Child's Play] in there so you get the shapes, and then one of the Graboids from Tremors. They would all ride it."
A horror movie trope that was solidified with slasher films in the '80s was the "Final Girl," the female protagonist who would ultimately outsmart the villain and outlast her peers, surviving until the film's finale.
"The final girl I most identify with has gotta be Jada Pinkett in Tales from the Crypt: Demon Knight 'cause she's black," Peele professed. "She's, like, the first black final girl that I can remember."
The debut of the first trailer for Us featured a creepy rendition of "I Got 5 on It" by Luniz, demonstrating Peele's unconventional use of music to set a creepy tone. The filmmaker went on to declare his favorite horror movie theme.
"So many good horror soundtracks and themes. A Nightmare on Elm Street theme is just, ugh, it just gets me," Peele confessed. "It's so creepy. It's like, just a perfect note choice progression."
Peele's Get Out demonstrated not only his skills with
"A B-horror movie? Critters. In retrospect, fairly bad, but, again, it gave me a wrong sort of feeling," Peele explained. "Those little things are so mischievous and so evil, they had those evil-ass faces."
Fans can check out Us in theaters on March 22nd and catch The Twilight Zone when it debuts on CBS
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