John Carpenter Explains Why He'll Never Watch His Old Movies Again

Throughout his career, filmmaker John Carpenter has given audiences some of the best films the horror genre has to offer, from Halloween to The Fog to Big Trouble in Little China. Despite these accomplishments, the director claimed watching any of his old movies is too emotionally agonizing an experience, as he sees only the mistakes and remembers the stressful experiences.

"Oh God, no. Don't ever make me do that," the filmmaker told The Guardian when asked if he revisited his films. "I don't want to see them again. I see the mistakes. That's all I can see. It'd be torture. Are you kidding? I don't want anything to do with them after I'm done."

As he's currently in the process of promoting a new album that compiles re-recordings of many of his film's classic themes, Carpenter elaborated to Playboy why he avoids his classics.

"The stress is just constant. You work like a coal miner. You don't feel like an artist. You can't wait to get done," Carpenter said of the experience of making a movie. "That's why I don't wanna look at 'em anymore. They only cause anxiety. If I sit and look at one of my movies, I'll think, 'Why did I do that? Why did I move the camera that way?' I can't handle it. And then, you know, rehearsing the actors can be fraught. There are no actors, as Robert Mitchum said. There are only actresses."

The filmmaker is serving as the executive producer of an upcoming installment Halloween franchise, being made by Blumhouse Productions. This marks the first time he's been directly involved in the series he helped create in decades. Carpenter might not revisit his movies, but Blumhouse founder Jason Blum has cited Carpenter's films as a template to make successful horror movies.

"I have no clue," Carpenter told The Guardian about how Blum developed this outlook. "My attempts at self-evaluation are doomed to fail because I'm terrible at it. All I do is go off instinct. I don't have the rules that Jason Blum has. He's much smarter than I am. I'm just a poor director trying to get by in this terrible world."

The upcoming Halloween sequel will be written and directed by David Gordon Green and Danny McBride, but Carpenter has reportedly made a "deal" to help compose the film's score.


The new sequel is slated to hit theaters on October 19, 2018.

[H/T The Guardian/Playboy]