Few names conjure images of nightmares and horror more than John Carpenter. The veteran filmmaker practically invented horror with 1978’s Halloweenand has since directed such genre classics as Fog, talk, they live, in the face of madness, even more. The filmmaker has been largely inactive since his last theatrical release, parentingIn 2010, he enjoyed staying behind the scenes and contributing to the score to David Gordon Green’s recent Halloween reboot trilogy.
This Halloween, Carpenter is coming out of semi-retirement with a new anthology series on Peacock, John Carpenter’s Suburban Screams, which blends true crime stories with slasher-style splatter. spoke to Jordan Roberts, one of the show’s executive producers and showrunner and director of one of the show’s standout episodes. a killer comes homeWhich is probably the scariest 45 minutes you’ve seen this year.
: How did you get involved? suburban screams,
Jordan Roberts: I had done some work with Tony DiSanto (one of the executive producers) and he approached me for this project. He said John Carpenter was part of it and asked if I wanted to run and direct it. I said, “Yes.” It’s Genesis, simple as that.
John Carpenter is known as a master of the horror genre. What was your initial meeting with him like and how did you both work on the series together?
I studied John’s films in film school. I had seen all this in my childhood, so I know their film language. Obviously, I’m not John Carpenter, but I know his film style. When I first met him, I wondered if I was going to be friends with this guy. How is this going to work?
When John speaks, he is heard. Mostly he let me do my thing and I let him do mine. I tried my best to work with him and spread his aesthetic across all the episodes, while also leaving my mark on the episodes I directed.
Just curious, what’s your favorite John Carpenter movie?
I mean, it’s bound to happen talk, This is his masterpiece, isn’t it? It is a wonderful cinematic journey into paranoia.
suburban screams Straddles the line between fantasy and true crime. Why did you use that approach to tell these stories?
I started my career in documentary films so I am a filmmaker at heart. Why limit yourself to only one way of telling a story? When you can bring truth to something scary, the truth really intensifies the horror experience. When you mix genres together in a successful way, you can create a new experience. with suburban screamsI’m hoping to create a new genre that doesn’t just apply to horror.
In addition to producing the series, you also directed an episode, a killer comes home, What made you want to tell that story specifically?
I wanted to make sure the genre was respectful of the victims. I didn’t want to glorify the murderer. I wanted to create the feeling that the audience was being hunted by this real-life monster. a killer comes home It had all the elements of truth and it appealed to my storytelling technique. It was the right thing for me to do. You know, other directors are amazing, but this one appealed to me and I wanted to take a stab at it.
Because of his deep association with the series, did Carpenter influence the way you shot a killer comes home, Did that consciously or subconsciously influence how you approached the material?
It’s all of the above. You can’t help but be influenced by it. I mean, the show is called John Carpenter’s Suburban Screams, [Laughs] So, I used long takes and did some Steadicam stuff that is hallmark of Carpenter’s classic style. But I wanted it to be seen in all six episodes, not just mine.
a killer comes home it’s like real life Halloween, I mean, the tagline of the movie was ‘The Night He Came Home.’ There are all these parallels in this episode that echo Carpenter’s film. There’s also a scene where the killer hijacks a vehicle to quickly drive to his hometown.
it’s interesting. When that story came out, I asked John if he wanted to do it because of all the similarities Halloween, And he refused. So I was like, okay, so I’m going to do this.
What do you expect? suburban screams Apart from scaring the audience, what is achieved?
I mean, scaring people is part of it. But I think there’s a depth that can come from the basic emotions of fear. It forces you to look at yourself and wonder what you’re afraid of. I think horror as a genre enables you to do that.
When you scare people, perhaps on some kind of subconscious level, you’re asking questions about the nature of the human experience, and that’s too deep for a horror TV show. But that’s how I see the world. What can I tell you?
John Carpenter’s Suburban Screams Now streaming on Peacock.