There are many things in life that I do or many things that I collect simply because I’m a bona fide mentally disturbed completest. I’ll sit through the worst Hitchcock film, eat the most disgusting item from a DD&D restaurant, travel to distant lands to see a VP grave, etc. – all in the name of obsession and the ever-growing scavenger hunt mentality of life. And so it goes with Halloween III: Season of the Witch. At some point, I decided to get autographs from the actors who played Michael Myers in the film franchise, despite the fact that each film seems to get progressively worse. That’s one thing. Halloween III is another. This was the film in the series that didn’t even feature the killer Michael Myers.
At one time, the Halloween franchise was envisioned to be an anthology series with differing story lines in each film. I can’t testify to the crappiness of the film because to date I’ve never seen it (although – naturally – I own it). But I’ve heard.
Since I was attending the Horrorhound Weekend in Indianapolis on November 11, 2012, which was a Halloween franchise of sorts, I figured I should gather some celebrity encounters for the Halloween section of my album that represent Halloween III. Fortunately the two individuals who were present from that film both had some interesting careers in their own right.
Tommy Lee Wallace was both the co-writer and the director of the film. His Halloween history went back to the first film on which he worked as a production designer and editor. Because he worked on the designs of the set, there were certain scenes in which he actually portrayed Michael Myers aka ‘The Shape’ – for instance the scene in which ‘The Shape’ attacks Laurie when she is in the closet, so that he would know exactly where to strike the breakaway set pieces.
He’d go on to direct Halloween III: Season of the Witch in addition to Stephen King’s IT, Fright Night Part 2, Once You Meet a Stranger, and episodes of the 80’s version of The Twilight Zone. Yep, lots of sequels, lots of remakes. Mr. Wallace had a cool shot of himself on the set of Halloween III, so I opted to utilize his association with this film instead of the various shots of himself as Michael Myers.
I didn’t know much about Tom Atkins when I met him, so unfortunately I didn’t quite appreciate the encounter as much as I might now. He was the lead actor in Halloween III: Season of the Witch, so thusly this was the photo that I chose to have him sign. But he also had a very lucrative career in other films and television. Among the film credits were The Fog, Escape from New York, Creepshow, and Lethal Weapon. He also has a seemingly unending string of credits on TV: M*A*S*H, The Rockford Files, Baretta, Harry O, and Rhoda to just scratch the surface.
My friend Peter had particular interest in Atkins from his Rockford and Harry O appearance, but I didn’t know that at the time or else I would have made him aware that I was meeting him. It looks like I may have another chance to get a signed photo for him this summer.
Even though Halloween 3 may not stand out in the canon of extraordinary films, I’m thankful that because of the film, I was able to meet these two interesting guys from the film industry.
UPDATE: I had another nice encounter with Tom Atkins at the Horrorhound event in Cincinnati on March 22, 2015. This time I was getting a signed photo for my friend Peter, who preferred that it be on a shot from The Rockford Files. He did in fact have one, which I had personalized to Peter and told him how much of a fan he was. I also asked if he had any stories to share from his time working on that show and Harry-O that I might be able to share with Peter. Nice guy that he was, he bluntly told me that “no” he didn’t. He did however say that of all of the actors with whom he has ever worked, James Garner was hands-down the best. He was nice enough to pose for another free photo with me, as well as with my girlfriend Carolyn.
Celebrity encounters of the 2012 Indianapolis Horrorhound Halloween reunion weekend will continue…
Celebrity encounters from the 2015 Cincinnati HorrorHound will continue…