John Carpenter’s score for the original HALLOWEEN is a key ingredient to the movie’s legacy. It’s simplicity and moody atmospherics have solidified it as an instantly recognizable and terrifying piece of music that ranks among other renowned movie themes. A new featurette for the upcoming sequel digs into the creation of the movie’s new score, which takes the iconic theme from the original and gives it a modern feel, resulting in something that will make a new generation of audiences terrified just as viewers were in 1978.
“It’s almost like JAWS; you don’t need the symphony to tell you how to feel,” director David Gordon Green said at the start of the video, astutely summarizing the genius of Carpenter’s work. Carpenter talked about (via IndieWire) how excited he was to utilize all the new technology at his disposal to give HALLOWEEN’s music a new edge, and how together with his son Cody and godson Daniel Davies they were able to create some new sounds for the score.
“The score was done in 1978 on old tube synthesizers,” said Carpenter. “It was very crude. Well, today, the technology has just advanced, amazingly. And the sounds have become very sophisticated and deep. We adapted the old themes and refurbished them so they sound better. But then we sprinkled the new stuff.”
Among those new sounds are some new rhythms and strong percussions, and they even took the sounds from them rubbing their pants and incorporated it into the score. You can get a taste of their work in the track titled “The Shape Returns,” which takes the old theme and injects some new beats and soundscapes to give it a fresh, yet still haunting feel.
Go see HALLOWEEN on October 19.