FEARnet fans are familiar with Trick ‘R Treat: the Halloween anthology film starring the creepily adorable Sam has been a staple on our linear channel for years now. The film first played for the public in 2007, played a half-dozen times more at various film festivals, then languished on the shelf until Warner Bros. and Legendary Pictures finally released the film straight to DVD in time for Halloween 2009.
Now, in time for Halloween 2013, Legendary Pictures is hosting a special screening of Trick ‘R Treat in Los Angeles, followed by a Q&A with director Michael Dougherty and cast members. We got to Dougherty first and asked him about the screening, directing a cult classic, and possible sequels.
How did this special theatrical screening come about?
Magic! Legendary has always been a massive supporter of the film, and they’ve definitely noticed the swelling of fans who have embraced it over the years. They thought it would be really fun to put on a big event screening for it at the Egyptian Theater, which is a great venue. Legendary just wants to continue building its audience. They’ve noticed that Trick ‘R Treat’s audience has grown over the years, which is rare for a film. New technologies have helped introduce the film to a wider audience: VOD, iTunes, Amazon, etc. They thought it would be fun to live stream it, do a Q&A with the cast and crew, and let people tune in via Facebook.
Will people be able to watch the movie on Facebook or just the Q&A?
The whole thing, that night. They will be able to watch the movie for free, streaming on the Legendary Facebook page.
And of course, they can always tune in for the 24-hour marathon on FEARnet.
Usually when a movie languishes on a studio shelf, people forget about it, or assume it is terrible. Did you ever expect Trick ‘R Treat to flourish like it did?
I always hoped that would happen. I definitely wished for that to happen - then it did. A lot of times, what you hope for and wish for don’t always pan out. At the same time, I felt like it was meant to be. I knew there was an audience for it, and with each successive screening of it, I only felt that fandom grow, and watched it grow online.
Any plans for a Trick ‘R Treat 2?
Not currently. I think we are still letting the first film build its audience. The first movie found its home with a lot of horror fans first, obviously. Only now is it being embraced by the mainstream. We want to use the screening on the 28th as a way to expand that further, by letting people watch for free on Facebook.
Now that you are too old to trick-or-treat, what does a typical Halloween consist of for you?
Scaring trick-or-treaters! We have a big cemetery display going up this week. I have a house that already looks haunted from the outside, and I like giving kids the memorable Halloween scare that I had as a kid. There was always one house that went ape-shit for Halloween. I’m giving kids that experience. Then I invite friends over and it kind of becomes a little party and we take turns scaring the kids. And the parents want to see their kids scared! Any other time of year you’d get in trouble for scaring kids. This is the one night of the year when parents are okay with it and encouraging it.
For FEARnet, you have done several short films with Sam taking on other holidays like Easter and Mother’s Day. Are there any other holidays you would like to see Sam tackle?
I’d love to see him face off against Santa Claus at some point.
Watch the Trick 'R Treat livestream on Facebook on October 28th at 7:30pm PT. And don't forget to tune in to FEARnet's 24-hour Trick 'R Treat marathon, which starts at 6am ET on October 31st. Find out how to get FEARnet here!