Legendary author R.L. Stine (Goosebumps, Fear Street, The Haunting Hour) and writer/producer Seth Grahame-Smith (Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter, Pride and Prejudice and Zombies) have teamed up for the new Disney+ series Just Beyond, and we recently talked to both gentlemen about the project, as well as celebrating Halloween in their own lives, and why young people of every generation gravitate to horror.
Premiering today (10/13) on Disney+, the eight episode Just Beyond is an anthology based on Stine’s book series of the same name. From the official synopsis, the show “tells astonishing and thought-provoking stories of a reality just beyond the one we know. Each episode introduces viewers to a new cast of characters who must go on a surprising journey of self-discovery in a supernatural world of witches, aliens, ghosts, and parallel universes.”
Asked why young people generation after generation find themselves drawn to scary stories, Stine tells HDN, “Well I think it’s a very scary world for kids in real life, and I think these stories, which are creepy and fun and also don’t go too far and have happy endings, I think they are a nice escape for kids. I think it’s a way for them to escape the real world, and in some ways deal with what they’re really afraid of.”
Grahame-Smith adds, “I agree with everything he said. I just know from my own experience as a kid who turned to horror early and loved the excitement of getting right up to the edge of what I could handle in terms of intensity, whether it was in a book or a movie. I have a lot of memories of hanging out with friends, you know sleepovers, middle of the night, daring each other to watch a VHS of this slasher movie or that slasher movie in the ’80s, and I don’t know – (to Stine) Bob, like you say, I turned out alright.”
Laughing, Stine responded simply, “Yes you did.”
Stine also reveals the real life Halloween incident from his childhood about the worst costume his parents ever bought him at a time when he wanted a scary costume, which helped inspire his story The Haunted Mask, while Grahame-Smith reminisces about a particular C3PO Star Wars costume from his Halloween past.
Just Beyond is available now Disney+, as part of their Hallowstream 2021 programming event.
You can watch our full exclusive interview with R.L. Stine and Seth Grahame-Smith below.
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