When Michael Myers returned to the big screen in the 2018 Halloween requel, he was resurrected by James Jude Courtney, with a cameo appearance and assist on the breathing by the original 1978 Shape Nick Castle, but when the a new ending for the movie was shot, another person got to join that elite club of men behind the Myers mask, as Cody Robinson worked as Courtney’s stunt double the climax, fighting Jamie Lee Curtis’s Laurie Strode, performing the iconic sit up callback, and more.
In a candid and fun video conversation last week, Robinson discussed his time in Haddonfield, working with Courtney and Curtis during a week of reshoots in 2018, and he told us that he came to the project with a unique skill set already in place that proved perfect to portray Michael Myers. “In college, I majored in psychology with a focus on criminology,” he tells HDN, “so it was like instantly I started being drawn into horror, because I was reading about serial killers. I read all about these different types of real life characters, and then I would think about how that made me feel, reading books about them, reading stories about them, reading their case files, reading their psychological evaluations, and then seeing movies about that. Then seeing how that played into the horror genre itself.
“Seeing how when you see somebody like Michael Myers or Jason, or any of these litany of different actual human characters, murders and just crazy madmen that come after you, I wasn’t drawn into horror just because of the why it made me feel. I’m interested in that, but I was so drawn into horror because of the story it tells about the human psyche, and how some people find refuge (from) their own internal fears and their own issues by working through the exhilaration and the fear of a horror movie, and how people get that from different areas.
“With me, I’ve always had more of a draw to more spiritual horror movies, like stuff where it’s a demon or something coming after you, because I grew up in a religious environment. But people who don’t grow up in that might have more of a lean towards the slasher films, because to them, that’s a really real fear, that somebody bigger and stronger than you with more power and energy might come to kill you out of nowhere and you can do nothing about it. With me, I have years of being a police officer. I was a cop for five years, so I’ve been in a lot of bad situations with big people in dark buildings, so I’m not as scared of a person…
“Psychological thrillers are more my genre, what gets me going, what really turns that crank inside of you that gets going when you’re really into a horror movie. So when I watch something like a Friday the 13th or Halloween, I’ll watch them, but I’m not scared in the same way that some people might be. To me it’s more of an interest, like, wow this really gets to some people, and I love that.
“I think that’s kind of why I played that character of Michael Myers so well, because I’ve had an interest in what makes a killer a killer, and what makes people fearful about that, and what body motions might be more scary for whatever reason. When I was doing Michael, the reason why the mask is so scary, I determined personally, is that because of the mask and not really being able to see the eyes most of the time, it kind of simulates what they call in psychology the thousand-yard stare, where a person is literally not looking you in the eyes, they’re looking past you, and you are just an object in the foreground. It kind of dehumanizes the person that they’re looking at, and you would see that a lot of times with murderers and people that you would interview that were psychopaths and sociopaths.
“So that mask really, because there’s no expression on it, because you can’t ever see the eyes well, it feels like a thousand-yard stare going through your soul. Because I had done so many papers and (watched so many) films and stuff on killers, it sort of made me interested in playing a character like that. It fell in my lap, obviously, I didn’t go out seeking that; but it was something that was like, ‘Man, I’ve kind of training my whole life for this.'” (laughs)
In our discussion, of course we also talked about celebrating Halloween itself, and about Cody’s own journey to Haddonfield through stunt work, which started in the world of parkour, and includes appearances in Avengers: End Game, Venom, Gotham Knights, and many other huge films, and we talked much more of his experiences making Halloween and his place in the legacy of this hallowed franchise.
You can watch our full exclusive video interview with Cody Robinson below.
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