Last week was one of both sadness and elation. First came sadness when we got word that Paramount had shut down pre-production of Friday the 13th Part 13 (allegedly after getting cold feet following Rings poor Box Office showing). But then came elation with the announcement that a new Halloween film is in the works with an October 2018 target release date. Michael Myers is coming home… again!
Halloween 2018 is being produced by Jason Blum and will proceed with the blessing of original Halloween scribe John Carpenter, who may himself return to score the film. David Gordon Green will direct and Danny McBride is writing the script. The duo is best known for collaborating on stoner-comedies Pineapple Express and Your Highness, and may seem unlikely choices for reviving a seminal horror franchise. But it’s exciting to know that series is getting a thorough infusion of new blood.
And speaking of new blood, casting news promises to be electrifying. Since we’ve been told Halloween 2018 will pick up after the events of Halloween 2, many Horror Freaks are anticipating the return of Dr. Loomis, Michael Myers’ psychiatrist made famous by incredible turns from Donald Pleasence, who played the part to perfection. Indeed, Pleasence, who passed away in 1995, leaves some very big shoes to fill. So who do you think can handle the role?
I love playing “Armchair Casting Director” when upcoming films are announced, and today, I’m offering my Top 15 recommendations for actors who would be awesome as Dr. Loomis in Halloween 2018. Jason, David, Danny, if you guys are listening, feel free to use any of my suggestions! Check out my choices below and let me know who you think would make an amazing Dr. Loomis in the Comments section!
Bill Nighy from Underworld (2003), Shaun of the Dead (2004), Underworld: Evolution (2006), Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest (2006), Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End (2007), Underworld: Rise of the Lycans (2009), and I, Frankenstein (2014).
I think there’s a reason the 4th and 5th installments of the Underworld franchise weren’t as successful as the first three: They don’t include Bill Nighy. While Kate Beckinsale is certainly a major draw, it was Nighy’s Viktor who gave the series a dignified yet terrifying aura. He’s got the academic air and, as an actor, he knows how to go to dark places.
Patrick Stewart from TV’s Star Trek: The Next Generation, Star Trek: Generations (1994), Star Trek: First Contact (1996), Star Trek: Insurrection (1998), X-Men (2000), Star Trek: Nemesis (2002), X-Men 2 (2003), X-Men: The Last Stand (2006), X-Men: Days of Future Past (2014), and Green Room (2016).
It might seem strange to nominate the guy who’s best known for playing father figures in PG-13 franchises like Star Trek: The Next Generation (Picard) and X-Men (Dr. Xavier). Indeed, I’m not sure I would have thought to choose him if not for the chilling performance he gave in 2016’s Green Room. Yes, he’s charming as hell (not traits Loomis in known for) but he also knows how to be intense and driven—and even scary. He’d give Loomis a unique and complicated treatment.
Danny Trejo from Desperado (1995), From Dusk Till Dawn (1996), Con Air (1997), The Devil’s Rejects (2005), Halloween (2007), Predators (2010), and Machete (2010).
I know he’s made a name for himself playing some of modern film’s most dastardly villains, the kind of characters that represent the dregs of society, but I absolutely believe Trejo is a talented actor with an extensive range that has yet to be utilized. Of course he’d have to cut his hair (or rock a pony tail), but he’s bring a new vibe and much needed diversity to the series. And it would be one hell of a promotion from his job as asylum janitor in Rob Zombie’s Halloween (2007).
Anthony Hopkins from The Silence of the Lambs (1991), Bram Stoker’s Dracula (1992), The Edge (1997), Meet Joe Black (1998), Hannibal (2001), Hearts in Atlantis (2001), Red Dragon (2002), The Wolfman (2010), The Rite (2011), and HBO’s Westworld.
In Hannibal Lecter, Anthony Hopkins is well versed as both a psychiatrist and a psychopath, insights that would surely make for a knock-out performance. I honestly believe that Hopkins tackling the role of Dr. Loomis would result in nothing short of an Oscar worthy performance.
Jack Nicholson from One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest (1975), The Shining (1980), The Witches of Eastwick (1987), Batman (1989), Wolf (1994), and Mars Attacks! (1996).
Jack Nicholson just came out of retirement, singing on to appear in the comedy Toni Erdmann. If Jack’s back in action, it would be an absolute coup getting him to play Dr. Loomis. And, of course, it would be a return to horror for the actor who became synonymous with Jack Torrance for his portrayal in Stanley Kubrick’s The Shining. Nicholson has the ability to play serious, academic roles, but he’s got a bit of inherent sleaziness that would also work perfectly for Loomis.
Peter Stormare from Fargo (1996), The Lost World: Jurassic Park (1997), The Big Lebowski (1998), 8MM (1999), Constantine (2005), The Killing Room (2009), Undocumented (2010), Dylan Dog: Dead of Night (2010), Bad Milo (2013), Dark Summer (2015), and John Wick: Chapter 2 (2017).
While he’s primarily known for playing villains (exemplified by his portrayal of Satan in Constantine), I think Peter Stormare would make a fantastic Loomis, who is (after all) no angel. There’s absolutely something dark driving the Dr.’s obsession with Michael Myers—something that goes beyond a medical relationship. Stromares’ brooding would hint at similarities between the two archetypes, a paralleled that would make for gripping subtext.
Jeff Goldblum from The Fly (1986), Jurassic Park (1993), Independence Day (1996), The Lost World: Jurassic Park (1997), and Independence Day: Resurgence (2016).
Jeff Goldblum is one of those actors who always brings a bit of himself to the roles he plays: His cadence, his facial expressions, his mannerisms; so he’d definitely give the role of Loomis a unique (if predictable) twist. Of course, Goldblum always brings the perfect amount of off-kilter intensity to the screen, something that would go a long way in creating the perfect new Loomis.
Jeff Bridges from Starman (1984), The Fisher King (1991), The Vanishing (1993), Fearless (1993), The Big Lebowski (1998), and Iron Man (2008).
Dude, how awesome would it be to see “The Dude” in the new Halloween movie? His turns in The Vanishing and Iron Man show how the actor masterfully hides nefarious intentions behind a friendly demeanor. There’s definitely something wicked in the subtext of Loomis, and Bridges is more than capable of subtly bringing that darkness to the surface.
David Cronenberg from Night Breed (1990), To Die For (1995), Extreme Measures (1996), and Jason X (2001).
Yes, I’m talking about David Cronenberg, the director who practically defined the body-horror subgenre with films like Rabid, Shivers, The Fly, and Dead Ringers. He’s been appearing in his own films via clever cameos ala Alfred Hitchcock for decades, but anyone who saw his turn as Dr. Philip K. Decker in 1990’s Nightbreed knows exactly why I think he’s make for a perfect Dr. Loomis.
Denise Crosby from TV’s Star Trek: The Next Generation, Pet Sematary (1989), Deep Impact (1998), and Dark Intensions (2015).
No, I’m not just suggesting Denise Crosby because gender-flipping well-known characters has become a hip Hollywood hook, nor am I picking her name at random. I’ve always felt this actress never had the perfect role to truly highlight her diverse talents, and I imagine Dr. Loomis would be the perfect role to prove her range. Crosby is always no nonsense, tough as nails, but genuinely human.
Jim Carrey from Once Bitten (1985), The Cable Guy (1996), The Truman Show (1998), Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (2004), The Number 23 (2007), and Kick Ass 2 (2013).
I’m not suggesting that Green and McBride draw on their comic roots in order to turn Halloween 2018 into a wacky affair. Sure, Jim Carrey is best known for playing absolute idiots in films like Ace Ventura and Dumb and Dumber, he was serious a cancer in The Number 23, proving his he’s no one-trick pony. A restrained yet slightly unhinged Carrey could bring the perfect amount of imbalance to Dr. Loomis.
Jessica Lange from Cape Fear (1991), Big Fish (2003), Sybil (2007), and TV’s American Horror Story.
Even without working these themes into a script, casting a woman as Dr. Loomis would instantly imply some sort of maternal relationship between the psychiatrist and Michael Myers. The Shape would be seen as a rebellious child, and Loomis could use motherly love as bait to lure Myers back into captivity. Jessica Lange would bring an utter exquisiteness to the part. Just imagining it gets me excited!
Val Kilmer from True Romance (1993), Tombstone (1993), Batman Forever (1995), The Island of Dr. Moreau (1996), The Ghost and the Darkness (1996), Red Planet (2000), and 7 Below (2012).
Remember when John Travolta popped up in Pulp Fiction after what seemed like a complete disappearance? It struck instant nostalgia and relaunched the actor’s career. I think the world is ready for a Val Kilmer comeback, and playing Dr. Loomis could be the perfect opportunity to launch a comeback. Of course, he’d have to promise to swear off his diva ways, behavior that turned the once lauded thespian into a pariah by the late 1990s.
John Malkovich from Dangerous Liaisons (1988), Mary Reilly (1996), Mulholland Falls (1996), Con Air (1997), Shadow of the Vampire (2000), and Transformers: Dark of the Moon (2011).
Because John Malkovich, that’s why! What more do you need?
Laurence Fishburne from Apocalypse Now (1979), Boyz n the Hood (1991), Event Horizon (1997), The Matrix Trilogy, Assault on Precinct 13 (2005), and Predators (2010).
If there’s any chance Halloween 2018 will culminate in a physical throw-down between Dr. and Patient, Laurence Fishburne would make for an epic confrontation. But that’s not the only reason why the actor would be a knock-out as Dr. Loomis. Fishburne can be super cool like Morpheus, commanding like he was in Event Horizon, and completely nuts like he was in Predators. Here’s a guy who would bring incredible depth and gritty intensity to the important role.