It figures that it would take news about a Halloween movie to get me to blog for the first time in almost two months. I’ve been busy. But today’s news is worth getting excited about.

Details about the new project, Halloween Returns, started popping up online over the weekend. It wasn’t until this morning that an official announcement came at the website. The new film isn’t a sequel, or prequel, or reboot — according to the producers, it’s a “recalibration” of the Halloween story. Whatever that means. If I’m going to take a guess, I’m going to say it’s a new Michael Myers story, not connected to the previous films, but acknowledging that they exist. Kind of the like the Halloween comics or (shameless plug coming) Halloween: Masks.

I’m good with that. I don’t know if we need to connect this new film to any of the previous Halloweens, and I’m not sure the audience would be interested in seeing those older films anyway.

I’m looking forward to seeing what Marcus Dunstan and Patrick Melton are going to bring to the Halloween mythos. I’m not really a Saw fan, but I’ve seen all the films, and I’ve seen Feast and The Collection. I’m sure they’ll bring a different vision to Michael Myers, and right now anything’s better than how the last film ended. Let’s not even talk about it.

So I’m excited about this Halloween. Production starts next month, and although no release date has been announced, you have to figure the film is on track to open in 2016.

By that time, it will have been seven years between Halloween films. That is the longest layoff in franchise history, so we’re really overdue.

Tryon Studios to release new ‘Halloween’ tale in October


Michael Myers is coming home this fall.
Michael Myers is coming home this fall.

The sun is setting up here in Seattle, so there’s still enough time for me to grab the coattails of today’s Halloween Blu-ray news and make some noise of my own.

In case you missed it, Anchor Bay and Scream Factory announced the upcoming release of the 15-disc Halloween: The Complete Collection box set, featuring new interviews and unreleased versions of films (including the Halloween 6 Producer’s Cut).

Amazon is already taking pre-orders for the collection, which runs $118.99 for the Limited Deluxe Edition.

And if, after all that, you hunger for more Halloween, Tryon Studios has another treat for you!

I figured this was as good a time as any to intentionally let it slip that my friend Devon Heffer and I are working on our next project, to be released in October.

We launched our creative partnership, Tryon Studios, last year and released Halloween: Masks. The response was very kind, and we want to keep exploring the possibilities within the Halloween universe.

This upcoming project will not be a follow-up to Masks, although I would like to go back to the characters we created – Bradley and Jessica – and see what happens to them.

“This time around I really wanted to explore an established character,” Devon said. “Someone the fans already know and love. It’s gonna be a lot of fun.”

While we’re keeping the title and plot details under wraps, I will say the story focuses on a character from Halloween 2, which is my favorite film in the series.

Having experienced last fall’s Halloween: 35 Years of Terror convention in person, I know the series still has a huge fan base, and while it may be another couple of years before a new film is released, it’s nice to know there’s enough room in the universe to add more stories in print.

Updates to come.

— Jason

‘Halloween: Masks’ is here!

Click the image to read the story, and further below you can read about how this whole thing came together.


It took about a year to finish Halloween: Masks. I pitched the idea to my friend, Devon Heffer, telling him I wanted to write a story that would fit in with the expanded universe of John Carpenter’s Halloween.

Those short stories and comic books usually feature minor characters from the films and keep Michael Myers in the background until it’s time for him to, you know, do his thing.

(Recommended reading: Halloween: Sam and the Halloween: 30 Years of Terror tale Repetition Compulsion)

Spoilers Below!

So, I came up with the idea of a boy living in a town near Haddonfield about five years after the events of the original Halloween.

The boy, Bradley, would have an older sister – mirroring the Michael and Judith Myers characters from the film.

As the story progressed, Bradley would become a suspect in a series of crimes that were actually committed by Michael Myers. The adults in Bradley’s town would overreact, thinking the boy was infected by the same “evil gene” as Myers.

In the end, Bradley would be committed to the same sanitarium as Myers, where he’d realize the boogeyman was never out to get him – he just wanted him out of the way so he could get to his sister.

Devon took the idea to another level, adding a personal connection for Myers, linking Bradley’s family to a character from the first film. This gave Myers a motivation that we’ve seen before – his need to target people for Halloween pranks and not let go.

The adults in the story were never going to believe Myers was the killer, so Devon gave Bradley unsympathetic qualities that could make him a suspect.

“I didn’t want Bradley to be a victim. I wanted Bradley to maybe… just maybe… be a killer,” Devon said.

He also introduced the reader to Bradley’s father and expanded the characters of Bradley’s crush, Misty, and her boyfriend, Justin.

Visually, we wanted the story to look like it could fit right in with other Halloween short stories, so we used similar title fonts and reached out to another friend, artist and publisher PJ Perez, for help on the cover.

PJ came through with a dynamite cover that shows Bradley staring at a wall of Halloween masks, like he does at one point in the story.

Among them you can see Michael Myers’ mask, along with the skull, pumpkin and witch masks made by Silver Shamrock (Halloween 3!!). PJ also threw in some characters popular for the era in which the story takes place.

A lot of work went into this short story, we hope you enjoy it. And we’re not done. Devon and I are already talking about a new story for Halloween 2014, we’ll see what happens.

–          Jason

Tryon Studios launches with ‘Halloween: Masks’

Announcement time!

For years, my friend Devon Heffer and I have been talking about working together on a project that combines his writing talent with my producing skills.

Now it’s happening.

This week marks the launch of our new partnership: Tryon Studios.

Named after the street where we grew up, Tryon Studios will showcase our creative efforts across multiple platforms.

Our first official venture, Halloween: Masks, will be published online this week.

Halloween: Masks is an original short story set in the Halloween universe. Featuring great cover work by PJ Perez, the story was produced in the style of the popular Halloween tales Sam and White Ghost.

Here’s a snippet of the cover, more to come later this week!