This summer’s Child’s Play remake will shake-up the character of Chucky in some major ways as he’s no longer a serial killer’s spirit inhabiting a toy doll but an artificial intelligence gone bad. This is just the start of the differences between the new movie and the original franchise though, according to producer Seth Grahame-Smith. In particular, fans can expect lots of R-rated intense gore, as well as a more human story in place of the black humor of the past few films.
Grahame-Smith spoke to CinemaBlend recently and lined up the ways in which the remake is its own beast, teasing that the killer doll is “driven by something different” than the old version.
“We sort of lean into more of the AI/Kaslan story and hint at a Chucky that is driven by something different than he is in the original series, when he’s Charles Lee Ray and he’s just a truly psychopathic killer in the body of a doll. [Also, there is] the mother/son story, the emotional component of the movie, which I feel like the movie really delivers. And then above all that, just the intensity, the gore, the fact that the movie is rated R, that it really does go there when it goes there. I think the movie looks big, is much bigger than a lot of movies that are our size – very affordable movie, we are. But we had big ambitions. Those are, I’d say, the primary things we’re going for.”
The producer then went on to explain that Andy Barclay (Gabriel Bateman) and Chucky, voiced by Mark Hamill, will have an unexpectedly “sweet” bond to start with, before things take a very dark turn.
“It starts out… very sweet. It’s two characters in Chucky and in Andy that both in their own ways… [have] been rejected. Andy is certainly in need of a friend, and finds one in Chucky. We wanted to sort of lean into that this is a relationship that is genuine that goes off the rails in a big way. It’s not just brooding, and it’s not sinister from the jump. It gets there, for sure, but that I think just gets to the heart of what we’re trying to do here, and why we felt like there was a why and a cultural relevance to doing a different version of this classic series.”
MORE FROM THE WEB
Another big change will be an emphasis on the kids taking on Chucky themselves, much like we’ve seen recently in the likes of It and Stranger Things, with mom Karen (Aubrey Plaza) and cop Mike Norris (Brian Tyree Henry) not getting in on much of the action.
“We knew that one of the differences we wanted to do here was to ultimately put more pressure on kids having to do this than in the original movie where it’s Karen and Detective Mike, primarily Detective Mike, hunting this [doll] down.”
Grahame-Smith’s description of the movie fits with what we’ve seen in the trailers, which have definitely played up the creepiness of Chucky and also Andy’s dilemma as he knows that this toy is turning murderous but the adults around him won’t believe him. Plaza has also talked about the film in a similar way before, saying it’s a real “drama” with a “Spielbergian vibe” and not some “hokey, schticky, campy” story.
At the same time though, it’ll still honor the original Child’s Play, said Plaza, who called it an “iconic movie.” Likewise, we know that Hamill took his voicing responsibilities very seriously, as he rewatched all the films in the franchise before providing his take on the villain.
Be sure to catch Chucky when he slashes his way back into cinemas on June 21st.