Killer Klowns From Outer Space Director Explains Why The Sequel Never Happened

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Killer Klowns From Outer Space is one of the greatest cult movies of the ‘80s, but despite the widespread nostalgia for the decade still showing little sign of dissipating, it’s never received any kind of follow-up. A belated sequel has been discussed for a very long time, of course, but never so much as reared its hideously misshapen head, and director Stephen Chiodo has now explained what the problem is.

The film sees a band of carnivorous aliens with the appearance of circus clowns crash to Earth in their big top spaceship in the woods near a small town, and begin harvesting the townspeople using a variety of jester – and circus – themed paraphernalia repurposed as deadly weapons. Although it opened to little fanfare in 1988, upon finally receiving a home release in 2001 it instantly gained a new legion of followers along with a hunger for more of it.

Speaking to the Slasher Radio podcast, Stephen Chiodo, who directed the film and wrote, produced and created its practical effects along with his brothers Edward and Stephen, discussed the circumstances that led to the planned sequel never being made, saying:

“There was a deal… MGM controls the rights… and they went to SYFY. They did Critters, and you saw what that turned out to be like. But they wanted to do Klowns for like two million [dollars]. And we don’t want to do that… we did it for two million back in the ‘80s. So we didn’t want to do it. And even MGM didn’t want to do it… they said it was a more valuable property than just signing off for that little money.”

“Right out of the gate we tried to do a sequel; in fact we had a TV deal [with] USA TV. But the deal fell through like a lot of things do. And we have been trying to get the sequel going since 1988. And Hollywood is just a horrible machine. The film didn’t really get much box office… and when you want to get a sequel done, they look at the box office. They don’t regard cult films as something to invest in.”

Killer Klowns from Outer Space

Frustratingly, it seems like it’s all comes down to money. Expecting someone to make a film on the same budget as they did over 30 years ago is unreasonable, not just due to inflation and increased audience expectations of how polished a finished movie should look, but also because the whole point of revisiting past works is to capitalize on an audience’s love of them, which in Killer Klowns’ case can’t be accurately quantified by only taking into account the interest it received upon its original release.

Despite the constant setbacks, it seems like Chiodo is still determined to see the Killer Klowns From Outer Space sequel made properly, so hopefully with enough persistence, the right people willing to stump up enough financing will take an interest in bringing it to life.

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