(NEXSTAR) -It’s been 44 long since the classic horror film “Halloween” was first released in 1978. It was the year that the world was first given a look at one of the cinema’s most terrifying villains, the unkillable Michael Myers. The franchise is preparing the release of its 13th film, “Halloween Ends,” you might like to re-read the plot so far.
The “Halloween” franchise, however it’s not as easy as you’d think.
In all, there three distinct timelines arising from the original film and one remake timeline and one anthology film that is a standalone. Confused?
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Films to be released by release date
“Halloween II” (1981)
“Halloween III: Season of the Witch” (1982)
“Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers” (1988)
“Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers” (1989)
“Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers” (1995)
“Halloween H20: 20 Years Later” (1998)
“Halloween: Resurrection” (2002)
“Halloween II” (2009)
“Halloween Kills” (2021)
“Halloween Ends” (2022)
Although this is the order that the movies were made available however, it’s not the order you’re supposed to watch the films in, especially in case you’re looking for the plot to be logical.
Films listed in chronological order are: “Halloween” (1978); “Halloween II” (1981); “Halloween 4”; “Halloween 5”; and “The Curse of Michael Myers”
Important differences: Sequels within this timeline conclude in “Curse.” Movies 4-6 don’t feature franchise star Jamie Lee Curtis or her character Laurie Strode. Instead, they focus on Laurie’s daughter, Jamie Lloyd, among others new characters.
A spoiler-free summary: Michael Myers terrorizes the town of Haddonfield, Illinois, over an interval of approximately 20 years. It all began with the events that took place in the film’s first.
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The film was widely criticised to this day “Curse” later received a second release in the form the widely-discussed “Producer’s Cut.” This version, which has significant plot changeswas a bootleg that was traded between fans for years prior to the official release in 2014. The film also stars the the upcoming “Ant Man” superstar Paul Rudd.
Films listed in chronological order are: “Halloween” (1978); “Halloween II” (1981); “Halloween H20” and “Resurrection”
Important distinctions: All sequels that are included on this list are sequels to the original two “Halloween” movies. Jamie Lee Curtis appears in all four of these films.
A spoiler-free review In the course of one night on Halloween, Laurie Strode (Curtis) barely escapes death. Though still traumatized by the incident, Laurie has faked her own death before moving to California in which she meets with Michael twenty years later.
The contract’s stipulation led to being the creator of “Resurrection” and Curtis’ appearance on the show. Curtis was returning to the show with the belief the show’s final episode “H20” would be the final chapter. Moustapha Akkad, the producer and owner of the franchise however, had different plans. If you’ve ever watched the infamous “Resurrection,” you’ll see the extent to which Curtis was not interested in being in the film.
The timeline for ‘H40’
Films by order of release: “Halloween” (1978); “Halloween” (2018); “Halloween Kills”; and “Halloween Ends”
The key difference is that all sequels on this timeline are just sequels to the original film. The sequence that took place in “Halloween II” (1981) were never actually filmed.
A spoiler-free summary: Following an infamous murder spree on Halloween night , 1978 Michael Myers is captured and sentenced to prison. 40 years after, Laurie Strode (Curtis) remains alive and living located in Haddonfield she must confront her fears when Michael escapes, only to return on Halloween. The newly published “Halloween Ends” trailer reveals that the story will unfold four years following the events in the film of 2018 as well as “Kills.”
Facts: A lot of the original cast members, aside from Curtis returned to all three of the new movies which include Nick Castle, the first Michael Myers, and “Real Housewives of Beverly Hills” star Kyle Richards, who was as a young child in the original film. The director who was the original Carpenter returned to the three new filmsand this time he co-produced the score.
Rob Zombie Remakes the timeline
Films in order: “Halloween” (2007) and “Halloween II” (2009)
There are some key difference: The 2007 film is both a re-make of the 1978 film and an unprequel. Although the film is based on the same plot as the first film, it also takes a look at Michael’s childhood and the psyche of Michael. Jamie Lee Curtis does not appear in any of the films, however Laurie Strode (played by Scout Taylor-Compton) is. A key difference is the amount of blood and lots of gore.
The 15-disc “Halloween” franchise box set that was released at the end of 2014, by Anchor Bay/Scream Factory included all the films that had been released until that point (Courtesy of Russell Falcon)
The events of the first film are similar to the first. The sequel is centered around the connection that exist between Laurie Michael and Laurie Michael. Both killers and survivors are trying to reconcile their lives as they experience a series of strange hallucinations.
Facts: Danielle Harris, who played Laurie Strode’s daughter in the first timeline, is a part of both Zombie films but plays an entirely different character.
The only film: “Halloween III: Season of the Witch.” It’s not any kind of sequel to the first film.
Key differences: No Michael Myers. The brains behind the first “Halloween,” director/writer John Carpenter and producer/writer Debra Hill weren’t keen on continuing the story of Strode-Myers beyond “Halloween II.” But the way things went, as Inverse says, Universal wanted a third film. Because the series was initially intended to be an thematic anthology (with each film focusing on the story of a different character centered on the theme of Halloween), Carpenter and Hill set out to create a brand new story that was a mix of sci-fi and supernatural.
A spoiler-free summary It’s true that the Silver Shamrock novelties company is unveiling three new Halloween masks for kids to play with in a live giveaway. Given that this is a horror film it’s likely that there’s more to the tale.
The trivia: Despite being an economic and critical failure upon its release “Halloween III” has become something of a famous cult film — and has even been evaluated and deemed to be a quality film by a few. The popularity of this film even was reflected in the latest films and even had Silver Shamrock masks appearing briefly in the film of 2018 and especially on the set of “Kills.”
Overall The “Halloween” franchise has earned more than $700 million since the year 1978. The franchise has produced not only movies, but also books that tie in and stand alone graphic novels, as well as an extremely-pixelated Atari games on video.
“Halloween Ends” hits both theaters as well as Peacock on October. 14. If you’re not sure you might want to watch any of “Friday the 13th” or “A Nightmare on Elm Street” films.