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Why John Carpenter Didn't Return To Direct The Halloween Sequels

John Carpenter has many accolades when it comes to directing, producing, writing, and even composing movies. While he's made all sorts of films over the years, horror fans are likely to remember his notable contributions to the genre. When John Carpenter movies are ranked, horror and horror-adjacent works like "The Thing," "The Fog," and "Christine" come very near to the top. Still, when it comes to sheer cultural omnipresence, none of these great horror works can truly hold a torch to "Halloween." 

When it came out in 1978, Carpenter's original "Halloween" had an immediate cultural impact, and the filmmaker's shoestring-budget B-movie effort ended up spawning numerous sequels, reboots, and revivals, right up until 2022's divisive franchise finish "Halloween Ends."

Though Carpenter continued to wear various behind-the-scenes hats as the franchise rumbled on, he didn't ever actually direct another "Halloween" movie after the first one. Here's why he didn't return to direct the sequels. 

Carpenter didn't think Halloween had sequel potential

John Carpenter has a very simple reason for not returning to direct the "Halloween" sequels, and in an interview with Vulture, he revealed what it was: He simply didn't believe that the movie had any sequel potential. 

"The Halloween movie I love the most is the one I made back in 1978, the one I directed. Others are other people's visions," Carpenter explained. "That's the way it goes. That's what happens when you give up. I didn't want to direct sequels. I didn't think there was story left. Boy, was I wrong, huh?"

As this quote makes clear, Carpenter is quick to admit that he didn't quite get the franchise potential of "Halloween," but doesn't exactly feel awful about it because he didn't feel he had anything to offer for a potential sequel. He also drew attention to another, far more practical reason why he doesn't have anything against other people putting their own spins on the franchise's movies. "They have to pay me every time they make one," the director noted.