Mark Hamill is taking another step into the horror genre by voicing Chucky in the upcoming remake of Child’s Play, but it wasn’t an easy task. Three decades after director Tom Holland’s slasher film Child’s Play arrived to terrorize generations – and six sequels later – comes a new version with Lars Klevberg in charge of directing.
Child’s Play follows the same basic plot of the original, in which a mother (Aubrey Plaza) gives her son, Andy (Gabriel Bateman) a toy doll for his birthday, unaware of the evil inside of it. The story went through some major changes in order to adapt it to the modern world, with Chucky (now voiced by Hamill) having a bunch of technological enhancements and a new origin to his evil nature. That’s a lot to unpack, so it’s only natural that Hamill was intimidated by this role.
During a press conference to promote the film (via Den Of Geek), Hamill talked about his experience voicing this new version of the iconic evil doll, but believe it or not, it wasn’t the character as it is that intimidated him the most – it’s what this character represents to many fans, and following in the footsteps of the original Chucky, Brad Dourif. Hamill explained he hadn’t felt this type of intimidation since he voiced the Joker in Batman: The Animated Series, and it was after he was cast that he truly felt the weight of it.
“I thought, when I auditioned for the Joker, there’s no way they’re going to cast this icon of virtue, Luke Skywalker, as the Joker. Forget about it. So I had no performance anxiety because I knew they couldn’t hire me. It’s only because so many people have expectations of what he’s supposed to sound like. I didn’t feel that kind of intimidation until it sunk in that I was doing this. I love Brad. It’s a great responsibility, so I’m anxious to see how people react because it’s not the Chucky that we all know from before”.
It really isn’t the Chucky we all know. This new evil doll isn’t possessed by a serial killer, but instead programmed to be evil by a still unidentified character who we got to (briefly) see in one of the trailers. Hamill shared that he found this change in Chucky’s backstory to be “the crucial element” that was different from the original, and while the character is very dark and intense, it also has a dose of humor, which was a bit tricky for him. In the end, he says it was a “sort of open collaboration” as he would do “slightly different nuances”, with the editing team putting them together to achieve the desired tone.
Having played iconic roles both on camera and behind it as voice actor, it’s surprising to hear that Hamill felt intimidated by voicing a classic slasher character like Chucky, but it’s also understandable. The Child’s Play franchise has a devoted fanbase, and a big part of it is still not completely convinced by this new version, as franchise creator Don Mancini was left out of it (but he’s working on a separate TV series). It’s a big responsibility, but judging from what we’ve already heard from the new Chucky, Hamill will surely have nothing to worry about.
Source: Den of Geek.
- Child's Play (2019) release date: Jun 21, 2019