Behind The Scenes Saturday: Child’s Play (1988)

Welcome back to Behind The Scenes Saturday! As we all know, the Child’s Play reboot is premiering this Friday. So, I wanted to make this Saturday dedicated to the original film that made us all fear the name Chucky!

(Trivia provided by IMDb.com)

(SPOILER ALERT!!!)

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Childs Play

  • Chucky’s full name, Charles Lee Ray, was inspired by three notorious murderers. They were Charles Manson, Lee Harvey Oswald, and James Earl Ray.
  • In the scene where Chucky (Brad Dourif) is running behind Maggie (Dina Manoff), Andy’s (Alex Vincent) babysitter, Alex Vincent’s little sister was the one who played Chucky.
  • In the original concept, the Good Guy dolls were supposed be life-like with blood and latex skin. If the skin was torn, Official Good Guy bandages were available. In the film, Andy was going to cut his hand and mix his blood with Chucky’s for a blood pact. That act was the one that was going to bring Chucky to life. Honestly, if this was the concept for the reboot, I’d definitely watch it. 
  • Brad Dourif’s voiceover work for Chucky was all recorded in advance. This was done so it would be easier to match up Chucky’s mouth with the words. Dourif was rarely on set for the doll scenes because the voice recordings were played for Alex Vincent to work with.
  • The film’s writer, Don Mancini’s original script was supposed to toy with the audience a bit more. That first draft was supposed to make us question whether or not Andy was the one killing people.

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  • Tom Holland, the director of Child’s Play, actually has a cameo in the film! When the Good Guy doll is being promoted on TV, Holland is the voice of the costumed host.
  • The toy shop in the beginning of the film was actually a Chinese restaurant that closed down. The restaurant was actually on the corner of Wabash and Van Buren, the streets Detective Norris (Chris Sarandon) shouts when he calls for backup.
  • Some of the film’s deleted scenes include:

Detective Norris dressed in drag attempting to capture Charles Lee Ray. In the beginning of the film, you can still see Norris toss his dress aside as he chases after Charles.

Andy showing Chucky his room and revealing to Chucky how his father died.

John (Dr. Death) performing a voodoo ritual.

The film was originally three hours long before being cut down by the studio.

  • In the original script, Tom Holland wanted Charles Lee Ray to be Andy’s father.
  • The chant that Chucky recites throughout the movie is usually mistaken as French, but is actually Haitian Creole. A possible translation of the chant states: “I call to thee, Damballa. Give me the power I beg of you!! Leave me mercy from this mortal coil. Grant me life beyond death. Move my mortal soul into this vessel. I command to thee, Damballa I command to thee, Damballa I command to thee, Damballa! Move my mortal soul into this vessel! I command to thee, Damballa! I command to thee, Damballa! I command to thee, Damballa!!”

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  • In the early ‘90s, there was a chain of appliance stores called The Good Guys. After the Child’s Play films started coming out, the stores would get a lot of prank calls, and people would come in asking for Good Guy dolls. They considered changing the name of the store because of all of this.
  • The concept of Chucky appearing more human-like the more time he spent inside the doll was abandoned. The doll was supposed to grow stubble like Charles Lee Ray did when he was human.
  • The Hillside Stranglers inspired Tom Holland to make Charles Lee Ray have a partner, Eddie Caputo (Neil Giuntoli). Then, Eddie is never mentioned in the franchise again.
  • Originally, Maggie was supposed to die of electrocution while taking a bath. This death scene was later used for Tiffany (Jennifer Tilly) in Bride of Chucky.
  • During an interview, Brad Dourif told a story about one of his recording sessions. His daughter, Fiona, who was 7 years old at the time, snuck into his recording booth. Of course, that was when he recorded his agonizing screams for the scene Chucky burns in the fireplace. No one, including him, knew Fiona was in the booth until she got scared by his screaming and started to cry. 25 years later, Fiona faced off against her own father in Curse of Chucky.

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  • When Chucky is approaching Karen (Catherine Hicks) and Andy, Chucky was originally decapitated by Norris knocking his head off with a baseball bat, as opposed to Karen shooting his head off. You can actually see a bat knocking Chucky’s head off if you slow the scene down.
  • In the scene where Chucky is lit on fire, Chucky’s stunt double, Ed Gale, was the one in the fire place, wearing a fire proof suit.
  • Catherine Hicks and Chucky’s creator, Kevin Yagher, met on set and were married a year later.
  • Don Mancini and John Lafia threatened to sue Tom Holland over a writing credit dispute and they were eventually barred from the set.
  • Jessica Walter (Play Misty For Me) recorded lines for Chucky, but her audio went unused.

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