‘Child’s Play’ Originally Had a Very Different Origin Story for Chucky — And a Title to Match
In every way that counts except physically, Chucky is one of the biggest slasher movie villains ever. In our extremely mathematical assessment of the deadliest slashers ever, Chucky beat out Leatherface and had nearly as many kills as Freddy Krueger across a series that has already spanned seven films.
The Hollywood Reporter recently attended a 30th anniversary screening of the original Child’s Play, where series creator Don Mancini revealed that Chucky nearly had a totally different origin — one that might have precluded him entering the hallowed halls of horror legend. Originally, Chucky wasn’t a “Good Guy” doll imbued with the spirit of a dead serial killer. Instead, his murderous ways were actually a non-supernatural extension of his owner Andy’s repressed murderous urges. Mancini explained:
One of the features the Good Guy dolls had was fake blood in them, because I was inspired by my sisters’ dolls — they peed, you could make their hair grow — and I thought in the context of a horror movie, how awesome to have a doll that would bleed ... So the way that the doll came to life was that because Andy is a lonely kid — no dad around, his mom is a busy working mother — in that classic rite of brotherhood he cuts his own thumb and the doll’s thumb so they’ll be best friends forever —‘friends ’til the end’ — and after that the murders start.
It wasn’t until Mancini’s original script was passed on by the studios and made its way to producer David Kirschner, did Chucky get the backstory horror fans know and love. Kirschner read Mancini’s script and sensed its potential — but also felt Chucky as “an expression of the kid’s unconscious rage” wasn’t quite the right hook. He snagged the rights to Mancini’s script, added the serial killer spirit to Chucky, and the rest is movie history — and television history once the Child’s Play TV series arrives on screens in the near future.
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