Candyman Director Nia DaCosta Discusses Tony Todd’s Position in Her Model

There’s little question in horror followers’ minds that Tony Todd stands simply as one of many nice slasher actors of our time. The six-foot-five actor effortlessly created an icon in 1992’s Candyman, enjoying the titular character summoned in an eerie, Bloody Mary-like ritual. The actor towered over Virginia Madsen’s Helen Lyle with ease, coated in quite a few bees that might make even the largest outdoorsman flinch and talking in such a method that nearly made audiences wish to belief him — have been it not for his big hook for a hand.

Candyman has gone down in historical past as a horror icon alongside the likes of Jason Voorhees and Freddy Krueger — however when it got here to reintroducing him to new audiences, issues obtained slightly difficult. Nia DaCosta, director of Common Photos’ “religious sequel” to the horror basic, had a little bit of a problem on her fingers when it got here to Todd reprising his function on display screen for 2021’s Candyman, starring Yahya Abdul-Mateen II and Teyonah Parris.

RELATED: How Tony Todd’s Voice Turned ‘Candyman’ Right into a Trendy Day ‘Dracula’

For DaCosta, it wasn’t merely a matter of placing Todd again on display screen as Daniel Robitaille — the person tortured into changing into Candyman — to please longtime followers. For her, she stated on an look on the Empire Spoiler Particular Podcast, the circumstances of Todd’s look mattered to the story, to the burden of the Candyman legend and what it stated concerning the cyclical nature of violence. She wasn’t excited by a one-off cameo for fan service — if Todd was going to seem in any respect, it needed to imply one thing within the story of Mateen’s Anthony McCoy:

“We positively knew Tony Todd can be concerned in a really particular method – which is mainly what we did…What’s so attention-grabbing is everybody’s like, ‘It’s a must to deliver him again, and convey Helen again.’ And it’s like, nicely, they each aren’t allowed to age, as a result of they’re each ghosts. In order that’s instantly the trickiest factor about it. The dangerous model is a few bizarre cameo, like, ‘He’s a man shopping for artwork within the gallery!’…It’s like, no – Tony Todd is Daniel Robitaille, is Candyman, and so we knew that’s what he needed to be within the movie.”

To fulfill followers’ need to see their favourite slasher again on display screen, but in addition not lose the that means of her personal, new story, DaCosta got here up with a workaround that appeared to fulfill: the concept that Todd’s Daniel Robitaille isn’t the one Candyman, that Candyman is “the entire rattling hive”, because the movie’s trailer proclaims, an amalgamation of all of the violence and horror skilled by Black males in Cabrini-Inexperienced, and even in the entire of America:

“The unique script I don’t assume had that kernel of an concept in it…However what it did have was the concept that Anthony himself would grow to be Candyman on the finish of the movie. That basically spoke to me. I used to be like, ‘Oh that’s so nice, as a result of I actually wish to discuss the truth that these individuals we make into martyrs or monsters are people initially.’ […] A minimum of for me, it was about ensuring we talked about the truth that this was cyclical and that historical past repeats itself, and this isn’t simply an incident that occurred to at least one man named Daniel Robitaille. It’s truly an setting by which we dwell that permits for these items to occur time and again.”

If that hasn’t utterly terrified you out of seeing Candyman for your self, the horror sequel is now enjoying in theaters, additionally starring Nathan Stewart-Jarrett and Colman Domingo, with a script from DaCosta, Win Rosenfeld, and producer Jordan Peele. However don’t go muttering round any mirrors…

KEEP READING: Did You Catch All 12 Hidden ‘Candyman’ Appearances in Nia DaCosta’s Movie?

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