Child's Play (franchise)

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Child's Play
Childsplayboxset.jpg
Chucky: The Complete Collection Blu-ray set
Directed by Tom Holland (1)
John Lafia (2)
Jack Bender (3)
Ronny Yu (4)
Don Mancini (5, 6)
Produced by David Kirschner
Don Mancini
Robert Lathan Brown
Grace Gilroy
Corey Sienega
Written by Don Mancini
Screenplay by Don Mancini
Tom Holland(1)
John Lafia (1)
Story by Don Mancini (1)
Starring Brad Dourif
Jennifer Tilly
Alex Vincent
Catherine Hicks
Chris Sarandon
Jenny Agutter
Gerrit Graham
Christine Elise
Justin Whalin
Perrey Reeves
Jeremy Sylvers
Tommy Smerdlow
Travis Fine
Dean Jacobson
Katherine Heigl
John Ritter
Nick Stabile
Redman
Billy Boyd
Fiona Dourif
Distributed by United Artists (1988)
Universal Pictures (1990–present)
Rogue Pictures (through Universal Pictures) (2004)
Release dates 1988–present
Running time 533 minutes (total)
Country United States
Language English
Budget $80 million (all 6 films)
Box office $126,194,464 (United States)
$182,042,376 (Worldwide)

Child's Play (also known as Chucky) is a horror film franchise created by Don Mancini that consists of six slasher films, starring Academy Award nominee Brad Dourif. The first installment, Child's Play, was released on November 9, 1988. The film has spawned five sequels and has gone into other media, such as comic books. The films are all centered on Charles Lee Ray (played by Dourif) aka Chucky, a notorious serial killer known as the "Lakeshore Strangler" whose soul is trapped inside a Good Guy doll following a voodoo ritual to avoid the afterlife. The first, second, and fourth films were box office successes with all of the films earning $182,042,376 worldwide.

The series originally started out as straight horror with the first installment Child's Play, which appears to have more psychological horror elements while its successors are straightforward slasher films with elements of humor. As the films progressed, they became satirical and campy, until the series briefly became a horror comedy, beginning with 1998's Bride of Chucky and 2004's Seed of Chucky. On June 23, 2012, it was confirmed that a new sequel to Child's Play would be made under the title Curse of Chucky and be released direct-to-video. Unlike Bride and Seed, Curse of Chucky is a full-fledged horror film much like the original three installments. However, it does maintain the campy humor to a small degree.[1] Chucky has also appeared in TV commercials.It also won a Saturn Award for the Best Horror Franchise.

Films[edit]

Film Year Director Writer(s) Producer(s)
Child's Play 1988 Tom Holland Story:
Don Mancini
Screenplay:
Don Mancini
John Lafia
Tom Holland
David Kirschner
Child's Play 2 1990 John Lafia Don Mancini
Child's Play 3 1991 Jack Bender David Kirschner
Robert Latham Brown
Bride of Chucky 1998 Ronny Yu David Kirschner
Grace Gilroy
Seed of Chucky 2004 Don Mancini David Kirschner
Corey Sienega
Curse of Chucky 2013 David Kirschner
Don Mancini
Child's Play 7 2015 David Kirschner

Overview[edit]

Child's Play (1988) — A serial killer and voodoo practitioner named Charles Lee "Chucky" Ray is mortally wounded and transfers his soul via a voodoo ritual into a child-sized "Good Guy" doll. The doll is found by a homeless peddler and sold to Karen Barclay, who gives it to her son Andy as a birthday gift. As time goes on Chucky has to get his soul out of the doll before it turns human and the transfer becomes permanent, and thus has to possess the first person he told his secret to - Andy. Desperate to leave his doll body, Chucky terrorizes the Barclays in order to restore his soul.

Child's Play 2 (1990) takes place two years after the first film. While Andy is living in foster care, the doll's manufacturer has taken a positive corporate stance and remade it to prove there is nothing wrong with the Good Guy brand. After a freak electrical malfunction brings Chucky back to life in a new Good Guy doll, he continues to follow Andy in order to transfer his soul from his doll body before it's too late.

Child's Play 3 (1991) picks up eight years after the second film. The Good Guy factory has re-opened after the events of the previous film, and as Chucky's remains are removed some blood from his destroyed human-doll body drips into a vat of melted plastic used to re-mold the Good Guy line. Chucky returns in a new body, going on a hunt for the now 16-year-old Andy Barclay, who has left to attend a military academy after the results of the first two films. While attempting to reach Andy, Chucky finds a new boy, Tyler, who he shares his "secret" with. With a new Good Guy doll brings the possibility of possessing a new human body and Chucky attempts to restore his soul in human form as Andy attempts to stop the killer Good Guy doll once and for all.

Bride of Chucky (1998) — Set not long after Child's Play 3. One of Charles Lee Ray's former girlfriends, Tiffany, acquires Chucky's remains, stitches them together and via a voodoo ritual revives Charles Lee Ray, albeit in a much different form. Chucky kills Tiffany, transferring her soul into a bride doll, and the two maniacs force a young couple to bring them to Ray's grave, where Chucky plans to use an amulet to finally get a new body. In the end, the Tiffany doll gives birth to a new form of life...

Seed of Chucky (2004), Chucky and Tiffany's child Glen finds his parents six years later and brings them back to life, but is horrified by their murders. Chucky and Tiffany force a pregnancy on actress Jennifer Tilly, which is accelerated by voodoo magic. Glen suffers a split personality, having both a male and female soul in his body, and dismembers his father. Tiffany uses the ritual to take over Tilly's body and as Tilly bears twins, Glen's dual personality now has a body each of its own. Chucky survives, however, and mails one of his severed arms to the home of his family to strangle them.

Curse of Chucky (2013) — Twenty-five years after the first film, Chucky is delivered to the family home of Nica and Sarah Pierce, where Chucky terrorizes and kills the family one by one. Chucky is driven by revenge, as Sarah was the one who called the police on him while he was still human, leading to his original death in the first film. Nica survives, but is institutionalized, and blamed for the murders. Chucky is collected by Tiffany, who delivers him to Alice. Alice fails to transfer his soul into her body when her grandma emerges from the basement, after Chucky tried to suffocate her. Six months later, Chucky is mailed to his next victim who just happens to be none other than his long time nemesis, Andy Barclay, who shoots him through the head.

Cast and characters[edit]

Character Film
Child's Play
(1988)
Child's Play 2
(1990)
Child's Play 3
(1991)
Bride of Chucky
(1998)
Seed of Chucky
(2004)
Curse of Chucky
(2013)
Chucky/Charles Lee Ray Brad Dourif
Andy Barclay Alex Vincent Justin Whalin (Referenced only)   Alex Vincent
Tiffany   Jennifer Tilly
Karen Barclay Catherine Hicks (Photograph)   (Photograph)
Detective Mike Norris Chris Sarandon (Mentioned only)   (Archive footage)
Jack "Mario" Santos Tommy Swerdlow (Mentioned only)  
Kyle   Christine Elise (Mentioned only)   (Photograph)
Joanne Simpson   Jenny Agutter  
Phil Simpson   Gerrit Graham  
Mr. Sullivan   Peter Haskell  
Ronald Tyler   Jeremy Sylvers  
Kristen De Silva   Perrey Reeves  
Cadet Lieutenant Colonel Brett C. Shelton   Travis Fine  
Harold Aubrey Whitehurst   Dean Jacobson  
Jesse   Nick Stabile  
Jade Kincaid   Katherine Heigl   (Mentioned only)
Chief Warren Kincaid   John Ritter   (Mentioned only)
David Collins   Gordon Michael Woolvett  
Glen/Glenda   Infant cameo Billy Boyd (Mentioned only)
Jennifer Tilly   Jennifer Tilly (Mentioned only)
Redman   Redman  
Joan   Hannah Spearritt  
Pete Peters   John Waters  
Nica Pierce   Fiona Dourif
Alice   Summer H. Howell
Barb Pierce   Danielle Bisutti
Ian   Brennan Elliott
Jill   Maitland McConnell
Sarah Pierce   Chantal Quesnelle
Father Frank   A Martinez
  • Chucky/Charles Lee Ray (played by Brad Dourif) - The central character and antagonist of the series. A merciless murderer whose soul gets stuck in a doll. He usually kills 'anyone' who gets in his way with a knife and frames the person of each film for them. Aside from being a deranged killer, he often spouts humorous yet profane insults. He is the only character to appear in all of the films in the franchise.
  • Andy Barclay (played by Alex Vincent and Justin Whalin) - The original protagonist who is pursued by Chucky so Chucky would transfer his soul into the boy's body, as well as successfully framing him for the murders. He appears in the first three films and Curse of Chucky.
  • Karen Barclay (played by Catherine Hicks) - Andy's mother, and later Mike's wife. She buys him a Good Guy doll for his birthday, unaware that the one she picked was possessed by a serial killer. Initially, she refuses to believe that Chucky was alive, but she soon finds out when he comes alive and tries to kill her. In Child's Play 2, she is written out of the story when she was taken away to an insane asylum when no one believes her about the murderous doll. She appears only in the first film and is mentioned in the second, third, and sixth films. In the sixth film, Karen talks to Andy over the phone, which reveals that she is now free from the asylum and plans to cook dinner for Andy's upcoming birthday. It is also strongly hinted that she has married Mike.
  • Detective Mike Norris (played by Chris Sarandon) - A detective investigating the murder of Andy's babysitter. He is also responsible for Chucky's death prompting him to transfer his soul into a Good Guy doll. He initially refuses to believe the Barclays, but when Chucky tries to kill him, he becomes an ally to the family. In Child's Play 2, however, it is mildly implied that both Mike and Mario denied the ordeal to protect the Chicago police department. Appears only in the first film, and is indirectly mentioned in the second and fourth films. He appears via archive footage in Curse of Chucky' (namely, pictures on the internet).
  • Kyle (played by Christine Elise) - Andy's teenage foster sister whom he ends up staying with. At first she finds Andy to be a pain on her side, but starts to back up his story about Chucky when she witnesses him trying to take his soul and later finds their foster mother murdered by Chucky. She then goes to find Andy (under Chucky's command) and ends up saving his life in the Play Pals factory, as well as helping him destroy Chucky after he tries to kill him after the voodoo soul transfer spell goes awry. She appears in the second film and was written out of the series and was never seen again but was briefly mentioned in the third film when Andy re-encounters Chucky again. She was also briefly mentioned to have kept in contact with Andy in "Curse" as he kept a photo of her.
  • Mr. Sullivan (played by Peter Haskell) - The greedy and arrogant CEO of Good Guy Toys Inc., First appears in Child's Play 2 upon learning of Andy's Good Guy Doll supposedly becoming possessed by the soul of Charles Lee Ray, and tries to protect the company's reputation from angry stockholders. He also appears in Child's Play 3 when he moves Good Guys Toys forward with producing more dolls, however he is killed by Chucky when he accesses Sullivan's office computer to find Andy in Military School.
  • Ronald Tyler (played by Jeremy Sylvers) - A young private boy who befriends Andy at the military school he is sent to after failing to cope with living at several foster homes. When he finds Chucky (who mailed himself to the same military school to go after Andy again), he decides to go after Tyler instead. At first, Tyler finds Chucky to be a nice guy, but realizes the true colors of the doll's evil murderous ways once he attempts to transfer his soul into his body much like he attempted to do with Andy in the first two films. Appears in the third film, written out of the series (along with Andy), but was originally going to be killed off alongside Andy in the original draft to Seed of Chucky.
  • Kristen De Silva (played by Perrey Reeves) - Andy's girlfriend at the military school he attends, ends up sticking up for him when Shelton and the other guys take a liking in bullying him. Appears only in the third film.
  • Jack "Mario" Santos (played by Tommy Swerdlow) - Mike's partner who was also investigating Andy's babysitter's death. In the beginning of the first film, he was mostly the cop who drove Mike's car to chase Eddie Caputo in his van. He was also one of the police officers that believed Andy was the killer. During the end, he tried to show Mike that Chucky wasn't alive, but was nearly killed by him and then he believed that the Barclays and Mike were telling the truth. He only appeared in the first film and has a face similar to that of the popular Nintendo video game character, Mario.
  • Tiffany (played by Jennifer Tilly) - Charles Lee Ray's former girlfriend (and later wife) who later gets her soul stuck in a doll like Chucky. She ultimately transfers her soul into actress Jennifer Tilly (her doppelganger and portrayer) after being fed up with her husband's intent to remain a doll. In Curse, she is shown to be living a double life as both her regular self and Tilly. Appears in Bride, Seed, and Curse.
  • Jennifer Tilly (played by herself) - An exaggerated version of Tilly, herself, and Tiffany's idol. Appears in Bride in the role of Tiffany (both human and doll forms), and in Seed as both herself and the voice of Tiffany. Tiffany was successful in transferring her soul into Tilly's body.
  • Glen (played by Billy Boyd and human form portrayed by Beans Balawi) - Chucky and Tiffany's original child and Glenda's twin brother. He was an orphan for the first five or six years of his life until he saw his parents on television. Glen is a good person, and he doesn't like violence and definitely does not like murder unlike his parents. Though Tiffany promised him that they will refrain from killing, Chucky tries to get Glen involved in the family business. He fears but still loves his dad due to the fact he killed him in a misunderstanding. He is the only living doll character not to be voiced by an Academy Award nominee. Appears in Bride (at the end as an infant) and Seed. He does not appear in Curse, nor is there any mention of him.
  • Glenda (human form played by Kristina Hewitt) - Chucky and Tiffany's second child and the twin sister of Glen. She was originally Glen's alter ego for a brief moment, but was reborn as a human. Unlike Glen, she is violent, sadistic, and cruel. She is even more ruthless than her father, implying she possibly will take on the family business. Appears in Seed.
  • Jesse (played by Nick Stabile) - former friend of Tiffany Ray and boyfriend of Jade. He was greatly disliked by Jade's uncle and believed to be responsible for his death until Chucky and Tiffany reveal themselves. In the end, Jade kills Chucky and she and Jesse leave the scene. He also appears in a Chucky comic continuation. Appears in Bride of Chucky.
  • Jade (played by Katherine Heigl) - girlfriend of Jesse. Her uncle Warren is killed by Chucky and Tiffany early in the film. In the end, Jade shoots Chucky and she and Jesse leave the scene. She also appears with Jesse in another struggle with Chucky in a comic book continuation. Appears in Bride of Chucky.

Box office[edit]

Film Release date Box office revenue Box office ranking Budget Reference
United States Foreign Worldwide All time domestic All time worldwide
Child's Play November 9, 1988 $33,244,684 $10,952,000 $44,196,684 #1,680 $9,000,000 [2][3]
Child's Play 2 November 9, 1990 $28,501,605 $7,262,000 $35,763,605 #1,916 $13,000,000 [4][5]
Child's Play 3 August 30, 1991 $14,960,255 $5,600,000 $20,560,255 #2,896 $13,000,000 [6]
Bride of Chucky October 16, 1998 $32,404,188 $18,288,000 $50,692,188 #1,727 $25,000,000 [7][8]
Seed of Chucky November 12, 2004 $17,083,732 $7,745,912 $24,829,644 #2,685 $12,000,000 [9]
Total $126,194,464 $49,847,912 $176,042,376 $72,000,000(E)
List indicator(s)
  • A dark grey cell indicates the information is not available for the film.
  • (E) indicates an estimated figure based on available numbers.

Music[edit]

Joe Renzetti composed the first Child's Play, followed by Graeme Revell, who composed the soundtrack for Child's Play 2 and Bride of Chucky. John D' Andrea and Cory Lerios wrote the score for Child's Play 3, while Pino Donaggio composed Seed of Chucky. Joseph LoDuca composed the score for the newest film, Curse of Chucky.

Reviews[edit]

Film Rotten Tomatoes Metacritic
Child's Play 69% (32 reviews)[10]
Child's Play 2 40% (15 reviews)[11]
Child's Play 3 23% (13 reviews)[12]
Bride of Chucky 44% (34 reviews)[13]
Seed of Chucky 32% (75 reviews)[14] 46/100 (17 reviews)[15]
Curse of Chucky 80% (15 reviews)[16]
Average Ratings 48%

Alleged Relation to Crimes[edit]

The following crimes have been associated with the Child's Play films:− In December 1992 four people who tortured and killed a 16 year old girl, Suzanne Capper, were said to be influenced by one of the Child's Play movies. During the torturing of the girl the perpetrators taunted her with quotes from the movies. In 1993 youths who abducted and murdered a toddler named James Bulger were said to have been influenced by the film Child's Play 3. The supposed link between the murder and the film was denied by film censor James Ferman.[17] According to a relative of two boys aged 10 and 12 who brutally attacked a nine-year-old and 11-year-old boy in Edlington, South Yorkshire in April 2009, the attackers watched horror movies, including Chucky films, from the age of about six or seven.[18]

Comic books[edit]

Innovation Publishing[edit]

Beginning in 1990, Innovation Publishing released the first comic books based on the films, in the form of a three issue adaptation of Child's Play 2. It was later collected in a trade paperback. The success of the adaptation led to a monthly series of new stories starting in 1991. The series, titled Child's Play: The Series, ended in 1992 after only five issues. This was followed by a three issue adaptation of Child's Play 3.

Devil's Due Publishing[edit]

In 2007, Devil's Due Publishing obtained the license to publish Child's Play comics and released a one-shot crossover with Hack/Slash titled Hack/Slash vs. Chucky which takes place after the events of the Seed of Chucky film. This was followed by a four-issue series called Chucky. A second volume began in early 2009 but ceased publication after only one issue.

Video game[edit]

Main article: Chucky: Slash & Dash

Slimstown Studios announced an endless runner video game titled Chucky: Slash & Dash. The game is scheduled to be released on iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch and Android devices. It is the result of an agreement with Universal Partnerships & Licensing to develop and publish the first officially licensed smartphone and tablet Child's Play video game. The gameplay is actually inspired by the second film's climax.

In the game, Chucky is stuck in a never-ending nightmare in which he’s endlessly running through the factory that produces Good Guys dolls. Players control Chucky while sprinting through the factory floor, the catwalks, the warehouse, or even outside, and need to avoid conveyor belts, forklifts, acid pools, barrels and other obstacles. Chucky can also eliminate security guards patrolling the factory using his classic knife or other more outlandish weapons like a cleaver, screwdriver, or hatchet. As they play, gamers collect batteries that can be used to purchase in-game items or power-ups, such as a double battery bonus, a fast start, or extra lives that can extend a run after dying.[19]

The app was released on November 1, 2013.

Future[edit]

In an August 2008 interview, Don Mancini and David Kirschner spoke of a planned reboot of the franchise to be written and directed by Mancini. They described their choice of a reboot over a direct sequel as a response to the will of the fans, who "want to see a scary Chucky movie again", and "want to go back to the straightforward horror rather than the horror comedy." They indicated that Brad Dourif would return as the voice of Chucky.[20]

In a subsequent interview, Mancini described the reboot as a darker and scarier retelling of the first movie, but one that, while having new twists and turns, will not stray too far from the original concept.[21] At a 2009 horror convention, Brad Dourif confirmed his role in the remake.[22] At a reunion panel at the Mad Monster Party horror & sci-fi convention, cast and crew from the original film confirmed both a remake and a spin-off are in development. Writer Don Mancini and Producer David Kirschner were working on a sequel titled "Revenge of Chucky".[23]

In June 2012, plans for the reboot were put on hold and a sixth film, Curse of Chucky, went into production in September 2012. It was released on VOD on September 24, 2013 and DVD and Blu-ray October 8, 2013.

Mancini has since expressed an interest in making a new line of "scary Chucky films."[24] On December 2, 2013, he had revealed that plans for seventh film is heading into development.[25][26]

Halloween Horror Nights[edit]

Since 1992, Chucky has starred in his own shows at Universal Studios Halloween Horror Nights, entitled, Chucky's In-Your-Face Insults and Chucky's Insult Emporium.

In 2009, the climax of Child's Play 3 received its own maze, entitled Chucky's Fun House. Curse of Chucky has also been slated to receive its own scarezone in the 2013 lineup.[27]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "New Child's Play sequel, Curse of Chucky, Coming to DVD". IGN. 2012-06-23. Retrieved 2012-08-27. 
  2. ^ "Child's Play (1988)". Box Office Mojo. 
  3. ^ "Child's Play (1988)". The-Numbers. 
  4. ^ "Child's Play 2 (1990)". Box Office Mojo. 
  5. ^ "Movie Child's Play 2 - Box Office Data". The Numbers. 
  6. ^ "Child's Play 3 (1991)". Box Office Mojo. 
  7. ^ "Bride of Chucky (1998)". Box Office Mojo. 
  8. ^ "Bride of Chucky - Box Office Data". The Numbers. 
  9. ^ "Seed of Chucky (2004)". Box Office Mojo. 
  10. ^ "Child's Play". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved 2013-10-07. 
  11. ^ "Child's Play 2". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved 2013-10-07. 
  12. ^ "Child's Play 3". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved 2013-10-07. 
  13. ^ "Bride of Chucky". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved 2013-10-07. 
  14. ^ "Seed of Chucky". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved 2013-10-07. 
  15. ^ "Seed of Chucky (2004): Reviews". Metacritic. Retrieved ?.  Check date values in: |accessdate= (help)
  16. ^ "Curse of Chucky". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved 2013-10-23. 
  17. ^ BBC News - "Film censor Ferman dies"
  18. ^ BBC News - Boys' mother 'fed them cannabis'
  19. ^ Webb, Charles. "'Child's Play' Killer Chucky The Unlikely Hero of Endless Runner 'Chucky: Slash & Dash'". MTV. Retrieved 12 September 2013. 
  20. ^ Quint chats up Don Mancini, David Kirschner ... Interview at AICN
  21. ^ "Child's PlayMancini&Kirschner". ShockTillYouDrop.com. CraveOnline Media. September 8, 2008. Retrieved October 11, 2009. 
  22. ^ "MGM Gets Rolling On A ‘Child’s Play’ Remake". 25 March 2011. Retrieved 25 March 2011. 
  23. ^ "The Cynical Optimist : Child’s Play spin-off Revenge of Chucky in the works!". 28 March 2012. Retrieved 28 March 2012. 
  24. ^ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2c_tc9xtx5E
  25. ^ http://www.shocktillyoudrop.com/news/341285-chucky-is-going-to-be-back-for-another-sequel/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=chucky-is-going-to-be-back-for-another-sequel
  26. ^ https://twitter.com/realdonmancini/status/407591894407843840
  27. ^ http://www.fearnet.com/news/news-article/universal-studios-halloween-horror-nights-introduces-chucky-and-purge-scarezones