Goosebumps 2: Haunted Halloween

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Goosebumps 2: Haunted Halloween
Theatrical release poster
Directed byAri Sandel
Screenplay byRob Lieber
Story by
Based onGoosebumps
by R. L. Stine
Produced by
CinematographyBarry Peterson
Edited by
  • David Rennie
  • Keith Brachmann
Music byDominic Lewis[1]
Distributed bySony Pictures Releasing[2]
Release dates
  • October 8, 2018 (2018-10-08) (Culver City)[4]
  • October 12, 2018 (2018-10-12) (United States)
Running time
90 minutes[5]
CountryUnited States
Budget$35 million[6]
Box office$93.3 million[6]

Goosebumps 2: Haunted Halloween (or simply Goosebumps 2 as marketed on home release)[7] is a 2018 American horror comedy film directed by Ari Sandel and written by Rob Lieber from a story by Lieber and Darren Lemke. A stand-alone sequel to 2015's Goosebumps, it is based on the children's horror book series of the same name by R. L. Stine. The new cast consists of Wendi McLendon-Covey, Madison Iseman, Jeremy Ray Taylor, Caleel Harris, Chris Parnell, and Ken Jeong. The plot follows two young boys who accidentally release the monsters from the Goosebumps franchise in their town after opening an unpublished Goosebumps manuscript titled Haunted Halloween, causing a wave of destruction on Halloween night.

Development of the film began in September 2015. Rob Letterman intended to return to direct, but dropped out due to scheduling conflicts with Pokémon: Detective Pikachu. Ari Sandel replaced him as director. Jack Black and Odeya Rush were set to reprise their roles as R. L. Stine and Hannah Stine, respectively; Black's role was reduced to an uncredited cameo and Rush's role was ultimately not included in the final script.

Goosebumps 2 was released in the United States on October 12, 2018, by Sony Pictures Releasing under its Columbia Pictures label. The film received mixed reviews from critics, and was not as successful as its predecessor, grossing $93 million worldwide against its $35 million budget.


Three years after the previous movie, teenager Sarah Quinn lives with her mother, Kathy, and her teenage brother, Sonny, in Wardenclyffe, New York.

Sonny's friend Sam Carter is dropped off at his house to be looked after while his parents are away for three days.

While scavenging for items in an abandoned house, they find a locked manuscript and open it, causing Slappy the Dummy to appear who is lifeless. When they leave the abandoned house, they are interrupted by a bully Tommy Madigan who steals the manuscript from them.

At home, Slappy reveals that he is alive to the boys. After he causes several accidents and incidents, the kids realize Slappy is at fault. They try to dispose him by locking him in a briefcase as throwing him into a swamp, but he escapes and jumps on in front of the vehicle sending the teenagers into a panic. Slappy now in a fit of rage says that he wants to be part of the family and pounding on the windshield, cracking it, Sarah immediately slams the breaks throwing Slappy off the vehicle and asks they are okay. Sam then notices that Slappy has disappeared. Wondering where did he go, Sonny says that they just made things a thousand times worse.

Later that evening, They find an article online about the events that happened in Madison, Delaware and desperately contact R. L. Stine but is forced to leave a recorded message.

Meanwhile, Slappy is at the Fred's Pharmacy and uses his magic to bring Goosebumps costumes and Halloween decorations to life and transforms a store employee named Walter into a hunchbacked ogre. Sarah, Sonny, and Sam then leave the house to retrieve the book from Tommy, who tells them that it is at his house in his room just before he and his friends get abducted by witches. Just before leaving Tommy's house, Sonny and Sam are then attacked by some possessed gummy bears. Sonny and Sam discover that the book can suck the monsters inside when a gummy bear trips over Sonny.

Kathy is kidnapped by the balloon spider. The kids' neighbor, Mr. Chu, a Goosebumps fan, helps them craft monster disguises to safely navigate the town.

The kids head for the Wardenclyffe Tower, where Slappy is. They discover that Slappy has turned Kathy into a living dummy. They defeat Slappy and Sarah combines the book's power with the tower reactor's energy to drag all the other monsters back into the manuscript, returning Kathy and Walter to normal. When Stine arrives at the Tesla tower, he congratulates the teenagers for defeating the monsters.

When the group leaves the Tesla tower, Kathy says to Walter that she was glad that they ran into each other outside of work and Tommy (who was abducted by the witches earlier) lands into a bush and is so glad to see Sonny. Before Stine leaves, he tells Sarah that the first rule of writing is "write what you know".

In November, Walter and Kathy start dating each other and Sonny wins the high school science fair and in December, Mr. Chu has his house decorated for Christmas and Sarah gets an email saying she got in to Columbia University in which the family celebrates.

After the scrolling credits roll, Slappy's voice is heard saying "Slappy Halloween!".


  • Madison Iseman as Sarah Quinn, a teenager living in Wardenclyffe, New York
  • Jeremy Ray Taylor as Sonny Quinn, Sarah's brother
  • Caleel Harris as Sam Carter, Sonny's high school friend
  • Wendi McLendon-Covey as Kathy Quinn, Sonny and Sarah's mother
  • Chris Parnell as Walter, the manager of the local pharmacy who has a crush on Kathy and is turned into a hunchbacked ogre by a Haunted Mask
  • Ken Jeong as Mr. Chu, the Quinns' neighbor
  • Jack Black (uncredited) as R. L. Stine, the writer of the Goosebumps books[8]
    • The real R. L. Stine cameos as Principal Harrison, the principal of the school that Sonny and Sam attend
  • Mick Wingert as the voice of Slappy the Dummy,[9] a living ventriloquist dummy from the Night of the Living Dummy books. Jack Black previously voiced Slappy in the first film.
    • Avery Lee Jones provides the puppeteer work for Slappy.
  • Bryce Cass as Tyler Mitchell, Sarah's ex-boyfriend.
  • Peyton Wich as Tommy Madigan, a bully who picks on Sonny and Sam
  • Kendrick Cross as Mr. Carter, Sam's father
  • Shari Headley as Mrs. Carter, Sam's mother
  • Courtney Lauren Cummings as Jess, a girl whom with Tyler cheats on Sarah
  • Jessi Goei as Maya, Jess' friend
  • Katharine C. Lumpkin as a monster bride
  • Kent Wagner as an undead pirate
  • Marsha Shackelford as a female cyborg
  • Barry W. Jerald Jr. as a gray alien
  • Sherri Millican as a banshee
  • Scott Millican as a red-haired ghoul
  • Joseph N. Hardin as a vampire
  • Alex T. Hill as a scarecrow
  • Benjamin Bladon as a royal mummy

Calaca ladies portrayed by Iyani Gwendolyn, Cheniqua Litchmore, and Hali J. Ross.

Goblins portrayed by Cody Jenkins and Joe Marri. Mummies portrayed by Mary Tricia Froedge, Robert Hunt, Martin Skyler, Grace Toso, Calvin Wickham, and Taylor Williams.

A scene briefly shows toys of Ryu and Ken from the Street Fighter series using voice clips from the games.


On September 2, 2015, it was reported that a sequel to the film Goosebumps was already in the planning stages, with Sony looking for a screenwriter.[10] On January 17, 2017, a January 26, 2018 release date was set, and Rob Letterman confirmed that he was to return as director for the sequel.[11] On February 6, 2017, it was announced that the film's release date had been delayed to September 21, 2018, taking the date previously held by Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation.[12]

In May 2017, the title was said to be Goosebumps: HorrorLand.[13] At the time, it was also reported that Jack Black would reprise his role as R. L. Stine.[14]

In November 2017, Rob Lieber was tapped to pen the script.[15] In December 2017, Ari Sandel was announced as the director instead of Letterman, due to the latter being busy directing Pokémon: Detective Pikachu for Legendary Entertainment. Variety reported that two scripts had been written: one script in which Black would reprise his role, while the other had Black cut out entirely.[16] In December 2017, the sequel's release date was pushed to October 12, 2018.[17]

The film was later renamed Goosebumps: Slappy's Revenge,[18] and its new leading cast members were set as Madison Iseman, Ben O'Brien, Caleel Harris and Jeremy Ray Taylor (O'Brien did not appear in the finished film).[19] Ken Jeong, Chris Parnell and Wendi McLendon-Covey joined the following month.[20] Filming began on March 7, and in April 2018 the title was renamed again, to Haunted Halloween.[21][22][23]

It was initially stated by Sony representatives that Avery Lee Jones, who puppeteered Slappy in the film, would also voice the character.[24] Jack Black returned for the film as Stine,[8] and it was later reported that Mick Wingert would actually voice Slappy.[25][9]


Goosebumps 2: Haunted Halloween was released on October 12, 2018. The film's first trailer premiered on July 11, 2018, the international trailer on August 16, 2018, and a third trailer on September 20, 2018.[26] A television spot was released on September 24, 2018, which also confirmed that Jack Black would return for the film.[8] Unlike the first film where it was given RealD 3D screenings, the sequel was not in the format.

Goosebumps 2: Haunted Halloween was released on Digital on December 25, 2018, and DVD and Blu-ray on January 15, 2019.[27]


Box office[edit]

Goosebumps 2: Haunted Halloween grossed $46.7 million in the United States and Canada, and $46.6 million in other territories, for a total worldwide gross of $93.3 million, against a production budget of $35 million.[6] In the United States and Canada, Goosebumps 2: Haunted Halloween was released alongside First Man and Bad Times at the El Royale, and was projected to gross $15–21 million from 3,521 theaters in its opening weekend.[28][29]

The film made $4.9 million on its first day, including $750,000 from Thursday night previews, up from $600,000 by the first film. It went on to debut to $15.8 million (down 33% from the first film's opening of $23.6 million), finishing fourth at the box office, behind Venom, A Star Is Born and First Man.[30] The film dropped 38% in its second weekend, to $9.7 million, remaining in fourth.[31]

The film was released in the United Kingdom on October 19, 2018, and opened in third, behind A Star Is Born and Halloween.[32]

Critical response[edit]

On Rotten Tomatoes, the film has an approval rating of 47% based on 95 reviews, with an average rating of 5.4/10. The website's critical consensus reads, "Goosebumps 2: Haunted Halloween offers a handful of treats for very young viewers, but compared to the entertaining original, this sequel is a ding dong to ditch."[33] On Metacritic, the film has a weighted average score of 53 out of 100, based on 20 critics, indicating "mixed or average reviews".[34] Audiences polled by CinemaScore gave the film an average grade of "B" on an A+ to F scale, down from the "A" earned by the first film.[30]

Bilge Ebiri, writing for Vulture, said: "The first Goosebumps movie ... had wit, speed, and an imaginative spirit, throwing all sorts of rampaging, creatively designed ghouls at us. Goosebumps 2: Haunted Halloween can’t quite make the same claim. It replicates the template and the atmosphere of the original, but it lacks invention and emotional investment", and added: "The movie feels undercooked on every level. True, it’s all meant to be slight and charming and inoffensive — but there’s a way to make this sort of thing work, and Goosebumps 2 doesn’t seem particularly interested in trying to find it."[35]

Ignatiy Vishnevetsky of The A.V. Club gave the film a grade of C, writing: "Though the new Goosebumps 2: Haunted Halloween gets closer to the spirit of Stine’s bestselling books, it also shares their reliance on formula, recreating the first movie’s monster mash with fewer self-referential gags." He concluded: "though Sandel relies less on exasperating, rubbery digital effects than Rob Letterman, the DreamWorks Animation vet who helmed the original, his direction of the monsters and mayhem is never more than workmanlike, racing joylessly through a shaky plot that barely holds attention."[36]

Writing for The Globe and Mail, Kate Taylor was more positive in her review of the film, giving it a score of 3 stars out of 4 and writing: "With a mere cameo from Jack Black as the reclusive Stine and fewer clever twists in the plot, Goosebumps 2 risks the diminishing-returns scenario that plagues most sequels; what saves it is a climax that is fresh rather than frantic." She concluded: "the safely scary and often amusing formula holds. Meanwhile, the movie’s conclusion includes enough plot about Stine’s fate to suggest Goosebumps 3 will feature more of the elusive Black and that can only be a good thing."[37]


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External links[edit]