Tommy Lee Wallace

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Tommy Lee Wallace
Born Thomas Lee Wallace
(1949-09-06) September 6, 1949 (age 67)
Somerset, Kentucky, US
Other names Tommy L. Wallace, Tom Wallace
Occupation Film director, screenwriter, producer
Spouse(s) Nancy Kyes (divorced)
Children 2

Thomas "Tommy" Lee Wallace (born September 6, 1949) is an American film producer, director, editor, and screenwriter. He is best known for directing horror films such as Halloween III: Season of the Witch, Fright Night Part 2 and It. He is a long-time collaborator of director John Carpenter, getting his first credit as an art director on Carpenter's directorial debut Dark Star. Along with Charles Bornstein, he edited both the original Halloween and The Fog. Initially approached to direct Halloween II, a position eventually taken by Rick Rosenthal, he directed the following entry Season of the Witch.

Early life[edit]

Born Thomas Lee Wallace in Somerset, Kentucky, to Robert G. Wallace, and his wife Kathleen Wallace, he has one sister, Linda. He grew up in Bowling Green, Kentucky, and attended high school at Western Kentucky University teachers training school (College High).



Wallace entered the film business from USC film school, starting as an art director and editor for commercials and industrial films. In 1976, he worked as sound effects editor and art director on Assault on Precinct 13, directed by longtime friend John Carpenter, with whom he had previously worked on 1974's Dark Star, a low-budget science-fiction comedy that started life as a student film and took years to make. In 1978, he served as production designer and editor of Halloween, also directed by Carpenter. (He gave co-editing credit to his assistant editor, Charles Bornstein.) In 1980, he served in the same capacity for Carpenter's next theatrical release, The Fog. In addition to his duties as co-editor and production designer, Wallace also appeared in Halloween intermittently as The Shape (the masked Michael Myers), and later in The Fog as several different ghosts; his voice was featured in both films as TV/radio announcers.

Directorial debut[edit]

For Halloween II, John Carpenter, serving as producer, offered the directorial responsibilities to Wallace. After careful deliberation, Wallace declined, citing disappointment with the script. Wallace did, however, write and direct the third film, Halloween III: Season of the Witch; his voice was also featured as the announcer and the munchkin singers on the Silver Shamrock commercial.

Work over the years[edit]

Wallace has continued to write and direct. In 1986, he performed the title song of Carpenter's film Big Trouble in Little China as part of the band Coup de Villes, alongside Carpenter himself and another friend, Nick Castle. In 1988, he co-wrote and directed the sequel Fright Night Part 2 starring Roddy McDowell. In 1990, he served as writer and director of the made-for-television miniseries It based on the novel by Stephen King. In 2002, he directed Vampires: Los Muertos, a sequel to the 1998 film Vampires directed by John Carpenter.


  • Gorezone Magazine (USA) 1988, Iss. 3, pg. 44–47, by: Marc Shapiro, "Tommy Lee Wallace Leaves the Carpenter Nest"

Personal life[edit]

Wallace is also credited as 'Tommy L. Wallace', 'Tommy Wallace', and 'Tom Wallace'. He is divorced from actress Nancy Kyes, who appeared as Annie in Halloween and Halloween II and as Mrs. Challis in Halloween III. Together, they have two children.



Year Result Award Category/Recipient(s)
1981 Nominated Saturn Award Best Special Effects for The Fog
Shared with:
Richard Albain
James F. Liles
1991 Won ACE Award Writing a Movie or Miniseries for El Diablo
Shared with:
John Carpenter
Bill Phillips
1989 Nominated International Fantasy Film Award Best Film for Fright Night Part 2


Further reading[edit]

  • "The Devil (and Dino) Made Him Do It!" by Lee Gambin, Fangoria magazine No. 317, October 2012, pages 58–59. 97. Interview of screenwriter Tommy Lee Wallace regarding his scripting of Amityville II: The Possession. Three-page article has five photos, one of Wallace.

External links[edit]