BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KGET) — It has been 34 years since the demon doll Chucky started terrorizing the world with the feature film “Child’s Play.” The chills and kills have continued over the years through multiple movie sequels, tons merchandising, a reboot and finally the TV series “Chucky” that launched last year.
The creepy “Good Guy” doll that comes to life after being taken over by a demonic spirit has not lost his killer touch. The first season of “Chucky” was a monster hit as one of the top three new cable drama series of the year. The viewership include the longtime fans of the film franchise as well as newcomers to the franchise.
“Chucky” creator and executive producer, Don Mancini, credits the loyal fans with keeping the franchise going so strongly for so long. He also points to the work by Brad Dourif as the voice of the evil doll and the puppeteers – led by Tony Gardner and Peter Chevako – for the continued success.
“I think in tandem, they bring Chucky to life to such a degree that we on set can all take it for granted,” Mancini says. “I think that ‘Chucky’ works well as a television series because for years the films already set the precedent of doing serialized, ongoing, narrative storytelling. We have been spinning this continuous web over decades.
“So, to be able to do that now at an accelerated pace, and to go through eight hours of story per season, that’s really exciting. Because it allows us to get more into character’s history, and relationships, and go down different avenues and explore characters that fans have been wanting to know more about.”
Bits of information will begin being revealed when season two of “Chucky” launches at 9 p.m. tonight (Oct. 5) on both the Syfy and USA Network.
After his diabolical plan to invade America’s children’s hospitals was foiled in season one, Chucky now seeks revenge on those he holds responsible: surviving teens Jake (Zackary Arthur), Devon (Björgvin Arnarson) and Lexy (Alyvia Alyn Lind). He is also looking to deal with ex-love, Tiffany (Jennifer Tilly), who is now his sworn enemy.
Over the decades, Chucky’s look has changed – especially with multiple variations being introduced in the series – but the one thing that has remained the same is his evil nature. Tilly, who has been the voice of Chuck’s love interest, Tiffany, since 1998 with “Bride of Chucky” is certain the fans have loved seeing each new incarnation of Chucky.
“It keeps us fresh and new. He is recognizable, but you mix it up a little bit and it is fun for them to see. This season, and last season also, when they had a lot of Chuckys. It is just really fun,” Tilly says. “And Brad gives them all different personalities, but they are all still Chucky because Brad does the voices so brilliantly.
“They are different aspects of Chucky’s character, the different Chuckys. I don’t think I am giving anything away, because there were a lot of Chuckies last season too.”
There were multiple demon dolls in the first season. Dourif provided a different voice for each version of Chucky and he found varied character traits for each in the script that helped him make each Chucky very different.
When he does his recordings for each Chucky, Dourif will complete all the dialogue for one Chucky before he records the others. Dourif laughs as says, that the vast amount of work he does is just so much Chucky noises. He gets to scream, yell, breathe, sigh, moan, cry and laugh a lot.
The biggest difference between speaking for Chucky in the first film and providing the voice in the series is a matter of time. Dourif points out he is no 72, more than twice as old as when he started the job.
What hasn’t changed is his trust in Mancini.
“I think that Don Mancini is of all the ‘Chucky’ collective unconsciousness, he is the god thereof. And most of my evolution comes from his imagination,” Dourif says. “I always felt that Don’s ability to grab where horror was going, how the genre changed, and adapt ‘Chucky,’ it was always unique and extremely fun.
“I think he is the reason why this thing continues to work, and why Jennifer and I still have a job after many, many years. I know the character really well, so, I feel like I should be able to go in there and do it, but Don always comes up with [expletive deleted] that makes it harder. I mean he really challenged me this year.”