Trivia for Prince of Darkness
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- When Dr. Leahy introduces himself to Dr. Birack, Peter Jason wasn't expecting Victor Wong to walk away in the middle of the scene. Jason's subsequent confused appearance and awkwardness is natural and unscripted.
- Rock singer Alice Cooper is among the hordes of homeless people that surround the church during the film.
- The movie was shot in just over 30 days.
- Alice Cooper used the bike impalement trick in his stage shows prior to this movie. The bike he uses was his own personal prop.
- This is the second film in what John Carpenter calls his "Apocalypse Trilogy". The other two are The Thing (1982) and In the Mouth of Madness (1994).
- When Brian and Catherine are in bed in the morning, Brian says to her, "Who was he, the one that gave you such a high opinion of men?" This is a fairly well known quote (among others) from To Have and Have Not (1944), only the sexes are reversed here. The original has Lauren Bacall saying, "Who was the girl, Steve?" To which Humphrey Bogart replies, "Who was what girl?" And she responds, "The one who left you with such a high opinion of women."
- Screenwriter John Carpenter is credited as "Martin Quatermass". The pseudonym is a homage to Professor Bernard Quatermass, the lead character of The Quatermass Experiment (1953) and several subsequent TV series and film versions. In the original press notes he was described as 'the brother of Professor Bernard Quatermass, head of the British rocket programme.' In a further nod to Carpenter's influences, the character Wyndham is named after science-fiction author John Wyndham and Anne Howard's character is named after the star of The Wasp Woman (1959), Susan Cabot.
- Donald Pleasence's character, Father Loomis, is named after the character he played in the Halloween movies.
- Peter Jason hurt his shoulder in the scene where he and Jameson Parker try to break the front doors of the church down to escape. He claims that the pain still flares up to this day.
- Jameson Parker, who plays Brian, was sporting an old leg injury he picked up while making TV series Simon & Simon (1981), and would sometimes need to rest in his trailer because of the pain.
- The scene where Wyndham (Robert Grasmere) is stabbed by the bag-lady at the back of the church is inspired by a similar stabbing scene in the Terence Fisher movie The Curse of the Werewolf (1961).
- The audio of the "broadcasts" that Brian receives in his dreams was sampled by Marilyn Manson in the song "Down In The Park" originally performed by Gary Numan. It is also sampled on DJ Shadow's album 'Endtroducing...'
- While Dennis Dun and Victor Wong worked together with John Carpenter on Big Trouble in Little China (1986), Donald Pleasence worked with Carpenter on Halloween (1978) and Escape from New York (1981). It was the first time Peter Jason worked with Carpenter and would later work together on They Live (1988), In the Mouth of Madness (1994), Village of the Damned (1995), Escape from L.A. (1996), and Ghosts of Mars (2001).
- The first time that Gary B. Kibbe worked as a Director of Photography for John Carpenter. Since then, they had worked together on every movie except for Memoirs of an Invisible Man (1992) and The Ward (2010).
- John Carpenter's first film that he made independently since Escape from New York (1981). Not only because of the box office failure of his previous film Big Trouble in Little China (1986), but also his frustration with working with the studios.
- Although the film wasn't John Carpenter's first screenplay that he wrote since Escape from New York (1981), it was the first film since Escape that he directed but credited himself as "Martin Quatermass". A similar thing he did on They Live (1988) but under the name "Frank Armitage".
- The first of two films that John Carpenter made with Alive Films. The second film they made was They Live (1988).
- The parts played by Donald Pleasence, Victor Wong and Dennis Dun were written specifically for them by John Carpenter due to his enjoyable prior collaborations with them.
- Several scenes were shot at the University of Southern California, which John Carpenter attended as a film student.
- Peter Jason came up with the idea for the mouth trumpet routine.
- The recurring dream was shot on video and filmed off of a television screen.
- Mercury was used for the reaching through the mirror shots.
- Jameson Parker came up with the idea for the card trick.
- John Carpenter claims to have been fascinated with religion ever since watching the old Hammer horror films and how Holy Water would destroy vampires.
- John Carpenter states he set out to make a film that was atmospheric and dreadful. At the time he was noticing a lot of derivative horror films and wanted to try something new involving quantum mechanics and religion.
- John Carpenter mentions the film died a swift death in theaters but found life, like many of his films, on video.
- Alice Cooper states he was directed to act emotionless and "brain dead" by John Carpenter. The street people were "soul-less".
- Alice Cooper originally asked John Carpenter if he could come to set just to watch a special effect, due to Cooper's manager also producing the film. Carpenter eventually decided to offer Cooper a role as the leader of the street people.
- Alice Cooper believes the film is ripe for a sequel, claiming he wants to see more than just the anti-God's hand but the whole thing.
- The genesis of the project came from Debra Hill describing a dream she had of a vague dark figure exiting a church which filled her with dread. John Carpenter developed the story around this idea in hopes of recreating the fear Hill really felt.
- The film takes place in 1987 and 1999.
- When Etchinson is cornered in the alley by the homeless people, he is listening to "Prince of Darkness" by Alice Cooper on his headphones, just as he is about to be killed by the character played by Cooper.
- On the Audio-Commentary of the DVD John Carpenter and Peter Jason talk about the scary Masks that were already prepared for the movie and were unfortunately destroyed in a fire while filming.
- The central location of the film is a church named Saint Godard's. 'anti God' can be formed by rearranging some of the letters.
- John Carpenter claims the most difficult effect was the claw coming out of the mirror. They drained mercury from a crane to create the effect of a pool of silver liquid.