The original Halloween was low budget.
But this low budget!?
Michael — called “The Shape” — was played by Nick Castle.. As a small boy, Michael Myers was played, in one scene, by an actor named Will Sandin in his first and last role on screen. In POV shots, the hands of young Michael were provided by co-writer and producer Debra Hill, while the unmasked Michael — who appears only briefly at the very end of the movie — was played by Tony Moran.
There were certainly a lot of Shapes.
The shooting schedule for the original “Halloween,” filmed in Pasadena, was a mere 21 days back in 1978. The film was famously completed for a mere $300,000 to $325,000 … although little of that, it seems, went to Castle. According to a 2018 interview with Vanity Fair, Castle’s pay was $525, in total.
Vanity Fair adjusted Castle’s paycheck for inflation, saying that $525 in 1978 would be about $2,509 in 2018. By 2023, that inflation only equals $2,583.43. According to Rent.com, the average price of a one-bedroom apartment in Los Angeles is about $2,853..
In Castle’s own words:
“I was paid $25 per day for ‘Halloween.’ That was a lot at the time! You have to remember: my interest in doing the film was being on set, so I could demystify the experience of filmmaking and directing. I expected to hang around the set for no money. But hey, $25 per day, and all I had to do was wear a rubber mask. It’s a mystery what [John Carpenter] saw in me and the way I moved. I asked John, ‘What is this character going to do?’ And he said, ‘Just walk across the street.’ I knew Michael’s movements weren’t going to be robotic. He was a real guy. He’s not rushing.”