While horror icon Tony Todd has played many terrific roles in the genre over the course of his long, prolific career, easily his most recognizable is that of the Candyman. The living embodiment of an urban legend, Candyman kills only those brave – and/or stupid – enough to say his name five times in a mirror. At least usually, as those in the general vicinity of his target can also sometimes end up gutted with Candyman’s trademark hook.
The first Candyman film is often regarded as one of the greatest horror movies of the 90s, and a lot of that is no doubt thanks to the excellent work of English director Bernard Rose. The success of Candyman naturally led to two sequels, neither of which saw Rose return to the director’s chair. The first sequel – subtitled Farewell to the Flesh – is passable enough, although a big step down from the original. 1999’s Candyman 3: Day of the Dead is absolutely dreadful, and succeeded in killing the franchise dead ever since, despite Todd repeatedly saying that he would like to once again reprise the character.
That all said, one wonders what a Candyman sequel might have been like if directed by Rose. It turns out that Rose himself also wonders that, as he revealed during a recent interview with Art of the Title that he would love to come back and make a direct sequel to the storyline of the original Candyman film:
“Yes, desperately! I would love to do the proper sequel. There are all sorts of reasons why it’s never happened. I think it would be great, but of course unfortunately I don’t control the rights, otherwise I would just do it.”
To make the prospect of a Rose-directed sequel even cooler, he also wants to bring back Virginia Madsen to the role of Helen. How exactly that would work – considering that Helen seems to have herself become a murderous ghost at the end of the first movie – is unclear, but fans would no doubt love seeing her back opposite Todd regardless.
The real problem with Rose’s idea is that not only does he not control the rights, it’s not publicly clear who does. All three entries in the series were distributed by different studios, and have been released to disc by different companies. Until that mess gets sorted out, Rose’s dream of a true Candyman sequel will likely remain just that.