Terrifier 2 Director Responds To Stephen King’s Praise Of The Gory Horror Flick

David Howard Thornton's Art the clown, looking horrific in Terrifier 2.
(Image credit: Dark Age Cinema, Fuzz on the Lens Productions)

Few newly released or upcoming horror movies have had as much ink spilled in their name as special effects artist-turned-director Damien Leone's Terrifier 2. The splatter flick has been praised for its outstanding use of practical gore effects, masterful handle on anxiety-inducing tension and employment of dark humor. The movie is supposedly so intense it caused some fans to vomit in the theaters. Whether this is true of the slasher or a clever marketing tactic on the part of producers, one thing is for sure; people are taking notice of the brutal sequel. Even the horror master himself, Stephen King, has been singing its praises, and Leone has responded to that reaction.

Earlier this month, the world-famous horror writer took to social media to ask if anyone had seen Terrifier because, in his own words, "it looked pretty good." Curiosity must have finally drawn Stephen King to his local theater because, within days, there was a follow-up tweet, in which King praised the film's gore, and the Terrifier 2 director was more than willing to share that response. Damien Leone made it clear on his Twitter that he was honored to have the nod from the King of all things spooky:

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The legendary author is famously a life-long movie fan, and his films have been being adapted (and there's a lengthy list of Stephen King adaptations) as long as he's been publishing books. Hence, the man has a pretty good idea of what makes a horror movie tick. This is quite the compliment coming from the OG creator of scary clowns! And who can blame Leone for wanting that sort of stamp of approval on the film's poster? 

Of course, given the serious level of praise from the Carrie writer, some of you may now be even more interested in checking it out. Of course, there are a few things that one must consider before heading out to the theater.

Things You Should Know Before You See Terrifier 2

Stephen King may love Terrifier 2's old-school approach to thrills and kills, but the film may not be for everyone. There are a few things that set it aside from its peers within the horror genre. Here's what you might want to know first:

  • The movie is a sequel to 2016's Terrifer. The first movie is available on the streaming platform Tubi if you want to catch up with the series before watching the sequel.
  • The movie stars actor David Howard Thornton as the mute serial killer, Art the Clown. You may want to skip this one if you have coulrophobia (fear of clowns).
  • The original movie was conceived by the film's director, who started as a visual effects makeup artist, as a way to showcase his talent for gore. If you don't like blood and guts, these aren't horror movies for you.
  • The series is in the subgenre of horror known as splatter, which means they are light on plot and heavy on stomach-turning visual effects. Don't come to the film looking for A24-type stories or anything elevated. But if you're as oblivious to elevated horror as filmmaker John Carpenter, and you're only looking for old-school scares, then maybe Terrifier 2 will be a good fit. But remember, it's all dirt, grime, and viscera down in the trenches of splatter films.
  • Don't expect the best acting. Though Thornton has been heavily praised for his horrific portal of Art, the visual effects and makeup are the real stars in the world of low-budget indie horror. You won't be finding Florence Pugh or Meryl Streep-level performances here. 

So all in all, the film should be a good time for those who don't mind seeing their fair share of gore. The film has received mostly positive reviews, but I honestly can't think of a higher recommendation than the one given by the one-and-only Stephen King.

If you think you're brave enough to watch Terrifier 2, the film just received an extended theatrical run based on popular demand, so there's still time to catch it at your local theater. And if you miss it in theaters, don't fret because it's expected to hit the streaming platform Screambox after it wraps up its run in the cinemas. To arrange all of your film-going plans in the coming months, you can look at CinemaBlend's 2022 movie release schedule.

Ryan graduated from Missouri State University with a BA in English/Creative Writing.