In the movie Change of Habit (1969) Elvis Presley plays a character named John Carpenter. In 1979 Carpenter directed the TV movie Elvis (1979) starring his good friend Kurt Russell.
Is a fan of the Quartermass movies (The Quatermass Xperiment (1955), Quatermass and the Pit (1967)), wrote Prince of Darkness (1987) under the pseudonym of Martin Quatermass, and the village in In the Mouth of Madness (1994) is named after a rail station in "Quatermass and the Pit".
Appears in his own films under the name Rip Haight, appearing in in The Fog (1980), Starman (1984), Body Bags (1993), and Village of the Damned (1995).
Considers it bad luck to wear the hat of the show he's working on. Will not wear a crew cap until the film is over.
Loves Elvis Presley and old Cadillacs.
Is a major NBA fan and has a satellite dish installed on his location trailer to keep up with the games. Always has a portable basketball hoop on location.
He has a son, Cody Carpenter (born John Howard Carpenter Jr.), with Adrienne Barbeau.
Is a great fan of Sergio Leone and cast Lee Van Cleef in Escape from New York (1981) because of his work with Leone.
Carpenter's character Snake Plissken (of Escape from New York (1981) and Escape from L.A. (1996)) is about to become a comic book. Published by theCrossGen imprint Code 6 Comics, the book will be known as "John Carpenter's The Snake Plissken Chronicles". It is set for publication beginning in 2003.
With the exception of Escape from L.A. (1996), he has rarely made a sequel to any of his films. Has said that he got forced into writing Halloween II (1981), but refused to direct it because he "didn't want to direct the same movie again".
Biography in the following: John Wakeman, editor. World Film Directors, Volume Two, 1945- 1985. pp. 184-189. New York: The H.W. Wilson Company, 1988.
Praised longtime friend and frequent collaborator Kurt Russell for being a hard-working, professional actor who isn't afraid to take on roles that might hurt his image or make him look like a fool.
He is a big fan of The Beach Boys and Howard Hawks.
Was originally supposed to direct Firestarter (1984), and even had a screenplay written by Bill Lancaster. Both were replaced when The Thing (1982), a film on which they both collaborated, did poorly at the box office.
Said in a 1982 interview that he thought the R rating for Halloween (1978) was justifiable, but The Fog (1980) should've been rated PG.
Was given the chance to direct Mutant Chronicles (2008).
Was offered a chance to direct the Eddie Murphy film The Golden Child (1986), but turned it down.
Turned down the chance to direct Top Gun (1986).
Turned down the chance to direct Fatal Attraction (1987).
Was offered the chance to direct Armed and Dangerous (1986) but turned it down. The job went to Mark L. Lester who also directed Firestarter (1984), which was offered to Carpenter.
Is an avid fan of the Godzilla films. He considers the first Godzilla movie (Godzilla (1954)) to be an inspiration for him.
Was approached to score Planet Terror (2007) for Robert Rodriguez, but was busy finishing up post-production on Masters of Horror (2005).
Close friend of actor Jeff Bridges.
Turned down the chance to direct Zombieland (2009).
In the 5th edition of 1001 Movies You Must See Before You Die (edited by Steven Jay Schneider), 2 of his films are listed: Halloween (1978) and The Thing (1982).
In an interview, he stated that he takes much of the failure of his movies pretty hard. However, out of all the movies that he had done, he claimed that The Thing (1982) was the failure he took the hardest.
Lives in West Hollywood, California.
Directed one Oscar-nominated performance: Jeff Bridges in Starman (1984).
He directed child actress Kim Richards in his second feature film, Assault on Precinct 13 (1976), and directed Kim's sister Kyle Richards in his next film, Halloween (1978).
Named his six favorite films as Only Angels Have Wings (1939), Rio Bravo (1959), Citizen Kane (1941), Vertigo (1958), Black Christmas (1974) and Blow-Up (1966).
He has always claimed that the Western is his favorite genre but he's never made a full-length film within the genre.
Claims that his son, Cody Carpenter got him hooked on playing video games. When Cody was growing up, the two spent time playing together, with early games such as Sonic the Hedgehog (1991). As an avid gamer, he continues playing video games both with his son and independently. As of 2013, his recent favorites included: Dishonored (2012), Assassin's Creed III (2012), and the God of War (2005) Collection. He can frequently be seen at the Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) with his son. (Source: Magazine: gameinformer (Volume XXIII, Number 6, Issue 242)).
Based his most famous character, the iconic Michael Myers from Halloween (1978), on a thirteen year old boy he saw at a mental institution on a school trip.
He said in an interview that he almost directed Tombstone (1993).
He was offered the chance to direct The Exorcist III (1990).
Fans of John Carpenter's work include the directors Bertrand Bonello, Tom Tykwer, Joon-ho Bong, Jeff Nichols, Olivier Assayas, Alice Winocour, Gaspar Noé, Jeremy Saulnier and Jordan Peele, who all named him as an influence on some of their own work. The composer Hans Zimmer was an early fan and said Assault on Precinct 13 (1976) has his favorite movie theme of all time. Another fan is Slovenian philosopher Slavoj Zizek, who is especially fond of They Live (1988).
His favorite movies are only angels have wings(1939), Rio bravo(1959), citizen kane(1941), vertigo(1958), and blow up(1966).
He has directed one film that has been selected for the National Film Registry by the Library of Congress as being "culturally, historically or aesthetically" significant: Halloween (1978).