Chris Nashawaty
August 01, 1997 AT 04:00 AM EDT

How does an unkillable masked maniac celebrate his birthday? As far as Miramax is concerned, by going on a bloodletting bender. The studio has enlisted Scream screenwriter Kevin Williamson to pen a new chapter in the Halloween franchise in time for the 20th anniversary of director John Carpenter’s 1978 slasher classic. ”Part of my deal with the studio was to write a seven-page treatment for a new installment,” says Williamson. Though he already has a few good ideas, the assignment would be simpler if ”we could just forget the last four [sequels],” he says of the dismal follow-ups that left the franchise ”a real dead dog.” Williamson admits getting the old gang together will be tough. ”I talked to Jamie Lee Curtis. She said she’d be interested if Carpenter directed, and Carpenter said it would have to be a great story. So that’s what I have to do.”

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