The original Ghoulies (released in 1985) originated in 1983 under the title Beasties. It was to be directed by Charles Band, with special effects by Stan Winston (the two had previously collaborated on Parasite). It ended up being directed by Luca Bercovici with special effects by John Carl Buechler and his company Mechanical and Makeup Imageries Inc. The film was released theatrically by Empire Pictures in March 1985 and was a surprise success on home video. Ghoulies also stars Mariska Hargitay and Peter Laipis.
This film depicts a comical Hollywood-esque portrayal of black magic, Satan worship, and the occult.
According to stories Charles Band tells on his Full Moon Horror Road Show, he was tasked to come up with a great campaign to promote the film. During a brainstorming session he came up with the idea to have the Ghoulie popping up from the toilet. The idea was a huge success and the scene was then shot for the film after the fact. After opening weekend he arrived at his office to a stack of hate mail from angry parents who had been trying very hard to potty train their children and after this movie cannot get their kids anywhere near a toilet.
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