David Howard Thornton’s Confession About The Terrifier Enigma

Bihter Sevinc

Creepy clowns have undeniably become a popular trend in the movie industry. From major box office hits like ‘Joker’ and ‘IT’ to low-budget B-horror flicks such as ‘Clownado,’ studios are benefiting from people’s mixed emotions of fear and fascination toward these enigmatic characters.

The obsession with clowns also showed itself in Damien Leone’s 2016 film ‘Terrifier,’ starring David Howard Thornton as Art the Clown. While coulrophobia, the fear of clowns, is a widespread phobia, Thornton doesn’t see them as objects of fear. The actor explained in a phone interview with Pittsburgh City Paper in March:

“I was actually never afraid of clowns. I used to watch ‘The Bozo Show’ every single morning before I went to school on WGN. I loved clowns.”

In the later part of the chat, David reflected on his character, Art’s creepiness, saying:

“I think that the little bit of silliness to the character, the clownishness adds more of a creep factor to him as well because he’s doing horribly horrific things, but he finds them to be extremely funny.”

He added more on his portrayal of Art and how he built it both as humorous and terrifying:

“He’s not doing it out of revenge or anything like that. He gets his amusement out of killing people. He’s the anti-clown. You know, clowns are supposed to be here to bring joy and amusement to other people. He’s here to bring pain and misery to other people for his own enjoyment and amusement. And that’s how I looked at him.”

Six years after the original ‘Terrifier,’ ‘Terrifier 2,’ again starring Thornton, hit the theaters in 2022. Following the success of the second movie, plans for ‘Terrifier 3’ were officially announced. The filming is set to start in November or December and is expected to be released in late 2024.

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