If you’re on social media, browsing horror content online, you’ve likely seen a few of the wonderfully goofy “self-isolating” Michael Myers videos floating around. Now, it’s time to meet the man behind the (Myers) mask: Craig Layton!
Unlike Michael Myers, Craig talks and he had a lot to say about his videos, his history as a horror fan, his frustrations with online content theft, his hopes for future collaborations, and he even offered some valuable tips/encouragement for fellow independent filmmakers.
If you enjoyed this episode, please share it with your friends! And, if you love the HorrorFam.com Podcast and want to support it, please consider donating via PayPal (button in the sidebar) or Patreon. ♥
Links for MORE Craig Layton:
- Follow Craig on Twitter: @craiglayton07
- Follow Craig on Instagram: @BadPhotoshopGuy
- Subscribe to Craig’s videos on YouTube: YouTube.com/MrCraigLayton
Update (7/11/2020): Since recording this episode, Craig Layton has updated the visible display name on his online platforms from “BadPhotoshopGuy” to “StabbyTimeTV;” however, the links above are still correct/valid URLs.
An Important Note from Lauren Spear:
When listening to this episode, I think it’s important to remember that Mr. Craig Layton is based in Nova Scotia, Canada.
I realized, upon re-listening to my discussion with him to edit/polish the episode, that some of his comments regarding the current pandemic/lockdown (and even some of his comments regarding Halloween mask availability back in the day!) may confuse some of our American listeners — particularly those who hail from Los Angeles (where I’m based).
While Nova Scotia eased nearly all of their COVID-19 restrictions on May 1st and, as of this writing, essentially lifted their “lockdown” in full on July 3rd, that is not the case in the United States. Especially not in my hometown of Los Angeles, where we’re still under very strict lockdown/stay-at-home orders.
Anyway, I didn’t want any of my fellow Los Angelenos (or anyone else still in active/strict pandemic lockdown) hearing Craig’s statements about the quarantine ending and returning to his full-time job to get needlessly excited/confused.
PLEASE continue to follow the lockdown guidelines for YOUR area. If we all continue to work together, we may still have a chance to save Halloween 2020. (Prayer’s up!).
That said, I hope you enjoy Episode 13 of the HorrorFam.com Podcast! It was a pleasure talking to Mr. Layton about his humorous take on Halloween‘s Michael Myers and his history as a horror fan and independent filmmaker. Hang in there, Everybody!! WEAR YOUR MASKS, even if it’s a Michael Myers’ mask. ~Lauren*
FULL Written Transcript of the Interview (with Additional Videos/Pics!):
*Intro Music from FreePD.com*
Lauren Spear: Hi, Everyone! My name is Lauren Spear, and you’re listening to the HorrorFam.com Podcast!
My guest today is Craig Layton! And, if you haven’t heard of him already, he’s on Twitter and Instagram as “BadPhotoshopGuy.” But, you may not recognize the handle because you’re probably more familiar with his videos where he portrays Michael Myers in very hilarious everyday situations.
I have been enjoying those videos for several months now and I reached out to Craig and was like, “I love these videos! They always cheer me up!” and “Would you please come on and talk about them?” And he agreed! Annnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnd here he is!!
So… Hi, Craig! Welcome to the show!
Craig Layton: Well, hello! Thanks for having me here! This is exciting!!
I’m excited that you actually reached out to me and would consider me guest-worthy on your great podcast. So, thank you so much for having me.
Lauren: Thank you so much for coming on!
Lauren: Yeah! So! “BadPhotoshopGuy!”
Craig Layton: Yeah!
Lauren: Most people see you as just… Michael Myers doing weird things.
Craig Layton: Yeah. Yeah. It IS interesting…
Lauren: But, when they actually try to find you, you’re a little hard to find sometimes!
Craig Layton: Yeah, it is like a… Yeah. Someone pointed that out to me actually.
Because, you know, when I started on Twitter, I actually made bad Photoshops. That kind of was a little hobby I had where I’d take myself and my friends and I’d Photoshop them into famous movie scenes.
Like, I had one that I kind of… I broke character a couple weeks ago for an episode of The Last Drive-In and I had… They were doing Cannibal Holocaust [as an episode of The Last Drive-In with Joe Bob Briggs], and I actually… That was one of the bad Photoshops I did. I Photoshopped my face on one of the dead bodies that were impaled on the beach!
So, that’s what I started doing. And then I got away from that and started doing the Michael Myers videos that I do now… which completely have nothing to do with my Twitter handle! Right? So… it does confuse people.
Absolutely, right? Because, people tend to say “Hey! Did you see that Michael Myers guy!” Right? And then people will search for “Michael Myers.” And, if you actually enter Twitter and search “Michael Myers,” you get SO many hits on people who already have that name.
So, people have suggested that I change it. I’m… I’m really afraid of change. Y’know? *laughs* So, it’s… Like, what if it’s branded to something else and then I decide to branch out?? But it’s just…
Social media! I’m an old man! So, social media ins and outs are not my thing. *laughs* So, I’m excited — I’m just happy that people have stumbled across me and seem, for the most part, to enjoy what I’m doing. Because I have a LOT of fun making these videos.
Lauren: *laughs* That was actually one of the reasons why I wanted to talk to you! Because, you know, you’re Craig Layton — the man behind the mask! And, if you ever want to do something ELSE (and you’re absolutely free to do so! As much as I enjoy your Michael Myers videos, you’re always free to do your own thing), I thought that it would be good if people could recognize not just “Oh, there’s Michael Myers on Twitter” they could be like “Oh, there’s Craig Layton AS Michael Myers!” and “Craig Layton is the man who is doing these wonderful creative things that are cheering us all up in these really strange, hard times…”
Craig Layton: Yeah. It’s interesting, right? Because I do my best to stay “in character” on the Twitter. I try.
But I find it hard to define my Twitter too. Because it’s like… Am I a parody account? Am I not because…?
There’s a lot of Michael Myers [cosplayers] out there! And there’s some people doing wonderful stuff. I’m not alone in what I do! But, there’s people out there who like to keep the persona “real” that they’re the ACTUAL character. Right? So, some people do that and… That’s kind of not me.
Like, I try and stay “hidden” because of how… I’m not super successful, at this point. By any means. I just enjoy doing [the Michael Myers comedy videos]. Like, it started as just entertaining myself.
But, I get worried that, if I do change it up, are people who do seem to…
I have a very loyal following for what I do have on it. And it’s always like “I’m afraid to change now! Can I take the mask off? Would people still find what I do entertaining or humorous?”
But I don’t have any immediate plans of removing the masks. So, I’m gonna keep on chucking away at making these things.
And, it’s interesting because, like, you talk about these trying times and that’s what started this for me.
Me wearing a Michael Myers’ mask and doing things isn’t new. It’s just new that… Like, ask anybody that knows me — like my family, my community — they’re kind of accostomed to seeing this.
I get that a lot in my videos too! Like, “What do your neighbors think?!” Right? And my response is, “Well, it’s another day.” Right? Because… I do this. Like, normally. I would go out and mow my lawn dressed like [Michael Myers]. And I’d get chuckles from the neighbors and stuff.
It’s just… When COVID started, and the lockdown started, I used it as a way to just pass the time. So, I decided to just turn the camera on myself and do mundane things in it.
So, as much as I’m glad that I seem to have a bit of a following and that people are enjoying what I’m doing, I’ll make no bones about this: If I didn’t enjoy making the videos, I wouldn’t be doing it.
So, I’m glad people are enjoying them. But, at the end of the day, it’s… If I find it amusing and I do it and I watch it and think “Ah, that’s going to be funny” then… That’s my benchmark: I have to think it’s humorous before I post it. And then whatever the audience that I’m trying to find and whatever they think about it… that’s a bonus if they enjoy it and support it. If they don’t, I respect that as well. But, at the end of the day, it’s… I enjoy doing it and I started solely to pass the time and amuse myself.
And, it took my family a bit to get into it as well. Because my wife is a big supporter and a big help! Of course. Because, a lot of stuff that I can’t… Like, if I need to put the camera in motion to follow me! All I have is…
I use my cellphone and a tripod. So, if I do a motion, I get [my wife] to film it. And, in the early days, it was like “*exasperated sigh* Really? I don’t want to do this. Really?!” And now she’s… She’s made appearances in some of the videos too! So, it’s fun that they’re taking [a liking to] it.
The only person who really hasn’t gravitated to really digging what I’m doing is my 12-year-old daughter. Because, well… *laughs* She’s twelve!
Lauren: *knowing chuckle*
Craig Layton: Right?!
Craig Layton: So, she’s turning into a teenager and she’s at the age where “Oh my God, Dad. You’re SO embarrassing!”
Craig Layton: In case anybody’s wondering, I’m probably more strange in my everyday life than I actually am in the [Michael Myers] videos! *laughs* Because I just… Enjoy life!
I like to have fun, you know? I like to joke around and entertain.
So, I am the dad who you’ll see dancing in a grocery aisle!
Craig Layton: My daughter HATES it! *laughs* She YELLS at me when I start doing it or walks away! But… I will.
And my thing is like: If they don’t want you dancing in the grocery aisle, why are they playing music?? Right?! It’s as simple as that!
Craig Layton: And I’m pretty sure every parent can probably relate to that. What we’re saying there. When [parents] have children and they’re starting on their teenage years, the last thing they wanna do is be seen with you… let alone seen with you dancing in a grocery store.
Lauren: Well, sometimes they play good stuff! You can’t help it!
Craig Layton: Yes, exactly! Well, you know, I’m a slave to the ’80s!
Lauren: Oh, me too!
Craig Layton: I love the ’80s! And a lot of the stuff you’re hearing in grocery stores and stuff… It’s not always current music. It’s the old retro stuff! I grew up on that stuff and I just LOVE it!
Lauren: Oh yeah. Me too…
Oh! But… *laughs* Sorry. We’re going off about ’80s music, but you…
Craig Layton: *laughs* I rant.
Lauren: You’ve been on YouTube since about 2009…
Craig Layton: Yep.
Lauren: …and you pretty much kinda “first” put on the mask and started filming yourself as Michael Myers off-and-on a little over a year ago. But, it wasn’t until about three months ago — when the lockdown really hit EVERYWHERE — that you really started putting out the Michael Myers videos.
And the first one that I remember seeing was the one with the handwashing. And…
Craig Layton: Yep! That’s one of the earlier ones. Of course. Yep.
Lauren: Yeah, that was the one I came across. And I was just going to say: It’s just so comforting that it’s like it really drives home that we’re ALL in this together. Like, even the monsters — the killers — are in quarantine and having to deal with the pandemic.
And I thought that that was just really cool.
Craig Layton: Yeah. It’s…
My YouTube. Yeah, and I do have a YouTube (so if everybody could please go visit that, that would be super cool). It’s YouTube.com/MrCraigLayton
I’ve been involved in film most of my life. All right? So, I have a lot of stuff on my YouTube that… I got away from a lot of this. And my YouTube is very underutilized, but…
I used to make stuff! And I’ve been in some TV shows and I’ve been in some films. And I’d make my own little films.
There’s some really old stuff on my YouTube that, when I was more active, that… You know, if you REALLY want to go back into the past of what I was like. I actually have a video, made on Halloween, I think probably five years ago, where I pretended to get a pumpkin stuck on my head and I had my mother-in-law try to beat it off with a baseball bat. Right? And that’s still on my YouTube. I actually have it as one of my featured videos.
THAT one got a lot of attention! Right?! *laughs* But there was a trend too, right? Like, there’s a lot. Google “head stuck in pumpkin.” There’s a MILLION of ’em!
So… The Michael Myers, like I said before, it really kicked into gear during COVID. And I kind of set some expectations that I don’t think I can still live up to…
And what I mean by that is: When I first started doing this, during lockdown, I was — seriously! — for probably a good two months I was releasing a video a day.
And that’s VERY hard to keep up — to be original and creative — when your benchmark is “I’ve gotta put out a video each day! Each day! Each day!” Right??
So, in the early days, it was easy! It was like, “Okay. I’m going to vacuum the basement.” Right? And I’d video me vacuuming the basement. Mopping the floors. Doing laundry. Like, the really simple mundane things.
And then you try to get more creative… And then I tried… you know. “Okay. We are in lockdown…” Which led to the handwashing video as well, right? Where I’m washing my hands and I talk about the importance of wearing a mask. You know?
Which is very relevant! Especially right now where there’s a big push to educate people to wear masks in public. There’s legislation being put in place in different cities where it’s manadatory. And people are fighting it and this and that. But [my Michael Myers handwashing video] is [relevant, even now].
That was probably one of the earlier ones that I did. [It] was, you know, encouraging people to wear a mask! And, of course, the joke of it is… I say, “Wear a mask. Wear a Michael Myers mask. Because everybody knows, you can’t kill the boogeyman.” That’s the joke of the video! Right?
And, so, it was easy to do simple little things! Like, I even did a bit about… Playing along with the fictitious toilet paper shortage we had! Right? So, I have a video with Michael Myers on the toilet realizing he has no toilet paper!
These are simple little things that I had the avenue to do because I was taking what was really going on in the world and — like you said! — put a little twist on them!
We watch these movies. We’re all horror fans. And, secretly, if you really don’t buy into a franchise or a character, you have that thought: “Oh, I wonder what they’re doing when they’re not on that special day… On Halloween! What does [Michael Myers] do?”
Of course, in the movies, we have him locked up in an institution, right? But, what if he wasn’t? What would he be doing? I mean, he only kills ONE day! He’s still has laundry to do, right? He still has to have a shower! Like, little things like that started…
And then, I like to think it kind of grew into more interesting plays on things.
Like, one of my more popular ones recently, was me trying to use a chainsaw like Leatherface. Right?
Lauren: Yeah. *giggles*
Craig Layton: And, of course, that’s the play on this: “Well, he doesn’t even know how to start a chainsaw!” That’s the thing!
Honestly, I don’t put a lot of thought into my videos. Nine times out of ten, I come up with an idea and I wait for the availability of the time…
And that’s the thing. Now, with lockdown down and work’s opening, I unfortunately have less time to make the videos. So, making daily videos is very difficult for me at this point.
But, most of them are just like “Oh! I have an idea! I’m gonna do this! Let’s go shoot it!” Right?
And, because I have the fortune of portraying a character who doesn’t have to speak, I don’t actually have to do a lot of takes. Ninety percent of the videos I have are all filmed in one take. I just shoot it, do it, and then I play around with the editing if I’ve gotta clean something up, and then I release it. Because I don’t have dialogue, right? So I don’t have lines to mess up. Which is really… It makes it a lot easier.
Lauren: That was a smart choice. Yeah.
Craig Layton: Yeah! Like…
Lauren: Like the other day! You were telling me that you liked that you chose a character who power walks and doesn’t have to run or…
Craig Layton: Exactly!
Lauren: …do anything too…
Craig Layton: I’m a very lazy man! I don’t want to have to run around! Right?!
But it’s just… I’m just trying to have fun with it.
And it’s at a point now where it… Like I said, I have a bonafide following! And I’m very appreciative of my followers.
Like, I just asked a question the other day on Twitter — like just an honest thought… Like, I appreciate EVERY view I get. Right? So, if I get 100 views, I appreciate every single one of them. And, if I get lucky and I get one that gets up to like 40,000 or 100,000 views, I actually appreciate EVERY single one of those views! I appreciate every follower I get. I appreciate “Like.” I try to do my best to respond to every single comment I get. Which is a lot easier when I don’t have tens-of-thousands of followers. Right?
And I have the… There are people out there who have like 60,000 followers who are SUPER interactive on Twitter! I don’t know how they do it. I really don’t.
Lauren: I don’t know either.
Craig Layton: Because there are times when… If I have a video that seems to be taking off and I’m getting lots of comments… Like, I joked to my wife, “I’m just going to give you my phone while I’m at work and you’re going to be my social media coordinator! You gotta respond to these things!” Right? Because sometimes it gets time-consuming! So, I don’t know how they do it! Right?!
But, there’s also people who… And my question [on Twitter] was like, “Are super successful YouTubers… Do they even remember the days when it was exciting to have 11 views on YouTube?” Because 11 people watched it. Like…that’s… I don’t know. Maybe it’s because I’m older or I’ve been doing this for a long time? I know success. I know failures.
I actually don’t consider what I’m doing a success. At ALL. By any means. But… I appreciate it. It means the world to me that someone actually took the time to watch it. To hit the “Like” button. To comment! Or to Retweet! Like… It’s amazing.
When people “quote”… When they Retweet my videos with a “quote,” I’m always like the first comment on it of “Thank you. I appreciate this. Thank you for Retweeting.” Because it’s HARD to find an audience in the “social” world.
Craig Layton: Because, let’s say it, I’m not unique with what I’m doing. There’s other people that do similar things. But, I dunno…
I don’t want to toot my own horn here! But, if people are curious: I’m genuine. I’m actually… Honestly. When I say this… I appreciate EVERY time when somebody watches a video. Every time somebody…
I sit there and I WATCH the views. *laughs* Right?!
Craig Layton: “Oh! Wow! Wow! Wow! Woooooooooow! This one seems weird…” Like, there will be days where I’ll be driving with my wife and my phone will be there… And my phone would start “Da-ding! Da-ding! Da-ding!” because I didn’t turn notifications off. Right? And my wife will say, “You put a video up today, didn’t you?” And I’ll say, “Oh yeah. I did. Wow. That one seems to be doing pretty good!”
Craig Layton: But there’s times, where I put up a video, and I’m like, “Oh, this is going to be GREAT!” and it’s like… a tumbleweed blowing through my Twitter feed. Nooooooooooooooooooobody.
And there is a video that I have that I was always amazed didn’t catch on! Because I thought it was a RIOT! *laughs* But it just never really caught on. And it was…
Have you seen my karaoke one?
Craig Layton: Yeah! That’s one of my favorite ones!
Craig Layton: It is! It’s one of my favorite ones. It’s simple. It’s like… Michael’s bored. And it’s one of the earlier ones I made, too, where Michael’s bored. But Michael wants to sing karaoke!
Craig Layton: But Michael doesn’t talk! So how does he SING? “Hahhh…hahhhh…hahhhhhh…hhhaaahhh…” He breathes to the rhythm of the song!
And, of course, I chose a Journey song! Right?!
Craig Layton: One of the most popular karaoke songs ever! And… nothing. Nothing. NO love for that one. Really?! Come on, People!! This is CLEVER! *rueful chuckle*
Lauren: One of our cats has, like, fused vocal cords. Which is… I guess it’s common if they’re inbred? But, that’s the noise that she makes when she’s really excited about something. Like, instead of purring. *laughs* So, that’s kind of what that [Michael Myers “singing” karaoke video] reminded me of.
Craig Layton: I’ll just get you to send me sound loops of that! That’s going to become the new breathing for my character!
Lauren: It’s actually a happy cat sound! But…
Craig Layton: That’s the crazy thing about cats though, right? Like, you know, I have a couple videos where I have my cat in it. And I have my dog in it. And… The Internet really does love cats!
Lauren: Oh yeah!
Craig Layton: I just put a video of me, in my mask, holding my cat and pettin’… and THAT gets traction. And I got one where I’m trying to play with it and…
I’ve got cat that… Her actual real name is Jamie Lee Purrtis.
Craig Layton: My daughter hates that name.
Lauren: I was going to ask about that, actually! If that was her real name, or just a joke name that you made for the cat’s character…?
Craig Layton: No, I’m going to tell you the true story behind this cat.
I have two dogs that are rescue dogs. That we adopted. My wife sent me pictures one day and said, “Oh! What do you think of these dogs?” And I said, “Oh, they’re cute.” I’m not lying — I came home from work that day and they were in my house! We now own two dogs.
And those dogs are Chris and Farley! Which is lost on the young generation because all the youngsters don’t know the comedian Chris Farley. Right? So that’s their names. They’re Chris and Farley.
Lauren: That’s very funny.
Craig Layton: And I have two other cats! Right? And they were rescue cats as well.
I get no say in the pets in here! Of course, I love the pets now that they’re all here. I love them all.
But, the last one, Jamie Lee Purrtis, was a cat we adopted a year ago. I was the only one available to pick [her] up. So, my signature is on the legal adoption papers of this cat. So, the cat’s name was Moo-Moo. My daughter came home and said, “Oh! This is Shookie!” And I said, “No, Honey. This is MY cat. Here’s the legal document. It says ‘Jamie Lee Purrtis.'”
Craig Layton: It’s a joke, of course, just to irritate! But… her legal name is Jamie Lee Purrtis. My daughter will call her Shookie. Other people call her Shookie. I’m the only one calling her Jamie Lee Purrtis.
So, clearly, you’re a genuine Halloween [movie franchise] fan!
Craig Layton: Yeah!
Lauren: How’d that come about? What made you drawn to Halloween, and what made you decide “Yeah. I’m Michael Myers. That guy. That’s who I’m gonna be!”??
Craig Layton: Yeah! It IS interesting! It is…
Obviously, [Michael Myers] is my favorite character. And… I don’t care that I’m going to date my age here: I was born in ’73.
There’s three horror movies that I have the earliest memory of seeing. Okay? And I can’t really tell you which order these are in…
But, one of the clearest memories of a horror movie I’ve seen would be… There’s a movie called The Boogeyman. Made in 1980. It’s gotten remade about 27 times since. I clearly remember that!
And then I remember Halloween II. Released in 1981. I clearly remember seeing that movie. It’s actually the first Halloween movie that I have any recollection of ever watching.
Lauren: My dad worked on that one.
Craig Layton: WHAT?! Really??
Lauren: Yeah! He did the…
Craig Layton: He’s like a celebrity!
Lauren: …the Ben Tramer mask.
Craig Layton: Does he still HAVE the Ben Tramer mask?!?
Lauren: Oh! *laughs*
Craig Layton: What?! How do you not talk about this?!?
Lauren: Well, I…
Craig Layton: I’d be telling EVERYBODY!
Craig Layton: EVERYONE I know!!
Lauren: My dad’s been on the podcast! He’s going to be on later this month. He’s gonna be talking about the 1988 version of The Blob…
Craig Layton: Wow!
Lauren: And he was on in… I think it was March? He was talking about his work on Beetlejuice. And… yeah! He comes on. He talks about [his special FX work]. And I wrote recently about…
Craig Layton: I’ve gotta do my research better. I’ve gotta research my shows better! That’s AMAZING!
Lauren: Yeah… Both my mom, Cathy Tharp, and my dad, Rob Tharp, worked at Don Post Studios for over 40 years.
Craig Layton: Wow!
Lauren: So, yeah. They’re…
Craig Layton: I’m extremely jelous. I’m, like, humbled now.
Lauren: …VERY familiar with the Michael Myers masks.
Craig Layton: What are you talking to ME for…?! Well. Okay. I gotta ask a question then: Has your father seen any of my videos?
Lauren: Oh! Yeah. This morning! *laughs*
Craig Layton: Okay. As somebody who worked on Halloween II on the Ben Tramer mask… What does he think of them?
Lauren: *nervously laughs, secretly wondering if her dad even remembers seeing/commenting on the videos she thrust into his face at 3am that morning*
Craig Layton: You can criticize me! It’s okay. It’s your show.
Lauren: No. I mean…
Craig Layton: What does he think of them??
Lauren: My husband [who’s a nightowl and was 100% awake at the time] and my dad both thought that they were funny. Very amusing!
Craig Layton: Oh! Okay!
Craig Layton: It’s endorsed by somebody who actually worked on the Halloween movies!
Lauren: Yeah. I actually have a question from my husband that I’m going to ask in a bit. But first, you know, finish your story about…
Craig Layton: Yeah! So!
Lauren: …your history with Halloween. I…I’m sorry [for interrupting you].
Craig Layton: But yeah. That’s what it was. The first one. Halloween II was the first one I clearly remember. And I love it! To this day, I love it. It is my FAVORITE Halloween movie. Hands down.
I’m from the camp… When you talk about Halloween People, there tends to be the “I’m okay with getting rid of the sister angle for the 2018 movie.” Right? There’s people who are okay with that. Blumhouse was okay with that. I’m NOT “okay” with that, myself. I’m a FAN of the sister angle! That Laurie is Michael’s sister. All right?
Now, I’m NOT fan of anything that happened after Halloween II. Right? And I’ve seen them all. Right? I’m a Halloween fan. I’m a Michael Myers fan. To me, it’s the original, the second part, and…
I’m still on the fence about the 2018 one, to be honest. I was there opening night. And I saw it. And I remember loving it. And… The more I think about it, I’m going to be honest about this, is it’s a movie… It’s a fanboy movie. One-hundred percent. With all the throwbacks and bringing back Laurie and Michael together.
I dug the way how they got Michael to Laurie. Because Michael wasn’t hunting Laurie in the new movie. He wasn’t. It’s… The doctor put them together.
But, I like how he HUNTED Laurie in [Halloween II]. All right? So, I’m from the camp of that.
I’m also — and I apologize to your listeners out there — in the camp of: I’m not a fan of the Rob Zombie Halloween movies. The backstory really ruined it for me. I like how [Rob Zombie] created Michael as being such a violent, BRUTAL killer in the first Halloween he made. I’m a fan of that. But the backstory just ruined it for me.
But, yeah. [Halloween II] is one of the earliest movies I remember seeing!
The other… The third one. I mentioned The Boogeyman, 1980; Halloween II, 1981… But the original When a Stranger Calls. Do you remember that one? “Have you checked the children?” The babysitter movie?
Craig Layton: I have memories of that terrifying me!
I have three older sisters, right? And I remember them watching and… It just scared the bejeezus right out of me! But I can’t remember in the order that I seen it. Right? I saw… It was one of the first three horror movies I’ve ever seen in my life.
But the ones I clearly remember, like I said, is The Boogeyman then the Halloween II. And I’ve always loved it.
And the interesting thing about this is: Everyone who has known me, my whole life, as I grew up, I was obsessed with Michael Myers Michael Myers Michael Myers… But, I actually didn’t buy my first Michael Myers mask until 2018. Right? That’s… I never had a Michael Myers mask before that!
Now, granted, being a child of the ’80s, you really couldn’t get a real Michael Myers mask. You had all the plastic ones. Just the ones with the elastic or something, right? Like, it wasn’t grained… For some reason, it wasn’t grained into the licensing of… And people will probably correct me, if I’m wrong here; but, I remember growing up as a kid and wanting a Michael Myers costume, right…? And once the masks became available, they were just SO expensive because they were custom-made. So they were beautiful!
But, once Trick or Treat Studios…
Yeah, I’m plugging Trick or Treat Studios here. People love ’em or hate ’em. I love Trick or Treat Studios! I talk to them all the time and I keep trying to get a mask from them because I have a great idea that I wanna do… A video for their new [Halloween Kills] mask! But they’re like “We can’t. We can’t. We can’t give it to you!” because the movie hasn’t been released yet. Right?
Craig Layton: But I’m working angles! I’m trying to get one!
I have a fantastic Michael Myers video [planned] for the new mask, when I get it. So, people will probably have to wait six months before I get that.
But when Trick or Treat Studios bought [the Halloween/Michael Myers license], in 2018, I bought my first mask. And it’s the one I wear. All the time. It’s my favorite one! I have six Michael Myers masks from six different movies. But the only one I wear is my 2018 [version]. Because I love it!
Now, I do have the… There’s a couple videos that [don’t] stand up today because it’s made in a COVID lockdown world. But, it’s my Saturday Night Live… My Saturday Night FEVER video. I’m assuming you’ve seen that??
Craig Layton: If not, you’re going to say “yes.” That’s what you’d do.
I recreate the opening of Saturday Night Fever, when he’s getting ready to go out, right? So, I do everything…
When I do parodies of other shows, I do my best, within my limited resources, of trying to recreate them shot-for-shot. Like my Ferris Bueller one!
Lauren: Yeah. You had the Ferris Bueller opening as well. I was just going to…
Craig Layton: Yeah. Exactly.
Lauren: …say that.
Craig Layton: And the only thing I missed from that was the equalizer that he adjusts. Because I just physically don’t got one. I was trying to get my hands on… My neighbor here has a junk removal company and he always has weird stuff. And HE didn’t even have one! Because that’s what was missing from [my Ferris Bueller’s Day Off parody video].
But, my Saturday Night Fever one, I wear the ’78 [Michael Myers] mask that [Trick or Treat Studios] made. And I actually have [that mask] on another one, I think, when I talk about… Michael Myers discovers anti-aging cream.
Craig Layton: Yes! So, I did?
Lauren: Yes. That was one of the ones I showed my husband and my dad this morning.
Craig Layton: Yeah. Like, I try and mix it up. But, I love my 2018 [Michael Myers] mask. It fits me the best. And, I feel almost to the point where it’s…
If people follow my videos, they EXPECT to see that mask.
Lauren: And that’s a…
Craig Layton: And, I also…
Lauren: …good choice, too, for the younger audience because they might not be familiar…
Craig Layton: Yes.
Lauren: …with the ’70s movies, but they…
Craig Layton: They’ve seen the 2018 movie.
Lauren: …may have seen the… Yeah.
Craig Layton: Yeah. And, I always try to end with part of the soundtrack from the 2018 movie. Right? It’s called… It’s “The Shape Stalks Allison.” You’ve seen the movie. When he’s chasing the daughter, right? After he just impales a person on the fence.
Craig Layton: And it’s got, like, the “Purge” sirens in it. That one there is my favorite, opposed to the original theme. Like, I always end [with] that.
Like, I’ll mix up my sound from the different movies. And I have some people point that out! I get it more on Facebook, honestly, than I do on Twitter. But, on Facebook, I’ll get this line that’s like, “Why are you using the music from Halloween II when you’re wearing the mask from 2018?” And it’s like, “Really?? Come on! Let’s have fun with this!”
Craig Layton: I like that sound! It WORKS for the set-up! And then I throw it to the soundtrack from the 2018 [Halloween film]. But, yeah…
I think I’m a lot more clever than I think I really am. So… little things in it that I try and do, right? I always try to have just a little bit somewhere like…
Okay, I’m going to say this during the show! Because I said this before we started that “I’m not a political guy. I don’t get into politics.” But I do have ONE thing. And that is: I have an issue with TikTok right now. I don’t know if you’re aware of that or not.
Lauren: *chuckles* Yes.
Craig Layton: Yeah?
Lauren: Yeah. The “TikTok Sucks” and Michael Myers burning the…
Craig Layton: Yeah! Exactly. But, did you…? I guess I’ve read some comments and some people get it. But, there’s a throw in that. There’s a throw to Sinéad O’Connor when she ripped the Pope’s picture up on Saturday Night Live…?
Craig Layton: That’s why I chose to burn the sign!
Craig Layton: Some people picked that up! Or not, right? But, yeah. TikTok really bothers me.
My wife scrolls through TikTok all the time. And she was like… Even my daughter! Right? “Dad, I think you’d do really good on TikTok! You’d do really good!” Right?? And so I’m like, “All right. I’ll try to reformat some of my videos and put them on…”
My Ferris Bueller one got taken down from TikTok! For “violating community standards.” I have NO IDEA why! And then I put up another one and it got taken down! Right?! So, I got annoyed. Like, “All right. I’m done with TikTok.”
So, the thing that came positive that came out of it is: It gave me an idea for a video. Right?
So, I get ideas from odd little places. And I made a little political statement. And I’m going to keep this running joke going that I hate TikTok. I hate TikTok. I hate TikTok.
I found this awesome video from… Oh. I probably should know his name so you could find him. But if you go through my Tweets, you’ll find it. This guy made an awesome video of his wife whacking him with a frying pan.
Craig Layton: It’s a great joke! It’s a fantastic joke. “Honey, what would you do if someone said they’d give you a million dollars to knock me out?” And she instantly knocks him out!
Craig Layton: And I stumbled across it, right? And I’m like “This is great!” So, I commented on it and said, “Too bad it’s on TikTok, because I actually love this video.” Right?
But, sometimes, I think people follow me more than they really do. Because he didn’t understand the TikTok thing. And his comment was “Hey, Dude, a good joke’s a good joke. Regardless of what platform it’s on.” Right? And, I mean… he’s right. And I’m like, “No. I get it. It’s good. I just have an issue with TikTok because they ban [my videos].” And, of course, I use the opportunity to post me holding the sign as Michael Myers to try and get the joke home that I’m still playing with this.
But, it’s frustrating. *chuckles*
Lauren: Yeah… Sometimes, with Twitter, it’s just like SO many things go by that it just… [Posts] get lost. And then, sometimes things will resurface that are old!
Like, the other day, I commented on one of your videos that you had actually posted — I dunno. Four days ago? And, for me, it was brand new and it had JUST shown up in my [Twitter] feed at that time! And then I went back and I’m like, “Wait a minute. Everyone else saw this four days ago! Why am I only seeing it now?”
Craig Layton: Yeah. That’s the frustrating part, you know? And that’s where I think a lot of people were telling me…
Like, the comment I get MOST on my videos is, “Man, you really should be on YouTube. You’d be doing SO good on YouTube.” And my response is always, “I am on YouTube. No one cares.” But, I understand.
That’s a frustrating thing for ME, especially where… I’m not lying. I probably made 50-60 of these videos. And they get lost because the way Twitter organizes its timeline is insane! Right? Because, if I Retweet someone’s Tweet, that there’s… There’s no structure to how their media is in its thing. So, you may stumble across a video that I posted over a week ago and go “Oh! This is the first time I’m seeing it! I’m going to check this guy out!” And then you’ll go and…
And, of course, you’ll see my pinned post, which is my Texas Chainsaw Massacre where I’m trying to use the saw. Because I try to leave something up there that might grab your attention. But, after that, you’d have to sit there for an hour scrolling through my timeline to find more videos.
Craig Layton: So, it IS frustrating. Though, I have been populating them on my YouTube. At least it’s structured some.
Lauren: Yeah. That’s one thing, like… You’ve been very interactive and cool on Twitter, but your Instagram page and your YouTube page are the ones that are the easiest to just go to and see the videos and be like “Okay. Have I seen all the new ones, or…?”
Craig Layton: Exactly. Exactly. And Instagram is there, but I don’t play well on Instagram. Right? I do… I live on Twitter because, for some reason, that’s where I seem to be getting an audience. Right?
Because YouTube… It’s hard too. Right? Because, when you share your YouTube stuff — when you share it to Facebook or Twitter — it takes you away from the platform. If you click on a YouTube video on Twitter, nine times out of ten, it takes you to YouTube. So, you’ve just left Twitter. Right? So, I find that hard.
And it’s something I need to work on because… People are really liking my videos and my videos DO get lost. All right? Because I have SO many of them! And, you know, there’s certain ones that catch on! And a lot of them don’t, for the record. A lot of them don’t.
And I have to say this as well: My videos do better when someone ELSE posts them.
Craig Layton: I’ve had issues with them, in the past, where I would find… And I do now! I find my videos! Especially my…
I did one of the “Wipe It Down” challenges in the mirror.
Craig Layton: I don’t know if you’ve seen that. Where it’s Michael and then…
Lauren: You wipe it and it’s…
Craig Layton: I wipe it and it’s Jason. And then I swipe back to Michael.
Lauren: Yep. And that was a callback, sort of, to the “Michael Myers Gets the Wrong Mask” as… a Christmas gift?
Craig Layton: Yeah. That… That’s actually…
I made the “Wipe It Down” BEFORE. All right? And it was… It was a Father’s Day one.
Lauren: Ah. See? I saw them out of order!
Craig Layton: Yeah, you did. That’s what happens! Right?
But, that video’s on Instagram and it’s on someone else’s page and… Like, I can’t see the views but there’s gotta be… There’s gotta be 20,000 comments on it!
Lauren: Oh man…
Craig Layton: But it’s MY video! Right? So, it’s a frustrating thing!
On Twitter, there’s a guy… His name is “Real Michael Myers” [@RealMMyers78]
Craig Layton: He stays in character. He has over 30,000 followers. I’ve spoken to him and he… I let him post my videos. Right?
Craig Layton: So, he’ll post it. It does… The views head back to my original video, but it LOOKS like it’s his video. Right?
Craig Layton: But, it’s interesting because, I’ll post a video and I’ll get…
Let’s talk about the one I did with the engagement proposal!
Craig Layton: I think I got maybe 3,000 or 4,000 views on mine? He posted it. Of course, all the views do come back to mine. So, when you look at it on my page… But, it got 45,000 views on it!
Lauren: Oh, wow.
Craig Layton: So, it’s… But HE’S not stealing! Because I know he’s doing it. We have an arrangement. And he’s great for that. And he does give me shoutouts, right? Like he would say “By Craig. By Craig.” So… it helps put traffic in.
Craig Layton: But, it’s interesting that, if someone ELSE puts your stuff out there…
The one that really set all this off, if you really want to go through the timelines: In February, I had 35 followers on Twitter. In February. Right now, [I have] just under 2,500 followers.
So, I made pretty good strides since February.
Lauren: Oh yeah!
Craig Layton: But — and you can probably testify this — I’m always, always promoting. I’m always trying to promote myself! I’m always trying to engage. I’m always trying to do it.
But, I made a video, back in February, of me shoveling my driveway after a snowstorm dressed as Michael Myers. It’s one of THE first Michael Myers videos that I ever did. Right?
I actually made that maybe back in January! And HE posted it… and it’s got over 100,000! I think it’s almost 200,000 views on it!
And I’m grateful for that because it’s getting my video out there, but… It’s like you said with the “BadPhotoshopGuy”… It’s not coming full circle! People see the video, but they’re not associating it as “Oh that’s CRAIG’s video!”
Craig Layton: Right? It’s interesting.
But, you know, I’m just happy. And, like I said, he has my permission to do it. Because, if he doesn’t do it, most of my videos don’t get a lot of views. Right?
Diana Prince, who we all know as “Darcy the Mail Girl” from The Last Drive-In show…
Craig Layton: She’s done AMAZING to help me grow my page and grow my videos! She’s one of the first people actually out there to actually ENCOURAGE me to do this! And she’d always… If she catches wind of my [latest] video, she’ll always Retweet it. She’ll do her best.
Lauren: Yeah! She’s been a huge supporter for us too! She was on Episode 6 of the HorrorFam.com Podcast and… Diana Prince is just so supportive with…
Craig Layton: How does she do it?!
Lauren: …with us, with you, with…
Craig Layton: I mean, HOW does she do it?!
Lauren: …with everyone…
Craig Layton: How does she have the time?!?
Lauren: I have no idea!
Craig Layton: I think she has over 60,000 followers, and she responds to EVERYBODY!
Lauren: Yeah! She’s just…
Craig Layton: She’s AMAZING!
Lauren: …so suppor…
Craig Layton: So supportive!
Lauren: …tive. Yeah. With everyone.
Craig Layton: It’s what she does. It’s amazing!
Craig Layton: Yeah. I’m just going to say it: I probably would’ve stopped trying to promote my [Michael Myers videos] if she wasn’t so supportive! Right?
Craig Layton: Because it was… It’s frustrating.
But, here’s the thing: I was talking to someone today and I want to give her a shoutout! I’m just gonna throw her out here, all right? Her Twitter handle is @LisaCaines84. She’s an artist. Digital artist. And she makes cute little things.
And she’s struggling right now. And I was talking to her today because she’s not getting an audience for her stuff. And she wants to give it up. She’s thinking about stopping. And I can relate to that! I can relate to feeling like you’re not going anywhere. But…
At least check out her stuff. She does fantastic little digital arts. And I want everybody to support her because I don’t want to see somebody stop doing what they love just because they think no one cares about it.
Lauren: Would you mind saying the name again…?
Craig Layton: Yeah. It’s @LisaCaines84. So, it’s L-I-S-A-C-A-I-N-E-S eighty-four.
Craig Layton: She does cute little drawings! Right? Like… I just think it’s fantastic.
I’ve spoken to her! And she’s… I shouldn’t say this. Because what if she changes her mind? *laughs* I’m putting her on the spot!
But, no, she’s gonna do a digital drawing of me in character. But it’s…
But I… Lisa, if you at least listen to this, I think you should doing it. Keep going. If you love it, do it.
Because Twitter and social media… It is a BEAST that will eat and destroy you! If you are the type of person who lives and dies on… If this is how you’re getting your validation.
And, trust me, I am a major… I have MAJOR attention-seeking behavior! Right? So, it only takes a couple people to say that they like my stuff and I’m like, “YEAH! This is great! I’m ready to keep doing it!” Right? But…
I do it because I love it. But, I really want, if anybody’s listening to this and want to take anything out from this — if I can give one bit of advice — is: If you love it, keep going at it. You’ll eventually find your audience.
Craig Layton: And I’m still trying to find MY audience! But, you just gotta keep going. And not stop. I just wanted to say that.
And I also wanted… I’m going to give another shoutout too! If I can do a shoutout? You MUST know! Because I plug his stuff ALL the time!!
I have a friend of mine who I call “The Greatest Leatherface Cosplayer on Twitter!” It’s Mike! And his [Twitter] handle is @Scrappa82 So, S-C-R-A-P-P-A eighty-two. That’s Mike. And he is a great guy and he does a Leatherface cosplay that is OUT of this world!
MAKE ME THE REBOOT #leatherface I AM READY TO CARRY THE TORCH @fedalvar @PromoteHorror @abhorrently_urs @Troma_Team @craiglayton07 @joe_randazzo #HorrorFamily #HorrorFam @ChainsawTX #horror @kinky_horror @tohill_ryan @andy_tohill @mutant_fam pic.twitter.com/L0vz9EkwEa— Mike Hathaway Jr (@Scrappa82) July 10, 2020
Craig Layton: Out of this world!!
And the only thing that really bothers me about it is that we don’t live in the same community. Because I am DYING to be able to make a crossover video with this guy!
Lauren: Oh yeah! I mean, he could teach you how to use that chainsaw! *laughs*
Craig Layton: That was the joke! That’s actually one of the reasons I made the video! *laughs* Right? I was watching his video and was like, “I’m going to play this…”
But, the other thing: I don’t consider myself a cosplayer. But, I guess, I am? Like, this is all new to me. But because I dress as Michael Myers and perform as Michael Myers, people say, “Well, that’s… You’re a cosplayer.” So, I accept it.
But the thing that I find interesting about this: I don’t know anyone else in my community that’s doing this. And I would love to meet them! Because I am DYING… I have SO many ideas that I need OTHER people for! And I would just love nothing more…
I… This is not an original idea, but I’m going to throw it out there. I’m sure it’s been done. And I really want to do it MY way. But, I am DYING to do The Brady Bunch opening with horror cosplayers.
Lauren: Uh-huh. *chuckles*
Craig Layton: I’m dying to do it! I’m pretty sure, if I Googled enough, I’d probably find someone who already did it. But, these are the things that I can do…
Like, I have made a couple “cheat” videos where I’ve edited stuff together. Like my Magnum P.I. one that I did.
Craig Layton: And my A-Team that I did. The Kill Team. Right? Which was just editing characters into it.
I would love nothing more than…
If people are listening to this, and you’re a cosplayer, and you, like, somehow want to get together and we can collaborate…? I would love it! Because that’s the last evolution of what I’m doing.
I really think people will eventually tire of my Michael Myers doing what he’s doing if I don’t expand it and grow it. It needs to grow into something.
So, yeah! So… And, of course, with the lockdowns and COVID, it’s difficult. I’m in Halifax, Nova Scotia. If you gotta, you can come stalk me.
We only had ONE convention! Right? It’s called Hal-Con. And it’s a small convention and it’s very local. So, like, I never attended these things, even though I had the opportunity… But, I was gonna go this year! I was gonna go on a mission to find other horror cosplayers in my community so that I CAN work and collaborate and GROW this! Right?
It’s frustrating about all the things… I really haven’t talked, in detail, about what I’ve done BEFORE this, but…
To quote Bane in Batman, I feel like “No one cared who I was until I put on the mask.”
Craig Layton: Right? *laughs*
Craig Layton: Because it is… I wonder though… Would this…? Would my little jokes that I do… Would they be as funny if it wasn’t this obscure character doing them?
If there’s any magic to what I do, that’s what it is. And you touched upon that earlier. It’s like the obscurity of Michael Myers mowing the lawn. Michael Myers trying to fold a fitted sheet! (Which is one of my favorite videos as well…)
Lauren: *chuckles* That was pretty much my reaction to folding fitted sheets as well!
Craig Layton: And that’s…! I think that’s the beautiful thing about it! Everybody reacts to it that way! How do you fold it?!
There’s that woman on that Netflix show that… SHE knows how to fold a fitted sheet! There’s YouTube videos on folding a fitted sheet. But, you know, everybody gets frustrated. Most people roll it up into a ball and throw it into the linen closet. That’s what we do!
Craig Layton: So… You had some questions? You had some family questions?
Lauren: Yeah, uh…
Craig Layton: Let’s go to the… Let’s go to the Fan Mail!
Craig Layton: Let’s see what’s… laughs
Lauren: Well, one of the questions that I had, you already answered before we even started this call! It was: “[Do] you actually vape in real life?” Or if you bo…
Craig Layton: I do! Yes.
Lauren: …ught the vape as a joke [prop] to push the Pulp Fiction cover even further into absurdity…
Craig Layton: Yup. *laughs*
Lauren: …by holding a vape instead of a cigarette?
Craig Layton: No, no! I do vape! And that was deliberate too, right? Because I was trying to like… “Oh, she’s holding a cigarette? I’m going to hold a vape.”
Craig Layton: I’m glad you brought up that video! That was…
I made two of them! And one kind of flew under the radar. The other one, you know, did very well for me. I think I hit about 50,000 views on the first one. And I did do a second part to it as well [where I recreate additional movie posters as Michael Myers].
And, I have other ideas to do a Part Three, Part Four… And then it’s like, “Is this just beating a joke into the ground?” Y’know?
Craig Layton: I have a history of doing that, too.
Lauren: Well, hey! Follow…
Craig Layton: Like, I will find something funny and I will BEAT IT until it’s not funny whatsoever! *laughs*
Lauren: Follow your own advice there: If YOU enjoy it, do it.
Craig Layton: Yeah. And it’s funny… It’s not an original idea. I’ve seen videos of people recreating — like, on TikTok and stuff (ughhh… that damn TikTok!). No. But, people have done it.
I stumbled across one thing on it and was like, “Wow. That’s really good. I think I can do it better.” I’m not saying it IS better, by any means — don’t twist my words here!
But, no. It was it…
And people don’t really know the history of the entertainment that I’ve done. I did a lot of… I used to have a web show back in my twenties here in Halifax. I actually won some local awards for it actually! But it was more risque. It was more… I really pushed the envelope on some of the stuff I did!
And, you know, as I got older it was… I just don’t see myself doing that anymore.
So, if anybody’s wondering: There actually are things I have done, as Michael Myers, where my wife — being the good critic that she is — had said, “You know what? I don’t think… I think you went too far with that one.” And, considering the type of videos I’ve made in the past, that she’s been around and involved with… I was like, “Okay, Honey. You really think I went to far? Then okay. We won’t use that.”
So, there are things that I’ve done… One of the ones that I actually cut from my second movie poster [recreation video] was the poster for Striptease.
Lauren: Oh! *laughs* Yes?
Craig Layton: Yeah. I filmed it and everything and she goes, “Ah, Craig, you can’t use that.” And I go, “Why not?!” And she goes, “Because you’re hanging out right there!” *laughs* I’m like, “Oh nooo! Okay!”
Lauren: Oh! *laughs*
Craig Layton: I’m shooting it like “This looks great!” and then, um, “you’re exposed. You can’t use it.”
Lauren: Well, the version that I saw, you were just showing some leg, so…
Craig Layton: I did Showgirls! Yes. But I actually recreated the Demi Moore Striptease poster as well.
Lauren: OH!! That one!
Craig Layton: Yeah.
Lauren: Okay. Yeah. Sorry! I was thinking of the Showgirls one.
Craig Layton: Yeah… Yeah, that one was pretty good. That one got really popular. That one there.
And I like to do that! I like to throw something. I like to really try and throw something that doesn’t “play” with the audience, but… Something that is unexpected.
Craig Layton: And movie poster recreations… They’re fun because, you know, they give me a good chance to express.
And, of course, the joke becomes that Michael Myers has better range. He’s not just a slasher, right? That he can do all that stuff.
Craig Layton: But I really try to get creative with them. And they’re so fun to shoot! They’re so fun to shoot because you’re doing stuff…
And I shoot them really quickly. Like, really… It took me longer, I think, to get positioned in the bed — in a skirt and red heels *laughs* — for the Pulp Fiction recreation than it took me to do, like, the Dirty Dancing one. Or the Titanic one!
Craig Layton: I actually…
My Jason mask! Let’s talk about that for a second.
It’s just a cheap one. One I bought off Amazon for like twelve bucks. Right?
Craig Layton: I bought it solely for the Titanic for the… Not the Titanic. The second one that I did! I did Hacksaw Ridge! Where I’m carrying Jason like he’s wounded. I’m carrying him…?
Craig Layton: It’s a quick one! But I solely bought [my plastic Jason Voorhees mask] for THAT!
Craig Layton: Then I went, “Well, how else can I use it?” And then I did repost the video, today, of me… The Rod Stewart video. “Do You Think I’m Sexy?” where I just use the mask and throw it away and stuff. So, I try to have fun with it!
I wish I had it for that video I did where I get caught watching Friday the 13th.
Craig Layton: And, at the end, I kinda push the music like he’s coming down and I’m kinda looking for him, prepared…?
Craig Layton: I kind of wish I actually had the mask for that one and had someone come down.
There are mistakes! I make a lot of mistakes in these videos! And some people point them out…
I really wish I was smart enough to put a mustache on my Michael Myers mask when I did my Magnum P.I.
I get that an awful lot! Like, “How did you forget Magnum’s mustache?!”
Craig Layton: And I’m like, “I DON’T KNOW! MY GOD! I SHOULD’VE!!”
Craig Layton: Right?! Like, even in the A-Team one I did, I kind of like… It’s not me. Obviously, I’m using footage from other videos. But, at the very end, you see me kind of tip the vape? At the end of it?
Craig Layton: I’m doing a throwback to the guy always smoking the cigar, right? That one guy who’s always smoking the cigars. So, I did the vape.
But, yeah! No. I try to be creative. I try to be a little bit different. But some things I think are funny, other people don’t. Ones that I think “Ah, this is gonna TANK” actually do rather welll! *chuckles*
My fake Shudder interview! Let’s talk about Shudder. Can we talk about Shudder?
Lauren: Oh, yeah…
Craig Layton: How long’s your show? This is going to be like an epic! This might have to be, like, a three-part.
Lauren: No, it…
Craig Layton: I’m ranting like crazy!
Lauren: …it varies, but I just let people…
Craig Layton: SHUDDER!
Lauren: …talk as much as they want. *sheepish laugh*
Craig Layton: Well, you’re going to have to break it up! No one’s going to want to listen to me talk and ramble! I don’t even know if I’m making sense!
Shudder! So, if you actually are a loyal follower of me, you’re probably aware I poke at Shudder and tell them that they need to give me my own show… This has been a running joke for probably… Three months? Maybe?
Lauren: It was around April, I think.
Craig Layton: Yeah. It started because I…
My wife will tell you it’s a very bad personality trait [of mine]. Where… It doesn’t take much encouragement for me to do something. So, you get the comments. A couple people. Like, “Man, you really need to have your own show!” I think three people said that.
I take those three people and, in my head, I work it up to that’s 300,000 people telling me I should have my own show!
So, I start plugging at Shudder. And Shudder has never ever EVER Retweeted or acknowledged me! *laughs* Right?! It’s Shudder!! How many people’s tags do you think they get in the run of a day? They can’t respond to everything.
So, as I said, it’s a running joke. Obviously. Do I think I deserve a show on Shudder? Absolutely not. For the record: It’s a joke. All right? I’m not in this alternate reality where I believe what I’m doing is actually even anywhere close to entertaining enough to be on a streaming service of any sort. I just want to make that clear.
But it’s a fun joke! It just gave me something to do. And, it gave me the opening to make my interview video! And that didn’t do too bad. I got about 7,000 views. It didn’t really get picked up by anybody.
So, that joke led to that where it kind of accumulated. That I spent, in my mind, since April, building up this joke to FINALLY actually use it in a video for a big pay-off… The problem with that is, like I said, I don’t have 300,000 people following me. So, most people don’t…
There’s probably a handful of people — I think you were one of them? — who probably picked up on “Oh, this is a joke Craig’s been making for a bit… Oh. Now he’s making a video about it. He’s actually bringing the joke he’s been trying to set up, since April, now he’s actually going for the pay-off of the joke.”
And that video there… I was actually… I didn’t expect it to do anything. At all. Really. When I shot it.
It’s the first video, to be honest, that I actually re-shot scenes for. Went and re-shot. Because there were certain things that I shot and then I put it together and I was excited about it. So, I asked a friend of mine — filmmaker friend — to watch it. He goes, “Craig, it’s not bad; but did you think about doing this, this, and this?” And I’m like, “Ahh… No. I didn’t!” So, then I went in and re-shot it. And it was…fun.
And I really wish… It would’ve been really nice to have, like, Shudder just… even just… To reach out and go “No.” *laughs* Right?
Craig Layton: Like, that would make my LIFE!
Craig Layton: Getting a rejection Tweet would’ve made my life! It would’ve made it all worthwhile!!
But, I’m like that too… See? I run jokes in my head. And I let them play out. And, to me, it’s played out. It’s been going on since April. So, like I said, that was the big pay-off of the joke.
But, the reality of the fact, I’m the only one — and MAYBE five people who actually acknowledged that “Oh, this was a play off of you pretending to get a show with Shudder.” And that’s the downside as well to this. But maybe it’s the genius of my madness, maybe? Like… if that’s what entertains me…
I’m going back to this: I do this to entertain myself. It’s how it first started. So, I like putting these little jokes in.
Craig Layton: So, if you’re a really really hard follower of me: Really pay attention to the things I say! Because it’s, eventually, going to lead off to something better. *laughs*
Lauren: Yeah, I… You know, when you first started kinda poking at Shudder, I was like “Oh! Well… maybe…? [If they got the Michael Myers rights and/or made an original character for Craig].”
But, a lot of the choices that Shudder makes kind of confuse me a little. Like, they rejected Elvira! Why would they do that?? But, I’m like, “Craig’s stuff is really awesome so, even if Shudder’s not a good fit. He could probably pitch to Quibi since they’re doing short form entertainment.” But…
Craig Layton: Okay. We talked about this.
Lauren: *laughs sheepishly, knowing her awkward attempt at encouraging Craig to actually try to get an original show didn’t verbalize quite as she’d intended*
Craig Layton: Let’s be realistic here for a second. I’m SO thankful that you find it entertaining. And that means the world to me that people find what I do entertaining.
But, I acknowlege the fact that I could never make money off what I’m doing now. And the reason is: There’s a whole licensing issue. I couldn’t go on Shudder and do an hour show each week as Michael Myers! It doesn’t work! There’s a licensing issue. I would need… Blumhouse would have to authorize it and produce it! Or license it off. And they’re not going to do that, right? So the reality…
I am realistic here! Because I’ve had people… I’ve had some people message me and say that they’re trying to get a streaming platform off the ground. And they say, “We would love to have your stuff on it.” And then I throw that do them that “I can’t do this. I don’t own the rights to Michael Myers. I can’t make money being Michael Myers!” That’s the reality of it.
So, that complicates things even more because… Hypothetically, let’s just say Shudder called me on my bluff. What do I pitch?
Lauren: Well, you…
Craig Layton: Seriously! What do I pitch?!
Lauren: *with resignation, temporarily giving up attempting to be helpful because Craig’s on a roll with his rant* Yeah.
Craig Layton: Like if they said, “We love what you’re doing, Craig! This is great! This is really funny! But you can’t do it as Michael Myers.” NOBODY is going to watch me without a mask doing exactly what I’m doing and find it as humorous.
Craig Layton: I don’t believe so. I don’t.
I question my poster one! That’s the only one I question. I wonder if I would’ve gotten more traction on recreating movie posters if I wasn’t Michael Myers. Because, you understand too: When I’m Michael Myers, I’m playing to a specific demographic. I’m playing to the horror crowd. I’m playing to the people… And that’s a very loyal crowd! If you can get the horror fans in your corner, they will support you. Right?
Lauren: Yeah! I actually…
Craig Layton: They will…
Lauren: …I wrote an article about horror fans and why they’re just the best, most supportive people! *chuckles*
Craig Layton: Well, they are! Right? And they… I don’t find that they’re even that competitive with each other! Right? Not in the “grass root” area that we’re playing in. People tend to support what each other’s doing. Right? They’re not like, “Oh my God. This guy here. Craig, Man. Look at his videos, Man! He’s getting way too many… We can’t support that! Because it’s taking away from what we’re doing!” Right? I don’t find that happens.
But, it’s such a… It’s such a gimmick! That I created. And it… It doesn’t work.
Maybe my movie posters could’ve crossed over with just me! Because then I would’ve gotten to a different audience. But, you know, there’s little things like…
I’m very surprised, to be honest, my engagement video didn’t cross over! *laughs*
Craig Layton: I really thought THAT would. I thought… Oh my God. When I shot this, I’m like, “This is going to be great! This is gonna be on the NEWS, Man!”
Craig Layton: “They’re going to be talking to you guys!! You guys just had the greatest, weirdest proposal EVER!” *laughs* He asked her to marry him and Michael Myers is standing there with a knife and a sign saying “Say Yes!” Right?
Craig Layton: It didn’t. He, um… The other guy. The “Real Michael Myers” account. He posted it, right? Which… I got about 50,000 views on Twitter for it. It’s on Facebook. I got maybe 7,000 on that. But YouTube… My YouTube does absolutely nothing for me. But I don’t know how to promote it.
But, that’s the thing too. It’s such a gimmick that I’ve created that… If Shudder was to call my bluff, I don’t know what I would… *scoffs* What I would pitch them. Right? So…
Lauren: *interrupts Craig, trying one last time to support and encourage his growth as a creator* Well! Maybe you should start thinking about it!
Because, I mean, hopefully the pandemic won’t last forever — and lockdown won’t last forever — and you might want to, um… You’ll always be a Halloween fan. But, if you ever want to move away from Michael Myers and, perhaps, create your OWN masked killer… To.. To play as. Not to BE! *chuckles*
Um… You could, you know, create your own character! You have a background in acting. You have talent with editing. And you’re creative… You could probably still work within the horror genre with your OWN character and ideas and…
Craig Layton: That’s…
Lauren: …REALLY branch out and push things. And that’s another reason, you know, WHY I’m like, “Let’s get this out there NOW that the Michael Myers [your audience] loves is Craig Layton. And, you know, at some point, he may be a DIFFERENT character that you will also love.”
Craig Layton: Well, that’s the thing of it is… I do. Let’s talk about serious stuff here.
I have written horror scripts. I’ve had a couple short horror films that I’d love nothing more than to do. Problem is…
Yeah. See. My buddy Karen from Cape Breton had a podcast called “You Should Be Filming.” That… There’s no excuse not to make a film. And you…
I somewhat prove it! Like, I contradict myself. Where, I’m like, “I just… I don’t have the time. I don’t have the connections to bring people together and actually try and make what I would say is LEGITIMATE genre material…” But, on the other side of it, I’m picking up my camera almost daily and putting the effort into making these Michael Myers videos.
Now, it’s a lot simpler when it’s just me and a concept then… the scripts. Right?
I see these comments all the time. Like on Twitter and stuff. People will ask for advice, in general. Like, “I wanna… I really wanna make a short horror film! What should I know?” Right? And, you know, I’ll chime in with my limited advice…
And, the big things I tell them is… Number One: Know your locations. Right? Write your stories to exist in the space that you can actually get access to. That’s the biggest thing. Right? Like, when people write a script… Like me!
I’m in Halifax, Nova Scotia. I’m not gonna write a script that takes place on Hollywood Boulevard. Because I don’t have the means to get to Hollywood Boulevard to shoot a scene that takes place on Hollywood Boulevard! I’m gonna write what takes place on my Main Street or my community or something. Like… That’s the advice I gave them: Write your story to fit YOUR environment.
The second advice I always give is: Watch your audio! *chuckles* You gotta have good audio! Nothing ruins a low-budget independent short like bad audio. You know what I mean! And I’m not knocking them… Because I respect the fact that people do stuff. But when people are… When you’re trying to shoot…
See, I shoot my stuff with my cellphone. I don’t have a big camera, right? So, the advantage of my character not speaking…? You’re not getting the wind, the echo, or the poor audio. Because I’m eight feet from my phone!
So… [bad audio] really ruins a lot of [indie films], in my opinion. It’s one of the mistakes people should avoid.
But, yeah. Like, someday… I dunno.
I’m also realistic. Right now, I love what I’m doing. And I do have thoughts of “Do I take the mask off? Do I try and venture out and do something else…?” But, you know, I’m realistic as well. If…
You gotta love what you’re doing. And you have to be dedicated to what you’re doing…
Back in my twenties, I took a run at it. I seriously did! I took a good run at it and I was, you know… I was a Union actor here in Canada. I was getting roles and stuff! And I felt I was on a great path to actually make a career of this… And then we had a writers’ strike. And then we had stuff go on in our community that stopped it. And then… the real life comes into play.
So, let’s be realistic here. Like… I want to provide for my family. And I don’t want to have to make a choice of “Do you…?” I… I’m not in my life gonna gamble my family! I’m a father. I’m not going to gamble my family’s future on the possibility of something happening. All right? That’s just who I am.
But that’s not saying that I’m not going to do stuff…
I think the evolution of me is… The mask will come off. And… I will just keep trying to make short little things for…
And I specifically chose my runtimes! Right? I make very short videos. The longest video I have is just over two minutes — and that’s the Shudder interview. Which… I was nervous about the runtime on it.
Because I can shoot a 30-second video in ten minutes. And the average attention span on social media is… I think it’s ten seconds? Like, you have ten seconds to grab someone’s attention or they scroll past ya! Right? So, I chose my runtimes to be super, super short. Try to get in and out! Catch your attention! Maybe give you a chuckle…
And then, now, I’m hoping that people turn on, like, a notification button that’ll go “Craig has posted a new video.”
Lauren: Yeah… And, you know, I think that’s great that you put your family first. And, you know, that you’re not really doing the Michael Myers videos for the money and…
Craig Layton: No. No.
Lauren: I dunno! I think that’s really great, you know? That you’re a dedicated family man. You have other interests and hobbies. AND you’re still creating! You’re putting things out there that cheer people up. Especially during this time when, you know, everything is just kinda “Ohh…mannnn…” ALL the time.
But, you know, if you ever do have the time or the urge… Our “cousin” *chuckles* We interviewed them on Episode Four! MutantFam.com is doing an online film festival where they’re taking submissions digitally for their Mutantpalooza! And it’s sort of an online film festival that they’re having in November. And they’re taking submissions until September 22nd.
And they plan to do it every year! So if you, or anyone else, misses the deadline this year, you can try again next year!
So, yeah! You could submit your…
Craig Layton: Huh! I wonder if I could take my Michael Myers videos and blend them into one big long thing…?
Lauren: *chuckles* Yeah. Or you could submit your short films and stuff. Get yourself out there.
Craig Layton: There’s something that I don’t think a lot of this generation has picked up on that…
There’s someone else who my videos are inspired by and… [They’re] actually MORE inspired by this character than actual Michael Myers at all! I’ve said it on Twitter a couple times who inspires me. Right? But…
My Michael Myers is Mr. Bean… Have you ever even thought of putting that analogy together?
Lauren: Mr. Bean?
Craig Layton: Yeah!
Craig Layton: Yeah! My Michael Myers is Mr. Bean!
Lauren: You have mentioned that. Yeah.
Craig Layton: Yeah! Like, that’s who it is!
Like, if I could do anything…
Let’s just say someone said, “Craig, we have the money to buy licenses!” I would like to just re-create every Mr. Bean episode as Michael Myers!
Craig Layton: I think it would be a RIOT!
Lauren: That would… yeah…
Craig Layton: I guess I could do it without licenses as long as I’m not making any money! Right? That would…
Craig Layton: I love Mr. Bean! I grew up on Mr. Bean!
Growing up, for me, other than horror movies… I’m heavily inspired by Mr. Bean. I love The Carol Burnett Show. I grew up on The Carol Burnett Show. These sketch comedies… The Kids in the Hall! Obviously. Being Canadian, the Kids in the Hall were MASSIVE and they were a big influence too.
So, I grew up on these great sketch comedies, right? But, Mr. Bean is SO brilliant that he was able create the legacy he created barely uttering a word. Amazing!! Right? So, I take a lot of inspiration from Mr. Bean with, like, my Michael Myers.
And once in a while I’ll get a comment where someone’s like, “Ughhh… Another video of an iconic slasher being treated like an idiot!” Right?
Lauren: *rueful chuckle, acknowledging that she knows the type*
Craig Layton: And… Okay. I respect your opinion. Right? It is. But… It’s humor. You know? Some people find it funny. Some people don’t.
Lauren: It’s subjective.
Craig Layton: It is subjective. It is.
And, let’s be honest: If you’re not a horror fan… Like a REAL horror fan. I’m not talking about these people who love to “critique” HEAVILY horror films… Like, people do reviews and stuff, and I’m all cool with that. But, let’s start with the realistic thing here, right? Like… If you shoot someone six times? They’re NOT getting back up.
Craig Layton: It’s a MOVIE, for God’s sake! Right?
Lauren: It’s entertainment.
Craig Layton: It is! Right?!
So, I think people that… I like to THINK people that really enjoy horror movies… And, let’s be honest, “horror” has become more horror-comedy than TRUE horror, in my view, in the new World Order of horror… We need to… We need to ENJOY it. Right? It’s not…
And, now, I do plan on… And I’m not sure if I’m going to pull it off or not! But, I’ve said this online as well…
I’m going to ATTEMPT to start weaning off some of the comedy and try to bring Michael into more “traditional” Michael [Myers] as we get closer to Halloween. Try to bring a full arc to the character. Right?
Craig Layton: Like, he’s Bored Michael… Trying to Do Different Things Michael… And then, now, as we’re getting closer to…
I feel pressure! And I put it on myself. That I created… I’m using one of the most iconic characters in horror history to entertain people! October is going to be…
I have the opportunity, in October, to get a whole new audience. Because Halloween starts trending on social media. Right? Like, people…?
Lauren: Right. Yeah.
Craig Layton: Halloween… October is, for the character that I have… October should be a good month for me. For branching out.
And I’m gonna try to! And I hope people stick with me. But… I’m trying to.
Craig Layton: And I kind of have it going on now!
Lauren: Yeah, you gotta do, like, where you see the calendar and it’s “Ahhh… October 1st… Wait a minute! There’s only a few days left until Halloween!” And then you’ve gotta have, like, the training montage to get in shape and go out and stalk and everything! *laughs*
Craig Layton: Yeah. I’ve seen a lot of those videos being done. Right? But, I’ve been thinking about it too…
Like, I have a buddy of mine who owns a gym. Right? And I’m thinking it might be really funny. Right? To have… I’m not giving away concepts here! But, it might be really funny to have him sitting there talking about, “Man! You really let yourself go! This COVID lockdown really effected you, Man. But, the Big Day is coming up and we need to get you in shape!” And you flip to the other table and it’s Michael Myers. He’s talking about Michael Myers!
Craig Layton: And try to get him…
But, then again, I don’t have to do that. I can just have my outta shape guy wake up, on October 30th, do a training montage like Rocky, and then he’s in shape! Right?
Lauren: Yeah! *laughs*
Craig Layton: But, I have done something in my videos and I’m not sure if people have fully noticed or not… Somebody has! I don’t remember who said it. But… Michael has gotten a little… A tiny little bit more impatient in the videos. He’s stabbing things a lot more than he used to!
I stabbed the Hell out of that basketball! *laughs* For that video. Right?
Like, there’s stabbing because he’s not as…
I’m trying to get at least a little bit of his rage trying to peek out at the end? Still in a comedic way, of course. Right? Like, I think it’s funny that he stabbed a basketball. Right?
Craig Layton: So, little things. Like the TikTok! I stabbed the Hell out of my phone and I smashed it! And, of course, for the record: It was a prop phone! It was an old iPhone that didn’t work. *laughs* So, I didn’t actually smash my real phone!
Craig Layton: So… Some rage coming, right?
Craig Layton: So, I’m gonna try and bring an arc to this character. And then, of course, if it goes to plan, I should be able to create some interesting concepts with my character up to Halloween. And then, of course, the big day is also going to be November 1st.
Craig Layton: The character’s going to flip around again.
That is… If I can keep this character fresh and people entertained that long. If they still want to watch me doing my little Michael Myers videos.
Lauren: Speaking of building up rage… I did have ONE more question for you…
Craig Layton: Oh, yes!
Lauren: …from my husband. My husband, Frank Spear — @FrankenSpear on Twitter *giggles* — is a HUGE Dead by Daylight fan and…
Craig Layton: Ah! I think I know…
Lauren: …in one of your videos, you were playing Dead by Daylight as Michael Myers. And [Frank] was wondering if you were a Dead by Daylight player in your everyday life, and if you “Main” as Michael Myers when you play Killer?
Craig Layton: Okay. I do play Dead by Daylight! I’m… I’m not a big gamer, to be honest. I don’t play it every day.
My wife is more of the gamer than I am. She’s a big Friday the 13th fan. She plays that game a lot. Unfortunately, licensing has effected that.
But, I do play Dead by Daylight. And, of course, to be honest… When I really was playing it, nine times out of ten, I’d play as Michael Myers. Yes, I do. BUT, my favorite character to play is The Legion.
Lauren: Ahhh! Okay! *chuckles*
Craig Layton: And that’s because… I like this Sprint Burst! I like that I can…
Craig Layton: Sprint across the thing! Because that’s a little frustrating… But, I do play it. I don’t play it daily. But, of course, once again, that was a very strategic placement in my video…
Craig Layton: I had to have myself in costume playing Dead by Daylight.
Lauren: Oh yeah. Of course. But we were curious! Like, “Oh!” Like… Frank was especially curious! He talked about Dead by Daylight when he was on Episode 10. He went on his love/hate rant about Dead by Daylight and… He plays it EVERY day. And…
Craig Layton: To get points. Ah. To be honest, I haven’t played it much since I started making my videos. To be honest.
Lauren: Well, there’s an event going on right now. You could get extra Bloodpoints. *laughs*
Craig Layton: Yeah? Well…
I have a love/hate with that too, Man! I do. I find… *exasperated sigh* The politics of it! It’s such… *frustrated noise*
Craig Layton: Like, Survivors hate the tactics you use as a Killer. And I’m… I’m a Killer.
When I first started playing Dead by Daylight, for the record, I was a Survivor. Because I couldn’t get the hang of killing! I just couldn’t figure it out! And it made me DIZZY!
Craig Layton: The first-person view.
Lauren: Oh my God. Yeah! First-person games make me kinda nauseous. *laughs*
Craig Layton: So, then I moved to the Killer. Yes. But, it’s like… They, [the people playing as Survivors], RAGE if you kill them!!
Lauren: Oh yeah.
Craig Layton: It’s like… That’s my JOB!
Lauren: *laughs hard* Yes!
Craig Layton: I’m like, “I’m supposed to do that!” And they’re like, “No, you’re not supposed to do that!!” And and and then like…!
I… I turned off the messaging on it.
Lauren: That was probably a wise decision. *knowing chuckle*
Craig Layton: Because it was just hate mail.
And because… This is my view on it:
When you’re first learning how to play, I think “camping” is an acceptable tool for learning. Okay? Because you have to kill someone!
Craig Layton: All right? And then, you get used to taking them off the hook and this and that.
Camping is NOT against the rules! It’s actually encouraged as a learning tool from Dead by Daylight’s manufacturers. Okay? BUT, Survivors will “pallet loop” for DAYS!
Craig Layton: It really pisses me off!!
If you “pallet loop” me and then BODY BLOCK me when I’m trying to put someone on the hook? If I get you… You’re GOING on that hook! And I’m NOT MOVING until you’re DEAD!
Craig Layton: Right?!
Because… They have things that they can do that ARE against the rules… Right?
Craig Layton: Like “body blocking” is against the rules! Right? And…
And I never knew what that was until I was playing and… I was like, “WHY can’t I put this guy on a hook?! Why can’t I??” Because somebody was squatted down at the hook and I couldn’t see!! Right?
Craig Layton: Or jammin’ into you! And, of course…
And I’m REALLY on a rant NOW! But, this…
“Tunneling!” They hate “tunneling.”
Craig Layton: WHY would I go after a healthy person if I can chase this person who’s limping around?! That’s my philosophy on it. Right?
Craig Layton: Hate me ALL you want!
Lauren: And then with the… Michael Myers has that stalking mechanic, so you kind of have to always be watching someone…
Craig Layton: Yep. Well. That’s the thing too… That’s one of the frustrating parts about his character! You actually have to stand STILL for SO LONG to get charged up to be able to basically…
The whole point of it is so you can take ’em down with one swipe!
Craig Layton: Which is great! Right? But… I’m not a very good player.
I think the highest I think I ever got in the ranking of it… I think I hit 13?
Lauren: Oh wow.
Craig Layton: But I was playing a lot at that time. Right?
Craig Layton: But I’m always at about 17… So, I do climb up, right? And… I dunno.
I just found, playing as The Legion… I liked it! I liked the fact that I could rage and I could LEAP over the… Through the window!
Craig Layton: Or I could leap over the pallet! As opposed to standing there and smacking it! Right? But…
I hate pallet loopers.
Craig Layton: Yes, I do.
Craig Layton: And there’s a video that I’ve never made… And I don’t know why I haven’t made it yet!
My dogs… I have one dog that, when I try and take him out, he doesn’t want to go out. And he’ll run loops around the kitchen!
Craig Layton: And it’s pallet looping! Ughhhhhhh! Pallet looping. Pallet looping…
And I’m like, “Why don’t I film this dressed as Michael Myers with the thing…? Try to chase him around! Make a Dead by Daylight joke!”
Lauren: *laughs* Yes!
Craig Layton: Y’know? *laughs*
Lauren: You should do that NOW, while the event’s going on!!
Craig Layton: Really! Might get some traction on that! Right?
Craig Layton: Be like “Pallet looping. UGH!!!” *laughs*
Lauren: Heck yeah, Man. Go for it! That’s awesome.
Craig Layton: That’s the thing too… Lotta stuff… Like, I have ideas that I don’t film and…
I have a couple that are brewing. But I don’t like plugging stuff because then people get excited…
Because, I have some people that were all of a sudden disappointed that…
They’re SO loyal to me that they wait each morning to see a video. Right?
Craig Layton: And that means a LOT to me! But… I haven’t been as active as I was.
Because it’s very difficult.
Do math here for a second. Do math. How many days have we had since COVID started?
Craig Layton: Right? And try to do a video every single day.
And I was!
Craig Layton: I was! I think I got probably like 40 videos in a ROW! And that’s what people were attracted to.
And, now, I’m down to a couple a week. And… I’m sorry.
I do recycle some older ones that didn’t do well. Right? Because, you know, when I started with 35 viewers… Now, I’m up to 2,400 — almost 2,500 — so of course I have early videos that only 50 people watched that I think are good! So, yeah. I’ll pull ’em out. Recycle it. It’s “new” material to 95% of my followers!
And my Fridays… I recycle videos an awful lot on Fridays because I made probably six videos solely dedicated to The Last Drive-In. Right?
Craig Layton: That I would recycle out on Fridays. I… Maybe I’m not as “current” as people think and I’m lettin’ secrets out here… But, please, PLEASE, People… Understand? It’s very hard for me to come up with fresh material every day! *sheepish laugh* But I got a couple I wanna do!
Lauren: Yeah. You’re also working a full-time job. You’re being a full-time dad. Y’know? Full-time husband.
Craig Layton: I try…
Lauren: Yeah. I mean, there are only so many hours in the day!
Craig Layton: I got a parody one that is cooking along in my head right now that I wanna do. I might not. But… I love doing parodies! I just love ’em. I just find taking…
I really enjoyed my Ferris Bueller one. I think it came out pretty damn good. I really do. Considering how it was just…
Lauren: I like how you made the hair on your Michael Myers’ mask…
Craig Layton: Yeah! *chuckles*
Lauren: …match in the shower [scene]. *laughs*
Craig Layton: I tried so hard! I could not bring myself to wet it! *laughs* Right? Because I actually…
Lauren: You still made it stick up though!
Craig Layton: Yeah! I took the brush and did my best to stick [the mask’s hair] up! And I tried to do the little thing…
I have some old videos that were made probably in… About a year or so ago, right? And once in a… And I have some photos and stuff. And, you know, you’ll see a tag on my mask? I have some videos where there’s still a tag on my mask. And…
I couldn’t bring myself to remove the tag! Right? Like… I LOVE my mask! Right? And I had no intention of ever using them, right? So, I kept the tag on.
And then people would point out… “What’s this tag on you?” And then, finally, I did a photoshoot at work one day where I recreated the… I think it was H20? When she’s looking through the circular window. When Laurie and Michael meet for the first time?
Craig Layton: Yeah. I recreated that photo. And that’s when I finally removed the tag off my mask. For that. Because it was showing up as a weird glare in the picture. So…
I had a hard time pulling it off. But… I do…
These masks mean a LOT to me. So… I’m actually worried now! Because I’ve been wearing mine so much. And, oh my God, I probably just probably… But I… I clean it. I take good care of it.
That’s another reason why I’m pestering Trick or Treat Studios all the time. Like, “Come on, Guys! Come on!”
Craig Layton: “You CLAIM you love my stuff!!” They TELL me “We LOVE your stuff!” So… Can we work together…? Gimme a mask!
I’ve got a GREAT idea for the new mask! FANTASTIC. Great idea for a reveal for one of the “unboxing” videos people do…?
Craig Layton: I have an EPIC one!
Lauren: Ooooh! That’s exciting.
Craig Layton: If I can pull it off, that’ll probably be the most epic one I ever do!
And, I swear to God, if I pull this off… From the opening shot, you’re gonna immediately know what movie I’m doing a parody of! And you’re gonna think it’s fantastic. *laughs* I hope so anyway!
Lauren: Well, that is actually…
Craig Layton: That puts a lot of pressure on…
Lauren: Oh! Yeah. I was just going to say that…
Craig Layton: But that’s probably like six months away though! Until I get my hands on a mask!!
Lauren: Yeah. Well…
Craig Layton: Meanwhile…!
Lauren: Until then — and, so that we’ll all be [already] following you and ready to see this if and when it happens (and I have a feeling it will) — please let everyone know where they can find you…
Craig Layton: Yes.
Craig Layton: Please. Yes.
I’m sure you’ll probably put this in a blog, but… Yeah.
I’m on Instagram. My Instagram doesn’t really… I don’t have a lot of people. I think I’ve only got about 100 people who follow me on Instagram. But 90% of my videos are up there. The only videos that aren’t up there are some that ran over the 1-minute runtimes. And I just didn’t really want to re-edit some of that stuff. But they’re all up there in order.
My YouTube is… I still have a lot of videos to upload to YouTube that I’ve been featuring on Twitter. Just because I wasn’t using YouTube for a while. But if you go to YouTube, you’ll get them at least in order. So you don’t have to go through my timeline [on Twitter] trying to find new videos.
I tried to start, recently, putting in the description of my videos on Twitter “new video” so that people will see maybe the first words “new video” and, if they’re fans of it, they’ll check it out. But…
Please! Follow me! Find me! I enjoy doing this and I really really appreciate every single supporter. Every single follower. Every single view I get. And I follow back. And I do my best to support everyone else out there.
Lauren: Well… Since this is audio and not everyone reads the…
Craig Layton: *laughs*
Lauren: …descriptions or goes to the transcript… uh… We should probably say — aloud — what your Twitter handle and Instagram handle and all that are. So… *laughs*
Craig Layton: Yep! They’re… My Twitter handle and my Instagram handle are the exact same. You can find me at @craiglayton07 That’s me there.
I am on Facebook. Craig Layton. You can find me over there. I do post all of my Michael Myers videos there and they are public posts. So you don’t have to add me as a friend on Facebook to see my videos. You can just look me up. And, if you like the videos, obviously, comment… share… Retweet!
Lauren: Okay! I’m just gonna…
Craig Layton: I do this because I enjoy it! And I’m… I’m surprised people enjoy it enough to have this massive conversation that you and I have had today!
Craig Layton: This means the world to me.
And I apologize if I got off on rants on people and I bored ya! Because I go EVERYWHERE. That’s just how my mind works.
Which is really funny! If you actually meet me… To think that I could actually focus for ten minutes on the task of making my videos. *laughs*
Lauren: So, in case people are listening and not reading: That’s Craig Layton. C-R-A-I-G L-A-Y-T-O-N zero seven. And you can find him on Twitter and Instagram. And if you just look up “Craig Layton” on YouTube and Facebook, you should be able to find him there as well.
Craig Layton: One of the advice people have told me… Because the handle is bad. “BadPhotoshopGuy.” But they don’t really care about that. If you look for @craiglayton07, you’ll find me.
My profile photo… I’ve been told that I can never change that! Because people have come to love it so much. And that is, basically, the Michael Myers… It looks like he’s naked, crunched over with the knife up! That was from an underwear video that I did. And I reposted it too, trying to have fun with the fact that maybe I’d get more followers if I’d actually shown some cleavage. So, I’m Michael Myers in a bra… If you find that entertaining…
Craig Layton: I find it funny as Hell!
But, yeah. You’ll find me as Michael Myers. You’ll see me crunched over like I’m trying to cover up. Because I look like I’m naked with the knife. That’s the same avatar on YouTube. Same on Twitter. Same on Instagram.
I think my Facebook may actually be a picture of ME.
Which is a mystery!!
Craig Layton: A lot of people don’t know what I actually look like!
Lauren: Yeah! Well… They would if they were REALLY paying attention, but…
Craig Layton: If you’re paying attention, there’s some things to figure out who I am!
Lauren: *giggles, pleased, because she knows she correctly guessed his true identity months ago*
Craig Layton: And, of course, if you get on my YouTube, you’re going to find a lot of old stuff that actually has me. I joke about it when I did a plug on Twitter. “Pre-mask Craig.”
Lauren: *chuckles, happy that others will know soon the ‘secret’ too, but kinda feeling silly because she figured it out the hard way, not knowing Craig had a YouTube channel until last week*
Craig Layton: So, yeah… Most of my stuff is for entertainment purposes. Right? I’d try to make funny videos. I have some prank videos on there…
Lauren: All right! Well! Thank you for being on, Craig!
Craig Layton: Well, thank you for having me! I’m glad we talked! And, like I said, this might be a three-part episode, but… I appreciate it!
Craig Layton: I’d love to come on again sometime! If you’re guest-less and you need a “filler.” I can come on and talk about other stuff!
Craig Layton: Yeah!
Lauren: Well, we’ll keep in touch. And I’ll keep following you and… I can’t wait to see what you do next!
Craig Layton: Hope to keep on impressing people! And I hope you still find it funny…
Lauren: All right!
Craig Layton: …because the day you stop finding it funny is, I guess, the day Craig stops making Michael Myers videos!
Lauren: Oh no!
Craig Layton: Yeah. So please laugh!! Like! Share!
Lauren: *chuckles* All right, Every…
Craig Layton: You know, it’d be really funny to make Shudder say “no” to me! *laughs*
Lauren: Okay, Everyone…
Craig Layton: If Shudder… I’m sorry. I wasn’t… You can cut off here. But, if Shudder…
Craig Layton: If anyone from Shudder actually listens to this: I’m not actually trying to get a show on your [platform]… I think it would be HILARIOUS if you could put a rejection Tweet out. That would make my LIFE.
Craig Layton: I’m the only person that would LOVE to see Shudder go… “No.” *laughs*
Craig Layton: Because I think it would be funny! That would make everything worth it to me!
Lauren: All right, Everyone…
Craig Layton: Sorry! Thank youuuuuuuuuuuu…
Lauren: …Tweet Craig. And poke at Shudder and get them to tell him “NO.” *laughs*
Craig Layton: Yes! Exactly! I’m gonna start a petition! A petition to get Shudder to reject me!!
Craig Layton: Okay! Thank you so much!
Craig Layton: Bye!!Become a Patron!
Lauren Spear (née Tharp) is the owner of LittleZotz Writing, a super-respectable multiple award-winning website for freelance writers. She’s also the HorrorFam.com founder! Lauren grew up in the horror industry (her parents did practical special FX work for many of the horror movies you love from the ’80s and ’90s) and basically created this site so she could freely gas on about creepy stuff and stop having to pretend to be normal.