Eddie Murphy was never the first choice to play the lead role in ‘Candyman’, its director insisted.
Bernard Rose, who directed the original 1990s horror, debunked the long-held myth in an interview about the release of a 4K version of the cooler.
The 61-year-old told the NME: ‘All this b******* going around Eddie Murphy, there’s not a shred of truth to it.
“We never even talked about it.”
Hook-handed Candyman was played by Tony Todd, 67, 6ft 4in, in the 1992 original – the actor also playing the ghoul in two sequels, 1995’s ‘Candyman: Farewell to the Flesh’ and ‘Candyman : Day of the”. Dead’.
Long-running reports state that one of the reasons Murphy, 61, who is 5ft 7in, was ultimately not cast as Candyman was his height, as he is only a few inches taller than the main the film’s wife, Virginia Madsen, who played urban myth researcher Helen Lyle, who stumbles upon the demonic presence while investigating a story about her in a run-down housing estate.
Candyman, 30 this year, is based on Clive Barker’s short story “The Forbidden.”
Written in the mid-1980s when Margaret Thatcher was in power, it fused themes of social deprivation with nightmare.
Rose says he would do “Candyman” again today “or something similar” because he claims it was about white privilege as well.
He added: “You have to remember that (the story) is told from the point of view of Virginia Madsen (of the character), a white person who comes into it.
“I think there’s something that’s been a bit lacking in the film…it’s an inversion of the ‘white saviour’ narrative.
“Instead, she goes out there and makes it worse. And I think that’s the goal. “There is the fear of the Candyman, which is irrational, but there is also the bourgeois fear of projects, which is just as irrational, and which is basically, you know, a great display of racism. And I think that’s where the movie gets its power.
He added that he liked the 2021 remake of the film from ‘Get Out’ director Jordan Peele, 43, adding: ‘It’s a direct sequel (to the original) and Jordan’s film has an interesting thesis. And what a lot of people don’t know is that Jordan was developing Candyman before “Get Out.”