Original vs. Remake: The Fog (1980)

Howdy folks. After a long silence, I’ve got an installment of Original Vs. Remake for y’all. This month’s movie is The Fog. I will cover the 1980 original, and Tiffany A. White will cover the 2005 remake. 

Let’s get started.

the fog poster


A California seaside town prepares to celebrate its centennial only to find a supernatural force wants to mark the anniversary in a less festive–and more deadly–manner. 

Watch The Trailer


About the Movie

The Fog was directed by John Carpenter. He also co-wrote the screenplay and composed the musical soundtrack. If you’re looking for creepy music to write to, this is good stuff. iTunes sells the motion picture soundtrack.

The Fog was Carpenter’s first feature film after his 1978 success with Halloween. The movie was shot on a budget of 1 million dollars.  While the film was a commercial success, it is considered a minor horror classic. Most folks don’t consider it as good as Halloween.

Carpenter has stated that a British film titled The Trollenberg Terror and a visit to Stonehenge inspired the premise for The Fog. He also cited a real-life historical event from the 1800s in which a ship was deliberately sank and plundered near Goleta, California.

A novelization of the film (a movie tie-in) by Dennis Etchison was published in 1980.


Lots of familiar faces:

  • Adrienne Barbeau was cast in the leading female role Stevie Wayne. Trivia: Barbeau and Carpenter were married at the time.
  • Jamie Lee Curtis (who starred in Carpenter’s Halloweenplays a young hitchhiker named Elizabeth Solley
  • Janet Leigh (Psychois Kathy Williams, organizer of the town’s centennial
  • Hal Holbrook plays Father Malone
  • John Carpenter has a cameo as Bennett


The Bottom Line

When I saw this movie as a kid, it scared the holy guacamole out of me. Ghost stories are my favorite kind of supernatural horror. (Which you probably know if you read my Peri Jean Mace Paranormal Mysteries.)

The “mystery” or the “why” behind the paranormal activity was absolutely haunting, by far the best part of the movie. I remembered those details long after I forgot the gore in the movie. Betrayal and revenge are pretty strong stuff.

Now? The movie is definitely dated. But I still think it’s a good, solid supernatural horror film.  It’s great for a retro horror night. Besides, ghosts are my thing–which you know if you’ve read my Peri Jean Mace series.

The movie is available both for rental and purchase at iTunes and at Amazon.

Don’t forget to the check out Tiffany A. White’s discussion of the 2005 remake.

What’s your favorite retro horror movie? (If you like horror movies, that is.)

The first book in my Peri Jean Mace Ghost Thriller series is FREE right now. Click here to download it from a retailer.

Or join my mailing list and get a FREE series starter--the first two books of my Peri Jean Mace Ghost Thriller Series PLUS two short stories.