By EW Staff
Updated October 16, 2004 at 04:00 AM EDT
Halloween: Everett Collection

”Halloween” made our countdown of the 13 scariest movies of all time

Forget the string of half-baked, nonsensical sequels. Disregard the slew of cruddy, uninspired slasher imitators like Friday the 13th. The original Halloween is, was, and ever shall be the alpha and omega of bogeyman flicks. It also remains one of the most profitable indie films of all time — costing a mere $300,000 and pulling in more than $55 million. The influence of Psycho (”It’s the granddaddy of all horror movies,” says director John Carpenter) is everywhere — from the tiniest details (Donald Pleasence’s Dr. Sam Loomis is named after Janet Leigh’s boyfriend in Psycho) to the casting of Jamie Lee Curtis as Halloween‘s shrieking heroine/babysitter in peril. ”It didn’t hurt that Janet Leigh was her mom,” admits Carpenter, ”because everyone’s a fan of Psycho.” And Halloween.