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Gremlins Star Zach Galligan Wants To Reunite With Gizmo


In the eyes of most movie fans, Zach Galligan has two credits: Gremlins and Gremlins 2. While there have been others (including Nothing Lasts Forever and the Waxwork movies), he spent the vast majority of his Q&A yesterday at Toronto’s Fan Expo talking about his defining franchise. In particular, fans wanted to know about Gizmo, and the challenges of working with this hyper sensitive critter. Loyal to the end, Galligan was quick to defend his co-star. “People don’t really stop and think about the suspension of disbelief that you need in general,” he said. “It’s no more difficult working with Gizmo than a person. It’s a lot easier to pretend that’s an actual pet sitting in my hand than it is to pretend that some actress I met ten minutes ago is my wife.”


Gizmo may be an illusion, but Galligan experienced the character in much the same way as the audience. “The animatronic thing is actually in my hand, so it’s right there, and it’s moving exactly like you see it in the movie,” he explained. “The only difference between it and a real pet is that, instead of making cute Howie Mandel noises, it made little mechanical noises.”

After considering this for a moment, he did remember one unique acting challenge. “I had wires all up and down my body and underneath my clothing. I can feel them because the wires had little slats all along them, and when they would pull on the joystick wires, those slats would close on my skin. So you were basically getting pinched anywhere from your ankle to your armpit—anywhere in between—at any moment, depending on which joystick they pulled.”

In spite of these challenges, Galligan remains enthusiastic about the prospect of reuniting with Gizmo. He referenced a few of his own sequel ideas—fans got a particular kick out of his suggestion that many gremlins could merge into a single Godzilla gremlin—and explained that writer Chris Columbus is open to a sequel, but not a remake. According to Galligan, Columbus recently said the next Gremlins would feature “some new characters,” suggesting that members of the original cast would be back. Elaborating on this, the actor explained that Columbus was emotionally affected by the trailer for The Force Awakens, which reinforced his belief that the new Gremlins should be a throwback. “The nostalgia pull is so powerful,” said Galligan, citing Chewbacca and Han Solo’s appearance in the trailer’s concluding moments. He held up the Gizmo doll in front of him, adding, “If you look at the Gremlins franchise, who do you suppose is the Han Solo and Chewbacca?”