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'Chucky' Filmmaker John Lafia Dies by Suicide at 63

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Editor's Note

If you experience suicidal thoughts or have lost someone to suicide, the following post could be potentially triggering. You can contact the Crisis Text Line by texting “START” to 741741.

Horror filmmaker John Lafia died by suicide at 63, according to Deadline, on April 29. His family confirmed the news in a statement, saying, “It is with great sadness we announce that loving father, film and television writer, director, producer and musician John J. Lafia passed away.”

Lafia was best known as a co-writer for the1988 horror movie “Child’s Play.” According to his collaborators, Tom Holland and Don Mancini, Lafia coined the name Chucky and the film’s most popular line: “Hi, I’m Chucky, wanna play?” Lafia was also a co-writer and director on the 1990 follow-up, “Child’s Play 2.”

“We’re devastated to hear of the passing of our friend John Lafia. He was a crucial part of the ‘Chucky’ family from the very beginning,” Mancini said in a statement provided to Variety, adding:

John was an incredibly generous artist. He let me tag along with him to every meeting, and shadow him on set; he taught me more about filmmaking during the production of that movie than several semesters in film school. John was also one of the most naturally curious and constantly creative people I ever met, someone who was always taking pictures, and jotting down ideas.

Fans, friends and colleagues reacted to his death on social media and shared condolences.

If this news is hard for you, know you are not alone — and there is help for people who feel suicidal. You can call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255 or text “START” to 741-741. Head here for a list of crisis centers around the world.

Header image via sculpies/Getty Images

Originally published: May 3, 2020
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