Art The Clown Decks The Hall With Bloody Bodies In “Controversial” First Teaser Trailer

He sees you when you’re sleeping, he knows when you’re awake, he knows if you’ve been bad or good… and he’ll cut you into little pieces either way.

The first teaser trailer for Damien Leone’s Terrifier 3 debuted in theaters ahead of the second movie’s return to the big screen last month, and the footage has now been officially released online.

The recent poster left little doubt that the horror threequel would have a Holiday setting, and this teaser really leans into the Christmas vibes, as we see a little girl wake up and make her way downstairs as a jolly figure in red is leaving gifts beneath the tree.

The excited youngster believes Santa has come to town, but, of course, it’s really everyone’s favourite murderous mime, Art the Clown, who raises an axe as a sinister grin spreads across his face. Then, the final shot sees Art drinking a glass of eggnog by the fire while covered in blood, strongly implying that he’s brutally murdered the poor lass.

This (off-screen) child murder has stirred up a bit of controversy. Horror movies have always got away with depicting some incredibly brutal and disturbing things, but young kids being killed tends to be seen as a bit of a taboo – even though it happens frequently (one of the more disturbing recent examples is Mike Flanagan’s Doctor Sleep).

Yeah… if you found this teaser distressing, probably better off not watching the movie!

“I remember having meetings with people. I got to meet with studios, like legit Hollywood studios, who wanted to make Terrifier 3,” Leone said in a recent interview. “But before I even had a script, just based on the success of part 2, and just having meetings and getting the feel that I was going to have eyes over my shoulders, and they were concerned about the levels of gore and this and that. I knew, and not having seen my script or have any idea what I had in mind, I knew they weren’t going to let me make this movie based on the first five pages. Like that’s how insane Terrifier 3 is. The first like 5 minutes of this movie, a studio would never let me film what I plan on filming. So mark my words, I guarantee you the first 5 minutes of this movie is going to be very controversial. But that’s not even the big kill scene. So like that’s why I was like, I need to just make this movie on my own, because it’s just too… it’s too insane.”

Terrifier 3 slices its way into theaters just in time for next Halloween. Check out the trailer below, and let us know what you think in the comments.