Helen Lyle Was Originally Featured in Nia DaCosta’s ‘Candyman’ and We’ve Got an Image to Prove It!


“It was always you, Helen. It was always you.”

The original incarnation of the Nia DaCosta-directed Candyman was a very different one and actually prominently featured Helen Lyle as the film’s main storytelling device, BD has learned.

In the 1992 Candyman, a loose adaptation of Clive Barker‘s story that was directed by Bernard RoseVirginia Madsen plays Helen Lyle, a Chicago grad student who becomes obsessed with a Cabrini Green-set urban legend about a spirit who appears when his name is said into a mirror five times. With a hook in the place of one of his hands, Candyman torments Helen, who eventually dies in a fire and becomes her own urban myth.

In the 1992 film’s final scene, Helen’s ex-lover sits alone in a bathroom mourning her death. In a moment of unadulterated grief, he looks into the mirror and says her name…five times. She appears behind him, holding a hook (which makes way more sense than having it jammed into a bloody stump) and using it to kill him.

Virginia Madsen as Helen Lyle in ‘Candyman’ (1992)

In the first drafts of the screenplay for Nia DaCosta’s Candyman, Anthony McCoy (played by Yahya Abdul-Mateen II) calls on Helen the same way, by reciting her name in a mirror five times. She becomes the film’s main device to move along the story as McCoy investigates the mythology of Candyman.

We told you two years ago that Cassie Kramer had taken over the role of Helen Lyle in the new film that returns to the neighborhood where the legend began: the now-gentrified section of Chicago where the Cabrini-Green housing projects once stood.

We now have confirmation that these scenes were filmed and one happens to be hiding in the very first trailer. What you see in the footage is Cassie Kramer as a burned Helen Lyle in DaCosta’s Candyman, sitting witness to the birth of a new Candyman near the very end of the new film. It appears as if they just snipped Helen from the sequence, although it’s hard to be certain.

No matter, there’s an entirely different film out there and we wonder if we’ll ever get to see the many deleted scenes? For now, at least we have a single shred of evidence that these scenes exist.

Check it out below…

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