Turning the beloved characters from the trippy 1968 kids’ TV show The Banana Splits into bloodthirsty killers came surprisingly easy to writers Scott Thomas and Jed Elinof.

“When you watch these shows there’s something inherently creepy about someone in full costume dancing around and doing manic things. And if you replaced the theme music of The Banana Splits with something like the Halloween theme, it would be scary,” Thomas tells STACK.

“Then we started to think about movies that lived in this area, like the original Child’s Play. How do you take a thing that is beloved for kids and make it betray you?”

The big question on the lips of Splits fans – and the rest of us – is undoubtedly, ‘Why?’ What inspired them to bring back a beloved children’s series as an R-rated horror film?

“The original idea came from Blue Ribbon Content, who take old Warner Bros. properties and go, ‘How can we twist this?’ It’s not always a horror movie or something demented, it’s just about taking what hasn’t caught on as a reboot and doing something really different with it,” explains Thomas. “So they called us up and said, ‘we want you to do a Banana Splits horror movie.”

“By messing around with these beloved properties and doing something totally different and new puts them back on the map, which is fun,” adds Jelinof.

Thomas concurs: “It gets people talking about The Banana Splits again. They’ve tried to reboot it several times and it hasn’t caught on. When we were talking about the movie, we thought, ‘Love it or hate it, everyone’s going to be talking about the Banana Splits again. And they are, it’s back in the zeitgeist.”

The Banana Splits Movie had its world premiere at Comic-Con and is hopefully bound for home entertainment Down Under sometime soon.