‘The Munsters’ Star Jeff Daniel Phillips Talks Playing a Younger Version of Herman

Jeff Daniel Phillips is garnering attention for his new role as iconic TV character Herman Munster. The actor steps into the size 26 boots of the beloved Frankenstein patriarch for Rob Zombie’s The Munsters film. Like many actors, Phillips offers his spin while staying true to Herman’s personality.

'The Munsters' star Jeff Daniel Phillips wearing a black suit and smiling for photographers.
The Munsters star Jeff Daniel Phillips I Michael Tullberg/Getty Images

‘The Munsters’ star Jeff Daniel Phillips talks about creating his version of Herman Munster

Herman Munster is an iconic character etched into TV and pop culture history. Actor Fred Gwynne became synonymous with the role he played from 1964 to 1966. Gwynne did a remarkable job playing the strong, caring, protective, yet childlike Munster patriarch.

Throughout the decades, many actors have played the lovable character. Phillips becomes the latest actor to put his unique spin on Herman. In an interview with Geek Vibes Nation, Phillips says he drew real-life inspiration into his role in The Munsters.

“You approach it like any character. You try to draw some things from the show. I definitely, growing up, I was a wisecracker, a class clown, so I could draw from that. But, yeah, we were basing it on the iconic TV show, so we tried to make it ourself, make our own version of the iconic character. I’m sure there’s a lot of me in that.”

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Jeff Daniel Phillips is playing a younger version of Herman Munster

Many films have been made about the Munster family throughout the past six decades. Horror director Rob Zombie took a stab at bringing the ghoulish clan to the big screen in his comedy. When it came to casting, Zombie chose Phillips for Herman. Phillips previously worked with the director on Halloween II and The Lords of Salem.

Fans will notice a few differences between Zombie’s adaptation of The Munsters and the original. For instance, the film is in color and not black and white. Another difference is a few core characters are missing. Zombie’s film focuses on Lily, Herman, and Grandpa’s early days in Transylvania.

In the film, fans will see a younger version of Herman as he’s created in a lab and meets his true love, Lily. According to Phillips, the younger Herman is slightly different from, the older version.

“He gets a sense that he’s trying to figure out who he is, and these things just come to his brain. And he can’t, you know, he’s always amazed because he was just created and trying to figure it all out, unlike the TV Herman, who’s fantastic. Fred Gwynne’s the master. But he was more established. He was married, had a job, and had a kid. This Herman is trying to figure it out. He’s trying to find his voice. Things are coming to him. He knows jokes; he’s in this big muscular body he’s never had before.”

Rob Zombie’s ‘The Munsters’ film premiered on Netflix on Sept. 27

Fans can officially see Phillips and his co-stars Sheri Moon Zombie and Daniel Roebuck in The Munsters. The film premiered on Tuesday, Sept. 27, on Netflix. The movie has received mixed reactions from fans. However, a few people love Zombie’s adaptation.

On Twitter, some fans expressed their love for the new movie. “I actually enjoyed this. I went into this open-minded,” wrote one user.

“Anyone who didn’t like this needs to watch an episode of the original series!! This exceeded my expectations! Absolutely loved it. Wish we had more,” wrote one fan.

“I gotta admit that although, well, we were told this movie was not good, I liked it. Quite a bit, actually,” declared another fan.

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