In Hubie Halloween, one of Adam Sandler’s character Hubie’s only friends is his mother, played by national treasure June Squibb (Nebraska, Palm Springs). The rest of the townspeople delight in ridiculing Hubie, but his mother loves him unconditionally, doing her best to protect her little boy.
Polygon sat down with Squibb via Zoom leading up to the film’s debut on Netflix to talk a little about her character, what finally got her to watch the Star Wars movies, and of course, her favorite kaiju.
[Ed. note: Spoilers for Hubie Halloween follow.]
When in the process did you find out what the twist to your character is?
I found it out reading it in the script, because I always read the script before I agree to do anything. And this was my first Adam Sandler film. I had never worked with him before. So it wasn’t a question of did I want to work with Adam. I didn’t know. So I read the script. And that’s when I found out.
Were you already familiar with a lot of Adam Sandler’s work?
Do you have a favorite of his films?
I think Waterboy. And then I was amazed at Uncut Gems. I saw that in New York at the film festival.
Your character wears a lot of graphic t-shirts. I’m assuming from seeing you on Zoom that that’s not really your personal style.
Well, no. [laughs] I don’t have a lot of t-shirts. I do have one now, though, that they gave me, so I have one.
The first one. [Ed. note: The “boner donor” shirt.]
Is that kind of slang humor your sense of humor?
Yes, I love words. I read so much. It was very funny to me. It really was. I laughed each time I went into the trailer to change clothes, when I saw them.
Hubie Halloween is a mix between horror and comedy. In terms of what you like to watch personally, is there a genre that you tend to gravitate toward?
I like mysteries. And I like horror. I never did before, but after having a son and having him grow up — he loves science fiction, so we saw the original Star Wars and all of those. They were wonderful, and I would never have done it without him. I’m sure.
Is there anything else that you ended up liking?
All the Godzilla films. They were a great favorite of his. He saw them over and over and over again. So I began to love them.
Do you have a favorite monster from those movies?
Mothra. I always liked Mothra. She was so female. It was so good to see such a feminine monster around. [laughs]
Another big thing in the film is playing pranks. I’m curious if you fancy yourself a prankster and if you have a favorite prank that you’ve managed to pull off.
I’m not. I’ve never been a prankster. When I was a kid, I didn’t understand pranks. I’m serious. That just is not a part of my person at all.
Have you had any pranks pulled on you?
Oh, yes. I’ve had pranks pulled on me. All the time in theater in New York, there were always pranks being pulled in the dressing room.
Your character calls Chardonnay her truth serum. Do you have a personal truth serum?
A martini. Just a standard martini and just the relaxing, and I think a lot of truth comes out there. [laughs]