For the film's characters and design, Kenan at times drew on his own childhood memories of creepy houses and neighbors. When he lived in Ramat Gan, he says there was a dark, shuttered house across the street from his family's apartment; a weird woman sometimes shouted from within.
"Monster House," which dubs itself "a home show on steroids," capitalizes on viewers' hunger for prickly reality TV shows. On each episode, Schwartz and five builders -- all strangers to each other -- have five days to transform a house into a family's dream theme -- with absolutely no peeking by homeowners. Tempers flare as the team crashes spaceships through ceilings, turns fireplaces into fire-breathing Tiki gods and bursts the Three Stooges through living room walls.