Friday the 13th has not released a feature film since the financially successful reboot in 2009. When you go back into the wildly successful franchise’s history, that long of a wait is somewhat unusual.
The first one dropped in 1980 and was followed by Part 2 in 1981, Part 3 in 1982, Part 4 in 1984, Part 5 in 1985, Part 6 in 1986, Part 7 in 1988, and Part 8 in 1989.
Jason Goes to Hell: The Final Friday followed in 1993, Jason X in 2002, and Freddy vs. Jason in 2003.
In 36 years of existence, the Friday the 13th franchise’s longest wait from one movie to the next was that 9-year stretch between JGTH and Jason X, but it’s hard to count that as everything after The Final Friday was more akin to a Jason event film — a “Star Wars Legends” type of universe that is often looked at separately from the main series of Paramount films.
— Dread Central (@DreadCentral) June 16, 2016
With the reboot, the hope was to launch a new line of Jason films that a) made the summer camp slasher scary again; and b) resonated enough with a new generation for a new ongoing series of films.
On those two fronts, the film failed despite its $91.3 million global take on a budget of just $19 million.
Enter Brad Fuller and scriptwriter Aaron Guzikowski, who hope to make Jason great again with a unique take on his origin.
Scratch that. Don’t say origin, according to Fuller. In recent comments to iHorror, he clarified what his Friday the 13th is and isn’t.
“Origin isn’t really the right word for this movie. The word ‘Origin’ got out and everyone’s calling it an origin film now, but that isn’t exactly the direction we’re taking. It’s more of an alternate world that we’re creating for Jason — an alternate space, alternate reality — in this film. Yes, Pamela and Jason are together in this film, but this is the same Jason we all know and love. He’s Jason; he kills — he kills teenagers. We went down the origin route with the second Texas Chainsaw Massacre film, and I think when you go too deep into a character’s origin, the character stops being scary at some point. I’m not worried about demystifying Jason by revealing parts of his back story, which most of the fans are familiar with.”
Fuller confirmed that the new Friday the 13th would take place in the range between the late 1970s and early 1980s, making it a contemporary of the original series of films, though taking place in that “alternate reality” of sorts.
Early word that the film would also include Jason’s father may be a bit premature, too, Fuller said, remarking that “including Jason’s father was an idea, a possibility, but it’s not at all a certainty that he’ll appear in the film.”
“The main relationship,” he continued, “is between Pamela and Jason.”
The 2009 film attempted to mash up the first four films into one re-imagined homage, so Fuller and company will have to go a different route to make theirs stand out and reignite a stagnant franchise.
So far, it sounds like that’s what they are doing, but there is also a sense that they could possibly be overthinking things. After all, at the end of the day, fans are pretty open that the reasons they watch Friday the 13th films are for the bloody kills and the gratuitous sexuality.
— Dread Central (@DreadCentral) June 17, 2016
But what do you think, readers?
Is there room to make Jason Voorhees a scary character again by opting for story and suspense over the staples of the franchise, or should Fuller and company stick with the body count formula?
Also, what is your favorite Friday the 13th movie? Sound off in the comments section below.
[Image from Friday the 13th Part VI: Jason Lives via Paramount]