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Leatherface, Michael, Freddy, Chucky, and Jason — no, this isn't the lineup for a One Direction replacement, it is the cream of the horror crop who have graced our screens for nearly 40 years. However, while all these franchises have had their peaks and troughs, fans now find themselves asking when (and if) these screen icons should rise from the grave once more.
Looking at Jason Voorhees and the Friday the 13th series in particular, we have found ourselves drowning in the stagnant waters of Camp Crystal Lake. Starting in 1980, Friday the 13th became the stuff of legend, spinning out nine sequels to the sci-fi sucker, Jason X in 2001 and then official crossover Freddy vs. Jason in 2003. Since then, Paramount Pictures gave us the mixed bag reboot in 2009 and Jason seemed to return to his hellish slumber. Asking what happened to the murderously anticipated sequel, it turns out that the hopes to reopen the summer camp may have taken a machete to skull.
Sink or Swim
Speaking to Bloody Disgusting, screenwriter Nick Antosca revealed what happened to his sequel and why the project officially hit the dirt in 2015:
"I know Platinum Dunes was ready to go --- they were enthusiastic. I heard various things --- Paramount changed their mind about the 80's setting, they wanted more mythology. Also, there was some corporate changeover in the ranks there, and the people who were in charge when I was hired were no longer there. The new folks may have wanted to put their own stamp on it. It happens. I was curious to see the version they did make, and I was disappointed when that fell apart too. It shouldn't be that hard to make a Friday the 13th movie."
Antosca shared the script with David Bruckner, and it sounds ambitious to say the least; who wouldn't want to see Jason alongside a rocking '80s soundtrack? Even better, there would be inspiration from some of the best films of that decade, including Dazed and Confused, Fast Times at Ridgemont High, and even Jaws:
"We just wanted to make a classic Jason movie, with kids at camp who get slaughtered, and great kills and some characters you actually enjoy hanging out with til they die. David Bruckner and I talked about how to make a consistent Jason throughout our movie, but nod to the different Jasons. I prefer supernatural Jason, personally. And I loved the imagery of him under the water.”
While it wouldn't be just a rehash with tired stereotypes, the sequel would've also shifted the Friday the 13th dynamic and taken the summer camp into winter. Seeing flashes of red splashed against a snowy backdrop would certainly be one way to reinvent the series and draw new blood. Sadly, it looks like none of these dreams will come true, and Antosca is right, why is it so hard to make a Jason movie? Saw bowed out in 2010 with The Final Chapter, only to find a new life for an eighth movie later this year.
Thankfully, there is blood at the end of the tunnel. It looks almost certain that Paramount will lose their rights to Friday the 13th, meaning that Warner Bros. could pick up Jason's blade for another installment. Paramount got the South Park movie rights and Jason in return for WB co-producing Interstellar, but there was only a window of five years. With that being more than four years ago, the slaughter sand timer is running out and Warner Bros. could open the camp itself.
If you look at Jason as a whole, he may be getting on in his years, but he is most definitely slowing down. We got a bumper crop of eight films in the '80s, which has crawled to just four more in the past 25 years. In an era of creepy Saw dolls and cursed nuns, some horror newbies may not even know who the hockey mask-wearing psychopath even is. With Warner Bros. already taking a big slash of the horror pie thanks to The Conjuring and IT, hopefully Jason Voorhees won't be left languishing in the lake for too much longer!
(Source: Bloody Disgusting)