In the annals of cinema, there are just certain names that we’ve found synonymous with the horror genre such as Boris Karloff, Bela Lugosi and Vincent Price. But as time went on and the idea of sequels and franchises became the norm, one could say that the characters themselves outgrew any one performer, with the likes of Freddy Krueger, Jason Voorhees and Michael Myers being some of the most notable examples.
Still, it’s the ones that have done the dance more than once that are most favored by fans. In the case of the aforementioned Jason Voorhees, many gravitate toward Kane Hodder because he played the character in four films, those being the seventh through tenth entries in the Friday the 13th franchise.
Most fortunate for him, he’s found a new home in recent years in the form of the Hatchet series, playing the grotesque Victor Crowley. Actually, he’s landed various other cool gigs in his time that you’ll soon read about, too.
With that, I’m pleased to present a transcript of the full interview that I recently conducted with Mr. Hodder himself at Astronomicon. To be honest, it’s an experience that I won’t soon forget, as not only was he one of the coolest, most down-to-earth celebrities I’ve had the honor of sitting down with, but he also provided so much great trivia that’ll be a treat for all to read.
So, without further ado, let’s get on with the show…
On why a fair percentage of the fanbase view him as the definitive Jason and how he’s responded to it:
I think it’s only natural that people consider me ‘more Jason’ because I did four films and everybody else did one, so that works in my favor. But a lot of people just enjoyed how I played the character, I guess. Of course, that’s nice to hear because I put everything I could into playing the character, so for people to respond that I’m their favorite or whatever they want to say is gratifying because I really wanted to do the best job I could.
When I got the part the first time, I went back and watched all the previous movies again so that I could see maybe what little things guys did that I liked, things that maybe I didn’t like that someone else did, to basically create my own version. Like I said, fortunately, people have responded to it very well.
Which Friday the 13th movie that he starred in was his favorite:
Well, I loved playing the character every time, no doubt. But, overall, my favorite one that I did was Part VII because I think that’s the best look of Jason in basically any of the movies – but definitely the best look of the ones I did, I think, just because it was so different. It was like a rotted corpse and it hadn’t been that way before. It was always a human.
Looking back on the experience that was Jason X:
When they first told me, “hey, we’re doing another one and we want you to do it again,” I was very happy and they said, “it’s gonna be Jason in space.” I said, “that’s pretty funny. What is it, really?” They said, “Jason in space.” I was like, “oh, I thought it was a joke.”
So, I was a little hesitant about the idea, but I thought it really doesn’t matter where Jason is as long as he’s consistent with what’s he’s always been. So, I figured I’m in space, but I’m still gonna be the same character: Brutally violent to everyone within reach and it’ll just be the setting that’s different. That’s how I approached it. It was an interesting movie, different ideas and stuff, of course. The Uber Jason look was pretty good.
Regarding his unexpected cameo in Freddy vs. Jason:
They say I wasn’t in Freddy vs. Jason. The filmmakers didn’t even know it, but I was in that movie. There was a scene where they’re at the insane asylum or whatever, the hospital, and there’s a movie playing on a TV set – and it happens to be Texas Chainsaw Massacre 3.
And there’s a scene of Leatherface doing something, and that’s actually me as Leatherface. I was the stunt double for R.A. Mihailoff for that movie and I was stunt coordinator. And so, they’re trying not to to put me in the movie, and I was still in it and they didn’t even know it.
Explaining the challenges that came along with making Friday the 13th: The Game:
What I look like when I’m doing motion capture for the game is totally different. I’m wearing spandex and I have motion sensors all over me, so it’s not the typical look of Jason. But then, I thought, once again, I’m going to be consistent to what the character has always been to me, regardless of what I look like. Just like with Jason X, regardless of the setting, I wanted to be consistent.
So, it’s interesting because we started the motion capture in January of 2016 and the most recent session we did was October of 2017, so that was a year and ten months off and on doing mocap sessions for the game – and there’s still stuff we’ve done mocap for that hasn’t been put in the game yet.
So, that was interesting because, in all my versions of Jason I played in the films, I never thought Jason should run because I just didn’t think it seemed right, so I never ran as Jason. But now, I’m doing motion capture for the game and I’m realizing that, in this stuff, you could play as Richard Brooker’s version from Part 3, and Jason ran.
So, here I was doing Jason moves and running. It was a weird thing playing Jason and going against what I always thought. But, you know, because you’re playing as a Jason that I never played in the film, I thought it was right to recreate a little bit of what the other actors did in their performance in the film because you’re playing Part 3 Jason and it needs to be consistent. That was part of the challenge of doing the motion capture: Staying consistent to characters that I didn’t play in the movies.
On his current gig as Victor Crowley, the possibility of more sequels, and other horror icons that he has played or hopes to:
There’s a variety of possibilities now that [writer/director] Adam Green has brought Victor back ten years later. And I love playing the character and I just love the Hatchet movies because Adam is such a genius by putting such comedic elements in a scary film that don’t detract from the horror of it.
You can be laughing one minute and a couple minutes later, you’re terrified, and nothing is at the expense of the other. That’s a hard thing to pull off, doing comedy in a scary horror film, but Adam does it well and, Victor Crowley, a lot of fans are saying it’s their favorite of all four of ’em.
Now, I’ve played Jason four times, I’ve played Victor four times. I’d love to continue with that if he [Green] can make it happen.
It’s pretty cool to say I did one shot as Freddy, several scenes as Leatherface, four of the movies as Jason. I just need to do a movie version somehow of Michael [Myers]. Those [Jason Voorhees, Freddy Krueger, Leatherface and Michael Myers] are the four contemporaries.
And you’ve gotta do one more Friday movie, too. It’ll be the thirteenth one.
That concludes our interview with Kane Hodder. We’d like to thank him very much for his time though and hope you enjoyed reading our conversation.