It used to be so simple. Hire a bunch of young and pretty actors, mix up a couple of buckets of fake blood, make sure Kane Hodder is free for a few weeks and – boom – you’ve got yourself a Friday the 13th movie. Sadly, Jason Voorhees’ homicidal rampages have been curtailed by a force more tenacious and single-minded than even him: lawyers.
The franchise has been stuck in legal limbo ever since original screenwriter Victor Miller launched a claim for the rights from Horror Inc.’s Sean Cunningham. Back in 2018, the courts ruled in favor of Miller, though this was challenged on appeal and a final decision has still not been made (mainly due to the judge ruling on the case unexpectedly dying).
But even if a new entry isn’t happening, the Friday the 13th flame is still burning. Paramount has just unveiled a brand new box set titled the Friday the 13th: 8-Movie Blu-ray Collection. This will contain the eight movies in the franchise, with newly remastered versions of the first four. If you’re just interested in the classic original, Friday the 13th will be available to buy as a solo Blu-ray. All that’s coming out on August 10.
But if you can wait until October 12 you can get the ‘Limited Edition Steelbook Version.’ This includes everything listed above, but in fancy Steelbook packaging and including some art showcasing posters and stills.
I’m still itching for a fresh movie once this legal knot gets untangled. What’s especially frustrating is that Stephen King revealed he has Friday the 13th project ready to go. His take on is called I, Jason and is told from the perspective of Jason as he’s repeatedly defeated by gangs of resourceful teenagers.
As King explained:
“Killed over and over again at Camp Crystal Lake. What a hellish, existential fate! [But] just thinking about the legal thicket one would have to go through to get permissions makes my head ache. And my heart, that too. But gosh, shouldn’t someone tell Jason’s side of the story? Blumhouse could do it as a movie.”
The return of Jason Voorhees and Friday the 13th, written by Stephen King and produced by Blumhouse? Sounds like a license to print money to me. C’mon, guys, let’s get Jason back on our screens in style!