Robert Englund Explains Why Kane Hodder Wasn’t In Freddy Vs. Jason


2003’s Freddy vs. Jason was a dream come true for horror fans, with Freddy Krueger and Jason Voorhees going toe-to-toe in both the dream and real world. While it didn’t meet with much critical approval, I thought it was pretty damn good fun, and it’s certainly in the upper tier of both the Nightmare on Elm Street and Friday the 13th franchises.

But while Freddy was of course played by Robert Englund, Jason was played by stuntman Ken Kirzinger rather than Kane Hodder, who’d been Jason since 1988’s Friday the 13th Part VII: The New Blood and reprised the role in Friday the 13th: The Game). Up until now, the reason for this had remained a mystery, but this week has seen an unreleased interview with Robert Englund on the set of Freddy vs. Jason in which he discusses the reason why director Ronny Yu decided to recast.

Here’s what he had to say:

“When you see Ken, you’ll see the reason why [he was chosen]. He’s really, really tall. And that’s what Ronny…That’s why he did it. It was just a size thing, it had nothing to do with Kane’s worthiness. Ronnie just had it in his head that Jason had to be absolutely humungous. And Ronnie is the director. The decision rests with him. Kane is a stuntman. So, there’s nothing in this movie that Kane couldn’t do. It’s just the size. Simply size. Kane is bulkier. And Ken is just really, really tall. There is a certain exaggeration of the whole story. The whole movie is kicked up a bit. I think that’s how Ronnie sees it. It’s a little larger than life.

Now, Kane Hodder is 6’2 and built like a brick shithouse, so this might be one of the first times he was deemed too short to play a role. But, as Englund correctly explains, Ken Kirzinger is “really, really tall,” standing at a jumbo-sized 6’4. With everything in Freddy vs. Jason cranked up to 11, it’s perhaps not surprising that Ronny Yu decided he wanted Jason to be as hulking and intimidating as he possibly could be.

With Freddy vs. Jason vs. Ash never to see the light of day due to disagreements over who would win in a fight (Ash, obviously), both the Friday the 13th and A Nightmare on Elm Street franchises are on hold. Jason’s caught in a legal limbo as courts decide on who owns the rights to him and there are currently no firm plans to revive Freddy after 2010’s iffy remake. It seems that only Michael Myers is left to carry the standard for 80s slashers, but at least he’s doing it in style!

Source: ScreenGeek