PARAMOUNT TO RUIN THE ‘FRIDAY THE 13TH’ FRANCHISE WITH A “FOUND FOOTAGE” SEQUEL

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In just over a year, we will be in 2015, which has (un)officially been declared the year of the sequel. So far no less than FIFTEEN sequels have been penciled in to open sometime throughout the year. Avengers 2 (excuse me, Avengers: Age of Ultron), Star Wars Episode 7, Bond 24, Terminator 5, Batman vs Superman and Alvin and the Chipmunks 4(!!!) are just some of the continuing stories Hollywood will be churning out within those 52 weeks. Now comes word that one more has been added to the list. March 13, 2015 will see the return of Jason Voorhees in…Friday the 13th XIII. For those of you who can’t read Roman numerals, that’s 13.

This news comes as a mixed blessing. On the plus side, Jason and his franchise are back where they belong with Paramount Pictures, the studio that originally brought the series to life waaay back in 1980.  And it’ll be good to see everybody’s favorite hockey mask wearing, machete-wielding psycho on the big screen again. Unfortunately, that’s about all the good news. Platinum Dunes is still producing which means this will likely be closer to a sequel of the 2009 version than the original. (Somebody please explain to Michael Bay that Jason does not take prisoners! Ever!)

Even worse, Paramount is reportedly considering going with a found footage concept. While this idea is unique to the Friday the 13th series, it doesn’t exactly fit. Think about it. Part of the fun of a Friday the 13th movie is seeing the inventive ways Jason kills people, or seeing him skulking in the background as some drunken/stoned idiot fumbles around in the dark, while the familiar death knell of “ki-ki-ki-ma-ma-ma” cues up on the soundtrack. How exactly would this work with found footage?  Anybody see Diary of the Dead? It wasn’t believable when the dude holding the camera just stood there working the camera while his friends get attacked by zombies. It’ll be even less believable if some character unrealistically holds on to the camera and watches Jason hack up his/her friends instead of dropping the camera and running for his life. Plus Jason usually kills people while they’re having sex! What are they going to do? Have a bunch of the characters shoot sex tapes?

Let’s not forget how everyone always complains about how found footage movies gives them motion sickness. Now picture that in a Friday movie where a good portion of the movie is characters running though the woods. Unless it’s set up with the characters exploring Crystal Lake as part of a documentary where they are rigged up with a Go-Pro camera, I just don’t see this working.

Lastly, there’s the fact that the whole found footage concept was already overdone by the time Paranormal Activity 2 came out. If Paramount truly wants to offer a new spin on the franchise, then go with the abandoned Jason in the snow concept.

Now THAT I’d like to see.

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About Author

Dave Zagorski

Dave Zagorski is a filmmaker who has yet to achieve his potential. He has written and directed two movies under his MAD Z Productions banner: “Killing Brooke” and a remake of the euro-horror exploitation movie “The Devil’s Nightmare.” He enjoys long walks on the beach, lesbians and putting his friends through hell on set. He hopes to one day win an Oscar, but until then he’ll make due with his son Oscar.