Over the years there has been several fan films about Jason Vorhees. Some good, some bad. It has been 10 years since there was a theatrical release of a Friday the 13th movie. Due to the current lawsuit, it may be some time before we get another one. On October 13th 2017, Never Hike Alone premiered on YouTube and in my opinion set a blue print of what a great fan film should be. Due to the popularity of that fan film, there are several in production including the movie in which I will be discussing with
Dave Brown who will also be playing the part of Jason Vorhees.
I met Dave through Facebook after he saw one of my post’s about my trip to Blairstown, NJ back in October of 2018. We started talking coming to find out he is a Jersey boy like me and actually grew up 20 minutes from me. In our initial conversation he told me he was in the process of putting a fan film together that takes place between part 1 and 2. This intrigued me as no one has ever made a fan film about sack head Jason. I was immediately hooked during our first conversation. Since than Dave and I have become good friends. Before I go into my interview, I will give you the synopsis of the film that is directly from the Facebook page.
HNWJ. Is a short film based off of Jason Voorhees from the Friday the 13th franchise. It will take place between the movies of part 1 and 2. Jason will be in his late 20’s early 30’s. It has been assumed he has drowned and is deceased, or is he? Camp Crystal Lake has been shut down and abandoned for years on the account of the horror that unfolded on the night of Friday the 13th 1980. The town folk of Crystal Lake are finally putting it past them and moving on but never forgetting. Only whispers and stories are told to the children at times when they have misbehaved and are instructed to never go in to the woods of “Camp Blood”, a nick name given by the locals, or Jason is going to get ya!
This film will also show you the story of 3 lifelong high school friends Bo Thompson, Charles (Chuck) Roberts and Mickey Bowetz. All avid deer hunters and their ill-fated decision to venture in on that cold November day of the foreboding area of Camp Crystal Lake to track and hunt a prized Buck that has eluded most hunters of the community for many years. It seems to have found refuge and solitude in the forbidden area of the lake on the account that man hasn’t tread there for so long. But as soon as the lifelong friends enter the woods they feel that time has almost stopped and direction seems to be off kilter. But there in the far-off distance, they get a glimpse of their prize and the thrill for the hunt begins! As fast it starts they are quick to realize the hunters have become the hunted and that there is truth behind those scary ghost stories; of the legend that lurks at Camp Crystal Lake is alive and has been living well.
I will also tell the story of Jason and his life in solitude living in the wooded areas of Camp Crystal Lake and the abandoned camp ground as he forges and scavenges all he can find to survive. He is also constantly tormented by his mother’s voice and her words in his head to guard and protect the camp ground including the surrounding lake because this is now his domain. It’s all he’s ever known and is closest to a home hell ever have. We will see what he will do to protect his home through this short film.
What was your first memory of watching Friday the 13th?
Growing up my family did not have a lot of money. My family were big fans of watching horror movies. In the winter we would watch VHS movies and in the summer we would go to the local Drive In in Egg Harbor Township. (Unfortunately, the Drive In is no longer there) On one particular night, the Drive In was playing a double feature of Friday the 13th parts 1 and 2. I was intrigued by the plot line of the original movie. Mrs. Vorhees was by all means an average woman to the citizens of Crystal Lake. She wasn’t from there. That’s the scary feeling knowing that an average woman could commit such horrific acts of violence.
We are both Jersey guys. However you currently live in New York. Do you have any formal training in acting, writing or directing?
After graduating from Absegami High School (Go Braves!) I moved to Southern California and attended School for Acting. I came to find out that I did not like the industry so I transferred credits and got a degree in Graphic Design. From there I lived in Philadelphia, Hoboken, NJ and now I reside in
Queens, NY with my wife and daughter and work in Manhattan. I also like to Cosplay. I enjoy weathering and aging clothes. (Dave also mentioned that he enjoys writing short stories and shared a concept of another Friday the 13th story he envisioned)
How did His Name was Jason come about? How long did it take you to write the script?
Growing up in Egg Harbor City, it was similar to Crystal Lake in regards to the locale and townsfolk. It has always intrigued me of what was Jason doing during that time; how did he survive? No one has told that tale. Guys our age who grew up when the movies first came out do like the sack look and I want to be able to give those fans something they have been wanting. Everyone who makes a fan film, uses the hockey mask look. In addition to that, I will be shooting in and around the area of Blairstown, NJ to give it an additional authentic feel. I had an outline of my vision and one of the actors who plays Chuck Roberts-Jason John Cicalese took my idea and put together a script in about 4-6 weeks.
Other than Friday the 13th part 2, what other film from the franchise is your favorite?
I like Friday the 13th part 4. The Final Chapter. (We than discussed part 3 and Dave was fortunate enough to have seen it during its theatrical run in 3D.)
How did you choose the actors for your films?
To have a successful fan film, you need to have actors in your film. What some fan film directors do is cast their friends which could potentially be the down fall of the film. I visited a website Backstage.com. It’s a website for actors to view casting calls and for directors to find actors. I would look at the bios of the actors/actresses and if they had the look of someone from NJ, I would reach out to them and set up a meeting. We would meet at a bar and if they gave the true vibe of someone from Jersey, I knew they were right for the film.
What is your projected time line to release your fan film?
I am hoping to have it released sometime during the summer of 2020. I will be shooting scenes in October with Ron Millkie (Officer Dorf from the original film) at the Blairstown Diner. In the movie he plays the Sheriff. Ron is excited to be a part of the movie and will bring an added piece of nostalgia to the film.
In order for fan films to get made, the creators need funding. To see how you can help get this movie made, please check out His Name Was Jason on Facebook. There is currently a Facebook fundraiser going on until the end of the month. There will also be a Indiegogo that will be released soon.