Halloween or Friday the 13th which triggered the slasher boom?

Discussion in 'Slashers' started by Ash28M, Jul 30, 2010.

  1. HAEMORRHAGE

    HAEMORRHAGE If he dies, he dies

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    F13 for many of the reasons already stated. Plus, they were the ones that did the whole "You know what this movie needs? Boobs." thing that everyone else made sure they copied.
     
  2. maybrick

    maybrick Well-Known Member

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    Halloween had boobs. Luscious, luscious, PJ Soles boobs.

    Look, it's easy to "one-up" another movie with a body count and gore. It's quite another thing to begin a new precedent altogether. F13 did nothing new, they simply took what had already worked in the past and amplified it a bit. Big deal.
     
    Last edited: Jul 31, 2010
  3. Body Boy

    Body Boy Well-Known Member

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    Meh. The same could be said about Halloween too.
     
  4. Erick H.

    Erick H. Well-Known Member

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    The Australian film was originally titled SNAPSHOT and it picked up it's THE DAY AFTER HALLOWEEN title upon it's U.S. release in an obvious attempt by the distributor to cash in on HALLOWEEN.The film's actually not all that close to HALLOWEEN.It was paired up with a reissue of TOWER OF EVIL (already several years old at the time)which was retitled BEYOND THE FOG,another attempt to make an import sound like a sequel to a Carpenter hit.

    Carpenter freely admits that a number of films influenced HALLOWEEN (DEEP RED for one).Certainly BLACK CHRISTMAS covered much of the same ground earlier,but there were many films that predated HALLOWEEN and the slashers that followed it,PSYCHO,DEMENTIA 13,several Giallo's,and William Castle's I SAW WHAT YOU DID to name just a few.HALLOWEEN didn't so much invent the slasher as build on many past pictures to create a perfected template for others to follow.It didn't create all the tropes but it perfected them,to the tune of ringing cash registers.

    Obviously FRIDAY THE 13TH was inspired by HALLOWEEN,and like the Carpenter film borrowed a lot from earlier works (especially Mario Bava's pics).HALLOWEEN set off the horror boom,FRIDAY followed it.It should get the credit (or the blame,some say) for adding blood and latex gore to the American slasher.It pushed the genre up into the splatter film area and that would effect almost all the slashers that followed it,including HALLOWEEN 2.
    So I'd say HALLOWEEN certainly made slashers big business and launched the 80's cycle while FRIDAY garneshed the main course with blood and gore.It added to the perception of what a ''slasher" was but it didn't ''create'' it.
     
  5. TheDreamMaster

    TheDreamMaster New Member

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    I don't think the original Friday the 13th is a great film by any means, but I think it's the one that should be credited with starting the "boom." Everything before it (Black Christmas, Bay of Blood, Halloween) all happened over the span of like a decade. Once F13 hit, it was a steady stream of shitty body count knockoffs that were made because F13 proved that you didn't have to make a great movie (like Halloween) to be successful.

    So while it obviously can't be solely credited (after all, it was an admitted rip-off of Halloween), I think that 90% of body count films were much more inspired by F13 than Halloween...which is unfortunate.
     
  6. maybrick

    maybrick Well-Known Member

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    To a limited extent it can, but on a larger scale it can't, because the amount that it raked in was unprecedented. Nothing even remotely similar to Halloween came close to the success it had before it's release.
     
  7. Ash28M

    Ash28M Active Member

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    That's not really the point here. It's not about who copied what. The discussion in about which film was more responsible for making slashers popular. Halloween made 60 million worldwide in 1978. I just think that is plenty of money to insure copy cats being released the following year. Especially with such an low risk formula. Then came Friday the 13th and bang they are coming out every week. I remember when I was a kid Jason Voorhees was the bigger name around the school yard then Michael Myers was.
     
    Last edited: Jul 31, 2010
  8. Body Boy

    Body Boy Well-Known Member

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    Halloween certainly started the rip-off slasher trend, but I'm easily giving my vote to Friday the 13th for the boom. Slashers made between 1978 and 1980 are sort of half-slashers most of the time. Christmas Evil, Fade to Black, Schizoid, Tourist Trap, etc...

    But after 1980, the Friday Friends came out of hiding, and we got a lot more, with shoulders deep in the genre. My Bloody Valentine, The Burning, Final Exam, Hell Night, Graduation Day...
     
  9. maybrick

    maybrick Well-Known Member

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    Halloween didn't make 60 million in 78, most of that was made the following year. The reason why there were so few slashers in 1979 was that Halloween was still playing in theaters and gaining popularity and, unless a producer is throwing out a super-quickie, it generally takes from the moment of conception 6 months to a year for a film to reach theaters. So realistically speaking the Halloween clones wouldn't be appearing until 1980, which is exactly what happened.

    Also, the explanation for Jason being more popular than Michael is pretty easy to see. Jason is in more movies.
     
  10. Kim Bruun

    Kim Bruun Resident Scream Queen

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    I don't necessarily agree with this. Friday the 13th may have lifted a few elements out of A Bay of Blood, but in terms of overall structure, it owes nothing to that film and everything to Halloween.

    I think Chomp said it best:

     
    Last edited: Jul 31, 2010
  11. Ash28M

    Ash28M Active Member

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  12. maybrick

    maybrick Well-Known Member

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    imdb is wrong. It happens. It premiered in Kansas City on October 25th, played a few cities afterward and premiered Pittsburgh at the end of November. It's highly unlikely that it made $60 million in what amounts to only a month left out of the year. They are talking about first run, and it's first fun was several months to a year in length.
     
    Last edited: Jul 31, 2010
  13. Ash28M

    Ash28M Active Member

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    Even if it's first run was that long (if you have a link to that info, that would be great) It was certainty popular before the end of the year. Certainly popular enough for production companies to notice.

    Here is link to a Pauline Kael review from 1978 (a negative one at that). The point is even in this review she says. "Yet a lot of people seem to be convinced that Halloween is something special---a classic." So that pretty much tells you right there, it was getting a ton of praise that year.

    http://www.pleasence.com/halloween/H1-KAEL.HTML
     
    Last edited: Jul 31, 2010
  14. maybrick

    maybrick Well-Known Member

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    I don't have a link, no, but it seems a fairly logical conclusion to arrive at given the facts. Back in the late 70s, films (especially independently financed ones) weren't front loaded to simultaneously appear in theaters nationwide on first release. They were still using limited prints that ran on circuits and it wasn't uncommon for a film to take almost a year to arrive in a place like my old podunk hometown. Word of mouth began to spread in 78 and that's most likely what Kael talked about but a lot of others like Ebert didn't review it until 79 according to wikipedia.
     
  15. Body Boy

    Body Boy Well-Known Member

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    I hate to go against the grain, but I agree with that lady's review. People are strong in their mindset that Halloween is this perfect movie. And while it has a pretty good atmosphere thanks to the blue, and some scenes are good, she's right about everything else. Halloween has so-so acting, a very bland script, and really isn't that powerful of a film. But it has the famous Michael Myers mask so it must be an amazing film. >.>
     
  16. TheDreamMaster

    TheDreamMaster New Member

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    Considering there's 8 other films with the "famous Michael Myers mask" that don't get nearly the praise as the original, I don't think that's a fair assessment at all. The original is rightfully regarded as a classic because of something else the others don't have: John Carpenter at his finest. It's a perfect storm of atmosphere, pacing, and direction.
     
  17. wago70

    wago70 Surviving on nostalgia

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    HALLOWEEN had the most curious release back in the day. In 1978, in my hometown of Reno, that movie opened right before THANKSGIVING (and with a tiny ad!). I begged my parents to take me but they and all my relatives who were visiting laughed at the idea of a movie about Halloween being out at Thanksgiving. Needless to say we went to Roller King instead :cry:
    The movie came out at Halloween time in 1979 with a slightly larger ad and, again, I was shot down by the folks. The best ad in most of the newspapers I researched came from 1980 the weekend prior to 10/31/80. Fun stuff.
    I think 1980 release was a good year because the film was really hitting strides by then. I wish I could find one of my ads where you could see the final showing HALLOWEEN on 10/31 and then stay for the midnight showing of FRIDAY THE 13TH. Actually, I wish someone would have taken my underage self to it!
     
  18. Iron Jaiden

    Iron Jaiden New Member

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    I couldn't agree more. John Carpenter's direction and supremely effective score made the film. The man turned what would have been standard fare into a creepy masterpiece.
    I'm still of the mind that the F13 series really kick started the slasher genre but I'll also say that I'll take the original Halloween over all of the 'Friday' movies combined any day.
     
  19. DavidH

    DavidH New Member

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    This is an excellent question. I think Ash28M's initial post hit the nail on the head regarding which movie was responsible for the slasher "boom" of the early 1980s.

    HALLOWEEN inspired an initial surge in serial killer-themed films, but I don't think there would have been a "boom" without FRIDAY THE 13TH. Most of the films, especially the popular ones, from 1981 seem in my mind to take FRIDAY more as a model, films like MY BLOODY VALENTINE, NIGHT SCHOOL, GRADUATION DAY, THE BURNING, HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO ME, HELL NIGHT, THE and THE PROWLER (and probably others that I'm not thinking about). These films feature inventive kills, body counts at or more than Friday's, an increased emphasis on gore, blood, and nudity, and a plotline that involves the killer's identity being revealed in the third act.

    I also seem to remember John Carpenter saying in an interview on the HALLOWEEN dvd that he and Debra Hill realized after the success of FRIDAY THE 13TH and the growing interest in a FRIDAY PART II that they needed to make a HALLOWEEN II (I may be misremembering some of the details there).

    That clinches it for me. Without FRIDAY THE 13TH, there wouldn't have been a HALLOWEEN II and thus no boom.

    Also, when watching HALLOWEEN II, the influences of FRIDAY are pretty noticeable. Among other things, it's body count doubled from 5 to 10, it has more gore, and it has less suspense than its predecessor.

    If I were to assign percentages, I'd give HALLOWEEN 30% to FRIDAY THE 13TH's 60%. I'll give 10% to the other major slashers from 1980.
     
  20. Matt89

    Matt89 Well-Known Member

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    I don't see how this is still even an argument. VICTOR MILLER AND SEAN CUNNINGHAM HAVE ADMITTED TO RIPPING OFF HALLOWEEN. He even says in one of the interviews, "Halloween made a lot of money. Let's rip it off." CLEARLY they tried to cash in on the success of Halloween, and had Halloween not been made, Friday the 13th would probably have never happened. Also, why would a major studio like Paramount pick up and distribute a low-budget slasher like Friday the 13th? BECAUSE HALLOWEEN WAS A LOW BUDGET SLASHER THAT PROVED TO BE VERY SUCCESSFUL. Smart move for them too, since Halloween started the slasher boom.

    ~Matt
     

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