Soon we celebrate Friday the 13th … again, or specifically, Friday November 13th which is our second this year! For horror fans Friday the 13th dates on the calendar mark the greatest excuse to Netflix and chill, while rewinding some of the greatest slasher movies of all time.
When you think of the evil villain serial killer who stalks morally bankrupt camp counselors, it’s hard to believe that Jason Voorhees kept us captivated for 12 movies. We still think that there is one more epic 13th movie left in the franchise, because that number would make sense, right?
If you are a fan of the Friday the 13th movie franchise, and you are planning on ordering some pizza and binge watching as many movies as possible this evening, we’ve got some fun facts and lore about the storyline that you may find pretty cool.
The Reverence of Friday the 13th in Homage to the Female Goddess (And How That Got Changed)
Throughout ancient history, both the day ‘Friday’ and the number ‘13’ were held in sacred esteem and were strongly associated with the Great Goddesses, and with the power of the feminine energy. There are roughly 13 menstrual cycles in a year for women, and it is the number of lunar potencies (told you about the moon tonight) blood and fertility.
The number 13 was always a lucky number. Sanctified in Ancient Israel, and the number of spiritual strength and renewal for Pre-Columbian Mayans. In the Wiccan faith, a powerful gathering of a coven is 13 members and for the ancient Egyptians, the very last phase or cycle of life on this planet ended at 12, and the afterlife began on the 13th. The number was also representative of the Goddess Shekinah, the yin to the yang of the duality of the supreme God. In the Islamic faith, Friday is the Sabbath.
The attribution of both Friday and the 13th day were so tied to mystical strengths and powers, that when matriarchal societies were suppressed by patriarchal morals and laws, they flipped the switch. The day became “evil” or a day of activity but unrest, and less spiritual significance. And the number 13? It became a superstitious magnet for misfortune and bad luck.
Was the movie Friday the 13th written to acknowledge the power and significance of the feminine Goddess, rage, and retribution? More specifically, was it a nod to Jason’s mother (who dies at the end of the first film?)
When we consider the epic history and characterization of Jason Voorhees, he ends up being a rather complex villain (for a guy who never spoke a word). One thing is clear; that big guy loved his Mom, because witnessing her death spurred another 11 movies about vengeance to restore the only woman that actually meant anything to Jason at all. Talk about a “Mommy Dearest” complex tantamount to Norman Bates.
Was the first movie ever supposed to be about Jason? Or was it ‘taking Friday the 13th back’ for the Goddess? It’s a head scratcher… you tell us what you think. Betsy Palmer was pretty darned terrifying with her mom hair helmet, fisherman’s sweater, and incredible machete skills. You could definitely tell she worked in the camp kitchen.
13 Fun Facts About The Friday the 13th Original Film You May Not Know
For diehard Jason Voorhees fans, we’ve dug deep and hard for some interesting facts (that everyone else isn’t sharing a blog post to celebrate today). If you have something to add to our list, don’t forget to leave us a comment below.
- Frank Mancuso Jr. was the producer of the original 1978 version of ‘Halloween’ and its success was the inspiration to write and produce Friday the 13th. Both franchises grossed over $529 million dollars in box-office receipts by 2018.
- The highest grossing single film in the Friday the 13th series had a co-star. A five-razor fingered co-star and an epic duel to the death (again) for both Jason Voorhees and Freddy Kreuger. Released in 2003, Freddy vs. Jason grossed $114.9 million dollars.
- The 2009 remake of the original Friday the 13th was the second highest grossing film in the series, with earnings of $92.67 million dollars.
- The original mask for Jason was supposed to be an umpire’s mask. Totally less scary than a white hockey mask. We’re glad they made the switch.
- The famous “ki ki ki… ma ma ma” sound effect that accompanied Jason, was composed by Harry Manfredini, to imitate a young Jason encouraging his mother to “kill kill kill, ma ma ma”.
- Jason racked a body count of 167 victims over the course of 12 movies. Which didn’t include Freddy Kreuger because Freddy is no one’s victim.
- Its cheaper budget wise if the masked killer doesn’t return for the next movie. It’s all about keeping production costs low, so Jason Voorhees has actually been played by 13 different actors.
- Camp Crystal Lake was actually New Jersey Camp No-Be-Bo-Sco. It used to sell memorabilia from the original movie, but now the most exciting thing on the website are Boy Scout Badges. They do sell special Halloween event tours for fans and camp fundraising.
- The ‘Goody Two Shoes’ guy next door character Bill? He was the real-life son of Hollywood legend Bing Cosby.
- Filming for the movie lasted only 28 days. Victor Miller wrote the script in two weeks.
- Kevin Bacon agreed to shave his armpits for the bunk murder scene.
- The full body count in the original movie was 11. Including the unlucky snake.
- Gene Siskel (yep, Siskel and Ebert) gave Friday the 13th zero stars. Not only that, but he was a Broadway fan of Betsy Palmer, and gave the audience her personal address, and told them to write her letters in protest for the exploitation of her theater talent in the movie.
Happy Friday the 13th from all of us at Puzzle Box Horror. If you have some fun fan facts to share, hit us up in the comment section or on social. We love it when you banter with us on horror and paranormal movie fandom.