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Friday the 13th Details


One of the longest-running horror film series began with this gory shocker from director Sean S. Cunningham, who had previously produced Wes Craven's classic Wes Craven. Entrepreneur Steve Christie (Peter Brouwer) re-opens Camp Crystal Lake after many years during which it has been cursed by murders and bad luck. The young and nubile counselors all begin to die extremely bloody deaths at the hands of an unseen killer during a rainstorm which isolates the camp. A woman is chopped in the face with an axe, another has her throat sliced in amazingly gruesome fashion, a male counselor (Harry Crosby) is pinned to a door with arrows, and a young Kevin Bacon has an arrow shoved through his throat from below a bed. Victor Miller's script is not particularly impressive, but Cunningham's tense direction, and some remarkable special-effects by acclaimed makeup artist Tom Savini are enough to make it worthwhile. 1950s quiz show regular Betsy Palmer appears as the cook whose son, Jason (Ari Lehman), drowned 25 years earlier while neglected by romancing counselors. Palmer was reportedly cast because she was willing to drive her own car to and from the set. Trivia buffs should note the decapitation scene near the end, in which the female killer exhibits rather hirsute hands clutching at the air. The hands belong to Savini's assistant, Taso N. Stavrakis. Friday the 13th made nearly 40 million dollars at the box office and spawned numerous sequels. ~ Robert Firsching, Rovi

  • Release date:May 9, 1980


Betsy Palmer
as Mrs. Voorhees
Adrienne King
as Alice
Harry Crosby
as Bill
Laurie Bartram
as Brenda
Robbi Morgan
as Annie
Jeannine Taylor
as Marcie
Kevin Bacon
as Jack
Ari Lehman
as Jason
Rex Everhart
as Truck Driver
Ronn Carroll
as Sgt. Tierney
Ron Millkie
as Dorf
Walter Gorney
as Crazy Ralph
Rex Everhart
as Truck Driver
Ronn Carroll
as Sgt. Tierney
Ron Millkie
as Dorf


Sean S. Cunningham
Sean S. Cunningham
Ron Kurz
Barry Abrams
Harry Manfredini
Composer (Music Score)
Bill Freda
Joel Goodman
Virginia Field
Art Director
Steve Miner
Associate Producer
Alvin Geiler
Executive Producer
Tom Savini
Tom Savini
Makeup Special Effects