David Bruckner Doesn't See A 'Way Back Into' The Friday The 13th Franchise

Director David Bruckner is on a roll. After helming the critically lauded haunter "Night House," starring the spectacular Rebecca Hall as a widow discovering a dark secret, Bruckner is currently enjoying the overwhelmingly positive reviews for "Hellraiser" on Hulu, his re-introduction to Clive Barker's perversely alluring universe. With the newly announced "V/H/S/85," he's also returning to the found footage anthology franchise that helped make him a writer and director to watch. After the success of the first "V/H/S" in 2012, Bruckner was approached by Paramount with the edict of creating a new "Friday the 13th" movie that embraced the found footage trope. 

With the help of Richard Naing and Ian Goldberg, all three writers crafted a version of Jason Voorhees that could possibly exist within a single perspective narrative. That proved difficult, considering the slasher formula has to heavily rely on multiple characters running off and generally doing stupid, overtly sexual things that get them killed. As originally reported by Fangoria, Bruckner and company worked within those confines to construct a "Friday the 13th" film that played more like a straightforward monster movie. 

During the recent whirlwind press tour for "Hellraiser," Bruckner was asked if he would ever want to return to the series and attempt to resurrect yet another beloved franchise. He told ComicBookResources that, "personally, it would be hard to find my way back into that now."

Jason is still on the sidelines

In the interview with our friend Patrick Cavanaugh, Bruckner looked back fondly on the chance to resurrect Jason:

"It's like the actor's approach to an audition, you have to just walk away at a certain point and put it behind you. Also, I spent a lot of time there. I worked with some wonderful writers, I think, and I've changed. Those ideas aren't interesting to me quite the same way they were with the work we did in particular, but I'm a fan of the franchise."

It must seem like a lifetime ago to Bruckner, who worked on developing a new "Friday the 13th" back in 2014 and 2015. There is a great deal more depth to him as a storyteller and filmmaker at this point, making it more unlikely that he would ever want to help create another kill spree at Camp Blood. He offered some insight into the challenge of working with such an established property, adding, "I think if you're working on IP, whether it be 'Hellraiser' or 'Friday the 13th,' this doesn't belong to me, it belongs to everybody." 

And Bruckner is well aware that the buck doesn't stop with him: 

"There will be others, there will be other Friday the 13th films. They will figure it out, the IP is too valuable. The fans want it too much."

Where Jason could go next

With a potential end in sight to the seemingly endless legal entanglements in the "Friday the 13th" court case, there may actually be a new film on the horizon. On a positive note, the creatives over at Paramount have moved on from a potential found footage movie that may have followed a documentarian or amateur filmmaker obsessed with the Crystal Lake murders (that would be my guess, anyway). There would have to be multiple cameras for that to work and Jason would have to do some POV shots of his own, which may prove difficult when he's also carrying a machete. 

Once the found footage idea was abandoned, Bruckner had a much more exciting take. "I wanted to do "Dazed and Confused" meets Jason Voorhees, a genuine last-day-of-school coming-of-age story," as originally reported by Fangoria. The premise of an '80s-era hangout movie that's suddenly interrupted by Jason sounds like a fantastic setup for a story. Set it in the pouring rain or during the dead of winter for an entirely new change of scenery. There could also be real character development instead of the usual generic kids that mainly exist to pose, flex, and die, in that order.

If "Friday the 13th" fans are lucky, they may finally be getting another entry sooner rather than later. Bruckner is definitely still one of those fans, telling CBR, "I'll be the first person in [the] theater to figure out what they did."