Friday the 13th … Finally … Some Lost Footage Restored

For us, the fans of the Friday the 13th franchise it has long been a wet dreams to get these early movies completely uncut. But it has felt like you might as well forget about it, since according to all ”experts” it has been thrown away a long time ago and could not be found anywhere. Then Samuelsons Studios suddenly anounced a couple of days ago that the footage, and we are talking about several minutes have been found and will be restored for Friday the 13th Part II on the upcoming boxset from Scream Factory (Read about it further down). I read about the Scream Factorys release several months ago but ignored it since I was sure it was going to be the same old in a new package, but after reading this I will order it at once.

CUT/UNCUT STATUS

Friday the 13th (1980)
There are three different cuts available,
(1.) R-rated US theatrical version. 
(2.) Unrated international theatrical version. 
(3.) Hybrid cut which contains some of the edited material restored. It contains a longer version of Annie’s death, but an edited version of Mrs. Voorhee’s decapitation

Friday the 13th II (1981)
All versions are of the R-rated US theatrical cut. The following scenes were cut from the film in order to avoid an “X” rating from the MPAA: 
(1.) A close-up shot of Jeff and Sandra being double-impaled while having sex on the bed. 
(2.) A close up shot of Crazy Ralph and the wire cutting. 
(3.) A scene at the very end where we are shown the inside Jason’s shack and see Pamela’s face. While there, her eyes open. It was cut by Paramount for looking too fake. 
(4.) A facing shot of Mark’s face being split by the machete. 
(5.) Blood was trimmed from the shot of Jason driving the hammer in the cop’s head. 
(6.) The flashback footage showing Mrs. Voorhees decapitation was trimmed. 
(7.) Blood flow was cut from the shot of Jason driving an icepick into Alice’s head. 
(8.) Additional blood flow was cut from the shot of Jason slicing Scott’s throat. 
(9.) Originally, the sex scene between Sandra and Jeff was longer and it included full frontal nudity from actress Marta Kober but when Paramount studio discovered that she was underage the scene was deleted completely. 

Friday the 13th 3-D (1982)
All versions on DVD and Blu-ray are of the R-rated US theatrical release. The following scenes were cut to avoid an “X” rating from the MPAA: 
(1.) The death scene of Andy showed his right leg and stomach being cut apart. 
(2.) Vera’s death was longer, it included more blood and a shot of her reaction. It was cut because the board said that it looked too real. 
(3.) Edna’s death was cut of excess blood. 
(4.) The impaling of Chili with the hot poker was cut. Originally, the impalement was shown, along with a splash of smoldering blood. 
(5.) Debbie’s death originally showed blood spraying across her upper half and face.

Friday the 13th IV (1984)
Some material was cut from the film before the theatrical release, in order to avoid an “X-Rating” in the US. This missing footage is not restored to any new print yet.

Friday the 13th V: A New Beginning (1985)
Some material was cut from the film before the theatrical release, in order to avoid an “X-Rating” in the US. This missing footage is not restored to any new print yet.

Friday the 13th VI (1986)
Some material was cut from the film before the theatrical release, in order to avoid an “X-Rating” in the US. This missing footage is not restored to any new print yet.

Friday the 13th VII: The New Blood (1987)
Some material were cut from the film before the theatrical release, in order to avoid an “X”-rating in the US. Some of the cut footage is presented as deleted scenes in the R1 UE, and even more footage on the R1 Deluxe Edition.

Friday the 13th VIII: Jason Takes Manhattan (1989)
Some material were cut from the film before the theatrical release, in order to avoid an “X”-rating in the US. The cut footage is presented as deleted scenes on the R1 Deluxe Edition.

Jason Goes to Hell: The Final Friday (1993)
Two versions of this film exist, but for some reason only the theatrical cut is released o
(1.) The theatrical cut (88 minutes). 
(2.) The unrated cut (91 minutes).

Jason X (2000)
No cuts.

Freddie vs. Jason (2003)
No cuts.

Friday the 13th (2009)
The following versions of the movie are known: 
– The original Theatrical version (~97min), 
– The Killer cut (~107min). 

Source for the cut status are the brilliant website DVD compare.

SAMUELSON STUDIOS PRESSRELEASE:

The upcoming FRIDAY THE 13 boxed set from Scream Factory will include the uncut footage from Part 2. How it was found after being lost for almost 40 years is a great story! As many fans of the series know, several minutes were trimmed because of a crackdown by the MPAA on slasher movies. A few stills have surfaced over the years that gave a hint to what was missing, but despite many efforts over the years to find the footage, it was believed to have been lost or destroyed.

While prepping to shoot an interview with Bill Randolph for Part 2, I decided to re-watch the CRYSTAL LAKE MEMORIES documentary in order to avoid repeating stories that have already been discussed in depth for years. As expected, there was talk about the footage that was shot, but not included in the final cut due to ratings board. Greg Nicotero mentions that FX artist Carl Fullerton showed him the footage in question. I wondered if anyone had reached out to Fullerton to see if he may still have the scenes that the fans have been dying to see for years. Bill Randolph (who wanted to see his scene as much as anyone else did) and I reached out to Fullerton to see if he still had it. We left a few voicemails and hoped for the best. With less than two weeks before our deadline, I received a call from Carl saying he had a VHS tape with all the material that was trimmed. However, he couldn’t remember exactly what was on it, but was kind enough to loan it to us for inclusion on the set.

Because I was terrified that if it was shipped via postal mail, it might get lost in transit, so I made arrangements to get the tape in person through my co-producer and pal, Peter Bracke. I joked with Peter that I should have gotten him a suitcase with handcuffs and a bodyguard as this most likely was the only copy in existence. Peter met up with Carl, who handed him the old cassette with a typewritten date of April 24, 1981 — about a month before the film opened in theaters! What could be on the tape?

Now came the fun part, seeing if the tape was still viewable after all of these years. It’s possible because of its age, it could have been blank or no longer viewable. We wouldn’t ’t know until we got it transferred. Shout Factory’s Cliff MacMillan made arrangements to get it transferred at a top-notch facility. However, there was an issue: the lab indicated that the tape was stuck together. If pulled apart, the magnetic information could be stripped, which would mean that we would lose everything. The only solution: baking the tape in an oven overnight to separate the reels. The VHS would have to be taken apart, the reels would have placed into an oven and baked overnight to in order to make it playable. After waiting almost 40 years for this footage, we would have to wait another couple of days to see if “Operation: Baking With Jason “ was successful. So after the careful dismantling and baking operation, the tape was then put back into the cartridge so it could be transferred to a digital format.

Now for the moment of truth — what’s on the tape and is it watchable? Eureka! “It’s alive!” After hearing so much about this footage over the years, I was astonished when viewing the contents for the first time. It appears that Fullerton knew the film was going to be trimmed, so he asked the editor to assemble the trims, and make a copy so he would have a them for his portfolio. The first thing you notice is that nearly every death is considerably longer! There are also few scenes that I didn’t even realize that were that trimmed, ie, Adrienne King’s death.

Even more surprising was the quality. At nearly four decades old, the tape gave me cause to worry, but what I discovered was that the older vintage of the tape actually worked in everyone’s favor. The VHS cassettes used back in the day were of a much higher quality than the ones used a few years later. In fact, I was surprised at how good the image quality was, especially considering the source.

I must have watched the footage found ten times, as I was in utter disbelief that I was finally seeing this material that was considered forever lost. Viewing it confirmed that it was no longer lost, but found. I want to thank Carl Fullerton for going the extra mile to get us the tape; Bill Randolph for reaching out to Carl; my co-producer, Peter Bracke for transporting the holy grail; and to Shout Factory’s Cliff MacMillan and Jeff Nelson for keeping the faith. Every Friday the 13th fan owes them a big round of applause and their eternal gratitude.

Edwin Samuelson
Director/Producer
Samuelson Studios

Please be sure to like the Samuelson Studios page: https://www.facebook.com/samuelsonstudios

For more information on the process of tape baking: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sticky-shed_syndrome

There are a lot of these boxset update videos on YouTube, but I included this one here.

READ MORE:
Bloody Dusgustings 13 fun facts about Friday the 13th Part II
Scream Factory information on the boxset

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