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New Line Cinema
LeBron, is that you under there?
SLASHING TO THE BASKET

LeBron James is so obsessed with “Friday the 13th” that he’s rebooting the horror movie himself

By Adam Epstein

Nobody loves anything as much as the NBA superstar LeBron James loves a fictional undead killer in a hockey mask.

The basketball player’s affection for Jason Voorhees, the campy bogeyman of the Friday the 13th horror franchise, is well-documented. In 2010, years before his move to the Los Angeles Lakers confirmed his status as a bona fide Hollywood mogul, James tweeted that Voorhees was one of his favorites. “Still don’t understand how he caught people running and he just walked though,” he added.

Then, in 2013, James posted an Instagram of himself driving a car while wearing Voorhees’ infamous hockey goalie mask. “Riding around masked up! Hahaha,” the NBA player wrote. “S/O [shoutout] Jason Voorhees.”

As if James’ obsession wasn’t already clear enough, in 2015 he launched a Friday the 13th line of Nike shoes, complete with fake blood spatter and a red Nike swoosh to honor the slasher film series.

The next logical step in James’ fandom, of course, is to make his own Friday the 13th movie. So that’s exactly what he’s doing. James’ production company, SpringHill Entertainment, is co-producing a reboot of the slasher flick, the horror news site Bloody Disgusting reports.

The franchise, introduced in 1980, focused on Voorhees, who as a boy drowned in a lake at his summer camp and later came back to life to stalk and kill anyone in his path. SpringHill, which is also producing a reboot of the cult basketball movie Space Jam, will work with Victor Miller, the screenwriter of the first Friday the 13th movie and the creator of the Voorhees character, after he regained the rights to the story following a long legal battle.

It’s excellent timing, following the massive box office success of Halloween, the direct sequel to John Carpenter’s 1978 slasher film of the same name. In fact, the original Friday the 13th was created in part to milk the success of the original Halloween. Now LeBron’s reboot is doing the same, four decades later.

And it probably won’t be the only one. The success of the Halloween reboot is so undeniable that Hollywood executives are surely scrambling to bring back other slasher franchises, including A Nightmare on Elm Street, the film that debuted a few years after Friday the 13th with an undead killer of its own, Freddy Krueger. (A crossover film, titled Freddy vs. Jason, was released to poor reviews in 2003.)

With this new Friday the 13th movie, we know that at the very least, the franchise is in the hands of someone who cares deeply about the material. Perhaps he’ll play Voorhees himself. After all, James is a very experienced slasher in his own right.