The creators of the Friday the 13th fan film Never Hike Alone are teasing new sequels with Thom Mathews as Tommy Jarvis. Mathews famously portrayed the character in Friday the 13th Part VI: Jason Lives, which is considered to be one of the best installments of the series. He reprised the role in Never Hike Alone when the fan film debuted on YouTube in 2017, meeting his old nemesis Jason Voorhees once again. The ending left room for a sequel, leading to fans hoping for an official follow-up movie to continue the story. On Monday, the Womp Stomp Films Twitter account tweeted that they are going to bring back Mathews for more fan films, with more news on the next installment to come in a few months.
"To hell with the lawsuit, who's ready for the Friday the 13th show down of the century? Ghost Jason vs Tommy Jarvis will happen in the Never Hike Alone sequels! Official Announcement coming this fall!"
Funded entirely by Friday the 13th fans, Never Hike Alone is one of the most popular fan films to be found on the internet. The 53-minute movie has accumulated over 855,000 views as of this writing, and its reception with viewers has been overwhelmingly positive. It stars director Vincente DiSanti as Jason Voorhees and Andrew Leighty as Kyle MacLeod, an outdoorsman who foolishly makes the decision to venture into the abandoned Crystal Lake campgrounds. His adventure turns into a harrowing fight for survival against the the unstoppable force that is Jason Voorhees. By featuring Thom Mathews as Tommy Jarvis in a special cameo appearance, the movie can be considered a sequel to Jason Lives, even if it's not an "official" movie.
As for why we haven't seen Jason Voorhees in theaters since 2009, it comes down to a never-ending legal battle over the property rights. Original director Sean Cunningham sued screenwriter Victor Miller to retain complete control of the franchise rights with the company Horror Inc., and a recent appeal will drag that process out even longer. With the rights to the series still under question legally, no studio will move forward on trying to produce a new Friday the 13th movie. Perhaps disheartened by the lack of progress being made towards a resolution, Womp Stomp Films chose a good time to announce their intentions on making new fan films. Clearly, passion projects like Never Hike Alone are going to be the closest we're going to get to a new Jason movie.
In addition to starring in Never Hike Alone, Vincente DiSanti and Andrew Leighty will also appear in the meta-slasher movie 13 Fanboy. Many various stars of the Friday the 13th series will be playing themselves in the movie, with an obsessed psychopath murdering each of them one by one. The movie is directed by Friday the 13th Part V: A New Beginning star Deborah Voorhees, and other fan favorites from the franchise like Kane Hodder, Corey Feldman, C. J. Graham, and Adrienne King have also been attached to the cast. Thom Mathews, who appeared in both Jason Lives and Never Hike Alone, will be playing himself in the movie as well.
We might have to wait until this fall to find out full details on Womp Stomp Films' plans for the next Never Hike Alone movie. Given Mathews' involvement and the quality of the original, it's needless to say there's going to be a lot of anticipation from Jason fans for its release. If you have yet to watch the first movie, you can do so below, courtesy of Womp Stomp Films.