Considering we're inundated with films about Battleships, emojis and creepy Furby's, a #documentary created from a meme is by no means the weirdest thing we will be watching in our lifetime. And that is just as well, given that #Slenderman — the meme that has been doing the rounds since 2009, and lurking in our nightmares ever since — has just landed its very own cinematic production. Yup, #HBO is serving up a big ole bowl of #Creepypasta, just like momma used to make, and bringing us an all new documentary entitled Beware the Slender Man.
Looking like the uber-creepy Gentlemen from Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Slenderman is described as a man from children's nightmares — unsurprisingly tall and skinny, he has a pale white space where his face should be and is always immaculately dressed. If you aren't scared yet, check out the trailer below:
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Life Imitating Horror
It is a harrowing tale that comes from humble beginnings: What started as a photoshop competition on the Something Awful forums (its creation attributed to Eric Knudsen, aka "Victor Surge"), the character has since turned into legend, fictional folklore, and most famously, Creepypasta fan-fiction. It is such fan-fictions that are said to have inspired a spate of Slenderman crimes, including a Wisconsin incident in which a 14-year-old set fire to the family home, and has even inspired connections to the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation suicides of 2015.
Knudsen retains the rights to the character, but says that he was shocked by Slenderman related crimes:
“I am deeply saddened by the tragedy in Wisconsin and my heart goes out to the families of those affected by this terrible act."
In the case of HBO's documentary, we will be introduced to the real-life case of two Wisconsin girls: A duo who famously lured another girl into the woods and then stabbed her 19 times as a way to honor the fictional creature. These girls are said to have been talking to not only Slenderman, but also to Lord Voldermort and one of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, before concluding that the only way to prove the existence of Slenderman was to conduct the stabbing. While the trial is ongoing, both girls were temporarily deemed mentally unstable, but will be tried as adults — facing up to 65 years in jail.
It'll Give You Nightmares
Given HBO's shock documentaries like The Jinx and 3 1/2 Minutes, Beware the Slenderman is sure to handle the source material with care. Rumored to air in 2017, the two-hour documentary not only explores the crime, but conducts interviews the families of the girls too — appealing to our True Crime obsessed generation.
Personally, I think a feature film based on the chilling man sounds like a Guillermo del Toro film waiting to happen, which is a very real possibility given a Slenderman film is reportedly in production by Screen Gems. For the meantime though, settle in for the HBO documentary, and try not to have nightmares!
If you are a glutton for horror, check out the trailer for SyFy's Creepypasta-inspired Channel Zero, and aon't forget to sound off in our poll below.
Will you be watching Beware the Slenderman?
[Source: NBC News]