Whether or not they like to admit it, a good portion of the celebrities we love made their start in horror films. And thanks to series like A Nightmare on Elm Street and Halloween having more sequels than there are interesting films released every year, odds are most of those same famous folks have been in at least one. So to celebrate Friday the 13th, I have compiled a list of the best known celebrities who started off in Jason films, before they were stars!
*Note: There were a handful of lesser known, ABC Family-types that appeared across the series, but I stuck with the major players.
Friday the 13th (1980) - Kevin Bacon
Much like Johnny Depp's career-launching role in A Nightmare on Elm Street, the Baconator began his career as a camp counselor with a speedo of gold in the very first Friday the 13th film! Unlike Depp, however, it took Bacon a long time to develop a sense of humor about his contribution to this never-ending series. Hey, if you're lucky enough to have an epic death in a classic horror film and still go on to have a super-successful career? I say, consider yourself lucky K-Bac.
F13 Performance Rating: 3 1/2 Slow-Walking Slashers out of 5
Friday the 13th: The Final Chapter (1984) - Crispin Glover & Corey Feldman
Final Chapter, my aunt Fannie! This fourth entry into the series is mostly remembered for featuring a baby Corey Feldman wearing a simply atrocious skull cap to play little Tommy Jarvis, the boy who would take on Jason. But personally, I only watch The Final Chapter to see (a pre-Back to the Future) Crispin Glover dance and be the absolutely glorious weirdo that he totally is.
Here is that scene on a five-minute loop. Why? Because. THAT'S WHY!
F13 Performance Ratings:
Corey - 2 Slow-Walking Slashers out of 5
Crispin - 5 Slow-Walking Slashers out of 5
Friday the 13th Part VI: Jason Lives (1986) - Tony Goldwyn
The man who would be president (on Scandal anyway) made his feature film debut in this series entry! The actual plot of this one is kind of hilarious: Tommy Jarvis goes to a graveyard to destroy Jason's body but then accidentally brings him back to life instead... NICE GOING FELDMAN! (Yes, I know Corey didn't play him in this installment. But isn't everything just a little bit Corey Feldman's fault?) But, if we can thank Jason Lives for anything, it's bringing Tony Goldwyn into our lives, and quite possibly starting my love affair with movie villains.
He was a total hottie in Ghost. You know I'm right.
F13 Performance Rating: 4 Slow-Walking Slashers out of 5
Friday the 13th Part VIII: Jason Takes Manhattan (1989) - Kelly Hu
Ahhh, Jason Takes Manhattan: because no one would be stupid enough to send him to space for another 12 years. But on the bright side, audiences got to meet kick-ass actress Kelly Hu, who would go on to play Lady Deathstrike in X-2, China White on TV's Arrow, and a host of other badass female leads. So while her role in this dumpster fire at sea may have been less than stellar, we all have to start somewhere, right?
F13 Performance Rating: 2 1/2 Slow-Walking Slashers out of 5
Freddy vs. Jason (2003) - Jason Ritter & Evangeline Lilly
Well, this mashup of Elm Street and Crystal Lake certainly has its amusing moments, and there is always the novelty of watching Freddy and Jason kind of lamely try and kick each other's asses. But personally, the only reason I watch this movie is to see Jason Ritter at the very start of his career, when he was still all baby-faced. And believe it or not, there is even a blink-and-you'll miss it, uncredited extra appearance from Lost/The Hobbit's Evangeline Lilly! See that picture up there? That's it. You don't even have to bother looking for her now.
F13 Performance Rating:
Jason - 4 1/2 Slow-Walking Slashers out of 5
Evangeline - 1/2 Slow Walking Slasher out of 5 (it was uncredited AND she had no lines! Sorry not sorry, doll.)
So there you have it! A list of the most famous, Before They Were Stars Friday the 13th players... Did I leave off a favorite of yours? Let me know in the comments!