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Writer/producer Jeff Katz discusses the Sleepaway Camp reboot

08.18.2016by: Cody Hamman

Sleepaway Camp Robert Hiltzik Felissa Rose

Back in October of 2013, it was announced that the remake rights to the 1983 cult classic slasher SLEEPAWAY CAMP had been acquired by Jeff Katz, a former New Line executive who was a force behind such films as FREDDY VS. JASON, SNAKES ON A PLANE, and SHOOT 'EM UP, as well as high profile genre projects that never made it into production like BUBBA NOSFERATU and FREDDY VS. JASON VS. ASH.

As you may recall, SLEEPAWAY CAMP centered on 

Angela, a bullied teen protagonist whose summer turns into a bloodbath when a killer begins offing campers.

At the time of the remake's announcement, it was said that Katz would be producing the new SLEEPAWAY CAMP film with the original movie's writer/director Robert Hiltzik, producer Michele Tatosian, and star Felissa Rose, with their aim being to "reboot the Sleepaway Camp mythos in a modern setting with a new film series that echoes the original's legacy and psychosexual elements".

That is the only thing we ever heard about this project, so you can be forgiven if you forgot that news ever happened. Nearly three years of silence has followed.

While making a guest appearance on Adam Green and Joe Lynch's entertainment industry podcast The Movie Crypt, Katz finally gave something of an update on the SLEEPAWAY CAMP situation, and even revealed some details on the script he has written for the film - including the fact that it's not a remake, it's a sequel to the original that also doesn't write out any of the ensuing sequels, so if you want to imagine SLEEPAWAY CAMP 2, 3, and/or RETURN TO SLEEPAWAY CAMP happened as well, you can.

The story begins with Angela (the idea being that Rose would reprise the role) having been locked up in Smith's Grove Sanitarium for years. Fans will know the name Smith's Grove is a nod to HALLOWEEN, and Katz also worked in a NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET 3 reference by saying that a Smith's Grove employee has recently transferred over from Westin Hills. Angela ends up escaping from Smith's Grove, taking a nurse hostage in the process, and seeks refuge at the camp from the 1983 film, Camp Arawak.

From there, Katz says, 

...you resolve her character while setting up the events of the new movie, which are tied directly to her and in a way which allows you to honor the original but spin off in an entirely new direction.

Katz also mentioned that his script gets "the penis thing out of the way immediately" - you'll have to be familiar with SLEEPAWAY CAMP to know what he's talking about there - and features a badass gay black man as the hero.

Katz isn't sure exactly what's going on with his take on SLEEPAWAY CAMP at the moment, but says it's set up at Radar (presumably Radar Pictures, a company that had a hand in the remakes of THE TEXAS CHAINSAW MASSACRE and THE AMITYVILLE HORROR) and they're fielding back-stop offers. When they get an offer they like, Katz expects a deal to be made and the movie to get rolling.

During this podcast conversation, Katz also assured that the AIP Cinematic Universe project announced in January of 2015 is still alive and well, despite changing companies a couple times. It's looking so good, in fact, that they're starting to plan more movies beyond the ten interconnected AIP remakes we already knew about, those being GIRLS IN PRISON, VIKING WOMEN AND THE SEA SERPENT, THE BRAIN EATERS, SHE-CREATURE, TEENAGE CAVEMAN, REFORM SCHOOL GIRLS, THE UNDEAD, WAR OF THE COLOSSAL BEAST, THE COOL AND THE CRAZY, and THE DAY THE WORLD ENDED. Phase Two of the AIPCU will begin with MOTORCYCLE GANG.

To listen to the Katz interview in full and hear a whole lot of interesting behind-the-scenes stuff about the making of some cool movies, head over to GeekNation.com and download The Movie Crypt episode #168.

Sleepaway Camp Robert Hiltzik Felissa Rose

Extra Tidbit: Would you like to see a SLEEPAWAY CAMP reboot?
Source: The Movie Crypt

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