Black Christmas remake co-writer comments on PG-13 rating

Last Updated on July 30, 2021

Yesterday, a lot of slasher fans were disappointed to hear that Blumhouse's upcoming remake of the 1974 classic BLACK CHRISTMAS won't be rated R. The film has earned a PG-13 for "violence, terror, thematic content involving sexual assault, language, sexual material and drinking." This was another strike against a movie that's already fighting an uphill battle due to overly spoilery marketing materials.

Seeing that the horror community was talking a lot about the PG-13, the film's co-writer April Wolfe took to her Twitter account to explain how the film ended up with that rating: 

Here’s the deal: We wrote it with an R in mind. When they did the test screenings, was clear that this movie needed to be available to a younger female audience because the subject matter is timely. Also I want to indoctrinate girls into horror. Doesn’t make it any less vicious!

As for the subject matter Wolfe is speaking of, I'm guessing the "sexual assault" mentioned in the reasons for the rating is a big part of it. Earlier this year, director Sophia Takal told Entertainment Weekly, "The original BLACK CHRISTMAS feels so contemporary and modern for the time. I wanted to make something that reflected our time right now. For me, it was about, What does it feel like to be a woman in 2019?" That indicates the film could be delving into #MeToo issues. I know I got creeper vibes from the guy hanging around with the girls in "sexy Santa" outfits in the spoilery trailer.

Of course, the filmmakers probably also want younger girls to see the sequence where the sorority sisters in the film become weapon-toting badasses and fight back against their attackers.

The new BLACK CHRISTMAS stars Imogen Poots, Aleyse Shannon, Lily Donoghue, Brittany O'Grady, Caleb Eberhardt, Simon Mead, and Cary Elwes. It has the following synopsis: 

Just in time for the holidays comes a timely take on a cult horror classic as a campus killer comes to face a formidable group of friends in sisterhood.
Hawthorne College is quieting down for the holidays. But as Riley Stone (Imogen Poots, Green Room) and her Mu Kappa Epsilon sisters – athlete Marty (Lily Donoghue, The CW's Jane the Virgin), rebel Kris (Aleyse Shannon, The CW's Charmed), and foodie Jesse (Brittany O'Grady, Fox's Star) – prepare to deck the halls with a series of seasonal parties, a black-masked stalker begins killing sorority women one by one. 
As the body count rises, Riley and her squad start to question whether they can trust any man, including Marty's beta-male boyfriend, Nate (Simon Mead, Same But Different: A True New Zealand Love Story), Riley's new crush Landon (Caleb Eberhardt, Amazon's Mozart in the Jungle) or even esteemed classics instructor Professor Gelson (Cary Elwes). 
Whoever the killer is, he's about to discover that this generation's young women aren't about to be anybody's victims.

I'm not too upset about the rating. In terms of violence, I think the original BLACK CHRISTMAS could get a PG-13 rating today, it's the language that pushes that film into R. We're just going into this new version of BLACK CHRISTMAS knowing it will be lacking the obscene phone calls of the original and the bloody deaths of the 2006 remake.

The third take on BLACK CHRISTMAS is set to reach theatres on December 13th.

Source: Twitter,

About the Author

Cody is a news editor and film critic, focused on the horror arm of, and writes scripts for videos that are released through the JoBlo Originals and JoBlo Horror Originals YouTube channels. In his spare time, he's a globe-trotting digital nomad, runs a personal blog called Life Between Frames, and writes novels and screenplays.