I set out with my Polaroid camera to photograph and interview disappearing Hollywood—the directors, actors, special effects artists, producers, even composers, who’ve had great influence but have since fallen under the radar. This is a record and a reminder of the true soul of the movies.
*Notable stunts: Friday the 13th Part VII - X, Demolition Man, Waxwork, Ghoulies 3 *
Kane Hodder is a Hollywood stuntman who survived a major burn accident after performing his first stunt film, leaving him with scars over half of his body. That didn’t stop him from continuing his career, and he has no problem doing stunts that involve fire.
After working eleven years as a stuntman, Kane Hodder was offered the role of Jason Voorhees in Friday the 13th Part VII: The New Blood. He continued to reprise the role for the next three films. It’s not typical that a stuntman becomes a leading man in a major Hollywood picture. This alone deserves a fist in the air for the blue-collar working force of the movie industry.
Kane Hodder's home collection of Friday the 13th posters
As we stood in his movie museum, a small hallway in his house decorated with Friday the 13th posters and stunt photographs, I asked him how he got the chance to be the star.
"I'm not really afraid of much," he said. "I was working as a stuntman on a film called Prison with my friend John Carl Buechler, a very talented special effects makeup artist. When Carl got the opportunity to direct Friday the 13th Part VII, he recalled how I had eaten worms in Prison and pushed for me to play Jason."
Kane gave the role of Crystal Lake's resurrected serial killer all of his heart by adding more of a psychological edge in addition to the abilities and strength of a stuntman. He is recognized by most fans as THE Jason. We laughed when he told me, "I like to strangle my fans in the photos they take with me."
Friday the 13th Part VIII Jason Takes Manhattan 35mm print, courtesy of a local film collector
When it came time to take his Polaroid, he asked me what I thought of his shirt. He was wearing a black t-shirt with a movie title on it, one I assumed was to promote a recent production. I told him he could wear whatever he wanted for the picture.
He left, and moments later came back into the hallway wearing a new shirt, carefully pressing out any wrinkles. With the sparkle of pride in his eyes he looked at me and said, “This is my son’s college. He just accepted their offer today.” His son’s name is Jace.
Previously - Off Hollywood - Allee Willis