Welcome to Script to Pieces, a recurring feature at Wicked Horror where we look at the best, most interesting and at times most unbelievable horror movies that never happened. Sometimes these will be productions that never came together at all, other times, they will be original incarnations that were completely different from what we wound up with. Each should be fascinating in its own way, because the stories of movies that never see the light of day can sometimes be even more interesting than the stories of those that do.
Jason X is a weird entry in the Friday the 13th franchise, and not just because it takes place in space 400 years in the future. It was basically made to keep the rights in-house at New Line while they continued to develop Freddy vs. Jason. It was also made to keep Jason alive in the public consciousness, as it had been almost ten years since the release of Jason Goes to Hell.
While many fans were skeptical of the idea in the first place, Jason X had a really rough time getting put together. It was originally written for a much bigger budget than it got. Todd Farmer was forced to rewrite it to add more humor for the post-Scream climate of late ‘90s/early 2000s horror, but it would be held from release for so long that that fad would already have passed by the time it came out.
But if it had been successful, we would have seen a lot more of UberJason. Todd Farmer took to his own personal blog in 2012 to dictate what the original version of Jason X was and what the two ideas for a sequel would have been, had they been allowed to continue.
According to Farmer, the original plan was for Jason X to be much darker and take place in “a Blade Runner city.” The bulk of the movie was to take place on Earth II, but it was deemed too expensive to shoot, and therefore the action was relocated to a ship en route to Earth II.
In Farmer’s original treatment, Rowan and crew would be completely unable to kill UberJason. The only way to deal with him would be to send him back through a rift in time so that he could kill himself or even prevent himself from being born. The movie would end just as Uber goes through the rift.
The sequel to Jason X, believe it or not, would have actually taken place in the past. Farmer’s first idea was for Jason to show up at Crystal Lake in the ‘40s, where a young barely-pregnant Pamela Voorhees would have to fight off her future cybernetic son. The idea was deemed way too similar to Terminator, so it had to be scrapped.
The second idea was for UberJason to show up through the time portal right at the beginning of Jason X, arriving just as Jason wipes out the military personnel sent to prep him for transfer. It would then turn into a battle of the Jasons with the idea basically being to let them fight because if UberJason kills his past self, neither one of them is a problem anymore.
Instead, Jason actually survives the fight and kills the UberJason, which you would think would effectively wipe Jason X from continuity. But in an interesting turn of events, he is apprehended, prepped for treatment, and frozen, allowing Jason X to happen as planned.
What’s interesting about this second idea is that we at least got a version of it in comic book form. The two-issue series Friday the 13th: Jason vs. Jason X does depict a fight between UberJason and his past self. Of course, the regular Jason in this comic is actually regrown from DNA, and not technically the Jason of the past. The fight has a much different outcome in the comic, though. Jason is eviscerated by the UberJason.
Fans of Jason X need not worry that we’ll almost certainly never see any kind of sequel on the screen, though, because the film got five follow-up novels. One was a novelization of the film, then it was followed by four sequels. Some of them dealt with clones of Jason, other weird experiments with Jason’s DNA, and one even saw Jason become a computer virus.
So while none of the planned returns to Jason X ever came close to happening—although the Sci-Fi Channel showed an interest at one point—there’s still plenty of Jason X material out there if people are intrigued enough to do a little digging.