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Friday the 13th: The Game and the Lawsuit 


David Mudd

Friday the 13 is one of the coolest video games that took inspiration from the original movie of the same name and another horror flick classic called Halloween. Before we get to the recent updates regarding this game and its prospects, let’s just take a quick look at facts as to why video games are based on horror movies. Friday the 13th: The Game and the Lawsuit is a very controversial topic!

Horror movies are a pretty popular type, especially if you have a thing for gruesome and gory deaths, violent killings and psycho murderers. But if you are a hardcore fan and live for murder movies and horror stuff, well there are many ways to get your horror fix. One of the most popular ways to connect with your favourite horror movie character is through video games. 

Video games and horror movies were fated to complement one another. This tradition of video games inspired by horror flicks is anything but new. The horror movies, which mainly inspire survival horror video games, have been a part of this joint venture since the early 80s. Sweet home is perhaps the earliest example of a horror slasher video game. Later on, it gained so much popularity the video games franchise would often base their game — the design on the licensed adaptation of horror movies. Halloween Texas Chainsaw Massacre, along with Friday the 13 th are some examples of this movie turned fame example. 

Among the above-mentioned series Friday the 13 is probably one of the most played ones. The game succeeded in making the gamers completely engaged in the game plot. Like a typical horror survival game, this one capitalized on making the participants less in control and rendering them more exposed to a cruel death. This feeling of fear and anxiety were deeply realized by the gamers and it kept getting updates, along with its increased popularity.  

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The doom of Lawsuits at Friday the 13th: The Game

Despite being very popular, Friday the 13 the game has been facing troubles for a long time. The legal battle between the director Sean Cunningham and Screenplay writer Victor Miller has caused the further enhanced new installments of the game to come to a stop. 

The lawsuit is pretty complicated. Sean Cunningham, the director clashed with the original writer of the movie Victor Miller over copyright infringement issues. Miller has stated that he had written the screenplay of the movie as an independent creator — and wants his rights given back to him. Cunningham on the other hand declared that Miller had worked on the project as a hired employee of the Production house and has no original right over his creation. Now, U.S .law states 

“Termination of the grant may be effected at any time during five years beginning at the end of thirty-five years from the date of execution of the grant; or, if the grant covers the right of publication of the work, the period begins at the end of thirty-five years from the date of publication of the work under the grantor at the end of forty years from the date of execution of the grant, whichever term ends earlier. “     —-SECTION 17 U.S.C. 203

This is the law based on which Miller has applied to the court to gain back his ownership rights. This seems to be quite a long legal battle. Not to mention, the covid– 19 pandemic has disrupted the court processes worldwide and the US too suffers the consequence, for being one of the worst-hit countries. Apart from this, One of the 3 judges, who were overseeing this issue, Judge Winter, passed away in 2020. This is adding to the delay of the final verdict of the Court. 

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What does this mean for Friday the 13th: The Game and the Lawsuit? 

the characters of friday the 13th
Featuring the characters of the horror game – Friday the 13th

In simple words, there will be no new version of the game on Friday the 13th. As the game was released before the suit, the old version of the game can still be played with necessary patches but new installments will be made available until and unless the court solves this matter of conflict between Cunningham and Miller. 

If this was not enough to stop the Movie franchise, there is another lawsuit that makes it all the more intriguing adventurous journey. Cunningham, the director, has filed another suit, claiming that Paramount Pictures and Warner Bros. resorted to Hollywood Accounting. That is to say, in layman’s terms, Cunningham has accused these Production giants of cheating him out of money regarding the licensing of Friday the 13 thin 2009.  Cunningham has also said how the producers showed him a misguided flow of money which led to his financial loss. 

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It’s all up to the fans now – Friday the 13th: The Game and the Lawsuit 

a glimpse from the controversial friday the 13th: the game and the lawsuit 
Featuring a still from Friday the 13th: The Game

No game is ever a successful launch without its audience. Friday the 13th gained instant fame because it successfully erased the difference between screen and reality. By taking away the sense of control over one’s fate the game hit a nerve with the hardcore fans of the genre. Now only a strong audience demand can perhaps draw the matter out of litigation — quagmire and new ventures can find hope. 


It’s going to be pretty difficult for the fans to believe that it’s finally over. There will be no more surreal experience of playing a new version of Friday the 13th. But to be honest, chances are, parties concerning this lawsuit will not go for an out of court fair settlement and this is going to be a long, tedious and exhausting battle that will just keep on trudging.  

So fans, sorry to break your hearts. At this point, it’s only you who can make a difference by constantly urging them to reconsider the matter. Hopefully, you will succeed and killer Jason will be back to haunt us with his creatively gruesome freaky death traps.