Ken Kirzinger in horror movie Freddy vs. Jason (New Line Cinema)
4. Kane Hodder was turned down playing Jason for the fifth time
The most commonly recognized actor for Jason Voorhees is definitely Kane Hodder. Lots of other actors have played the mama’s boy from Crystal Lake, sure. But Hodder plays him for four straight films in the series, more than any other. By the time Freddy vs. Jason came out, Hodder was as linked to the character as Robert Englund was to Freddy.
When Freddy vs. Jason entered preproduction, Hodder volunteered to play the masked maniac once again. It made perfect sense, as he had pretty much become the character by this point. But ultimately, New Line turned down using Hodder for the film, giving the stock answer that he was “too short”. I wonder if Hodder felt the same way Bart Simpson did when he missed out on playing Fallout Boy for the same reason.
Director Ronny Yu wanted someone taller, to give the “David and Goliath” feeling between Freddy and Jason. Ken Kirzinger, a tall stuntman, was then brought in to play Jason. Sure, Mr. Voorhees keeps his face obscured with a hockey mask. Still, longtime Friday the 13th fans could still tell the difference. For many, it didn’t feel like the real Jason.