When it comes to the many highly anticipated video game movies and TV shows, Five Nights At Freddy's ranks high for many gaming fans. Now, the video game movie adaptation has finally hit the 2023 movie schedule. Directed by Emma Tammi, the horror movie brings the beloved franchise to the big screen after nearly a decade of development hell. However, the decision to make the film PG-13 has sparked much debate among fans who wondered if there might be an R-rated version in the works. Tammi has since spoken out, shedding light on the reasoning behind the PG-13 rating and addressing hopes for an R-rated cut.
The filmmaker spoke with Forbes and explained her thoughts behind the film's PG-13 rating. She acknowledged that there was a desire among some fans for an R-rated iteration, given the dark and gruesome nature of the game. In her own words:
We knew that some of the fan base would want an R-rated version of this film. On the one level, we wanted to be inclusive of the younger audiences and knew we were going to hit the PG 13 rating, but for the audience that also wanted that level of violence, if you will, or at least insinuation of violence, we really wanted to still include elements that felt dark. Of course, there are a lot of dark elements to see in the lore, but in terms of some of the kills and everything, it was just all execution dependent. We really wanted to ensure that we were showing the right amount and doing creative things to insinuate what was happening or show what was happening without fully seeing it to still fit in that PG-13 category.
The co-writer and director's thriller draws inspiration from Scott Cawthon's popular video game series, which is set within a dilapidated family entertainment center haunted by endearingly cute yet vengeful animatronic creatures. While Freddy Fazbear, Bonnie, Chica, Foxy, and Mr. Cupcake take the spotlight in this new Blumhouse horror movie, the cast of human actors also shines with their exceptional talent and star power.
Emma Tammi's comments emphasize the delicate balancing act the filmmakers faced, striving to appeal to younger fans and some of the core fanbase who have grown with the franchise and may be looking for a darker, more gruesome experience. The Five Nights At Freddy's lore is rife with disturbing and sinister elements, making it challenging to adapt to a PG-13 rating without losing the essence of the game.
The Into the Dark veteran director further acknowledged the persistent hopes for an R-rated cut of the flick, putting the matter to rest by stating that fans should not expect such a version. She expressed her satisfaction with how the PG-13 rating aligns with the film's overall tone and themes:
I would say not to expect an R-rated version on this one. We're really happy with how the PG-13 tone landed; it felt like the right fit for this particular film. We're sticking by it.
With the director's clear stance on the film's rating, it seems the producers have made a deliberate choice to maintain the balance between accessibility and darkness, ensuring that the FNAF film remains, much like the game it is based on, a thrilling and eerie experience for a wide range of audiences. While some may have hoped for a more mature adaptation of the game, it's evident that the director and the creative team behind the film have worked diligently to stay faithful to the source material while accommodating a PG-13 audience.
Thus far, Five Nights at Freddy's has received less than stellar reviews. However, it is also accessible for home viewing via a Peacock subscription so that you can decide for yourself. After enjoying this movie, keep an eye out for other upcoming horror films and TV shows that could infuse your Halloween with a dose of delightful madness.