Two years ago, the independent production company Phame Factory had their Slenderman-inspired horror thriller “Flay” ready for release. Then litigation forced them to shelve the picture. Now it’s finally coming out….what’s the story here?
You know by now that the direct-to-video B-movie horror genre loves to rip off whatever movies happen to be coming out at the time. Normally, the big studios are content to let them do it. But, for some reason, not in the case of Flay. Sony had their own take on Slenderman hitting the big screen (it was just called “Slenderman”) and didn’t appreciate the “competition.”
More specifically, Sony thought they actually owned the character. This obviously wasn’t going to hold up in court as there is clear proof Slenderman is public domain — you can look up the message board thread on the website “Something Awful” where he was crowdsourced into existence. Sony threatened Phame Factory with legal action, and “Flay” writer and producer Eric Pham elected to simply shelve his film rather than fight it.
Now Sony and Phame Factory have reached a settlement, and Pham is free to release his picture. Also, Sony’s Slenderman movie came and went without a blip on the cultural radar, so Sony has no reason to care anymore.
“I’m now very happy to say that we obtained a very favorable resolution of this lawsuit and finally have the legal right to release our feature film,” says Eric Pham on behalf of Phame Factory.
Originally meant for release in 2017, “Flay” will now come out April 2, 2019.