Ari Lehman (Jason Voorhees - Friday the 13th)

Ari Lehman has the distinct honour of being the first ever actor to play the role of the iconic-pyscho-madman-killer Jason Voorhees. Well...before he became *that guy*, but nonetheless Ari played a pivotal role in the Friday the 13th saga...the original "little" Jason...enjoy!

Ari lehman as Jason Voorhees

1: You gave me a fear of the lake, canoes, and aquatic evil children...I was quite traumatized for several years after watching the end of Friday the 13th. How does that make you feel?
Hey John, I want to say Hi and Thanks to you, and all the Pit of Horror.com members. The answer to your first question is "Great!" If the special effects designed and created by Tom Savini scared your socks off, then their intended goal was fulfilled, and the whole team was successful. Of course, I truly hope that people will not develop an overwhelming fear of swimmming in lakes and ponds, but instead, that they appreciate the underlying "Water Safety" message. Weren't we all taught the "Buddy System" when we were kids? I mean, after all, WHERE WAS JASON'S BUDDY?!

2: Your interpretation of Jason is different than the later Jason's. What was your approach towards the part?
Good Question! When I got the script for the Jason character , I immediately noticed that he had no lines, and that the screen time alotted to his actions needed to be brief. Therefore, I created a detailed background history for both scenes, so that when Jason appeared onscreen his motives would feel more authentic and emphatic. The scene of the drowning portrays a neglected Jason, bewildered and vulnerable.

In the final scene, however, Jason re-appears suddenly, somehow transformed, far stronger, covered in muck, and full of vengeful purpose. The story of Jason's survival under the waters of Crystal Lake and his transformation from an abandoned, disabled, weakling to an semi-aquatic monster on a vendetta, provided a rich source of historical information for me to work with. In my version, Jason's regenerative powers are also acquired during his underwater sojourn. This topic is more fully explored in the lyrics of an upcoming CD/DVD I am working on at this time.

3: What is your favorite Friday the 13th film (other than the original) and why?
Well "The Final Chapter" is good, and it has Tom Savini back at the special effects helm. "Jason X" has a great concept, and Kane Hodder is always a good Jason. I feel that all of the Jason's, for that matter , have brought their own interpretation to the part, each one giving the part more depth. "Freddy vs. Jason", is also a new favorite, of course, because the young Jason character that I helped to create is portrayed once again, I must say quite well.

4: What do you think of how Friday the 13th has evolved into straight "Jason" films i.e. Jason Goes to Hell, Jason X etc... and now a totally new franchise with Freddy vs. Jason?
I think it's awesome, and more directly, it prooves that THE POWER IS IN THE HANDS OF THE FANS! The fans of Jason are the ones who bring him back to life, year after year, and as long as they continue to make their voices heard, Jason will live on forever!

5: What's your favorite horror film (non Friday the 13th)?
Let's see... The Abominable Dr. Phibes Dr. Phibes Rises Again The Creature From the Black Lagoon The Crypt Club (Independant)

6: Talk to us about Ari Ben Moses?
For the past twenty years, I have been working as a touring and recording artist, appearing in the U.S, Canada, Europe, and Africa as a keyboardist and singer for some of the top names on the Reggae/World Music circuit. Now, I have my own World Rock band, ARI BEN MOSES BAND, and we perform at festivals and events throughout the U.S. Our CD, "Burning Bush", received critical acclaim, and has been featured on WBAI-FM, WSIA-FM, and WLIB-AM radio sations in New York City, WNUR-FM in Chicago, as well as Radio Eshel 106-FM in Israel. ARI BEN MOSES BAND is releasing a new CD later this year.We will be appearing at the The Five Spot in Atlanta, Ga, on July 22nd, as part of the Atlantis Music Conference. Visit us at www.aribenmosesband.com

7: Can you tell us about your upcoming CD based on Jason Voorhees and the Friday the 13th mythos?
As I mentioned before, a CD/DVD is in the works that draws it's inspiration from the inner workings of the young Jason's mind during the 11 years he spent under the waters of Crystal Lake. The material is cut from a darker cloth than my other projects, and I am currently assembling the right musicians for the task. The former drummer for The Cro-Mags is already on board. We hope to be recording this project in NYC this Summer.

8: What is the strangest fan reaction you've ever had upon meeting you?
Honestly, most people are just psyched to meet the kid who scared the popcorn out of them so many years ago. Sometimes they get so excited, that I get pretty psyched up about it myself. It's a blast. Some people like to have their picture taken with me holding them in a headlock, and some fans seem to be actually scared of me! At the last Fango/ChillerCon, a couple of fans actually got married, and asked me to be in one of their wedding photos! Of course, I gave them an autographed photo of Jason in action as a wedding gift.

Would you reprise the role of Jason if asked? Any possibility we will ever see you on film again?
Well, with the new technology making DVD's the medium of choice, I do intend to participate in a number of independent productions, including my own. I would be happy to appear in a "Friday the 13th"or "Jason" film with my band, performing in a bar, party or concert, in the background, if asked. I think that would be a fun way to include me in a future film, for the benefit of the fans and trivia buffs, without jarring the story line. The illusion of reality might be suspended if I were to appear as a character, and I don't think anyone of my size could be a convincing Jason since he became a super-muscular giant killing machine. The illusion is everything in Horror. All of the fun, really, is in how effectively you are surprised, scared, frightened, stunned, and left gasping for air with your heart still pounding! HaHaahh! We got you again!

Well, that's all for now, but keep your eyes on www.pitofhorror.com for more updates and remember, it's the fans of Jason who keep him going strong! MORE POWER TO YOU! Many Thanks. Have Fun ! ~ Ari

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