Betsy Palmer took one of her most famous roles because she needed a new car and was positive no one would see the film.
Starring as Mrs. Voorhees in the iconic 1980 slasher film, Friday the 13th, the movie that kicked off the Jason franchise, the late Palmer said she was aghast when she read the script, but thought, “why not?”
“I had a Mercedes, which I had for a number of years, and it broke down on the Connecticut turnpike. So I said to myself, ‘I need a new car, universe,'” Palmer explained in a making of feature.
The actress who plays Jason’s mother says she went car shopping and found a Volkswagen Scirocco she liked.
“So the phone rang and my agent said, ‘How would you like to do a movie?’ and I said, ‘Great. That will pay for the car that I want to buy,'” Palmer said.
But, there was a catch, her agent said, it was a horror film.
“And I said, ‘Oh no,'” Palmer said. “So the script came and I read it and said, ‘What a piece of [shit]. No one is ever going to see this. It will come. And it will go. And I will have my Scirocco.'”
Friday the 13th spawned 12 films, a TV show, books, comic books, toys, costumes and video games.
The original, done on a budget of around $550,000, made nearly $6 million in its opening weekend.