Five Nights at Freddy’s Developer Scott Cawthon has announced that the Five Nights at Freddy’s movie will begin production in the spring of 2021.
In a Reddit post, Cawthon notes several screenplays intended for a Five Nights at Freddy’s movie. You can view Cawthon’s descriptions of those screenplays below:
The “F” screenplay
- Basic Setup: Group of teenage trouble-makers break into Freddy’s; chaos ensues
- Problems: Although a pretty basic setup, there were a lot of odd choices here, which only got weirder as the story continued. The story ended with our protagonists in a secret underground animatronic factory that was designing robots for the government. -___-
- Verdict: WT@#$@ Strayed way too far from source material! Tossed.
The “Plushies Take Manhattan” screenplay
- Basic Setup: Plushies take Manhattan.
- Problems: Plushies took Manhattan
- Verdict: Burned with fire.
The “Random Charlie” screenplay
- Basic Setup: Charlie and friends sneak into Freddy’s after-hours to retrieve a lost toy.
- Problems: Although sharing names of familiar characters from the series, these characters had nothing to do with their game and book counterparts. So, while featuring familiar elements of the games, it seemed too “loosely based” on the game, and lost a lot of its impact because of it.
- Verdict: Felt like a random bag of FNAF elements with no real stakes. Meh.
The “Silver Eyes” screenplay(s)
- Basic Setup: Kira and I both worked on three versions of a Silver Eyes screenplay over the course of about a year, trying to find the right approach to the story from the first book.
- Problems: These were the first attempts I made myself to write a screenplay after realizing it was going to be difficult to find someone else who understood the lore well enough to do it. Unfortunately, it also meant these screenplays suffered greatly from my inexperience at writing. Even Kira, with her writing expertise, couldn’t save them.
- Verdict: Although these had some good elements, I ultimately decided to focus on making a screenplay from the games and not from the books.
The “Pawn Shop” screenplay
- Basic Setup: A kid who watches after a pawn shop finds trouble when an animatronic is brought in. It turns out Freddy’s had been robbed, and the animatronics were taken to different locations for sale. The other animatronics come to retrieve the one at the Pawn Shop, and the kid and his friends get roped into adventure.
- Problems: A creative approach, but felt a little too much like “a boy and his animatronic”. Too much after-school adventure, not enough horror.
- Verdict: Seemed like a good idea at the time.
The “Cassidy” screenplay
- Basic Setup: Diving deep, this screenplay packed in a lot of lore, following the story of Cassidy.
- Problems: Spanning multiple time-periods, following multiple characters, and featuring lore from multiple games, this was pretty saturated, saturated to a fault. It may have been satisfying to the most hardcore fans, but it would have left the majority of people confused and lost. (Hey wait, maybe this WAS the most accurate screenplay…)
- Verdict: Ultimately more of a visual encyclopedia than a movie, this just wasn’t satisfying, even to me. Out.
The “Misfit Kid” screenplay
- Basic Setup: Single Mom brings her kid to a new town; kid finds Freddy’s; hilarity ensues.
- Problems: One of the problems in creating a modern day story with an old Freddy’s setting is finding a way to connect the protagonists to the restaurant, finding a reason for them to be there, and finding a reason for them to stay. The problem here was that the reason for this kid to go to Freddy’s and have misadventures was too contrived and too forced.
- Verdict: Not a bad setup, but it just didn’t work. If I don’t care about the characters, then there’s a good chance no one else will either. Pass.
- (This was going to be THE screenplay for a while because it didn’t have any serious flaws. I ultimately just decided it wasn’t good enough though.)
The “Ghost Trackers” screenplay
- Basic Setup: A group of amateur ghost-trackers sneak into the abandoned Freddy’s.
- Problems: Although a very common-sense setup for this sort of movie, the problem again arose about how to give these characters a connection to Freddy’s itself. What ended up happening was too much of the story went to their own backstories and their own hardships, and it took the spotlight away from the story of Freddy’s.
- Verdict: A stronger connection between protagonist and Freddy’s was needed. Lesson learned.
The “Insane” screenplay
- Basic Setup: Another ghost-tracker variation, this one involved the Funtime Animatronics, underground ball-pit tunnels, and a Marionette out for revenge!
- Problems: As some other screenplays ventured too far into adventure, this one went too far into action.
- Verdict: Too all-over-the-place, with too many characters doing too many things.
The “Mike” screenplay
- Basic Setup: Hmmmm. This makes sense. Why didn’t I think of this before?
- Problems: Actually this is a good mix… it has the best pieces from all the previous screenplays… Not really any problems here. All the right characters, all the right motivations, all the right stakes…
- Verdict: Yeah, we’re going with this one. It’s fun, it’s scary, and it has a great central story!
At the end of the post, Cawthon reveals that development has officially begun on the movie, with the “Mike” screenplay listed above. Additionally, Cawthon notes that principal photography on the film is set to start in spring of 2021.
Five Nights at Freddy’s (often abbreviated to FNaF) is an indie video game series and media franchise created by Scott Cawthon. The video game series began with the eponymous game developed and published by Cawthon for Microsoft Windows in 2014. The game was followed by a number of sequels, prequels, and spin-offs released for Windows, iOS, and Android, with ports for Xbox One, PlayStation 4, and Nintendo Switch. The series is centered on the fictional Freddy Fazbear’s Pizza, a pastiche of pizza restaurants such as Chuck E. Cheese’s and ShowBiz Pizza Place. The upcoming eighth game will feature a modernized shopping mall.
Scott Cawthon is a video game developer, animator, writer, and philanthropist, best known as the creator of the Five Nights at Freddy’s game franchise. Cawthon has created other games such as The Desolate Hope and There is No Pause Button!, as well as Christian-based animations such as A Christmas Journey and The Pilgrim’s Progress. Cawthon’s career in game design and animation began in the 1990s. His first official games were released in the early 2000s, one of the earliest known being RPG Max, released in 2002. He later joined Hope Animation, where he created animations for children based on Christian values.
On June 13, 2014, Cawthon submitted Five Nights at Freddy’s to Steam’s Greenlight system. A trailer was released the following day on June 14 with a demo following on July 24, 2014. On July 24, 2014, he then also submitted it to IndieDB, where it gained a massive amount of popularity. He submitted the game a third time to Desura on August 13, 2014. The game was accepted in Steam’s Greenlight on August 18, 2014 and was released for $4.99. The series has been popular since the release of the first game. The success of the video games led to the publication of three novelizations (The Silver Eyes, The Twisted Ones, and The Fourth Closet), a guidebook (The Freddy Files), and an activity book (Survival Logbook), as well as merchandise. A horror attraction based on the series was featured in the Adventuredome for Halloween 2016.