Nathan Forrest Winters was 12 years old when he was hired to be in a movie called Clownhouse, about evil clowns terrorizing some kids. One of his co-stars was a young guy named Sam Rockwell, who would go on to become pretty famous and very cool. That isn't the point of this, though. The point is that the director of Clownhouse was Victor Salva, and Salva raped Nathan and filmed it. Salva kept Nathan on set for 'extra rehearsals' and forced him to have and receive oral sex, all while the cameras rolled. Maybe the same cameras that filmed Clownhouse.
Victor Salva was arrested and convicted of sexually abusing Nathan and possessing kiddie porn. He was sentenced to three years in prison and did fifteen months. He did his time, even if it feels like maybe not enough to you and me. One of the cornerstones of a sane criminal justice system is the belief that people who did their time paid for their crimes. Even though we have to accept that Salva did his time (and is now a registered sex offender) you would think that raping the star of one of your movies would put a dent in your career. Not for Salva, who has made plenty of films since his release from prison... and he's made plenty of films that feature young boys in leading roles. He made a film called Powder which, once you realize it was directed by a pedophile, takes on a sinister tone. He also directed a very good horror movie called Jeepers Creepers - also featuring very young men although in this case they were pretty much the age of consent when playing high school students.
Jeepers Creepers is good, and it got a sequel, which wasn't as good but is okay. And then he made some other movies that were pretty easy to ignore. When Powder came out Nathan protested the film, telling people that the director had raped him. Powder was a Disney film, so you can imagine how that looked. The producers claimed that when they hired Salva they didn't know the truth behind his crimes, and maybe that's the case... but in 2015 Victor Salva is notable for being a child molester, with lots and lots of articles written about him raping Winters. A quick Google search would make sure that anyone looking to hire Salva would know what he did.
So with that in mind we come to the fact that Victor Salva has been hired to make Jeepers Creepers 3. Again, Salva did his time and should be able to live a life like anyone else... but it's also sort of weird, right? I mean, it isn't even like Salva is a genius - this guy is no Polanski, whose work is so undeniable that it forces cinephiles to really make moral choices. If you didn't see a Victor Salva movie you wouldn't be missing anything. The world isn't exactly clamoring for a Jeepers Creepers 3.
But we're getting it anyway! With all of that prologue out of the way, here's the news: a task force has been assembled to destroy the Creeper, who arises every I forget how many years to harvest nubile young flesh. The press release quote from Salva:
“Writing and directing a new Jeepers film, the first in over a decade, is incredibly exciting. For me and I believe for Jeepers fans all over the world that have been asking for more,” Salva said. “What will go before cameras as Jeepers Creepers 3 is a new and terrifying chapter from the Jeepers universe. We are bringing back the Creeper’s truck, and will be addressing the big questions about The Creeper: what it is, where it came from and why it does what it does.”
The "Jeepers universe!" Even if this guy didn't sodomize children and film it this would be worth making fun of.
Here's the part I don't quite get: Francis Ford Coppola is producing. He produced the first film as well, so he's clearly attached to the property. But what really doesn't make sense is why Coppola was even involved in the first film, since his American Zoetrope produced Clownhouse... the movie where Salva raped the lead! Again, Salva did his time and should be able to live and work like anyone else but I have a hard time imagining what sort of company would rehire you after you fucking RAPED SOMEBODY while working for them. Like, if you wanted to milk some more money from the IP you could probably find a dozen filmmakers who could churn out a good movie for you and not have a child rapist directing it.
Again, and I'll say it for the last time, I think that Victor Salva did his time and, if he is reformed, should be free to live and work like anyone else. I just think it's super weird that he keeps getting money to make movies featuring half-naked young men considering the fact that he's a child rapist. I also think it's weird that this movie is shooting in Canada and that he can go there - I knew someone who got turned away at the border for havin a drunk driving conviction.
Hollywood, never stop being incredibly confusing and morally problematic.