Father of "Slender Man" Attacker Condemns Film For Popularizing a Tragedy

The first trailer for the upcoming horror film Slender Man just hit the internet today, along with some backlash from the parent of a young girl who believed in the internet legend so strongly that she attacked one of her friends.

"It's absurd they want to make a movie like this," Bill Weier said during a press telephone interview. "It's popularizing a tragedy is what it's doing. I'm not surprised but in my opinion it's extremely distasteful. All we're doing is extending the pain all three of these families have gone through."

The supernatural entity was created back in 2009 for a Photoshop challenge on the Something Awful forum in which users were encouraged to take seemingly mundane photos and manipulate them to create a horrifying image.

Eric Knudsen, under the username "Victor Surge," shared two photos he created in which he took pictures of children and injected a figure into the background that wore a suit and had incredibly elongated limbs, birthing the concept of the "Slender Man."

The images resonated with multiple users on the website, as they all began submitting similar images featuring children and this elongated figure, with some even adding backstory and details about the creature. Given that no one person crafted a singular story, anecdotes ranged from users claiming to have seen the figure as a child to witnessing the Slender Man demonstrate otherworldy abilities.

In 2014, two 12-year-old girls, one of them being Weier's daughter, stumbled across images and stories about the Slender Man and, having difficulties comprehending these were mere works of fiction, were led to believe that the entity would come after them and their families if they didn't take action.

These girls lured one of their friends into the woods and, in a park restroom, stabbed her 19 times. The goal was to offer this sacrifice in order to become one of Slender Man's "proxies," which would ensure their safety.

The victim recovered from her injuries and the attackers received varying sentences in mental health facilities.

Sony's upcoming Slender Man is the first fictional story based on the concept, with the documentary Beware the Slenderman chronicling the real-world attack perpetrated by the young girls.

While it's unclear how the narrative of the film will unfold, we do witness elements of young kinds becoming obsessed with the entity, similar to how the real-life tragedy unfolded.

Slender Man hits theaters May 18.

[H/T The Hollywood Reporter]

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