New 'Slender Man' Featurette Uncovers the Mystery of the Legend

While many people are quite aware of the concept of the Boogeyman, an otherworldly presence that [...]

While many people are quite aware of the concept of the Boogeyman, an otherworldly presence that could stalk or terrorize its victims, in recent years, a new figure that has a similar supernatural identity has emerged in the Slender Man, who is the subject of a new film. Learn more about the horrifying presence in the featurette above before Slender Man lands in theaters this weekend.

In a small town in Massachusetts, a group of friends performs a ritual in an attempt to debunk the lore of Slender Man. When one of them goes mysteriously missing, they begin to suspect that she is, in fact, HIS latest victim.

The character was created by Eric Knudsen, featured in the above video, when a Photoshop challenge called for people to take relatively mundane photos and add a creepy element to them to make them horrifying. Knudsen added the image of a suited figure into the background of photos of children, elongating his height and limbs, dubbing him the "Slender Man."

An important part of the challenge was to also create a mythology for the character to lend credence to the edits. Knudsen planted the seeds of the character, claiming that he was a figure that lurked near playgrounds and schools, though didn't get into the specifics of his powers.

From there, the legends of the character began growing and changing, with other users crafting similar photos using the figure, claiming to have encountered the character and even having been subjected to his horrors.

The character became a modern day urban legend, with Slender Man's popularity growing and inspiring stories, movies, and video games. Tragically, the mythology also inspired real-life violent incidents.

When two girls became overwhelmed with the idea of Slender Man and having difficulties separating fact from fiction, they lured a friend of theirs to a nearby park and began to stab her, thinking that if they sacrificed her to the Slender Man, they would be spared his horrors. Luckily, the young girl survived, while her two assailants were committed to psychiatric facilities.

Following the debut of the film's first trailer earlier this year, the father of one of the attackers shared a statement about the film.

"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."

Slender Man lands in theaters this weekend.

Do you plan on checking out the new horror movie? Let us know in the comments below or hit up @TheWolfman on Twitter to talk all things horror and Star Wars!

[H/T YouTube, Sony Pictures Entertainment]