Eight months after its initial release date, Flay finally sees a light at the end of the tunnel. With an original scheduled release in March of last year, the film was ultimately shelved after being hit with a cease-and-desist order from Sony Pictures. Sony claimed that Flay director Eric Pham and writer Matthew Daley took their idea from the legend of Slenderman, which of which they own the rights, and released their own film – titled Slenderman – last year. Pham and crew disagreed that the film went full Slenderman and took it to a judge.
I can see where the lawsuit initially came from. Images from Flay definitely look to be using the Slenderman mythology/imagery. In a conversation with Deadline, Pham claims the legend was inspired by something else entirely, saying – “I see Flay as a contemporary mashup of the Japanese legend of the Noppera-bo, or faceless ghost, and Native American legends.” Whatever the case, this indie ghost story will finally be distributed digitally on April 2nd, 2019 by Uncork’d Entertainment. But – as part of the final ruling, the poster, advertising materials and the movie itself does require a “Not Slenderman” disclaimer.
Director Pham doesn’t have a lot credits in the horror genre, but he isn’t new to it. He’s a veteran visual effects guy having worked on films like Grindhouse, Sin City and Red Planet. He also supervised the effects for Flay, which is interesting if they go heavy on CGI. Starring in his film is Violett Beane, who you might remember from Blumhouse’s Truth or Dare. She is joined by Elle LaMont (Machete Kills, Alita: Battle Angel) and A. Michael Baldwin (Phantasm and its sequels). The film is also featuring Aaron Spivey-Sorrells, Kaylee King (Hell of a Night) and Emily Grace Dunn.
After the death of her mother, an estranged daughter struggles to save her brother and those around her from a malevolent faceless spirit.