It’s hard to believe I Know What You Did Last Summer came out 13 years ago this month. In October 1997, we were treated to the image of Jennifer Love Hewitt, Ryan Phillippe, Sarah Michelle Gellar and Freddie Prinze, Jr. as they looked toward various areas off-poster in a dark-blue hue, their pretty faces (so young!) filled with stress and concern.
I Know What You Did Last Summer told the dark and despairing story of four high school graduates and their unfortunate run-in with a fellow by the name of Ben Willis, a psycho killer dressed in a fisherman’s raincoat and wielding all sorts of sharp objects, his favorite being a hook about the size of Delaware. What happened to the days when a hit-and-run was no big deal? In I Know What You Did Last Summer, there are consequences to joyrides that go awry… and more consequences… and even more consequences…
A year later, we got the inevitable I Still Know What You Did Last Summer, which brought back J-Love and Freddie Prinze, Jr., the two survivors of the original quartet. Brandy Norwood and Mekhi Phifer joined the fun this time around, as did genre veteran Jeffrey Combs, crazy ol’ Bill Cobbs (who performs VOODOO on their clothes so as to protect them from EVIL) and even an uncredited Jack Black, who shows up and gets killed in a space of about three minutes. Anyway, J-Love did an extended scene in a bikini, her new boyfriend ended up being Ben Willis’ son (his name was “Will Benson” – oh, Jennifer, how could you not see through such a ruse?) and Freddie Prinze, Jr. managed to once again stay alive through it all.
Cut (ha!) to eight years later in 2006, we got the direct-to-video I’ll Always Know What You Did Last Summer, but as that’s not considered “canon,” we’ll ignore it. But it rules, too.
So, where does that leave us? The Scream franchise is getting a “Ten Years Later” treatment with Scream 4 coming out next April. Where’s the “Ten Years Later” (or, rather, 12 years, if we’re not counting I’ll Always Know…) love for the Last Summer franchise?
Rumor hath it screenwriter Kevin Williamson, who wrote the original film, is mulling over a fourth installment, which would be titled I’ll Never Forget What You Did Last Summer.
But what would be the plot?
We’re glad you asked. Because if we had our way, it would go a little something like this…
It’s 13 (unlucky!) years after the events of I Still Know What You Did Last Summer. Julie James (Jennifer Love Hewitt) is married to a successful online entrepreneur named Keith Wagner (Justin Long), and they have an eight-year-old son, Jared. Julie teaches English to high school seniors at a private school in New York City.
Meanwhile, Ben Willis (Muse Watson), the “fisherman killer” of the previous films, has been a patient at a maximum-security mental hospital for the past ten years. His doctor, the young, attractive and more than a little ambitious Dr. Jane Felton (Christy Romano), has been giving him an experimental drug known only as DX. DX supposedly hinders and all but destroys homicidal impulses — it’s the “rehab” drug that the justice system has been anticipating for hundreds of years.
The thing is, DX is highly illegal, and Dr. Felton has had to make, shall we say, certain “arrangements” with the mental hospital’s head doctor, the sleazy and corrupt Dr. Jonas Albright (Tobin Bell). Dr. Felton takes her secret sexual liaisons with him — which usually take place in his office, filled with macabre knick knacks that he collects when he’s overseas — in stride, as nothing matters but The Work.
As Ben Willis’ psychological profile has improved immensely since first taking DX over nine months ago — and since there have been severe budget cuts at the hospital — Dr. Albright has no choice but to release his patient to the outside world.
Beaming with victory, Dr. Felton approaches late night talk show host Marty Beevers (Russell Brand) about booking Ben Willis, the now-rehabilitated “fisherman killer,” as a guest on his show. Dr. Felton goes one step further and pitches an on-air “reunion” of Willis and his would-be victim that always managed to get away, Julie James.
The thing is, shortly after Willis’ release from the mental hospital, Julie’s students start dying in mysterious and rather gruesome ways.
Will reclusive manic-depressive alcoholic Ray Bronson (Freddie Prinze, Jr.), a man from Julie’s past, have any insight into all this madness? Will he deliver a monologue that reveals up-until-then unknown yet extremely vital information about the various players in this dastardly game?
You’ll have to wait and see the movie, won’t you?
Alas, the movie that will probably never be. But take heed, Kevin Williamson — make it at least half that awesome, and we’ll be there opening night.
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I Know What You Did Last Summer 1997 (c) 1997 Mandalay Entertainment. All Rights Reserved.