I Know What You Did Last Summer

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I Know What You Did Last Summer
I Know What You Did Last Summer.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed by Jim Gillespie
Produced by
Written by Kevin Williamson
Based on I Know What You Did Last Summer by
Lois Duncan
Starring
Music by John Debney
Cinematography Denis Crossan
Edited by Steve Mirkovich
Production
company
Distributed by Columbia Pictures[1]
Release date
  • October 17, 1997 (1997-10-17)
Running time
101 minutes
Country United States
Language English
Budget $17 million[2]
Box office $125.2 million[2]

I Know What You Did Last Summer is a 1997 American slasher film written by Kevin Williamson and directed by Jim Gillespie. The film is loosely based on the 1973 novel of the same name by Lois Duncan. The film also draws inspiration from the urban legend known as The Hook.

The film stars Jennifer Love Hewitt, Sarah Michelle Gellar, Ryan Phillippe and Freddie Prinze, Jr., with Anne Heche, Bridgette Wilson, and Johnny Galecki appearing in supporting roles. I Know What You Did Last Summer centers on four friends who are being stalked by a killer, one year after covering up a car accident in which they were involved. The film was directed by Jim Gillespie, from a screenplay written by Kevin Williamson, writer of Scream.

I Know What You Did Last Summer received mixed reviews from critics, but was commercially successful, grossing over $125 million at the box office.[3] It was also nominated for and won multiple awards.[4] As a result, the film has been parodied and referenced in popular culture.[5]

The film was followed by two sequels, I Still Know What You Did Last Summer (1998) and the straight-to-DVD release I'll Always Know What You Did Last Summer (2006). Though the former film sees a continuation of the plotline established in its predecessor, the latter film establishes a new plotline and does not star any cast members from the previous two installments.

Plot[edit]

On the Fourth of July, four recent high-school graduates — Julie, her boyfriend Ray, Julie's best friend Helen and Helen's boyfriend Barry — drive home from a party. While driving, Ray becomes distracted, hitting a pedestrian. Another teenager, Max, stops nearby. Julie convinces him everything is okay, so he leaves. The group decides to dispose of the body. At the docks, the man revives, but falls into the water and apparently drowns.

A year later, Julie is home from college for the summer. She receives a letter stating, "I know what you did last summer." She tells Barry and Helen about the note; Barry suspects Max. The trio go to the docks where Max works as a fisherman. Barry threatens Max with a hook. Julie discovers that Ray works there; he tries reconciling with Julie. That evening, Max is secretly killed by a figure in a rain slicker wielding a hook. Barry discovers a note in his gym locker containing a picture of his car and the message, "I know." Going outside, Barry is almost run over by the slicker-wearing figure, driving Barry's car.

Julie believes that the person they hit was David Egan. Ray still suspects Max, while Julie and Helen think the killer may be a relative of Egan's. They head out to the Egan home. They find David's sister Missy, who explains that David's death devastated their family. Missy tells them that a classmate, Billy Blue, paid his respects after David died, claiming to be his friend.

As Helen prepares for the Fourth of July parade. The killer sneaks into her house, cuts off her hair and writes, "Soon," on her mirror. As Julie rushes to Helen's house, she finds Max's corpse in her trunk. When she goes to show the others, the body is missing. Julie, Helen, and Barry confront Ray about recent events. Ray claims to have received a similar letter.

As Helen and Barry participate in the parade, Barry notices people wearing the same kind of slicker. Chasing one, Barry leaves Helen on one of the parade floats. As it passes by a building, she notices a shadowy figure in a slicker wielding a hook threateningly.

That same day, Julie revisits Missy. Missy tells Julie that David left a suicide note. As the writing matches that of the note she received, Julie tries convincing Missy that it is not a suicide note but a threat. Misty forces her to leave. At the Croaker Pageant, Barry is killed while watching from a balcony. Helen rushes to the balcony with a police officer but finds no sign of the killer or Barry. The officer offers to drive Helen home.

Julie researches David Egan's death. A year before the accident, he and his girlfriend Susie were in a car crash near the scene of the foursome's accident. David survived but Susie died. The research mentions Susie's father, Ben Willis. Julie deduces they ran over Ben, who had just killed David. While driving home, Helen and the officer are stopped by a stalled truck. The officer is killed by a dark figure with a hook. Helen rushes to her family's store, where her sister Elsa lets her in. The killer enters through a side door and kills Elsa. Despite her best efforts to escape, Helen is killed as well.

Julie goes to the docks to tell Ray her theory but he is dubious. Julie notices the name of the boat he's working on: Billy Blue. Julie runs off, believing Ray is the killer. The real killer knocks Ray out and puts Julie in his boat. Looking around, she finds a room containing photos and articles about her and her friends, and pictures of Susie Willis. Julie realizes she is on Ben Willis's boat, who is the killer. Ben sets the boat adrift, but Ray awakens and boards Ben's boat with a motorboat. He uses the rigging to sever Ben's hook-carrying hand and plummet over the side. When the police question Julie and Ray, they, to cover up the car accident, deny knowing why Ben attempted to kill them.

A year later, Julie intends to return home to see Ray. As she enters the showers at school, she notices one of the mirrors has the sentence "I still know" written on it. A dark figure crashes through the mirror.

Cast[edit]

Music[edit]

The film produced two soundtracks. One of them featured the score composed by John Debney, while the other contained various rock songs found in the film.

I Know What You Did Last Summer (Original Motion Picture Score)
Film score (Digital download)/Audio CD by John Debney
Released October 7, 1997
Genre Film score
Length 50:44
Label Super Tracks Music Group

Soundtrack[edit]

I Know What You Did Last Summer (The Album)
Soundtrack album (Digital download)/Audio CD by Various
Released October 7, 1997
Genre Alternative rock, alternative metal[6]
Length 51:14
Label Columbia Records
  1. "Hush" by Kula Shaker (2:55)
  2. "Summer Breeze" by Type O Negative (4:57)
  3. "D.U.I." by The Offspring (2:26)
  4. "Kid" by Green Apple Quick Step (3:17)
  5. "This Ain't the Summer of Love" by L7 (3:09)
  6. "Losin' It" by Soul Asylum (3:01)
  7. "Hey Bulldog" by Toad the Wet Sprocket (2:31)
  8. "My Baby's Got the Strangest Ways" by Southern Culture on the Skids (3:59)
  9. "Waterfall" by The Din Pedals (3:47)
  10. "Clumsy" by Our Lady Peace (4:27)
  11. "One Hundred Days" by Flick (3:40)
  12. "Great Life" by Goatboy (3:50)
  13. "2 Wicky" by Hooverphonic (4:44)
  14. "Don't Mean Anything" by Adam Cohen (3:43)
  15. "Proud" by Korn (3:17)

Reception[edit]

On Rotten Tomatoes, 36% of reviews were positive.[7] Metacritic reported an aggregate score of 52 out of 100 based on 17 reviews.[8] Critic Roger Ebert gave the film 1/4 stars and wrote in his review, "The best shot in this film is the first one. Not a good sign."[9]

Jennifer Love Hewitt was praised for her performance as Julie James by an Entertainment Weekly columnist stating that Hewitt knows how to scream with soul.[10]

Box office[edit]

In its opening weekend the film grossed $15,818,645 in 2,524 theaters in the United States and Canada, raking #1. By the end of its run, I Know What You Did Last Summer grossed $72,586,134 domestically and $53,000,000 internationally for a worldwide total of $125,586,134.

Home media[edit]

The film was released on DVD by Columbia TriStar Home Entertainment in the US on June 16, 1998. Special features included a theatrical trailer and filmmaker's commentary. It was released on DVD & video in the UK by Entertainment in Video with no special features. The film was released on Blu-ray for the first time ever on July 22, 2008, with more special features including the director's short film: "Joyride" with optional commentary, a featurette titled "Now I Know What You Did Last Summer", a music video of Hush by Kula Shaker and also included the theatrical trailer and filmmaker's commentary from the DVD. Though it was released in the US, it is available to be watched in regions A, B & C. The Blu-ray was re-released by Mill Creek Entertainment on September 30, 2014 in the US. It contains no special features and is only available in Region A.

Awards and nominations[edit]

Year Ceremony Category Work Result
1997 ASCAP Award Top Box Office Films John Debney Won
1998 Saturn Award Best Horror Film "I Know What You Did Last Summer" Nominated
Blockbuster Entertainment Award Favorite Female Newcomer Jennifer Love Hewitt Won
Favorite Actress
Favorite Supporting Actress – Horror Sarah Michelle Gellar
Favorite Actor – Horror Freddie Prinze Jr. Nominated
Favorite Actress – Horror Jennifer Love Hewitt
Favorite Supporting Actor Ryan Phillippe
International Horror Guild Award Best Movie "I Know What You Did Last Summer"
MTV Movie Awards Best Breakthrough Performance Sarah Michelle Gellar
Young Artist Award Best Performance in a Feature Film – Leading Young Actress Jennifer Love Hewitt

Sequels and remake[edit]

The film was followed by two sequels: I Still Know What You Did Last Summer (1998) and I'll Always Know What You Did Last Summer (2006), which went direct-to-video. Both were critically panned. In the first sequel, Jennifer Love Hewitt, Freddie Prinze Jr. and Muse Watson reprise their roles. The second sequel has very little relation to the first two, other than the premise, the villain, and the producers. It featured new characters and a different setting.

On September 14, 2014 Sony reported that they have plans to remake the film; Mike Flanagan and Jeff Howard are writing a script. In a June 1, 2016 Blumhouse.com "Shockwaves" podcast, writer Mike Flanagan revealed and further confirmed this new iteration and re-imagination of the franchise would not have any inventions of the Lois Duncan novel (the antagonist being a central character) nor the 1997 feature (the fisherman Ben Willis and 4 primary protagonists Julie James, Helen Shivers, Barry Cox, and Ray Bronson). Further, the new direction and scope of the film necessitates an estimated budget of $15-20 million. Sony also states that the film is a high priority and is set for a 2017 release.[11]

References[edit]

External links[edit]