Prom Night (2008 film)

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Prom Night
Prom Night.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed by Nelson McCormick
Produced by Neal H. Moritz
Written by J.S. Cardone
Starring Brittany Snow
Scott Porter
Jessica Stroup
Dana Davis
Collins Pennie
Kelly Blatz
James Ransone
Brianne Davis
Johnathon Schaech
Idris Elba
Music by Paul Haslinger
Cinematography Checco Varese
Edited by Jason Ballantine
Saderrious Bogan
Distributed by Screen Gems
Release dates
  • April 11, 2008 (2008-04-11)
Running time
88 minutes
89 minutes (Unrated cut)
Country United States
Language English
Budget $20 million[1]
Box office $57,197,876[2]

Prom Night is a 2008 American slasher horror film directed by Nelson McCormick. The film is a loose remake of the 1980 film Prom Night, which starred Jamie Lee Curtis. The film stars an ensemble cast including Brittany Snow, Scott Porter, Jessica Stroup, Dana Davis, Collins Pennie, Kelly Blatz, James Ransone, Brianne Davis, Kellan Lutz, Mary Mara, Ming-Na Wen, Johnathon Schaech, and Idris Elba with supporting roles done by Jessalyn Gilsig, Linden Ashby, Jana Kramer, and Rachel Specter.

The film's plot concerns a high school girl named Donna Keppel (Brittany Snow) who was traumatized after witnessing her former teacher Richard Fenton (Johnathon Schaech) brutally murder her entire family after he had become dangerously obsessed with her. Three years later, as Donna is getting ready for her senior prom, Richard Fenton escapes custody from the authorities and follows her to the hotel hosting the prom and kills anybody who gets in his way of reuniting with Donna.


In 2005, Bridgeport native Donna Keppel, a high school freshman, returns home from a movie date with her friend Lisa Hines to find her father and little brother murdered. Donna hides under the bed, where she sees her mother struggling with her former teacher Richard Fenton, who had become obsessed with Donna. As Donna locks eyes with her mother, she witnesses Fenton murder her after refusing to tell him Donna's location.

In 2008, Donna, now a high school senior, is living with her Aunt Karen and Uncle Jack, and is about to graduate. She regularly visits her psychiatrist Dr. Elisha Crowe and takes anti-depressants to cope with her depression. Donna and her friends are getting ready to attend their senior prom. While at the hairdressers with Lisa and Claire, Donna turns around after seeing Fenton standing outside, but realizes she was just seeing things. Donna's boyfriend, Bobby arrives at her house, along with her friends and their boyfriends, Ronnie and Michael.

At the police station, Detective Winn, who imprisoned Fenton three years ago, learns that Fenton has escaped and warns Karen and Jack. Karen thinks Donna should come home, but Jack convinces her that Donna should stay at the prom and have a good time. At the prom, Fenton arrives at the hotel disguised as a man named Howard Ramsey. He reserves a room on Donna's floor and kills the housekeeper to get the master key. Claire has an argument with her boyfriend Michael, and goes up to her room with Donna to calm down. After Donna leaves, Claire hears noises and she sees Fenton, who stabs and kills her. When Claire does not return, Michael goes upstairs to see her. Fenton hides in the closet, but Michael sees him shut the door. Michael opens the closet, is thrown to the ground and is murdered.

Detective Winn arrives and warns the hotel staff. Fenton kills a hotel employee looking for the housekeeper. Lisa and Ronnie bump into Fenton in the elevator on their way to the room. While making out, Lisa realizes that she saw Fenton and runs off to warn Donna, which makes Ronnie sad as he was about to propose to her. After waiting for the elevator, Lisa takes the stairs, but she is caught by Fenton. She is chased down to a lower floor that is under construction. Lisa hears the elevator doors open and sees Ronnie call for her. Lisa quietly leaves her hiding spot and makes a run for it, but is killed by Fenton. Winn and Detective Nash find the body of the real Howard Ramsey in his car trunk. Winn goes up to the room under Ramsey's name and finds the housekeeper's body. Winn sounds the emergency alarm and has the hotel evacuated. Donna goes back to her room to retrieve her mother's shawl and runs into Fenton, who attacks her.

Realizing Donna is still inside, Winn races back up to the room. Donna manages to escape Fenton. SWAT and police search the hotel, but find no sign of Fenton. Winn discovers the body of the employee Fenton killed and realizes Fenton left the hotel in the employee's uniform. Winn races back to Donna's house and finds Nash dead in his squad car. Inside, Donna goes to the bathroom and returns to her bedroom to find Bobby dead with his throat slit. She sees a shadow out in the hall and she hides in her closet, thinking the shadow is Fenton's. The person in the hall is Winn and Fenton grabs Donna in the closet. Winn is about to open the closet, but hears a scream from Karen, from noticing the dead officer on the ground outside, so Winn runs to her bedroom. Donna is attacked by Fenton and a violent struggle ensues. When Fenton is about to stab Donna, Winn runs in and shoots Fenton several times, killing him. Donna cries over Bobby's corpse, and Winn tells her it is over.



The budget for the film was $20 million.[3] It was produced by Original Film and Newmarket Films in association with Alliance Films, which holds the rights to the original franchise, along with sequel rights. It was released in the United States by Screen Gems, in Canada by Alliance Films, and in Australia by Sony Pictures. The film was shot in the vicinity of South Pasadena, California as the location for Donna Keppel's home. Park Plaza Hotel (Los Angeles) was used as the location for Prom. The Yaquina Bay Bridge is shown in the opening scenes of the movie.


Critical reception[edit]

Prom Night was not screened in advance for critics. The film was generally panned by critics. The review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes reported that 8% of critics gave the film positive reviews, based on 63 reviews with the critical consensus stating: "A dim and predictable remake of an already dull slasher film, this Prom Night fails to be memorable".[4] On Metacritic, the film has an average score of 17 out of 100, based on 12 reviews.[5]


Johnathon Schaech was nominated for the MTV Movie Award for Best Villain, but lost against Heath Ledger for his role as the Joker in Christopher Nolan's The Dark Knight.

Box office[edit]

In its opening weekend, the film grossed $20,804,941 in 2,700 theaters in the United States and Canada, ranking #1 at the box office and averaging $7,705 per theater, despite harsh critical reviews. In Australia, Prom Night opened at the #3 position making $854,514, just behind Superhero Movie and The Spiderwick Chronicles. In the United Kingdom, Prom Night opened at the #4 position making £507,985, just behind Sex and the City, Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull and Superhero Movie. The film has a domestic gross of $43,869,350 and a foreign gross of $12,728,210 for a worldwide total of $56,597,560. According to Boxofficemojo, the film is currently ranked as the 16th highest grossing slasher film and the 14th best Horror Remake.

Home Media[edit]

The DVD and Blu-ray Disc was released on August 19, 2008 in theatrical (88 minutes) and unrated (89 minutes) versions. Both formats contain deleted scenes and an alternate ending. It was released in Australia on Blu-ray and 2 Disc DVD Edition on August 27, 2008. In FYE stores in the US, the unrated edition came with a bonus disc called "Body Count: Investigating the Murders of Prom Night", which is a 22-minute documentary about the murders of various characters about the film, as well as various techniques the director used to make the murders scarier. Includes interviews with Nelson McCormick (director) and other members of the cast of the film.


  1. ^ "Prom Night (2008) (2008)". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved 2013-04-02. 
  2. ^ "Prom Night (2008) (2008)". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved 2013-04-02. 
  3. ^ "Box Office Mojo". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved 2013-04-02. 
  4. ^ "Prom Night Movie Reviews, Pictures - Rotten Tomatoes". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved 2008-04-16. 
  5. ^ "Prom Night (2008): Reviews". Metacritic. Retrieved 2008-04-16. 

External links[edit]