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Per an HBO press release, the HBO true crime documentary Beware the Slenderman, focusing on the 2014 Wisconsin stabbing of a adolescent girl believed to be inspired by the Slenderman urban legend, will premiere on January 23rd at 10pm.
Beware the Slenderman will focus on the 2014 stabbing incident that occurred on May 31st in Waukesha, Wisconsin. On that date, two 12-year-old girls allegedly lured another girl into some nearby woods and stabbed her 19 times in order to impress the fictional character Slenderman, an Internet fixture and urban legend since 2009.
The documentary, directed by Irene Taylor Brodsky (The Final Inch), will provide up-to-date information on the ongoing case, along with information on the origins the Slenderman and how the legend has quickly become so popular with young people through the Internet and social media. There will be interviews with the two accused girls’ families, courtroom testimony, and rare interrogation-room footage.
The documentary will also feature experts on the Slenderman myth and its connections to child psychology. Featured interviews will include digital folklorist Trevor J. Blank, Brad Kim of KnowYourMeme.com, evolutionary biologist Richard Dawkins, literary critic Jack Zipes, neurodevelopmental psychologist Abigail Baird, and psychologist Jacqueline Woolley.
The Slenderman character is thought to have been originally created in 2009 by Eric Knudson (aka Victor Surge) for an Internet “photoshop” contest, where participants were challenged to take everyday images and create something that looked to be paranormal.
Knudson’s Slenderman concept soon went viral, with many fans and consumers quickly being unable to discern fact from fiction concerning the true origins of the character as a real or imagined person. Slenderman is most often depicted as a thin, unnaturally tall and faceless man with unusually long arms,wearing a black suit.
Beware the Slenderman will also be available on HBO NOW, HBO GO, HBO On Demand and all affiliated Internet and streaming portals. You can watch the promotional trailer for the documentary here.