Jeepers Creepers is a 2001 horror film written and directed by Victor Salva. The movie takes its name from the song "Jeepers Creepers" which is featured in the movie. Incidentally, the song was first featured in the Warner Bros. film Going Places, which at one time was owned by this film's distributor United Artists (along with the rest of the pre-1950 Warner library).
Darry Jenner and his sister Trish Jenner were coming home from college to visit their family for spring break. As they drove through the North Florida countryside in Trish's 1960 Chevrolet Impala, they played a game of guessing the meaning of vanity license plates (such as 6A4EVR being "Sexy Forever"). After passing an RV, a mysterious driver in a rusty old delivery truck--with the license plate BEATNGU--tried to run them off the road.
After a stressful moment with Darry trying to convince the driver to go around, the truck finally passed them by. Afterward, Darry tried to guess the meaning of the vanity plate, assuming it read "Beating You." The two then began talking about two students, named Kenny and Darla, who disappeared while driving on the same road 23 years prior.
After taking a bathroom break, they passed by the truck parked outside an old abandoned church in the distance off the side of the road. A hulking man was tere, sliding what appeared to be bodies wrapped in old sheets, into a large sewer pipe protruding from the ground.
The driver, taking note that they had seen him, caught up to them and succeeded in running them off the road. The truck then left. Despite his sister's objections, Darry insisted they go back and investigate, in
case one of the bodies was still alive. Darry ordered Trish to hold his feet while he looked into the pipe. Darry was stunned by a swarm of rats and he jerked and screamed. This caused Trish to lose her grip on his legs, and he slid down the pipe cutting himself and knocking the wind out of himself
After Darry got up, he found a dying boy, with a huge stitch across his torso. The boy tried to tell him something but was unable to before he died. While looking for a way out, Darry found hundreds of bodies sewn together, covering the walls of a massive cavern beneath the church, including Kenny and Darla.
Darry found his way out of the church and startled Trish, who mistakenly thought the truck was returning. Trish then took over driving, while Darry sat in the passenger seat, not talking. He eventually explained to Trish that he saw Kenny and Darla and that the man had decapitated her and then sewn her head back on. They decided to contact the police when they see the truck pass by them on the way back to the church.
Finding a diner, Darry called the police. While waiting for the cops to arrive, they received a phone call at the pay phone in the diner. The lady identified Darry's rose tattoo and knew his name. She plays the song "Jeepers Creepers" on the phone, and told them that when they hear that song, they need to run. Badly frightened, Darry cursed at the woman and hung up.
Darry and Trish were questioned by the police, although they didn't seem to believe the story because it was so remarkable. A diner worker warned Darry and Trish that someone was out breaking into their car. They find that the mysterious driver had broke into their car, and smelled their laundry. Darry was worried now that the man knew his name
In order to verify the story, the police escorted Darry and Trish back to the church. Unknown to them, the police received a report that the church was being burned down. While they were driving along, the man from the truck attacked and killed the police. Leaving their car to investigate, Darry and Trish saw the man pick up an officer's head and try to eat his tongue. Terrified, they got back into their car and fled.
Finding an old farm house, Darry and Trish discovered an old lady who has many, many cats. They pled with her to call the police, but she refused due to her fear that they would take away her cats. While they argued, they noticed that the scarecrow in the yard was alive. The woman, angry that her cats were in danger, ran and got her shotgun. She shot at the man, who inhumanly jumped up and crashed through the roof of her house. Angry, the woman hit Darry in the crotch and ran into the house. After hearing shotgun blasts, it appeared that the woman was coming outside, but they saw that instead the man had impaled her with the gun.
Trish and Darry got into their car, intent on fleeing. Trish, however, attacked the man by hitting him with her car. After a couple tries, she finally hit him. Then, she ran over him over and over again until Darry forced her to stop. Afterwards, they see a wing appear out of the body and they assume it is some sort of strange creature. Leaving, they drive to the county police. At the police station, they waited for their parents to come and get them. The woman from the phone call appears and is introduced as Jezelle Gay Hartman, a woman who claimed to be a local psychic. She warned Darry and Trish that they are still in danger and then tried to reveal the true nature of the mysterious creature: It was an ancient demon known as "The Creeper", which rises every twenty-third spring for twenty-three days to feast on human body parts which, upon consumption, form part of its own body. She also told them that it seeks out its victims through fear, and that by smelling the fear from Trish and Darry, it has found something it likes. When asked which one of them the Creeper wanted, Jezelle didn't answer but looked over at Trish.
The wounded Creeper attacked the police station and gained entrance to the cells. After it feasted on prisoners to heal, it was swarmed by police, but killed a number of them. Jezelle guided Trish and Darry upstairs, telling them one of them will die, screaming in the dark while the song "Jeepers Creepers" played in the background. The Creeper headed towards Jezelle and sniffed her, but let her go, heading off to find Trish and Darry.
The Creeper finally caught up with Trish and Darry, despite the efforts of the police. It grabbed Darry before being confronted by a SWAT team. Trish, in an effort to save her brother, told the Creeper to take her instead. Darry yelled at her to not be a hero. Trish explained that Darry was weak and that she would not fight him. However, the Creeper wasn't interested in someone who was not afraid of him. He flew out of the side of the building, taking Darry with him into the night.
In the morning, Trish asked Jezelle if her dreams are ever wrong. Rather than answer, Jezelle just tells her that she's a crazy old woman and Trish can ask anyone.
Darry's screams were then heard as a new abandoned area was shown. The Creeper was at a sewing machine doing work. Then, Darry's dead body was shown, naked and preserved much like the other bodies in the House of Pain. The back of Darry's head and eyes were removed and the Creeper looked through the eye holes revealing that it was Darry's eyes he was after.
- Justin Long as Darius "Darry" Jenner
- Gina Philips as Patricia "Trish" Jenner
- Jonathan Breck as The Creeper
- Patricia Belcher as Jezelle Gay Hartman
- Eileen Brennan as Cat Lady
- Brandon Smith as Sergeant Davis Tubbs
- Peggy Sheffield as Beverly
- Jon Beshara as Officer Robert Gideon
- Avis-Marie Barnes as Officer Natasha Weston
- WhAT's EATing you?
- Evil is right behind you
- A nightmare cloaked in rags.
- The Tastiest Horror Film of the Year!
- Get a Taste of the Year's Best Horror Film!
- You Are NOT What You Eat...
- He's watching... He's waiting... He's hungry...
- Things are gonna get creepy...
- The third film reveals that the Creeper's truck is booby-trapped. And that he got it back while it was being taken to an impound lot.
- At the end of the movie, it is actually Justin Long playing the Creeper so that when he looks through Darry's skull, the eyeholes match.
- When Darry fell into the sewer pipe it is vertical, but when he is at the top is is diagonal, it cannot be a curved pipe as it would make it impossible for Trish to see through, furthermore she was unable to see at first, until there was light.
- When the Creeper is ramming the car from behind if you notice there is no damage to the back of the car in at least two scenes
- The Cat Lady has a Double Barreled Shotgun, so after two shots she would have to reload, but after she shoots the Creeper the first time, we hear two more shots.
- When the officer shines his flashlight on the creeper's back the zipper can be seen.
- After the Creeper takes Darry away Trish's eyes are brown, and not blue like they were throughout the film.
- The time of day flashes from night to day and so on, but this may be because it's been a few days.
- Trish's car has a manual function, but the car shifts gears while her hands stay on the wheels.
- When the Cat Lady's corpse is brought out of the house, a crew member can briefly be seen in the house.
- The pipe was slanted and slippery, making it impossible for Darry to be standing on.
- When Darry and Trish are talking on the phone if you listen carefully you'll hear that no one is talking on the other line.
- When Darry is carried away by the Creeper the person that is being carried away is an obvious decoy and the radio used for the sound effects is seen on his neck.
- After Trish leaves the police office a crew member can be seen on the inside.
- When the power goes out at the police station Darry is seen walking ahead of Trish and Jezelle. In the next shot Jezelle is in front and Darry is in back. In the final shot Jezelle is the one in the back and Trish is in the lead, but there's nothing to suggest that they've gone ahead of each other.
Jeepers Creepers opened in 2,944 theaters and took in a domestic gross of $37,904,175. It later made $21,313,614 internationally, making a total of $59,217,789 worldwide.
- Won: Crystal Reel Awards — Best Feature
- Nominated: Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror Films — Saturn Award Best Horror Film
- Nominated: Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror Films — Best Performance by a Younger Actor: Justin Long
- Nominated: International Horror Guild — IHG Award Best Movie
- Nominated: Sitges — Catalonian International Film Festival — Best Film: Victor Salva
In 2003 a sequel was released, Jeepers Creepers 2. Events in the second film take place days after the first film. The Creeper and Darry are the only characters to appear in both films, although they are not the only actors to appear in both films. In the first film, actor Tom Tarantini appears as the minor character "Austin McCoy" AKA "Roach" who is a car thief and regular in the Poho County jail. In the second he portrays "Coach Dwayne Barnes".
MGM has announced a third installment, Jeepers Creepers 3: Cathedral. The film will continue the story of the original film with Trish (Gina Philips) as she fears her son will have the same fate as her long lost brother Darry (Justin Long), the boy's namesake. The film will also feature the infamous Creeper truck. Jonathan Breck will return as the Creeper. Victor Salva will return as both director and writer. It has recently been confirmed that MGM Studios is interested in bringing a fourth movie to the series and that they intend Salva to film it back-to-back with Jeepers Creepers 3.