Five Nights At Freddy’s Director Told Us Why She Was ‘So Grateful’ For MatPat’s Cameo, Shared Love For CoryxKenshin And Living Tombstone Appearances

Foxy and Bonnie animatronics in Five Nights at Freddy's

Spoilers below for Five Nights at Freddy’s, so be warned if you haven’t yet watched in theaters or with a Peacock subscription.

Even without a glut of merchandising tie-ins to fall back on, Five Nights at Freddy’s still managed to crush its box office competition while delivering a dread-tinged adaptation that gamers have been far nicer to than critics. Audience’s love for the film was earned in large part through the various ways director Emma Tammi and the rest of the creative team paid homage to not only the lore-filled source material, but to the fanbase itself. Specifically, I’m referring to the celebrated cameos from highly popular YouTubers MatPat (of Game Theory) and the FNAF-loving CoryxKenshin, as well as the franchise’s unofficial theme song, as performed by The Living Tombstone.

I had the pixelated pleasure of speaking with Five Nights at Freddy’s director Emma Tammi about bringing in all three of the aforementioned elements into the live-action canon, and her enthusiasm for the full-circle appearances was downright palpable. So I think it’d be a good idea to dive into them now, but that’s just a suggestion: a CinemaBlend suggestion. (I think/hope MatPat would approve of that.) 

MatPat cameo in Five Nights at Freddy's

(Image credit: Peacock)

That Cameo From GameTheory’s MatPat 

YouTube speculator extraordinaire Matthew Patrick, better known to his fanbase as MatPat, has spoken at length about Five Nights at Freddy’s in a more eloquent and thoughtful fashion than just about anyone else online, with plenty of Game Theory hours devoted to Scott Cawthon’s ongoing series. His subscriber base certainly had their own hopeful hypotheses for if and how he might show up within the FNAF film, and there was much jubilance to be shared when he popped up as a waiter working at Sparky’s Diner. As it turns out, that was one of the first sequences filmed for the movie, and Emma Tammi told me his enthusiasm went a long way in kicking the production off on the right (animatronic) foot. In her words: 

MatPat was a really important cameo to include in this film. We knew the fans would love, love, love to see him in this movie, and the way the scheduling worked out, MatPat actually played on our very first day of filming. And not only is he just the sweetest, most energetic, kind guy – who also happens to be quite a talented performer – but he also just brought so much energy to that first day on set that felt representative of the fan base, really letting everyone know, ‘You guys, everyone’s so excited. This is finally happening.’ And I don’t know, there’s something symbolically about having him there on the first day that I still look back on and just feel so grateful for, because I think it just kicked everything off with a real reminder of who this movie is for, and that we had a real purpose here in terms of making a great film. So that was really special to have him there, on the first day in particular.

As cool as it would have been had MatPat’s character just taken everyone’s lunch orders without any memorable dialogue, the scene featured an wonderfully inside-baseball reference in which he refers to the perceived difference in importance between breakfast and lunch as “just a theory.” An innocuous moment to anyone unfamiliar, but a wildly great few seconds for those in the know.  

Balloon Boy And CoryxKenshin

Another killer cameo from Five Nights at Freddy’s came later in the movie, when CoryxKenshin popped up on the screen as a taxi driver. Granted, that moment was already teased in trailers, so fans were already anticipating the YouTuber’s arrival. (And the first millisecond he was on-screen earned a sizable crowd pop in the theater I watched it in on opening night.) His cameo stood out even more, however, as CoryxKenshin returned in the mid-credits stinger, in which his nap was rudely interrupted by the bitty menace Balloon Boy. When I asked Emma Tammi about that fun jump-scare, here’s what she told me: 

Balloon Boy ended up being one of my favorite Henson creations of the whole film. I got a little obsessed with Balloon Boy. He’s so cool. But on top of that, we were able to pair him in that final Balloon Boy moment with Cory, who’s a huge Five Nights at Freddy’s YouTuber, and it just felt like this particularly special moment because he was able to be a part of it. So you know, you gotta go out with a bang.

While there’s a chance fans could see MatPat return as one of the surviving Five Nights at Freddy’s cast members, assuming the director’s hopes for a sequel pan out, I don’t hold out the same hopes for CoryxKenshin’s cab driver. I mean, he already survived one right with Golden Freddy in the backseat, and I can’t imagine he’ll make it out of the Balloon Boy situation alive. Unless the mini-antagonist really needed a ride somewhere. 

Even if his character is killed off, it sounds like he’d be welcomed back in another capacity if such a possibility was available. Emma Tammi gave both Cory and MatPat props for showing up and turning out enjoyable performances that didn’t require background knowledge to still be fun.

I think what was so cool about MatPat and Cory in this film is that their work is so good, and those moments work so well that if you don’t know who they are, it doesn’t stick out as a distraction. And I think for the fanbase, who does know who they are, it’s a huge moment. But they’re woven into this movie, I think, as seamlessly as all of our actors are. So that was something that I was really proud of. They just did such a great job that I hope they get many acting jobs more after this if they want that. [Laughs.]

I dunno that fans should start For Your Consideration campaigns for MatPat or CoryxKenshin just yet, but it would be awesome if either or both could spin these Five Nights at Freddy’s cameos into future TV and film roles. Not that they either are loaded with spare time to devote to others’ projects, but still. 

The Living Tombstone’s FNAF Theme

Before Balloon Boy’s final appearance, however, Five Nights at Freddy’s dropped the biggest fandom-specific needle drop possible, with The Living Tombstone’s first banger from its initial trilogy of game-inspired tracks. The 2014 bop, simply titled “Five Nights at Freddy’s,” officially went Gold on August 6, 2023, which speaks to its popularity. So of course I had to also ask Emma Tammi about having that song serve as a perfect counterpart to the score composed by the always A+ Newton Brothers. She told me: 

Yeah, I mean I know the fans have been asking for that for quite some time. [Laughs.] So it was top of mind. We were also really fortunate to have them come visit set, which was fun. Anytime someone who had a link to the game and the fanbase, anytime they were able to come visit set, that was such a an exciting moment for us. But yeah, they were pumped, and we were so excited to be able to include that song at the end of the film.

I can only hope that it was an equally joyous experience for The Living Tombstone musicians Yoav Landau and Sam Haft to get to stand amongst the characters and locations that the first gave lyrics to nearly a decade prior. The duo has certainly made a name for themselves outside the world of Five Nights at Freddy’s, but the game’s fandom will forever treasure the musical tributes they crafted.

Hopefully all this talk about FNAF cameos and music inspires everyone to go and rewatch the movie, so that Universal and Blumhouse know beyond a purple shadow of a doubt that we need another Five Nights at Freddy’s movie next Halloween, as well as a bunch of real-world pop-up locations. Mmm, haunted pizza. 


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