Nine college students staying at a friend's remote island mansion begin to fall victim to an unseen murderer over the April Fool's Day weekend, but nothing is as it seems.


Fred Walton


Danilo Bach





Complete credited cast:
Jay Baker ... Harvey
Pat Barlow Pat Barlow ... Clara
Lloyd Berry ... Ferryman
Deborah Foreman ... Muffy / Buffy
Deborah Goodrich ... Nikki
Tom Heaton ... Constable Potter / Uncle Frank
Leah Pinsent ... Nan (as Leah King Pinsent)
Mike Nomad Mike Nomad ... Buck
Ken Olandt ... Rob
Griffin O'Neal ... Skip
Clayton Rohner ... Chaz
Amy Steel ... Kit
Thomas F. Wilson ... Arch


A group of eight college friends gather together at an island mansion belonging to heiress Muffy St. John to celebrate their final year of school. They soon discover that each has a hidden secret from their past which is revealed, and soon after, they turn up dead. Yet, are they really dead? Or is it just part of some very real and cruel April Fool's jokes? The hostess, Muffy, is the only one who apparently knows what's going on. But then again, is it really her doing the killing? Written by Losman <>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


It's the party to end all parties! See more »


Horror | Mystery


R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »

Did You Know?


The cast assembled at a hotel in Vancouver, British Columbia, just prior to filming and began hanging out to build a rapport and hone their characters to make it more believable that they were all actually friends. See more »


When Buffy is standing on the dining room table, one shot reveals a camera shadow on the back of her shirt. See more »


Chaz: [looks around Muffy's house] Nikki, burn my bags, baby, I am home!
See more »

Alternate Versions

The Swedish version, released on video in 1987, omits all violent scenes to a point of absurdity making characters disapear from the story with no logical explanation. See more »


Mama Told Me (Not to Come)
Music and Lyrics by Randy Newman
Performed by Three Dog Night
Courtesy of MCA Records, Inc.
See more »

User Reviews

April Fools slasher
18 August 2020 | by WuchakkSee all my reviews

Ten youths about to graduate college celebrate at a remote island mansion in the Great Northwest, soon to be inherited by one them (Deborah Foreman). Unfortunately, they start getting hacked one-by-one. Who's the killer?

"April Fool's Day" (1986) is a slasher/horror in the cabin-in-the-woods mold; it's just that the 'cabin' in this case is a magnificent mansion. The presence of Amy Steel, who played Ginny in "Friday the 13th Part II" (1981), brings to mind that series but, besides Amy, the female cast isn't as notable, although it's okay. You might remember Deborah Foreman from "Valley Girl" (1983) and "Real Genius" (1985).

On the other side of the gender spectrum, Ken Olandt is a Kevin Bacon lookalike while Clayton Rohner is reminiscent of Val Kilmer.

Regrettably, the pacing is off and so not enough suspense is worked up. Any "Friday the 13th" flick is all-around more entertaining, not to mention "Slumber Party Massacre II" (1987), which has similarities. But "April Fool's Day" gets points for the outstanding location and something revolutionary that happens, which I can't give away.

The film runs 1 hour, 29 minutes, and was shot at St John estate, Victoria, British Columbia, with additional studio stuff done in Los Angeles. It was rebooted or reimagined (not remade) in 2008.


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USA | Canada



Release Date:

28 March 1986 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

April Fool's Day See more »


Box Office


$5,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$3,373,779, 30 March 1986

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

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Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Color (Metrocolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »

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