Take the lift down to see your old friend, but beware! Therefore this article may contain spoilers remain unmarked! Do not go any further if you choose not to read or view spoilers before playing the game first.
"Shhh... there he is. The Projectionist. Skulking in the darkness. You be sure to stay out of his light, if you don't want trouble."
The Projectionist is a tall humanoid creature that is almost completely covered in ink and has a projector for a head. Several long, hanging black wires (possibly film roll) are attached to his back and under his head, with the longer wire attaching to his right ankle, and another attached to his left arm. He has a film reel stuck in his left shoulder. The Projectionist seems to wear clothing if one look real carefully, with rolled-up sleeves for his shirt, and pants with a rolled-up left pant leg and a pair of large boots. He has a speaker sticking out from the middle of his chest. On the top of both hands and his knuckles, there are white stripes and circle markings.
The Projectionist makes noises that sound like rattling spurs (judging by his western accent and boots) whenever he moves or walks.
Norman Polk, one of the many victims of Joey Drew Studios, is corrupted by ink for unknown reasons and has been transformed into a projector-headed creature prior to Henry coming back to the studio 30 years later. Norman's human intelligence is entirely gone, turning him into a completely feral and violent monster but is usually calm as long as no one is in his sight.
The Projectionist has the ability to project light from the projector where his head should be, similar in use of an actual flashlight helmet/headwear. Henry can avoid being seen by the Projectionist by hiding in one of the Little Miracle Stations.
If Henry is caught by the Projectionist's light or getting provoked by Henry's weapon while not noticing, the Projectionist soon becomes aggressive, emitting a roar-like screech and then proceeds to chase after Henry. When close enough, the Projectionist does a physical attack by hitting Henry with his snatching hands. The Projectionist will stop running after Henry once fleeing far away from him or safely hides inside one of the Little Miracle Stations.
The ink hearts are the Projectionist's collective properties. Having his ink hearts touched or taken will anger him, drawing his attention regardless how far away he is. When Henry does so, a chase will commence.
In Chapter 3 only, Henry can attack and kill the Projectionist with the Gent pipe, the axe found in the blocked room, or the Tommy Gun if successfully equipped. This may be difficult as the Projectionist is very tough and fast while the ink-flooded rooms may limit Henry's mobility. Hitting him with the axe or the Tommy Gun stunlocks him for a second, and hitting him with the Gent pipe makes the stun animation play, but does not actually hinder his attack.
Using the Gent pipe, it takes more or less 72 hits to kill The Projectionist. Using the Tommy Gun will take 16 hits and using the axe will take 8 hits. Killing The Projectionist is rather easy, as hitting the Projectionist will hinder his attack for approximently one second. If killed, The Projectionist will let out an inhuman, high-pitched wail while the light from his projector head flickers off, then falling forward to the ground, seemingly dead until his appearance in Chapter 4.
On Level 11, while doing errands for "Alice", Henry first sees the Projectionist wandering slowly in the small room, not noticing that Henry was there from the outside. Upon entering the room after the Projectionist went completely away, it appears that he walks to the closed gate off-screen. Even when getting into the room while the Projectionist is still in there, he strangely vanished.
Later, "Alice" sends Henry to the lowest level at Level 14 to collect the five ink hearts. On the start of Level 14, Projectionist's screech is suddenly heard when Henry obtains the very first ink heart from Striker's corpse. "Alice" warns Henry to stay out of the Projectionist's light, as he wanders along the corridors. The Projectionist wanders through the maze-like area of the Inky Abyss, usually in a linear path.
Henry needs to stay cautious on locating the ink hearts around the maze. When taking one, Henry should hear a loud splashing sound of the Projectionist rushing for an incoming attack, and must quickly hide inside one of the Little Miracle Stations to hold back from getting caught.
Henry will have a choice of either running and/or hiding from the Projectionist or killing him with an equipped weapon.
The Projectionist reappears in the fourth chapter regardless of whether or not he was killed in the third chapter, revealing that he was not killed, and was knocked out. Henry encounters the Projectionist in the flooded Maintenance department of Storage 9, walking around in circle. With no weapons equipped, Henry must only avoid him while trying to get to the lift control lever to unblock the stairs to the landing above. While avoiding the Projectionist, Henry must not interact the ink hearts seen piling on top of the wooden crate, or else it will immediately draw the Projectionist's attention and start chasing Henry upon seeing in sight.
Upon pulling the lift lever, the Projectionist becomes aware that Henry is here, then emits a shriek and begins to chase Henry no matter where in the room he is. Once Henry gets upstairs and pulls the switch there, the room goes dark and the Projectionist vanishes.
As Henry climbs the stairs out of the Maintenance department, the Projectionist reappears and chases Henry one last time. Henry immediately hides in the Little Miracle Station at the top of the stairs, then the Projectionist stops running to look into the station and seems to notice that Henry is inside. While moving a little closer in an attempt to open the station, he was interrupted by a bright flash of light, heralding the arrival of "Bendy" busts open the previously sealed door. The Projectionist exchanges several blows with "Bendy" before the latter lifts the Projectionist off his feet, and in another flash of light, "Bendy" tears off the Projectionist's head, killing him permanently. "Bendy" throws the Projectionist's severed head at the Little Miracle Station. After acknowledging Henry's presence but not having time to eliminate him, "Bendy" drags the Projectionist's now headless body away and disappears with it. Once Henry gets out of the Little Miracle Station, he can see the Projectionist’s severed head lying on the ground, spraying ink from his neck.
- Due to the fact that there is no actual visible head under the Projectionist's projector, the projector is the Projectionist's real head. This was proven when using the modeling program and then removing the projector with an edit.
- The sound of running reel tapes is heard coming from the Projectionist's projector head, even though an oversight shows his head lacking both film reels.
- The Projectionist seems to be deaf as he is not able to hear the splashes of ink Henry causes. This further supports the need of the projector on his head. Even though he cannot hear splashes or other sounds, taking or touching the ink hearts will draw his attention.
- It is ironic how "Alice" tries to quiet down Henry even though the Projectionist cannot hear.
- The Projectionist's chase theme is "Reel Fear". This is a self-explanatory pun.
- Originally, the Projectionist was going to be discarded during the production of the game, but was put back in again.
- The current quality of the Projectionist's official rigged model is unofficially released onto Steam's Source Filmmaker Workshop and included in the second SFM pack along with "Alice", Striker, Piper, Fisher, the Searcher, and the Swollen Searcher's model.
Chapter 3: Rise and Fall
- In the middle of Chapter 3's release date trailer, the Projectionist's footsteps are heard from the halfway.
- Defeating the Projectionist will unlock the "Norman's Fate" achievement. The achievement's title reveals the evidence that the creature is indeed Norman himself.
- There are several early differences that were later changed for the release of Chapter 4:
- In the first release of Chapter 3, while his full model appearance for his beta version was not much drastically different, his textures are rather slightly different; his projector head has different textures and the ink covering for his body was partly, exposing more of his clothing.
- The running tape sound for his projector head is not heard.
- Obtaining the ink hearts on Level 14 does not directly draw the Projectionist's attention, making this fetch quest more simple and less challenging.
- Prior to update patch 1.3.1, the Projectionist was able to walk the stairs of the Inky Abyss.
- If looked real closely while first encountering the Projectionist inside the waiting room, he is holding the ink heart with his right hand.
- Located in the game files, there is an animation of the Projectionist hitting with an ink heart as an alternate attack. It was never displayed anywhere in the game, however.
- Sometimes, there is a lifesaving bug that causes the Projectionist to get stuck in one corner of the maze while his walking animation keeps going. In this state, he never goes to chase after Henry upon getting caught, thus giving Henry a safe opportunity to defeat him. It is unknown if this bug was fixed upon Chapter 4's release.
- Strangely if "Bendy" is near the Projectionist, he will become covered in "Bendy's" ink-web. This can be only seen visibly if Henry manages to bring "Bendy" down to Level 14 with the elevator while doing this bug, as "Bendy" cannot spawn there.
- Even though that the Projectionist is "Bendy's" another victim he will later get murdered in the next chapter, "Bendy" does not bother to kill the Projectionist so as he instead just mainly focusing on going after Henry.
- When using hacks by teleporting to the waiting room where the Projectionist's walking by, the Projectionist will just simply vanish as soon as he reaches the blocked door.
Chapter 4: Colossal Wonders
- As long as equipping limited weapon-type empty Bacon Soup cans, it is still possible to kill the Projectionist, dealing only 5 hits. This will cause to prevent the fight scenario between him and "Bendy" from happening to show the Projectionist's real fate. As a result, the Projectionist's body will later oddly disappear once Henry activate the power lever, and the vault door will be noticeably opened again without "Bendy" himself bursting through. Although, this is considered as not canon to the chapter's plotline.
- However, with a usage of hacking, later on while walking the stairs out of the location after killing the Projectionist with an axe instead of the empty Bacon Soup can, the Projectionist seems to come back and still going after Henry, regardless getting kill from early.