Saw is an American horrorfranchise distributed by Lionsgate, produced by Twisted Pictures and created by James Wan and Leigh Whannell, that consists of eight feature films and additional media. In 2003, Wan and Whannell made a short film to help pitch as a potential feature film. This was successfully done in 2004 with the release of the first installment at the Sundance Film Festival. The film was released theatrically that October. The sequels were directed by Darren Lynn Bousman, David Hackl, and Kevin Greutert, and were written by Wan, Whannell, Bousman, Patrick Melton, and Marcus Dunstan, and were released subsequently every October, on the Friday before Halloween, between 2004 and 2010. Both of the creators remained with the franchise as executive producers. On July 22, 2010, producer Mark Burg confirmed that the seventh film, Saw 3D, is the final installment of the series. Lionsgate reportedly expressed interest in continuing the franchise in 2012 with a reboot. In November 2013, it was reported that they were in active development of a sequel. An eighth film, Jigsaw, was released in October 2017.
The franchise revolves around John Kramer, also called the "Jigsaw Killer" or simply "Jigsaw". He was introduced briefly in Saw and developed in more detail in Saw II. Rather than killing his victims outright, Jigsaw traps them in situations that he calls "tests" or "games" to test their will to live through physical or psychological torture and believes if they survive, they will be rehabilitated. Despite the fact that John was murdered in Saw III, the films continue to focus on the posthumous influence of the Jigsaw Killer and his apprentices by exploring his character via flashbacks.
The films collectively grossed over $975 million at the box office worldwide. The film series as a whole has received mostly mixed to negative reviews by critics, but has been a financial success at the box office and is one of the highest-grossing horror film franchises of all time. While the films are classified as torture porn by critics, the creators of Saw disagree with the term.
|Saw (film series)|
|Directed by||James Wan (1)|
Darren Lynn Bousman (2, 3, 4)
David Hackl (5)
Kevin Greutert (6, 7)
The Spierig Brothers (8)
|Produced by||Gregg Hoffman|
|Screenplay by||Darren Lynn Bousman (2)|
Marcus Dunstan (4, 5, 6, 7)
Peter Goldfinger (8)
Patrick Melton (4, 5, 6, 7)
Josh Stolberg (8)
Leigh Whannell (1, 2, 3)
|Story by||Marcus Dunstan (4)|
Thomas Fenton (4)
Patrick Melton (4)
James Wan (1, 2, 3)
Leigh Whannell (1, 2, 3)
|Based on||Saw by|
|Music by||Charlie Clouser|
|Cinematography||David A. Armstrong (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6)|
Brian Gedge (7)
Ben Nott (8)
|Edited by||Kevin Greutert (1, 2, 3, 4,5, 8)|
Brett Sullivan (4)
Andrew Coutts (6, 7)
|Distributed by||Lionsgate Films|
|Total (8 films):|
|Budget||Total (8 films):|
|Box office||Total (7 films):|
Flashbacks from Saw IV reveal the roots of the series, presenting John Kramer as a successful civil engineer and devoted husband to his wife Jill Tuck, who opened a rehab clinic for drug addicts. Jill lost her unborn baby, Gideon, due to the unwitting actions of a drug addict named Cecil, who fled the scene. Saw VI later showed that another drug addict, Amanda Young, also had an unintentional role in the death of Gideon. John grieved over the loss of his child, and distanced himself from his friends and his wife.
John and Jill eventually drifted apart and divorced. After this turn of events, John found himself trapped by his own complacency, until he was diagnosed with inoperable cancer. Extremely bitter over his squandered life and the loss of his unborn son, John began observing the lives of others and became even more depressed as he saw those around him squandering the gift of life that he had just been denied. John went to a man named William Easton to get money for a cancer treatment, but was denied. Flashbacks from Saw II show that, after surviving a suicide attempt where he drove his car off a cliff, John was "reborn", and nurtured the idea that the only way for someone to change is for them to change themselves. Then, in Saw IV flashbacks, he designed the first trap and test for Cecil and decided to use the rest of his existence to design more of these "tests" or "games" as a form of "instant rehabilitation" that would change the world, "one person at a time". John was soon given the name "The Jigsaw Killer" (or "Jigsaw"), because he removed a puzzle-piece-shaped chunk of flesh from those who did not escape his traps. John stated that this name was given to him by the media, and that the cut piece of flesh was meant to represent that these victims were each missing something—what he called the "survival instinct".
Few of Jigsaw's victims are able to survive his brutal mechanical traps, which are often ironicallysymbolic representations of the problems in the victim's life and require them to undergo severe physical and psychological torture to escape.
In Saw V, police lieutenant Mark Hoffman's ties with John are revealed in a series of flashbacks during the film. Hoffman's sister is murdered by her boyfriend, Seth Baxter. Seth is arrested; however, a technicality allowed him to be released, and Hoffman, feeling Seth had not served the full capacity of his sentence, kills him in an inescapable trap designed to look like one of Jigsaw's, laying the blame on him. Jigsaw then kidnaps Hoffman and blackmails him into becoming his apprentice in his "rehabilitation" methods, though eventually Hoffman would become a willing apprentice, helping set up John's tests from almost the beginning, starting with Paul's trap.
The first surviving victim, Amanda Young, views Jigsaw as a hero who ultimately changed her life for the better. Amanda, upon Jigsaw's request, agrees to become his protégée. After Amanda survives, John shows Jill her rehabilitation, and Jill then becomes knowledgeable of John's traps and becomes somewhat of an accomplice as well.
In Saw, Jigsaw has chained the man who diagnosed his cancer, Dr. Lawrence Gordon, in a dilapidated industrial washroom with Adam Stanheight, a photographer who has been tailing the doctor due to belief he is cheating on his wife. Lawrence has instructions to kill Adam by six o'clock, or else his wife and daughter will be killed. Flashbacks show detectives David Tapp and Steven Sing, who suspect Lawrence of being Jigsaw, following a trail of clues from other Jigsaw traps. Sing's death from a shotgun trap after saving a victim named Jeff causes Tapp to obsess over catching Jigsaw. Later on, he chases Zep Hindle, who monitors Adam and Lawrence's tests, and gets shot in the chest. Eventually, Lawrence saws his own foot off in order to escape, leaving Adam in the bathroom while Lawrence goes to try to save his family and get help for Adam. It is later seen in Saw 3D that Lawrence found a steaming hot pipe and cauterized his wound, stopping the bleeding and ultimately surviving the trap. John catches up with Lawrence and makes him his next apprentice, a fact which he hides from his other accomplices. Flashbacks from Saw III show that Amanda kidnapped Adam and later returned to suffocate him as an act of "mercy killing".
Saw II begins with the police tracking a severely weakened Jigsaw to his lair. However, another test is in place, as he and Amanda have kidnapped the son of Detective Eric Matthews and trapped him and a group of seven convicts, previously framed by Eric, in a house that is slowly being filled with sarin gas, with Amanda Young among them. He will trade Daniel Matthews' life for Eric's time, conversing with him until the game is concluded. Eric loses his patience and assaults Jigsaw, forcing him to take him to the house, only to discover that the video feed from inside the house had been pre-recorded, the events actually taking place much earlier; Eric's son was locked in a safe in Jigsaw's warehouse, being kept alive with an oxygen tank. Eric is knocked unconscious by a masked figure and wakes up imprisoned in the bathroom from Saw, which is part of the foundation of the house. Amanda reveals herself to Eric as Jigsaw's protégée before leaving him to die. In a flashback from Saw III, Eric manages to escape the bathroom by breaking his foot. He confronts and beats Amanda, demanding to know where his son is. Amanda fights him off and leaves him for dead. A flashback from Saw IV shows Hoffman later dragging Eric to a prison cell, keeping him alive for a future game.
The events of Saw III and Saw IV occur concurrently. Saw III begins with Jigsaw, weakened and near death, confined to a makeshift hospital bed. Amanda has taken over his work, designing traps of her own; however, these traps are inescapable, as Amanda is convinced that Jigsaw's traps have no effect and that people don't change. A kidnapped doctor is forced to keep Jigsaw alive while another test is performed on Jeff, a man obsessed with vengeance against the drunk driver who killed his son. Jigsaw, unwilling to allow a murderer to continue his legacy, designs a test for Amanda as well; she ultimately fails, and it results in the deaths of both Jigsaw and Amanda. Saw IV, meanwhile, revolves around tests meant for Officer Daniel Rigg, which are overseen by Hoffman. Rigg fails his test, resulting in the death of Eric Matthews. Rigg is left to bleed to death by Hoffman, who later discovers the bodies of Jigsaw and Amanda. When an autopsy is performed on Jigsaw, a cassette tape coated in wax is found in his stomach; the tape informs Hoffman that he is wrong to think that it is all over just because Jigsaw is dead, and he should not expect to go untested.
The events of Saw V show one of Hoffman's first solo tests, five people connected together by different roles in a disastrous fire that killed several others are put into four interconnected tests of teamwork, killing off one person in each trap. The two remaining test subjects realize at the final trap that each previous trap was meant to be completed by each of the five people doing a small part, rather than killing one person per trap. With this knowledge, the two work together and barely manage to escape. They are found alive by Special Agent Erikson. Meanwhile, Hoffman has set up FBI Agent Peter Strahm to appear to be Jigsaw's accomplice, while Strahm pursues Hoffman and is eventually killed due to his inability to follow Hoffman's rules, leaving Hoffman free to continue Jigsaw's "work".
Saw VI begins with Hoffman setting up a game as per John's instructions left in a box for Jill during Saw V. This game centers on insurance executive named William Easton who oversees a team responsible for rejecting two-thirds of all insurance claims. As William progresses through four tests, he saves as many people as he can and learns the error of his choice to reject so many policies, which inherently "kill" the rejected. His last test is revealed to be a test of forgiveness by the family of Harold Abbott, a man to whom William rejected a policy in the past, whose son ultimately chooses to kill William using hydrofluoric acid. Meanwhile, Agent Erickson and the-previously-thought-to-be-dead agent Lindsey Perez search for Agent Strahm with the assistance of Hoffman. Upon finding irregularities in previous murder scenes, Perez and Erickson discover Hoffman's identity, but are killed by him before they can go public with his involvement. Hoffman travels back to the site of William's tests in which Jill attacks him to obey John's final request. She leaves Hoffman in a new Reverse Beartrap left behind by John, though does not leave a key for him to free himself. He is able to manipulate the trap and escapes wounded.
Saw 3D picks up with Jill and Hoffman battling for control of Jigsaw's legacy. As Jill enters protective custody and makes Hoffman's true identity public, Hoffman sets up a new game involving skinheads to find a way to Jill. Meanwhile, Bobby Dagen, a fraud who has written a book about escaping a Jigsaw trap he never experienced, is captured and forced to confront people who knew that he lied about being in a trap. Three of Dagen's friends die and his test concludes with him being forced to reenact the trap that he claimed to have survived before. He fails, which results in the death of his wife. Meanwhile, Hoffman has posed as a corpse and killed several officers to infiltrate the police station. He finds and kills Jill using the Reverse Beartrap. Hoffman attempts to leave town but is captured by Lawrence Gordon and his accomplices, then placed in the bathroom from the first film. Revealing Jigsaw-aided Lawrence after his game and, in return, Lawrence helped with subsequent traps. Hoffman is then left shackled in the bathroom to die.
Jigsaw begins with a new game presumably being conducted ten years after the events of John Kramer's death in Saw III. Five people are forced to undergo a series of tests in an abandoned barn, lead by John. In the first test, one of the subjects is seemingly killed by buzzsaws after remaining unconscious during instruction. Most of the remaining subjects are killed over the course of the game, until only two, Anna and the heavily wounded Ryan, are left. The two of them are drugged and wake up chained on opposite sides of a room. John is revealed to be in the room with them, and he provides them with a shotgun, explaining it is the "key to their freedom", before leaving them to escape. Anna attempts to kill Ryan with the shotgun, but the weapon was rigged to backfire, killing her and leaving Ryan to die. Meanwhile, police forces lead by Detective Halloran and aided by medical forensic scientists Logan Nelson and Eleanor Bonneville attempt to discover the location and participants in the game, while also struggling to understand how the deceased John could be behind it all. Logan and Eleanor find the location of the game at an abandoned barn owned by Jill Tuck, with Halloran pursuing them, believing they are behind the most recent games. Eleanor is shown escaping, and Logan and Halloran are placed in a room with collars lined with laser cutters around their neck. They are told by John that they must confess their sins to survive. Logan is presumably killed after admitting his error delayed John's diagnosis. Halloran then confesses he let various guilty convicts walk free, deactivating his collar. However, Logan rises from the ground, revealing his collar was harmless. He explains that the game in the barn was the very first game that took place ten years earlier, and that the bodies found by the team were criminals that Halloran let walk free, who Logan placed into an identical game of his own. He reveals he was the participant in the first game who was presumably killed by the buzzsaws, but that John did not believe Logan should die simply because his 'crime' was merely an accident, and rescued him as a result. John took Logan under his wing, and Logan aided John in all the various traps throughout the series, making him John's very first apprentice. Logan reactivates Halloran's collar, slicing his head open, before slamming the door shut.
Main article: Billy the Puppet
Billy is a puppet resembling a ventriloquist's dummy, sometimes seen riding a tricycle, that has appeared throughout the films and has become a type of mascot for the series. It is used by the Jigsaw Killer to communicate with his victims by delivering televised messages or occasionally in person to describe details of the sadistic traps and the means by which the victims could survive. Viewers have sometimes incorrectly identified the puppet itself as Jigsaw, because of its presence and connection to the killer.
Age and use of the puppet over the course of the films necessitated its reconstruction. According to Wan, the original puppet's face for Saw involved clay, papier-mâché, and black ping-pong balls with the irises painted in for the eyes, but in later films more sophisticated construction included waterjet-cut foam for the body and remote-controlled animatronics.
The endurance and popularity of the franchise has resulted in the production of Billy merchandise, as well as references in other media and its use in promotions for the films.
Main article: Hello Zepp
"Hello Zepp" is a piece of instrumental music that was originally composed by Charlie Clouser for the first film in the series. In Saw, the implied villain, Zep Hindle, is revealed to actually be a victim of the Jigsaw Killer. (The character's name in the script is spelled "Zep", whereas the music titles are spelled "Zepp".) As the series continued, the piece was reused in every film as a leitmotif, often being renamed and remixed to accommodate the changing situations and characters. The music was used in every Saw ending, usually during the revealing of plot revelations and twists which Saw films often use and it serves as the main theme tune for the whole films.
An important component of each film is the variety of (usually mechanical in form) traps Jigsaw and his apprentices use on their captives to communicate his message.
According to David Hackl, all of the traps are real objects, and not CGI. They were designed to look horrific but ultimately be safe for the actors in them. Writer Marcus Dunstan said: "It's built to function there on the day", and added: "It works. So if there's a scalping chair—there really was a chair with working gears to grind and pull your scalp back." The most potentially dangerous item was a "water box" used in Saw V, in which one of the actors (Scott Patterson, as Peter Strahm) had to keep his head submerged as long as possible. Another element of the traps is that Hackl desired a specific look of rust and menace, but he also wanted them to have a type of beauty about them.
Cast and characters
Further information on the cast and characters: List of Saw cast members and List of Saw characters
- A dark grey cell indicates the character was not in the film.
Saw grossed $18.2 million its opening weekend and had become Lionsgate's second-best opening, after Fahrenheit 9/11's$23.9 million (2004).Saw went on to gross $103 million worldwide, and is the second-lowest-grossing film in the series after Saw VI. At the time, it became the most profitable horror film after Scream (1996). It is the seventh-highest-grossing Halloween opening weekend.Saw II opened at number one with $31.7 million, and set a Lionsgate Halloween opening weekend record and is also the third-highest-grossing Halloween opener. It became at the time, the widest release in Lionsgate history and one of the best opening weekends for a horror sequel. It is Lionsgate's fourth-highest-grossing film in the United States and Canada.Saw III placed first by grossing $33.6 million its opening weekend, making it the biggest Halloween debut ever and at the time, Lionsgate's highest-opening weekend. It is the highest-grossing film in the series worldwide. It has the highest-grossing weekend in the series and also Lionsgate's fifth-highest-grossing film in the United States and Canada.
Saw IV premiered at number one with $32.1 million making it the second-best Halloween weekend opener. In Saw V's opening weekend it placed second, being beat by High School Musical 3: Senior Year, and made $30.1 million. It is Lionsgate's tenth-highest-grossing film.Saw VI opened in second place behind Paranormal Activity to $14.1 million, which is the lowest of all the Saw films worldwide. It is also the lowest-grossing film in the series.Saw 3D placed first grossing $22.5 million its opening weekend, with 92% of tickets coming from more than 2,100 3D-equipped locations. It had the fifth-best opening weekend in the Saw series. It is the most successful film in the franchise since Saw IV.
The Saw series, when compared to the other high-grossing American horror franchises—A Nightmare on Elm Street, Child's Play, Friday the 13th, Halloween, the Hannibal Lecter series, Hellraiser, Psycho, Scream, The Exorcist, and The Texas Chainsaw Massacre—with figures adjusted for 2011 inflation, is the fifth-highest-grossing horror franchise in the United States and Canada at $457.4 million. This list is topped by Friday the 13th at $687.1 million, followed by the Nightmare on Elm Street series with $592.8 million, with the Hannibal Lecter film series closely behind with $588.7 million. Then comes Halloween with $557.5 million, the Scream series with $442.9 million and The Texas Chainsaw Massacre with $304.6 million, and lastly comes the Child's Play film series with approximately $203 million.
Unadjusted for inflation
|Saw||October 29, 2004 (2004-10-29)||$55,185,045||$47,911,300||$103,096,345||$1–1.2 million|||
|Saw II||October 28, 2005 (2005-10-28)||$87,039,965||$60,708,540||$147,748,505||$4 million|||
|Saw III||October 27, 2006 (2006-10-27)||$80,238,724||$84,635,551||$164,874,275||$10 million|||
|Saw IV||October 26, 2007 (2007-10-26)||$63,300,095||$76,052,538||$139,352,633||$10 million|||
|Saw V||October 24, 2008 (2008-10-24)||$56,746,769||$57,117,290||$113,864,059||$10.8 million|||
|Saw VI||October 23, 2009 (2009-10-23)||$27,693,292||$40,540,337||$68,233,629||$11 million|||
|Saw 3D||October 29, 2010 (2010-10-29)||$45,710,178||$90,440,256||$136,150,434||$20 million|||
|Jigsaw||October 27, 2017 (2017-10-27)||$38,052,832||$64,885,390||$102,938,222||$10 million|||
On IGN's list of the top twenty-five movie franchises of all time, the Saw series ranked as 25th.
Merchandise and attractions
Main article: List of Saw media
- Saw, a 2003 short film that served as a promotional tool in pitching the film's potential to Lions Gate Entertainment, included on the second disc of the uncut DVD release of Saw, released by itself, and on the Saw Trilogy DVD containing Saw Uncut Edition, Saw II Special Edition, and Saw III Director's Cut, packaged with a limited-edition 3-D puppet head box version of Billy the Puppet.
- Saw, released on October 29, 2004
- Saw II, released on October 28, 2005
- Saw III, released on October 27, 2006
- Saw IV, released on October 26, 2007
- Saw V, released on October 24, 2008
- Saw VI, released on October 23, 2009
- Saw 3D, released on October 29, 2010
- Jigsaw, released on October 27, 2017
Japanese video game company Konami currently owns the rights to the Saw interactive video game property. Konami stated in mid-2009 that they wanted to make Saw a series of video games to supplement the films. They also wish to make Saw their next big survival horror franchise next to their other property, Silent Hill. They stated that because Saw focuses on visual intensity and Silent Hill focuses on psychological terror, both could exist in the video game industry without directly competing against each other.
The first game in the series, Saw, set between first and second film in the series, was initially released on October 6, 2009. with a sequel Saw II: Flesh & Blood, released on October 19, 2010, for the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3, ten days before the release of the seventh film, Saw 3D.
David Tapp and Amanda Young were released as part of the downloadable Saw Chapter for the video game Dead by Daylight.
Saw: Rebirth, a comic book prequel to the original film released to promote Saw II. Its canonicity was later contradicted by events in Saw IV. It is, however, the first canonical appearance of Jigsaw's wife, Jill, who was later introduced into the film series in Saw III, and established still-canonical elements of Jigsaw's backstory (an engineer who is dying from brain cancer.)
- "Saw: The Ride" is a Gerstlauer Euro-Fighter roller coaster themed around the franchise, which opened on March 13, 2009, at Thorpe Park in the United Kingdom. It features an enclosed dark ride section with special effects, before cars travel outside and are pulled up a 100-foot vertical lift hill into a steep 100-degree drop.
- Thorpe Park opened a temporary Saw attraction called "Saw — Movie Bites" for their 2009 Fright Nights event.
- It was announced in October 2009 that Thorpe Park would also be adding a permanent, year-round live action horror maze themed around the Saw movies. It opened at the start of the 2010 season, and features six scenes representing one iconic trap from each movie to date.
- "Saw: Game Over" was a 2009 maze made by Universal Studios for Halloween Horror Nights, based on characters, traps and scenes from the films. At the Universal Studios Hollywood rendition of Horror Nights it was titled Saw: Game Over, while at the Universal Studios Florida rendition, it was simply titled Saw.
- "Saw", a themed haunted house, operated during the month of October at Fright Dome, Circus Circus Las Vegas. It featured interactive, handcrafted replicas of the "games" set by Jigsaw. It was introduced in 2009 and partnered with Lionsgate and Twisted Pictures.
- In 2010, "Halloween Fright Nights" at Warner Bros. Movie World featured a maze created by Sudden Impact Entertainment, featuring characters, traps and scenes from the films. The maze was simply titled "Saw Maze".
- "Saw Haunted Attraction" was a maze at the Brea Plaza Shopping Center in 2008 created by Sinister Pointe Haunted Attractions.
- "SAWMANIA" was a fan event in New York. Eventgoers were able to meet actors and directors, and view props used in the films.
Since Jigsaw's release and after it became a box office success, there have been reports about the possibility of a new entry. The horror news site, Bloody Disgusting reported on January 16, 2018 that "Twisted Pictures is planning a ninth SAW" noting that "it’s just a “conversation” at the moment, and Jigsaw directors Michael and Peter Spierig will not be returning to their director’s chairs."
Reflecting on this report, Movie Web took into consideration the franchise's financial success thus far when considering the probability of a ninth film being made. It noted: "Saw, at this point, thanks to Jigsaw, is just shy of becoming a billion-dollar franchise. That's not something many horror franchises can claim, so Saw 9 seems like the kind of thing that is probably going to become closer to a reality as time goes on."
On January 26, 2018, Tobin Bell expressed an interest in reprising his role as Jigsaw in a ninth film. He stated: "If they were to continue I’m always interested. Actors act. That’s what we do. And I’m always interested in expanding a character and filling him in if there’s more story to be told. And when the writing is good and makes people think, and is surprising and intricate and something new. So yes, I’m interested in participating in that." Bell also expressed an interest in a future sequel exploring more into the origins of the Billy doll.
During an interview on February 2, 2018 with Screen Rant for Jigsaw’s home video release, co-directors The Spierig Brothers claim the eighth film secretly laid the story foundation for the next sequel. When asked how the film sets up a potential ninth movie, Peter Spierig stated: "There’s a lot of things that go on in Jigsaw that we talked about where they could go in further movies, and so there’s things with the characters and ideas that have the foundations of other things that could potentially come in the next couple of movies. You want to make the movie itself a complete experience for the audience, a satisfying experience in terms of the story, of feeling like there is a conclusion. But at the same time, there are some questions about the characters and their arcs and things like that where we haven’t explained. And we certainly talked about it with the producers and the writer and even the actors – where things potentially could go. It really becomes a question of does the audience want more? Are they keen to see these characters – the characters who survive and even sometimes the characters who don’t survive can end up in another Saw film, based on its history. There’s always room for flashbacks and who knows what."
- ^Bowles, Scott (July 22, 2010). "'Saw 3D' will be the final cut for horror franchise". USA Today. Archived from the original on September 20, 2011. Retrieved July 22, 2010.
- ^"Lionsgate Remaking Saw?". DreadCentral.
- ^"Exclusive: Lionsgate Is Actively Developing Next 'Saw'". Bloody Disgusting.
- ^Sharrett, Christopher (December 2009). "The Problem of Saw: "Torture Porn" and the Conservatism of Contemporary Horror Films". 35 (1). Cineaste: 32–37.
- ^Nelson, Rob (October 23, 2009). "Saw VI Movie Review". Variety. Reed Business Information. Archived from the original on January 25, 2010. Retrieved December 8, 2009.
- ^Scheck, Frank (October 23, 2009). "Saw VI – Film Review". The Hollywood Reporter. Prometheus Global Media. Archived from the original on September 15, 2011. Retrieved September 15, 2011.
- ^Tobias, Scott (October 29, 2010). "Saw creators Leigh Whannell and James Wan". The A.V. Club. The Onion. Archived from the original on August 16, 2011. Retrieved August 16, 2011.
- ^Hoffman, Gregg (May 13, 2005). "Saw 2: Dairy #2". JoBlo.com. p. 2. Retrieved August 24, 2011.
- ^Saw script on IMSDb. Accessed 2010-07-23.
- ^Saw track listing on UGO
Jigsaw is a 2017 American horror film directed by Michael and Peter Spierig, written by Josh Stolberg and Peter Goldfinger, and starring Matt Passmore, Callum Keith Rennie, Clé Bennett, and Hannah Emily Anderson. It is the eighth installment in the Saw franchise, picking up over a decade after the death of the eponymous Jigsaw killer, during the police investigation of a new succession of murders that fit his modus operandi. Saw 3D (2010) was originally deemed the final installment of the series, before Lionsgate Films commissioned the production of Jigsaw from a pitch by Stolberg and Goldfinger.
Filming began in November 2016, with post-production following in January. The film was released in the United States on October 27, 2017, received generally unfavorable reviews from critics, and grossed $102.9 million worldwide.
Criminal Edgar Munsen is pursued by the police onto a rooftop, where he activates a triggering mechanism before being shot non-fatally by Police Detective Halloran and his fellow officers.
Five people are held captive in a barn, each with a metal noose around their neck. A tape recording from John Kramer explains they must give a sacrifice of blood and will need to confess their sins. The chains begin pulling them towards a wall of buzzsaws. Four manage to survive by cutting themselves on the blades as an offering of blood, but one man who was unconscious during the majority of the game appears to die.
The next test divulges that group member Carly caused the death of an asthmatic woman by stealing her purse, which had her emergency inhaler inside. To save the others from being hanged, she must inject herself with one of the three needles- one containing an antidote to a poison in her system, one a saline solution, and one a potent acid. Volatile group member Ryan eventually stabs Carly with all three to save himself, melting her face and killing her.
Detectives Halloran and Hunt begin investigating the discovery of bodies that appear to belong to the unnamed man and Carly. Halloran becomes suspicious of forensic pathologists Logan, a veteran and former doctor whose wife was killed two years prior, and Eleanor. Munsen is kidnapped from the hospital by an unseen assailant. When the police commissioner orders Kramer's grave be exhumed, Munsen's dead body is found inside instead.
Ryan tries escaping through a door marked "No Exit", and is trapped by wires that ensnare his leg. Fellow group members Anna and Mitch discover an unlocked door, and are trapped inside a grain silo. A taped message explains they will be buried in grain and killed by falling debris unless Ryan pulls a lever that will free him from the wires around his leg. Anna and Mitch survive, but Ryan's leg is severed when he pulls the lever.
Logan and Eleanor speak about their mutual distrust of Halloran. Eleanor takes Logan to her "studio" where she reveals that she is an obsessive fangirl of the Jigsaw case, and has built replicas of Kramer's traps. She's worried her obsession might incriminate her. Detective Hunt has followed them, and informs Halloran of the studio.
The next test reveals Mitch knowingly sold a motorcycle with a faulty brake to Kramer's nephew, resulting in his death. Mitch will be lowered into a spiral-shaped blade unless he can reach for a brake lever. Though fellow group-member Anna attempts to help him, he is shredded by the blade and killed.
Halloran calls for Eleanor and Logan's arrest after a corpse appearing to belong to Mitch is discovered in the studio. Logan convinces Hunt to let them go, as both suspect Halloran to be responsible. Eleanor has deduced the game's location, and she and Logan depart for the barn. Halloran pursues them. Meanwhile, Hunt finds puzzle-piece shaped pieces of human flesh in Halloran's freezer, fitting Jigsaw's M.O. and implicating Halloran as a copycat killer.
Anna attempts to slip through a doorway to freedom, only to be captured. She finds herself and Ryan chained in a room with a hooded figure, who is revealed to be a still-living John Kramer. Kramer reveals that Anna suffocated her infant in a fit of rage and blamed it on her sleeping husband by planting the body next to him. Her husband later committed suicide, thinking he accidentally smothered his own baby. It is also revealed that Ryan accidentally caused the death of several of his friends years prior in a car accident but managed to escape blame. Kramer tells them they have gotten his message "backwards". He places a loaded shotgun between them and tells them it is the "key" to their survival. Anna attempts to shoot Ryan, but the gun, which is revealed to be rigged, backfires and instead kills her. Ryan realizes that the keys to his and Anna's chains were in the gun, and destroyed when Anna pulled the trigger, leaving no hope of escape.
Logan and Eleanor investigate the barn, but are ambushed by Halloran. Eleanor escapes, and Halloran is drugged by an unseen assailant.
Logan and Halloran awaken in collars rigged with laser cutters. They are told they must confess their sins to survive and may choose who goes first. Halloran forces Logan to go first. Logan confesses that he mislabeled Kramer's X-Rays years prior, which caused his cancer to go undiagnosed until it was too late. Despite confessing, Logan appears to die. Halloran is tested next. He admits to having allowed criminals to walk free for personal gain, and his collar deactivates.
Suddenly Logan stands, revealing that he faked his death in order to get Halloran to confess, and that the barn game in fact took place ten years ago. He was the man who appeared to die in the first game, but Kramer, feeling he should not die because of an honest mistake, saved him. John took Logan on as his first apprentice. The bodies that were found were actually the bodies of criminals Halloran allowed to walk free. Logan placed them into the same tests that he was meant to face ten years prior. Logan also reveals that Munsen, one of the criminals Halloran let go, was responsible for murdering his wife. However, because Halloran didn't confess all of his sins, and broke the rules to force Logan to go first, he will die and be framed as the Jigsaw copycat killer. Logan reactivates the laser-collar around Halloran's neck and his head is sliced apart, killing him. Having succeeded in his plan, Logan declares that he speaks for the dead.
Further information on the cast and characters: List of Saw cast members and List of Saw characters
Saw 3D was intended to be the final Saw film. The film was set to be split into two parts, but Lionsgate Films only allowed the filmmakers to make one more film after Saw VI under-performed at the box office. According to Saw 3D writers Marcus Dunstan and Patrick Melton, because of the change, "the big reveal of Dr. Gordon was a bit underserved ... perhaps creating more questions than answers. There were several ideas [we] never quite figured out. But [I] don't want to say what they were, because you never know what might happen in the future."
After the intended conclusion, Lionsgate ceased making Saw films, while waiting to hear a pitch that they thought made it worthwhile to resurrect the series. Jigsaw was conceived when writers Josh Stolberg and Peter Goldfinger, who had spent two years pursuing the opportunity to write a Saw entry, proposed their vision. It became known in July 2016 that brothers Michael and Peter Spierig would direct the film. The producers Mark Burg and Oren Koules had also produced the previous entries in the Saw series. Composer Charlie Clouser has described the film as a "reinvention" of the series, opining that "the Spierig brothers can deliver a fresh take on the material that will establish a new story line and new characters that can carry the saga into the future." The directors further detailed their approach as being "Saw for 2017", and Michael Spierig explained, "It's perhaps not quite as vicious, and more fun. But it's still full of gore, that's for sure. It's got a really great mystery, and there are very interesting twists."
In October 2016, production was confirmed to have commenced under the working title of Saw: Legacy. The film was shot in November 2016, and entered post-production by January. On March 2, 2017, Bloody Disgusting revealed the first plot details and a full actor list, confirming that Tobin Bell would return in the role of John Kramer. In June 2017, the Motion Picture Association of America listed the film under the official title of Jigsaw, rating it R, for "sequences of grisly bloody violence and torture, and for language". On August 14, 2017, the film passed uncut in the United Kingdom with an 18 Certificate by the BBFC. In regard to the new title, writer Josh Stolberg clarified that "when a writer is writing a movie, they put something on the cover page to separate it from other films. So when we were writing this film, the title read Saw: Legacy but it was never official or 'decided'."
On September 16, 2017, Lionsgate released five posters to promote Jigsaw. The posters show off people in the traditional Billy the Puppet makeup, captioned "He is Everything. He is Everywhere. He is Everyone". The release of the posters was Lionsgate's way of reasserting the series' dominance over the Halloween season.
Halloween Blood Drive
The Annual Blood Drive is the series' tradition, where before the release of the films in October, mobile blood stations are set up around the United States, where fans who donate blood receive a free ticket to see the respective film of that year. The tradition started in 2004, after the overwhelming success of Saw, and continued for each of the sequels until it stopped in 2009 before the release of Saw VI. Due to the arrival of Jigsaw in October, the blood drive was revived for another year, promoting the film with eight posters released by Lionsgate, featuring "Nurses" Grae Drake, Dan Rockwell, Susanne Bartch, Nyakim Gatwech, Shaun Dross, Mosh, Mykie and Amanda LePore.
As of September 2017, 120,000 pints (57,000 L) of blood had been donated, which has led to over 360,000 lives being saved.
Charlie Clouser, who provided the score for all previous entries in the Saw series, returned to score Jigsaw. Clouser re-imagined the music of the Saw franchise, following the six-year hiatus between Saw 3D and Jigsaw. Clouser stated in 2016, "this will be an opportunity [for me] to re-imagine how [I] approach the score, and [I] will be trying a more stark, bold, and stripped-down approach that will be more in line with the strong vision that the Spierig brothers are bringing to the table."
Jigsaw was released in the United Kingdom on October 26, 2017, and in the United States theatrically on October 27, 2017. It was featured in IMAX screenings for the first week of its theatrical run.
Jigsaw has grossed $38.1 million in the United States and Canada, and $64.9 million in other territories, for a worldwide total of $102.9 million, against a production budget of $10 million.
In the United States and Canada, Jigsaw was released alongside Thank You for Your Service and Suburbicon, and is projected to gross around $20 million from 2,941 theaters in its opening weekend. It made $1.6 million from Thursday night previews at 2,400 theaters, just below the $1.7 million Saw 3D made from midnight screenings seven years prior, and $7.2 million on its first day. It went on to open to $16.64 million, finishing first at the box office but marking the second lowest debut of the franchise. In its second weekend the film dropped 61% to $6.56 million, finishing third behind newcomers Thor: Ragnarok and A Bad Moms Christmas. In its third weekend, the film dropped another 47% and made $3.43 million, finishing fifth.
On review aggregatorRotten Tomatoes, the film has an approval rating of 34% based on 73 reviews, with an average rating of 4.7/10. The site's critical consensus reads, "Jigsaw definitely won't win many converts to the Saw franchise, but for longtime fans, it should prove a respectably revolting—if rarely scary—diversion." On Metacritic, which assigns a normalized rating to reviews, the film holds a weighted average score of 39 out of 100, based on 18 critics, indicating "generally unfavorable reviews". Audiences polled by CinemaScore gave the film an average grade of "B" on an A+ to F scale.
IGN gave the film a score of 4.5/10, writing "The good news is, Jigsaw is not the worst horror movie of the year. The bad news is, it's still bad enough that that's the good news...[It] doesn't capture what made the Saw franchise work in the first place." Darren French of Entertainment Weekly gave the film a "C", calling it disappointing and overly long.Bloody Disgusting gave the film two and a half out of five, saying the film "while being a fun ride, fails to justify its existence with a story that is overly familiar and a twist that doesn't live up to most of its predecessors."
Variety's Owen Gleiberman found the film "garishly rote" saying "For 92 minutes, it more or less succeeds in sawing through your boredom, slicing and dicing with a glum explicitness that raises the occasional tingle of gross-out suspense but no longer carries any kick of true shock value."io9 largely panned the film saying "[it] is one of the better films in the franchise. Unfortunately, that's not saying much."
Jigsaw was released digitally on January 9, 2018 and on 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray, Blu-ray, and DVD on January 23, 2018.
On January 16, 2018, Lionsgate were reported to have begun discussing a ninth installment in which the Spierig brothers would not be returning.
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