Chris Rock is teaming up with producers Mark Burg and Oren Koules to relaunch the 'Saw' franchise.
Created by James Wan and Leigh Whannell, the original 'Saw' franchise has had eight feature films so far. The series revolves around "Jigsaw", who traps victims into elaborate death traps which test their morality.
Released between 2004 and 2017, critics have consistently given the films mixed to negative reviews. However, the horror movies clearly have a major fan following, as evidenced by the franchise grossing more than $1 billion from box office and retail sales by 2009. The films, meanwhile, have collectively grossed over $976 million at the worldwide box office as of 2018.
Stand-up comedian Chris Rock has been a longtime fan of the franchise.
"I’ve been a fan of ‘Saw’ since the first film in 2004," he said. "I am excited by the opportunity to take this to a really intense and twisted new place."
The re-imagining and spinning-off of the franchise will be for Lionsgate. The studio's latest movie to hit cinemas is 'John Wick: Chapter 3 - Parabellum.'
Joe Drake, chairman of Lionsgate’s Motion Picture Group, revealed that the new 'Saw' movie hits cinemas on October 23, 2020.
"When Chris Rock came to us and described in chilling detail his fantastic vision that reimagines and spins off the world of the notorious Jigsaw Killer, we were all-in," said Drake.
"‘Saw’ is one of the highest-grossing horror franchises of all time and it’s one of Lionsgate’s most successful film series. This upcoming film will still be as mind bending and intense as all the previous ‘Saw’ films. Chris conceived this idea and it will be completely reverential to the legacy of the material while reinvigorating the brand with his wit, creative vision and passion for this classic horror franchise."
The screenplay is based on a story conceived by Rock and written by Pete Goldfinger and Josh Stolberg. Darren Lynn Bousman, who helmed 'Saw II', 'III' and 'IV', is back as director. The movie will be executive produced by Rock, Daniel Heffner, Wan and Whannell. Burg and Koules are producing.
"Chris wants to put his own spin on the ‘Saw’ franchise in the way Eddie Murphy put a completely fresh perspective on buddy-cop films with ’48 Hours,'" said Burg and Koules.
"This new ‘Saw’ is going to be an event film in the making for horror fans. It will have all of the twists and turns and hardcore layers that our fans expect directed by one of the masters of the craft, Darren Lynn Bousman. We can’t wait to get started."