The Saw Franchise:
The Game That Never Ends
By Kirsten Howard
Nine films deep in Jigsaw’s puzzle, the Saw franchise looks like it will live a lot longer than its unfortunate victims.
When James Wan and Leigh Whannell’s low budget horror movie Saw was first released in 2004, no one could have predicted that its story would continue for so long.
Starring screenwriter Whannell and The Princess Bride actor Cary Elwes, Saw followed two men trapped in a deadly game set up by a villain called the Jigsaw Killer.
It took 3 years to get the movie made - and it debuted to mixed reviews - but it ended up making over $103 million at the global box office.
The men behind Saw went on to have big Hollywood careers while keeping their names on the extended franchise.
Saw writer and star Whannell directed the cult sci-fi horror movie Upgrade, and also helmed a smash hit reimagining of The Invisible Man.
Meanwhile, Wan launched The Conjuring and Insidious horror film franchises, and is the director of DC’s Aquaman solo films.
Many Saw sequels have been released since the original film, and a reboot movie also arrived in 2017.
The stories have continued to revolve around intricate and torturous plots set by serial killer John Kramer, and the people who have become ensnared in his web.
This year, there is an unexpected addition to the long line of Saw movies!
Spiral: From the Book of Saw hopes to revitalise the beloved horror franchise by taking a new approach to Jigsaw lore.
Comedian Chris Rock and Marvel star Samuel L. Jackson lead the cast of Spiral: From the Book of Saw.
In the film, Rock plays a cop called Ezekiel "Zeke" Banks, who refuses to put up with corruption in the police force.
But Zeke is drawn into the Saw mythology when he has to investigate a Jigsaw copycat - who also happens to hate corrupt cops.
The filmmakers decided that Spiral: From the Book of Saw would open up the franchise for audiences who hadn’t seen the other Saw films.
It also injects elements of comedy into the horrifying Jigsaw story.