Lionsgate has greenlit franchise's seventh installment

It turns out there’s plenty of life left in “Saw” and Jigsaw John.

With “Saw VI” due to open in the usual October slot, Lionsgate has greenlit “Saw VII” with a January start of production. David Hackl — production designer of the second, third and fourth films and helmer of “Saw V” — has been tapped to direct.

Mark Burg and Oren Koules, who have originated and produced all six of the “Saw” pics, are back as producers through their Twisted Pictures banner. And scribes Marcus Dunstan and Patrick Melton, who penned the fourth, fifth and sixth films, are writing the seventh.

Lionsgate has worldwide rights in North America and the United Kingdom. The five “Saw” pics to date have grossed more than $700 million worldwide.

Dunstan and Melton, who broke into Hollywood via Project Greenlight, also wrote home-invasion thriller “The Collector,” which opens next weekend through Freestyle Releasing. That pic also marks Dunstan’s helming debut.

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