'Saw' makers cutting 'Chainsaw' deal
Twisted Pictures is becoming the house of multiple sharp objects. The makers of the “Saw” series are closing a deal to take over the “Texas Chainsaw Massacre” franchise, putting the villains Leatherface and Jigsaw under one roof.
Sources said the producer/financier is in talks to partner in the films with Lionsgate, which has distributed all the pics in the highly profitable “Saw” series, including the Oct. 23 release of “Saw VI.”
The series had been launched at New Line with a remake and a prequel produced by Platinum Dunes, the genre company run by Michael Bay, Brad Fuller and Andrew Form.
Deals had been made on a per-pic basis with “Chainsaw” rights-holders Bob Kuhn and Kim Henkel, the latter of whom wrote the original 1974 pic with director Tobe Hooper. Talks fell apart with Platinum Dunes. The Twisted Pictures deal is for multiple films, sources said.
The franchise is bloody big business: The 2003 remake cost $9.5 million and grossed $110 million worldwide. The 2006 prequel didn’t do as well but still grossed $55 million on a $13 million budget.
The Platinum Dunes team, which just made a first-look deal at Paramount, still is aligned with a pair of iconic psycho murderers: After reintroducing Jason Voorhees in 2009’s “Friday the 13th,” they are relaunching Freddy Krueger (played by Jackie Earle Haley) in a new “A Nightmare on Elm Street.”