Chris Rock adds a comedic twist to an old saw, Entertainment News & Top Stories
Think about the Saw horror movie franchise and the most memorable thing about the movies besides the villainous Jigsaw are the traps.
These are the devices that keep a person immobilized while a countdown to a macabre automated execution. The victim must choose: cut off the trapped body part or die.
Actor and comedian Chris Rock has struck a deal with the creative team for the film Spiral, the latest chapter in the franchise. He would keep his way and they would keep theirs.
“We agreed early on that I would be in charge of the comedy and they would do the traps and the horror and the blood. Anything else would be egomania,” says Rock, who stars, produces and contributed. to the story of the film, the ninth installment of the Saw series.
He was speaking at a recent online press conference.
The first film, Saw (2004), was a huge success. It was the feature debut by Malaysian-born Australian filmmaker James Wan, working with a screenplay by Australian writer and filmmaker Leigh Whannell. The film was to be a launching pad for great Hollywood careers for both.
Spiral opens in theaters today.
Rock, 56, is an unlikely A-list presence in what has generally been a low- and mid-budget horror series, despite being followed by a big fan.
The cast has other notable names, such as Samuel L. Jackson and Max Minghella, actors of a stature not usually associated with a brand known for his poise.
Rock says he got involved and helped steer the story in a boyfriend-cop direction because, as a horror enthusiast and fan of the show, he saw he could help attract a wider audience without sacrificing its characteristic shocks.
“There’s a lot here for people who never watch horror. Comedy helps, casting helps. Plus, the relationship is really warm here – there’s a dynamic between me, Sam and Max,” he said.
Zeke, a detective played by Rock, and William, a rookie played by Minghella, investigate a series of gruesome murders that indicate serial killer Jigsaw may still be alive.
Zeke’s father, retired cop Marcus (Jackson), is drawn into the case.
Spiral pays homage to films such as the Boyfriend-Boyfriend Movie 48 Hours. (1982) and the crime thrillers Reservoir Dogs (1992) and Seven (1995).
While it may be shocking to some to see Rock – whose career includes several specials and appearances in comedies such as Grown Ups (2010, with a sequel in 2013) – doing drama in Spiral, it is not his first attempt at a non-comedic project. In the fourth season of the crime drama Fargo, which aired last year, he played the ruthless gang leader Loy Cannon.
“In the game that I played, it’s usually either – or: either I’m funny or I’m dramatic.
“There was no place to be funny in Fargo. Spiral is a welcome challenge because I can do both. I set it up with comedy and then brought it home with drama “he said.
Spiral director Darren Lynn Bousman is a series veteran, having directed the second (2005), third (2006) and fourth (2007) installments.
Speaking to the press at another conference, he admits that Spiral’s boyfriend-buddy structure might seem odd to those familiar with previous films. But he reminds them that horror franchises like Halloween or Nightmare On Elm Street have always enjoyed a freedom to go where other genres are afraid to step.
“Jigsaw died in Saw 3, but he came back in Saw 4, 5, 6, 7 and 8. The great thing about Saw is you never know where he’s going to go. goes into space then, I don’t know, “he says.
• Spiral opens in theaters today.