Spiral’s Darren Lynn Bousman on Return to Saw & Working With Chris Rock

While audiences may still have to wait a while for the highly-anticipated ninth installment in the Saw franchise, Spiral , ComingSoon.net got the opportunity to dive a bit further into the project with director Darren Lynn Bousman, as well as his return to the series and working with executive producer, story author and star Chris Rock!

While chatting with the 41-year-old filmmaker for his latest project, the Maggie Q-starring Death of Me , Bousman noted his disappointment in having to delay Spiral a year after its original release due to the global pandemic, but expresses he is “confident enough in the movie to say it will be worth the wait” and describing it as “intense,” “awesome,” “horrific” and stating that “Chris Rock kills it, he fucking kills it.”

The upcoming film also marks the first time in 13 years Bousman has sat in the director’s chair for the franchise after being “pretty vocal” about his disinterest in wanting to return, but that after Rock came to producers with the “unique take on a Saw movie” and the producers subsequently came to him, he had a change of heart.

“I guess I’ve learned to never say never because when I was presented with the idea and heard Chris’ take on it, I was like, ‘Shit, that’s good,’” Bousman recalled. “They were like, ‘Yeah,’ so I signed up immediately. I’m just excited, it’s really a unique take and a way to kind of relaunch the franchise while still paying massive homage to what came before it.”

Growing up in the ’80s and ’90s, Bousman came to be “a huge fan” of Rock’s comedy and found that he was “really intimidated by the idea” that he would be directing the comedian, “specifically knowing it was his idea” and even pointing out Rock himself is a director, but his fears were extinguished as Rock “could not have been more collaborative and cool” on set.

“I think there were two times on set that he pulled me aside and said, ‘Hey, am I overstepping or can I give you a suggestion?’” Bousman related. “Both times he did it, he improved the scene and scenario 100 fold and that was kind of awesome and then on top of that, he would back me on a lot of things. There would obviously be creative disagreements with the producers and myself and Chris, 95 percent of the time, would listen to my idea and be like, ‘No, that’s dope, what he’s talking about is cool.’ Chris and I bonded almost immediately and he was an awesome collaborator on the process.”

Having worked in the franchise prior, Bousman discussed that one of his major objectives in returning to the film was to give it “its own unique look” to fit the unique nature of its story, choosing to move away from “the traditional Saw look of the greens and all of that” and that while working with his “insane” and “fantastic” cinematographer Jordan Oram, a thought sprouted out for the look and feel of the film.

“It started with an idea of ‘What if we made this movie take place on the hottest day of the summer?’” Bousman stated. “This is obviously not the first movie to do it, there’s a ton of amazing movies, Spike Lee’s done it with some of his movies, Angel Heart does it where heat plays a huge role in the film and so in this film, heat plays a very important role. So Jordan and I went out to make every environment feel hot and that goes from air conditioning being broken to a sun always being down on people, which creates a claustrophobic kind of feel without having to make the movie claustrophobic.”

This particular installment of the long-running horror franchise comes from a story by Rock, who will co-star with Samuel L. Jackson. Rock plays a police detective investigating a series of grizzly crimes, with Jackson playing his father. They’re joined in the film by Max Minghella who plays William Schenk, Rock’s partner and Marisol Nichols as Capt. Angie Garza, Rock’s boss.

The ninth Saw film will offer fans worldwide a new amped up level of deviously treacherous traps, clever clues and the edge-of-the-seat suspense they expect from the one of the world’s most terrifying horror franchises.

The film will be produced by longtime Saw producers Mark Burg and Oren Koules – who are back once again to shepherd this re-imagining, which will be directed by Darren Lynn Bousman, who helmed three of the most successful films in the Saw franchise. The screenplay is based on a story conceived by Rock and written by Pete Goldfinger and Josh Stolberg ( Jigsaw ). The film will be executive produced by Chris Rock, long-time Saw executive producer Daniel Heffner and the original creators of Saw , James Wan and Leigh Whannell.

Spiral: From the Book of Saw is due in theaters on May 21, 2021 while Death of Me is set to hit select theaters, digital platforms and VOD on October 2!

Doug Liman, Anne Hathaway Team for Pandemic Heist Pic Lockdown

Before he takes off for space to reunite with Tom Cruise on the highly-buzzed about blockbuster, Doug Liman ( Edge of Tomorrow ) is keeping his feet on Earth for his next project Lockdown with Anne Hathaway ( Ocean’s 8 ) in final talks to star, according to Deadline.

The film, which is penned by Steven Knight (Taboo, See), is being described as a “ heist movie/romantic comedy set in the backdrop of the pandemic lockdown” and the producers of the project are eying a modest $10 million or less budget.

P.J. Sandwyck, who is currently partnering with Liman on the forthcoming space-shot project led by the Mission: Impossible star, is set to produce the project alongside Alison Winter and sources report that several key roles are currently available to cast, with Cillian Murphy ( A Quiet Place Part II ) reportedly being eyed for one. Lockdown will also mark a reunion for Hathaway and Knight, who previously directed the Oscar-winning actress in the critically-abhorred and financially disappointing mystery thriller Serenity .

Lockdown is currently being eyed to begin shooting by the end of this month.

Bill & Ted’s Ed Solomon Talks Stop Motion Film Automatons!

Way back in 2004 it was announced that Bill & Ted creators Chris Matheson & Ed Solomon were trying to get a deeply absurd stop motion animated comedy off the ground called Automatons . During promotion of this past weekend’s Bill & Ted Face the Music , screenwriter Solomon gave us the goods on the long-gestating project and how it may yet see the light of day! We’ve also included a few stills from the original shorts via Automatons set designer Kyle Arneson!

“I tweeted about ‘Automatons’ and someone named Matt from Adult Swim reached out to me about maybe doing it,” Solomon confirmed. “I want to reach out to Matt again about that because that was a really fun, unsung little gem that never went anywhere, one of the weirdest, funniest, strangest things I’ve ever been involved with. We made four shorts with Screen Novelties. Screen Novelties did three and a group out of Portland did a fourth one. But that was so weird and fun and funny and absurd and ridiculous. If you thought ‘Face the Music’ was passed on by the community, ‘Automatons’ was rejected so fast by everybody that I don’t know if it’ll ever see the light of day. But that’s something I would love to pursue at some point, actually. It’s the most absurd, ridiculous story I think we ever wrote.”

The vocals have already been recorded 15 years ago with a star-studded cast, which Matheson & Solomon financed themselves in hopes of generating interest.

“We recorded a set of vocals,” Recalled Solomon. “Here’s what happened. When we set out initially to write ‘Bill & Ted’ we were gonna write it as one sketch in a sketch movie, like a ‘Kentucky Fried Movie’ film. And ‘Bill & Ted’ was one sketch. Another sketch was Otto and Rob, the ‘Automatons,’ these two insecure robots created during World War II to stop Hitler, whose submarine sank and they’ve been wandering around the bottom of the ocean for 70 years and they emerge in Minneapolis St. Paul, still trying to find Hitler. But somehow, the pressure of being underwater has created a little bit of a human characteristic, so they are unfortunately totally insecure and neurotic. So they’re these neurotic insecure robots who are indestructible, who believe they’re humans and accuse humans of being robots.”

If you thought that was wild, read on…

“In the premise, Hitler and Tojo and Mussolini happen to be in Minneapolis because they’ve frozen themselves cryogenically and are trying to redeem themselves by putting on a production of ‘You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown,’ but they don’t get the rights, so they have to write their own version called ‘You’re a Very Good Boy, Charlie Blue.’” They try to perform it, and Otto and Rob basically are trying to stop them. It’s the world’s most absurd movie.”

So how much of the script for Automatons was actually committed to celluloid in full animation?

“We made four two-minute episodes and we were so certain that we could get this thing set up that we financed ourselves a recording of the entire movie with Jack Black, John C. Reilly, Silvester Stallone, John Cleese, Fred Armisen, Holly Hunter, Billy Bob Thornton, Gary Shandling, William H. Macy, Rachel Dratch and Catherine O’Hara. We had Deidrich Bader, we had Dennis Haysbert, we had Chris Parnell. I mean, it was this unbelievable group. And we recorded the whole damn thing, and still, every studio was like, ‘Are you out of your mind? This is the weirdest thing, and you have Hitler putting on a musical. This is not going to ever work.’ But you know, my fantasy is that one day maybe I can do it again. I won’t be able to use those voices because that was a long time ago, and even though we own them, it wouldn’t really be ethically correct to just repurpose their voices 15 years later. But you know, maybe we can do it in bytes again somewhere. It might be really fun.”

Does Automatons sound AMAZING? Would you love to see it brought to the big or small screen? Let us know in the comments below!

Are You Excited ? The Boys Star Joins The Cast Of Scream 5

Scream 5 has added yet another cast member. For a while there, only longtime stars David Arquette and Courteney Cox had signed up to appear in Spyglass and Paramount’s upcoming reboot of the meta-horror franchise, but the past few weeks have seen additional casting announcements, as newcomers Melissa Barrera and Jenna Ortega have also joined the project. Now, The Boys star Jack Quaid is confirmed to have been hired in an undisclosed role.
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Katie Dippold Penning New Haunted Mansion Movie for Disney

It’s been a decade since word first broke that Guillermo del Toro ( Pinocchio ) would be writing and producing a film based on Disney’s The Haunted Mansion and now it appears the studio is going a different route as Katie Dippold ( Ghostbusters ) has been hired to pen the script for a new adaptation, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
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