Wednesday, June 28, 2006


Darren Bousman on SAW III


June 26: SAW III wraps; director talks

It’s a solid stand-alone installment that’s also for the fans; it’s pretty damn ballsy, even for year already caked in blood; and it’s guaranteed to give the MPAA some grief. These are just a few things Fango has already heard about SAW III, the anticipated sequel due in theaters October 27 from Lionsgate, and who better to confirm it all than its director Darren Lynn Bousman (pictured on the set of his previous SAW II), who dropped Fango a line with a progress report.

Having taken a much-needed extended weekend before entering the editing suite for the first time today, Bousman speaks highly of the third entry’s 30-day shoot in Canada. “I’m so surprised by how quickly everything came together for this and how smoothly it went,” Bousman says elatedly. “I learned a lot of mistakes from SAW II, and part three is definitely not a copy of the first two films. It’s very, very different.”

Actors Bahar (CRASH) Soomekh and Angus (EQUILIBRIUM) Macfadyen find themselves cast as Jigsaw’s latest victims. The former plays a doctor who must keep the ailing killer (encoring Tobin Bell) alive just long enough to see Macfadyen’s Jeff get out of one of Jigsaw’s fiendish and thought-provoking games. Dina Meyer and Shawnee Smith also make their return to the series which has already grossed over $200 million in worldwide theatrical ticket sales.

“Fans don’t realize how much say they have in this franchise,” says Bousman, sounding rather like a carnival barker luring ticket buyers into his refurbished haunted attraction. “This movie is for them. Last year’s film was a balls-to-the-wall gorefest and it didn’t have too many scares. I believe SAW III has a lot more of what made both previous movies good—we took the best elements of each and combined them. It’s got a lot more scares in it and has so many Easter eggs for the fans to discover. For those who really know the franchise well, they’re going to be blown away by some of the things we did this year.”

As for the gore quotient, Bousman insists on skirting the intricate details, yet he is optimistic that what will make the final cut will be weighted by a healthy dose of realism. “We’ll see what remains. All I can say is SAW III is the real deal and it’s not f’in around. I don’t get disgusted easily; I think the time that happened with a movie was when I watched CANNIBAL HOLOCAUST. There’s one scene in that movie that made me squeamish—and there were about four separate occasions on the [SAW III] shoot that made me want to throw up.” —Ryan Rotten

Monday, June 12, 2006

Official SAW III Production Blog

I can't believe I never posted this ! It brings you posts from the set of SAW III by Darren Bousman, Shawnee Smith, and more!

Check it out!

Sunday, June 11, 2006

First SAW III Trap Revealed!

TORONTO - It takes a while to puzzle through what it is we're looking at, here on the Toronto set of the low-budget, high-concept gore-fest Saw III.

Deep in the latest warren of deathtraps conceived by murderous mastermind Jigsaw, behind a door painted with the words "here's your chance," the device standing in front of us looks like a crucifix fashioned out of steel beams, clamps, cables, motors and gears. There's blood (or the special effects version thereof) pooled around the base of it, and a few chunks of disturbingly lifelike ersatz flesh.

Arms get strapped in here, feet get wedged in there, head goes inside this clamp contraption. But what are the gears for? When this thing is powered up, won't the gears just rotate the clamps in place and make the victim's ... oh. Okay. Got it.

You know the famous scene in The Exorcist, where Linda Blair's head spins a full 360 degrees? Imagine a contraption that does that to you without the benefit of satanic possession. And to your arms and legs, too, twisting them in their sockets until flesh, muscle and bone rip and snap like wet tree bark.

Jigsaw, you're a sick, sick man. But that's why moviegoers love you so.

Saw III, which wraps shooting this month at Toronto's Cinespace Film Studios, is a homecoming of sorts for the monstrously successful horror franchise.

"We shot Saw II here in Toronto, in the same studio, same crew. So by now it's like family," said Leigh Whannell, co-creator of the Saw franchise with fellow Australian filmmaker James Wan.

"It's another day at the office, breaking people's limbs off, body parts flying everywhere," Whannell said last week during an interview on set. "It's good times."

The affable Aussie's demeanor belies the unspeakable stuff going on a dozen metres away. Literally unspeakable - access to the set is strictly controlled, and no one's talking about the film's array of deathtraps and plot twists, for fear of spoiling the fun when the film hits theatres this Halloween.

Other than the clampy contraption, all we are shown are the sets for Jigsaw's creepy, mannequin-festooned lair and a decrepit meat packing facility (complete with disemboweled hogs hung from hooks) where much of the film takes place.

Then we're hurried off the set, though we can hear director Darren Lynn Bousman call "action!", followed by the high-pitched whine of a drill. And screaming. That can't be good.

This much we know about Saw III: The terminally ill Jigsaw (Tobin Bell) is determined to play one more sick game with a new group of victims. With the help of his protege (Shawnee Smith), Jigsaw has kidnapped a beautiful young doctor (Bahar Soomekh) to keep him alive while he leads a grieving father (Angus Macfadyen) into a new den of horrors.

The hero's peril is much more than physical, though. Jigsaw's chosen victims are the people responsible for death of Macfadyen's character's son. He can choose to help them escape Jigsaw's devious deathtraps, or sit by and watch them die slowly and very, very painfully.

The grisly shoot is taking an emotional toll on Macfadyen. "When you're doing these things, you think, 'Jesus, these things actually happen for real, there are people who do the most awful things to other people,' " he said.

"And you go, 'How can you do that? How does someone take someone's head and shove it into a bathtub full of feces and drown them in it?' I just don't get it."

Fans don't seem to care. The first two Saw movies were made on a combined budget of about $6 million US, and took in more than $130 million at the box office, plus tens of millions more on DVD. Bousman, who also helmed the last film, has high hopes for number three.

"I would say the most tame parts of Saw III are (equal to) the most extreme parts of Saw II," he said.

"It's going to be interesting to see if we get away with half the things we're shooting right now. I'm even offended looking at what I'm shooting at the moment."


Sunday, June 04, 2006

SAW III Synopsis

 Jigsaw has disappeared.

With his new apprentice Amanda (Shawnee Smith), the puppet-master behind the cruel, intricate games that have terrified a community and baffled police has once again eluded capture and vanished. While city detectives scramble to locate him, Doctor Lynn Denlon (Bahar Soomekh) is unaware that she is about to become the latest pawn on his vicious chessboard.

One night, after finishing a shift at her hospital, Lynn is kidnapped and taken to an abandoned warehouse where she meets Jigsaw (Tobin Bell), bedridden and on the verge of death. She is told that she must keep the madman alive for as long as it takes Jeff (Angus Macfayden), another of his victims, to complete a game of his own. Racing against the ticking clock of Jigsaw's own heartbeat, Lynn and Jeff struggle to make it through each of their vicious tests, unaware that he has a much bigger plan for both of them...