The Quick Rap: Three Questions for ... The Talent Behind Saw IV!
I'm a self-proclaimed "scaredy-cat," so when Hollywood.com asked me to travel to Toronto to cover Saw IV's release, I saw it as a unique opportunity.
Not only is the Saw franchise wildly financially successful, but the films are incredibly cheap to make. The two main contrubting factors: rarely any A-List stars' salaries to pay, and filming in Canada. It’s no surprise that the studios want to churn out as many of these cash cows as possible, but it is surprising that after the horror of September 11, a collection of filmmakers emerged in 2002, known as the "Splat Pack." They created a renaissance in the horror film genre and raised the bar for horror cinema that showcased "sequences of bloody violence and torture throughout." Notable members of the pack include Alexandre Aja (The Hills Have Eyes), Greg McLean (Wolf Creek), Rob Zombie (House of 1000 Corpses), Eli Roth (Hostel and Hostel 2) and Darren Lynn Bousman (Saw II, III, and now IV).
On behalf of Hollywood.com's invite to the Saw IV press conference, meet the blood-loving filmmakers behind perhaps the most popular of the pack!
Hollywood.com: What filmmaking approach is taken with a movie so wrapped-up in non-stop violence?
Scott Patterson (Agent Strahm): I’ve worked with a lot of directors, and I can’t remember having this much fun. I think we made a great film.
Darren Lynn Bousman (Director): I think the hardest trap to film this time wasn’t even a trap, it was the final reel--sorry you guys didn’t see it! The whole movie was conceived around those last twenty minutes. I thought the last Saw movie was my last, so I said,"Kill everybody! Kill ‘em all!" And now, I’m like--I’m back, everyone’s dead. Now what am I gonna do? I approached Saw III as a love story between Jigsaw and Amanda. A lot of people looked down on Saw III saying I just did gore for gore’s sake. But I saw it as that love story between them. I watch horror films all the time--most are just gore and violence. When you take away the bloody scenes in the Saw films, there’s still a story. We write the story first and insert the traps later.
Hollywood.com: You guys are the architects of this "gore" genre. When you’re constructing these scenes, does 'the horrific' ever become the humorous--because you all know the tricks you use to create this world?
Darren Lynn Bousman: Um, Saw is not a serious set.
Betsy Russell (Jill): He has his dog yelling action!
Darren Lynn Bousman: I can’t remember on-set at any of the Saw films where we’re actually being somber. It’s not like that at all--the pranks, the practical jokes, the fart humor--everything. It’s a family--we’ve become a family. The times between where we say "Action!" and "Cut!" have serious moments. That’s it!
Hollywood.com: Sounds like the outtakes would be hysterical?!
Darren Lynn Bousman: I have some tapes of Scott saying to Betsy during the interrogation scenes: "Listen here, bitch--I’ve got an entire case of Fresca outside ... and all f*cking night!" They were some of the greatest outtakes I’ve ever heard.
Hollywood.com: How does being this character--a modern day Boogey Man--affect your social life?
Tobin Bell (Jigsaw): I coach a soccer team of 13-year-olds. When I’m trying to get them to do a drill they’ll say, "Do the voice first!!" So I’ll say [in full character], "This is your test!"
SAW IV opens in theaters October 26th