Lionsgate VS. Paramount: There Will Be Blood … And Legalities Over Saw 6 Director


Oh, yes … there will be blood.

Looks like Lionsgate and Twisted Pictures are done playing games with Paramount Pictures. The team behind Saw, horror’s most successful franchise to date, are enforcing a clause in Saw 6 director Keven Greutert’s contract that will prevent him from helming Paramount’s Paranormal Activity sequel.

The news comes on the heels of Paramount’s announced scheduling of Paranormal Activity 2 on Oct. 22, opposite Saw 3-D (the seventh installment in the series) at the box office.


Bad blood between the players began last Halloween when Greutert’s Saw 6 faced off against Oren Peli’s Paranormal Activity. Despite being the best Saw film since part three, Saw 6 stalled at $31 million and became the first flick in the series not to break a $100 million in worldwide coin. As a result, Lionsgate decided to rehire Saw 5 director David Hackl to shoot this year’s installment, thus freeing up Greutert to pursue other projects.

Last week, word got out that Greutert had signed on to direct Paranormal Activity 2 (Peli and Jason Blum return as producers). Paramount, which greenlit the sequel back in November when it became clear they had a blockbuster on their hands (the movie grossed over $150 million domestically), scheduled the film’s release date to coincide with Saw 3-D.


Now, Lionsgate has thrown down the gauntlet and Greutert finds himself caught in the middle of a franchise war. The editor-turned-director, who made his feature film debut with Saw 6, is understandably upset. He first expressed his disappointment by comparing the fiasco to parental rape on his blog, but has since changed the entry.

Greutert writes:

(I was told that my metaphor describing my feelings right now was in excessively poor taste, so let’s just say I’m pissed.)

In the “About” section, he adds:

Kevin Greutert is a Los Angeles-based filmmaker.  He’s very, very angry right now.

It’s unfortunate that Lionsgate didn’t show faith in Greutert early on and have only now brought him back to seemingly spite Paramount. However, like most Saw fans, I’m thrilled he’s back and grateful that Hackl is gone. I just hope Greutert doesn’t mail it in. The Saw fans are counting on him, especially after catching a peek at the new after-creds ending on the Saw 6 home editions, available tomorrow (click here to see new ending).

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