Texas Chainsaw 3D hits big, Lionsgate pushing forward with sequel

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Much to my surprise, I must admit (Didn’t think there was any two-stroke left in the ol’ Chainsaw!), Lionsgate’s “Texas Chainsaw Massacre 3D” looks to trump financial predictions for it’s opening weekend in the states, with the studio about to press the ‘go’ button on a sequel.

Though the reviews are eye-wateringly scathing (no surprise, it is horror after all), the John Luessenhop directed movie looks to rake in around $20 million for the weekend.

Bloody Disgusting reports :

The producers behind Texas Chainsaw 3D had acquired the rights to make up to 7 more films (including this one), and that this Leatherface adventure is the beginning of an entire new franchise at Lionsgate.

And as always, the success of each film dictates what comes next.

We’re the first to receive word that the people behind TCM 3D will in fact move forward on a sequel to the continuation of Tobe Hooper’s 1974 classic. As reported earlier today, TCM 3D topped the domestic B.O. Friday with $10.2 million, and is looking at a three-day haul more in the low-to-mid $20 million range.

The new “Texas Chainsaw” is a direct sequel to the original Tobe Hooper flick, rather than continuing the events laid out in the recent, forgettable Platinum Dunes’ additions to the franchise.

“The original is such a powerful piece of film we thought that playing off of it was a unique way to approach it,” says Luessenhop. That being said, the new movie would pay homage to the first film, and still take an original approach with a contemporary twist to satisfy both the fan base and new audiences as well.

“We wanted to have back stories on every character and brought logic and reason to their decision making in the movie,” says President of Twisted Pictures, Carl Mazzocone. There’s nothing worse than watching a horror movie where a girl goes to a creepy house, her friend is chopped up, she gets blood on her and decides to take a shower. She gets out, wrapped in a towel, and there’s a weird noise on the other side of a door, and of course, she opens it and gets hacked to death. You roll your eyes when you watch movies like that, and it takes you out of the film. We tried to have a very realistic movie where the decision making of our characters is one that is unpredictable, yet realistic, and keep audience members in their seats.”

From the moment he began pursuing the rights to the Chainsaw franchise, Mazzocone wanted to show his respect to the source material in a way that had not been evident in the previous films. “Sometimes when people make sequels or prequels or remakes, they shoot frame for frame. I think it’s a really fine line between an homage and plagiarism. In this movie, we constantly debated to what point we could swing in the right direction. Out of respect, I pursued Gunnar Hansen to play a cameo in our film. He was the original and best Leatherface, and he was passed by in all the subsequent Texas Chainsaw movies. I swore if I ever got the rights, I would fix that wrong.”

In addition to recruiting Hansen to the cast, Mazzocone also invited Marilyn Burns, who had portrayed Sally Hardesty in the original film, to play the role of Verna Carson, the matriarch of the Sawyer clan.

“Over the years, everybody and their brother was trying to write a sequel,” reflects Burns. “When I read this one, I was thrilled that somebody finally got it right. I just flew through it, and was genuinely surprised at how clever it was, and delighted that this hasn’t been done before. It paid tribute to Leatherface and the original characters, and then it had a life of its’ own characters who were so interesting and full of life. I loved all the puzzles and twists in the script.”