Stand-up comedian Chris Rock has branched from being a ‘Saturday Night Live’ alumni into a celebrated actor best known for his comedic chops. From ‘Down to Earth’ to ‘Grown Ups’ to ‘Top Five,’ he is praised for his timing and hilarious punchlines.
With his joining the cast ‘Spiral: From the Book of Saw,’ the latest entry in the ‘Saw’ horror franchise, Rock has expressed his intention of entering a whole new genre.
‘Spiral’ director Darren Lynn Bousman, who also helmed ‘Saw II,’ ‘Saw III,’ and ‘Saw IV,’ sat down with Syfy Wire to discuss Chris Rock’s expansion into horror in the first entry in the franchise since 2017’s ‘Jigsaw.’
“So it was basically refining what they already had,” Bousman said describing the script.
“And then once we got to that point, Chris would take the script and add his Chris Rock spin on things.” He added, “(Rock is) probably the greatest living comedian right now.”
He continued, “Chris would know where to put something that allowed the audience to either breathe a sigh of relief or have a laugh. That pulls them in harder when we wanted them to be shocked or be scared. We would do a scene and he would play it completely straight, completely serious. And then he’d say, “You know what, that’s too serious. I got to do that again.” And he’d do the exact same scene again, but add a button, like a joke in it.”
When asked why they decided to make ‘Spiral’ in the police procedural format, Bousman said that the Eddie Murphy comedy flick ’48 Hrs.’ had a big influence on that decision.
“I think that Chris was really fascinated with ’48 Hrs.’ as well — that buddy cop ’48 Hrs.’ feel,” he explained. “And I always thought ’48 Hrs.’ was a comedy until I rewatched it. And it’s not a comedy, it’s a balls-to-the-wall, violent police action film that happens to have Eddie Murphy in it. And Eddie Murphy’s funny. So I think that he was a huge fan of ’48 Hrs.,’ and that was one of his big inspirations. So we just leaned into the police on that side, since we knew that Saw movies have used police as an undertone, we just leaned into it.”
‘Spiral: From the Book of Saw’ is the ninth entry in the horror franchise and was developed under the working title of ‘The Organ Donor.’
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