Spiral Director Talks the Anatomy of a Saw Trap and Cutting a Device for Being "Too Gnarly"

Fans of the Saw franchise will tell you that what keeps them coming back for sequels is the ever-evolving plot full of twists and turns that keep you guessing until its final moments, but another key component which much of the general public has latched onto is its gruesome and violent traps, which are once again on display in Spiral: From the Book of Saw. Director Darren Lynn Bousman is no stranger to Saw traps, having directed three previous installments, with Bousman recently detailing that, while the series is known for its carnage, the traps play only a small role in developing the narrative and the attention the production pays to making sure the fictional devices would be just as brutal in real life. Additionally, he confirmed that one trap was so brutal that it had to be cut from the movie. Spiral: From the Book of Saw hits theaters on May 14th.

"To be inventive and to have it fit the story, because it's easy to think of ways to kills people, but to think of ways to kill people that are based in their character," Bousman shared with ComicBook.com about developing the devices. "The traps go through this evolution, they start off as an idea. When you read the script, it's really funny, when you read the script, it doesn't say what the trap is the first time. It'll say, 'Insert trap here,' and then we'll move on, 'Insert trap here.' And throughout the preproduction process, we figure out what that trap is. So, for example, the first scene in the movie, the tongue trap, that just said, 'Bos trap goes here,' and we sit down and figure out what that trap is. So we knew that he lied under oath, 'Okay, he lies, how do you lie? You lie with your mouth, so let's do something with the mouth. Okay, we've already done the headtrap, so we can't do that, so let's remove the tongue.'"

He continued, "Originally, it was fishhooks in the tongue. For me, the traps have to work the way we show them to, so if a guy is on a ladder and jumps off with fishhooks, all it's gonna do is tear the tongue and rip through it, it's not gonna tear it out. So we're like, 'How do we tear the tongue out?' We go through this crazy process, and then they go to engineers, literal engineers, to figure out would this really work. And one of my favorite things, and I hope it makes the DVD, are the tests that the effects house and the engineering house where they actually do it."

A criminal mastermind unleashes a twisted form of justice in Spiral, the terrifying new chapter from the book of Saw. Working in the shadow of his father, an esteemed police veteran (Samuel L. Jackson), brash Detective Ezekiel "Zeke" Banks (Chris Rock) and his rookie partner (Max Minghella) take charge of a grisly investigation into murders that are eerily reminiscent of the city’s gruesome past. Unwittingly entrapped in a deepening mystery, Zeke finds himself at the center of the killer’s morbid game.

With this being the first entry into the series since 2017's Jigsaw, Bousman knew he had to take the franchise to new heights, though fans will have to wait to find out what plan was too brutal even for Spiral.

"This is funny, and I might get in trouble for saying this, and I hope I don't, there was a trap that was cut out of the movie for being too gnarly that we actually shot," the filmmaker confirmed. "The traps are the most complicated part of the franchise at this point. We've killed so many people in so many different ways, the moment we think of a trap, I think, 'Oh, this is awesome,' and they're like, 'No, we did that in Saw V,' 'Oh, but what about...?' 'No, that was in Saw VIII,' and I'm just like, 'Goddammit.'"

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Check out Spiral: From the Book of Saw only in theaters on May 14th.

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