Leatherface is coming back to cinemas again. Again.
Adding to eight already-existing films in “The Texas Chainsaw Massacre” franchise will be a new film from Legendary Entertainment and producer Fede Álvarez. The Uruguayan director last brought the sleeper hit chamber thriller “Don’t Breathe” to the big screen in 2016. In 2013, Álvarez rebooted “Evil Dead,” based on Sam Raimi’s franchise.
According to Bloody Disgusting, Álvarez will produce the latest version of the Tobe Hooper horror movie universe, with no director or writer attached yet. It seems that Legendary is also looking to take a page from David Gordon Green’s 2018 “Halloween” restart, and Tim Miller’s upcoming “Terminator: Dark Fate.” While the former film was a direct sequel to John Carpenter’s original, Miller’s “Terminator” take is a direct sequel to James Cameron’s “Judgment Day.”
Álvarez, who’s searching for a director to attach to this latest “Chainsaw Massacre,” was last seen behind the camera directing “The Crown” Emmy winner Claire Foy as Lisbeth Salander in the poorly received “The Girl in the Spider’s Web.” Yet his previous film, “Don’t Breathe,” earned an astonishing $157 million box office on a shoestring budget. That super-scary film centers on a break-in gone horribly wrong.
Our last trip to “Texas Chainsaw” town was 2017’s “Leatherface,” which was directed by Julien Maury and Alexandre Bustillo, who, like Álvarez, were also tapped from the world of international horror film. “Leatherface” made stops at small indie horror festivals before earning just shy of $1 million at the U.S. box office and finding a fan base on DirecTV and other VOD platforms.
Prior to “Leatherface,” 2013 saw the release of “Texas Chainsaw 3D,” which earned $40 million, just about half its budget, despite being pilloried by critics. 2003’s Michael Bay-produced “The Texas Chainsaw Massacre,” led by a cast including Jessica Biel, was a slightly more successful retread. Directed by John Luessenhop — who helmed “Texas Chainsaw 3D” — the 2003 film served as a direct remake of Tobe Hooper’s 1974 film. The remake scared up more than $100 million at the U.S. box office on a budget of less than $10 million.
Shot on a peanuts budget and with scuzzy cinematography, “The Texas Chain Saw Massacre” from 1974 remains the gold standard for hillbilly slasher pictures.