In 2004 Australian filmmakers James Wan and Leigh Whannell changed the face of horror with their first feature film, Saw. Unlike anything else at the time, Saw shocked and wowed audiences during its Sundance Film Fest debut and put the Twisted Pictures production banner on the map.
During its opening weekend the $1.2 million indie horror flick landed in a respectable third place with a higher per-screen average than its Halloween weekend completion, The Grudge, making it a bona fide hit in the independent film world and with mainstream audiences as well; it also ensured that we’d be hearing more from both Whannell and Wan for years to come.
In honor of Indie Horror Month, Dread Central recently sat down with Whannell to hear more from the co-writer and star about his experiences before making Saw with Wan at the helm, the transition to officially becoming a screenwriter in Hollywood, how important the Saw short film was in getting the feature film made for the (at that time) Australian filmmaking newcomers and what he’s learned along the way.
Check out the first part of our exclusive video interview with Whannell below, and make sure to head back here tomorrow for Part Two to hear more on the franchise, his experiences working within the studio system and why, no matter what, he and Wan will always continue to collaborate together in the future!
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