While some horror movie villains like Jason Voorhees can swap one hulking actor wearing a hockey mask for another, other actors like Robert Englund have left their indelible mark on horror icons like Freddy Krueger. Saw franchise lead Tobin Bell has created a similarly unique position for himself playing the character of the Jigsaw Killer John Kramer across multiple entries in the series. But in a recent interview, the actor revealed he would be happy to see some other actor put their personal spin on Kramer.
"John Kramer is a King Lear-like character. He's huge, his world is very large. If the writing is amazing, he's a character that any actor would be thrilled to have an opportunity to occupy."
For fans who have grown up with Tobin Bell as Kramer, aka Jigsaw, it will be difficult to imagine any other actor playing the dead-eyed psychopath with a twisted sense of justice. A similar degree of skepticism greeted actor Mads Mikkelsen after it was announced that he would be taking on the role of Hannibal Lecter for the show Hannibal after Anthony Hopkins immortalized the character on the big screen with an Oscar-winning performance. Mikkelsen was able to make the role of Hannibal his own thanks to a masterful performance that was very different from what Hopkins had done, and it is quite possible for a new actor to provide a similarly different and equally compelling take on John Kramer.
For now, the next chapter in the Saw franchise will see Chris Rock enter the world of the Jigsaw Killer, or at least, someone very much like him, as the synopsis for the movie Spiral describes,
"In Spiral, A sadistic mastermind unleashes a twisted form of justice in Spiral, the terrifying new chapter from the book of Saw. Working in the shadow of 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.
It is not yet known whether Bell will be reprising his role as Kramer in Spiral, or whether the actor's hints about someone else taking over the role might be an indication that the upcoming film will see a new actor playing John Kramer. Or perhaps Kramer is not part of the film at all.
In any case, Bell is gearing up a fresh entry into the horror genre with Bezelbuth, in which he plays the character of a priest who has a connection to the world of demons and possession. It will be an interesting change for fans to see the actor playing a pious figure after getting used to seeing him brutally dismembering his victims onscreen through a series of ingenious traps. The movie will arrive on Blu-ray, DVD, Digital HD, and VOD on July 7th. This news was first reported at ComicBook.com.