Saw 1 debuted in 2004. Time flies. The Jigsaw release date is October 27, 2017. The original architects of the Saw franchise have returned for this blockbuster video. James Wan, Leigh Whannell will bring the terror, the bone chills, and the drama as only they can. The Jigsaw release date is important because Lionsgate (as well as Netflix with Stranger Things Season 2) is seeking to maximize their revenue by debuting Jigsaw a shade before Halloween. Why is this problematic?
Lionsgate is essentially admitting that they do not believe Jigsaw will be a hit. Instead, they want to capitalize on the nostalgia value for the cult class franchise’s fan base solely on the basis of its release date. Saw and Halloween go together like Halloween and Halloween, like salt and pepper, like pumpkin spice and latte. Some things are made for each other. While I appreciate the timing and recognize the marketing ploy, who in the world will go to see Jigsaw after Halloween is over? The movie will fall to VOD and DVD almost immediately. While this is also a good thing, movie fans may lose interest entirely. Releasing the movie a week earlier may take away from their one weekend one time massive Box Office Receipts, but it also would have grown revenue altogether and given busy fans a chance to enjoy the movie one last time on their time.
Contrast Jigsaw with Netflix’s upstart, Stranger Things. Stranger Things Season 2 also debuts on October 27. Do not work in marketing, and have not since 2011. Nonetheless, it does not require a statistician to wager that releasing a Halloween exclusive series four days before the holiday will diminish returns once the occasion is over. Mind you, the first season of the show just about brought the house down, but fans like to get into the spirit of things just before the holiday and on the holiday itself. To me it seems bewildering that Jigsaw and Stranger Things Season 2 are being released to coincide with Halloween, and yet may well fail to capitalize on the holiday due to poor timing. Somebody at Netflix or Lionsgate had better look into making me a studio executive to avoid making poor financial decisions!
On a positive note for you died-in-the-wool horror fans, Halloween (likely the final, final, I MEAN IT FINAL) installment in the Halloween franchise will come crashing into theaters in mid-October 2018. It stars Jamie Lee Curtis and is produced by John Carpenter. That will be a gift to those that have waited thirty years for a true continuation of the series.