It’s been 38 years since the debut of the indie film that spawned so many, many, many sequels, and in that time there has been a lot of news boasting how the franchise would live to see at least a ninth birthday.

But that’s not the song at least one of the writers is singing.

Patrick Melton, who co-wrote Saw IV, V, VI, and the forthcoming VII, told Latino Review that things might be coming to a close with the next installment due to poor box office performance when the game went full circle last Halloween.

The money quote here:

I think it’s going to end with Saw VII. I have a very strong feeling its going to end with Saw VII. That’s something we’re debating now. You saw in previous interviews or discussions where we thought Saw VIII would be the last one where we had the first trilogy and the second trilogy and then sort of a grand finale wrapped up in two films. But frankly because Saw VI hasn’t performed as well as we anticipated, the idea is well why make two movies when we can make one really excellent movie that wraps up as best we can? And it’s going to be in 3-D which sort of adds to the spectacle. So if you had to ask me, I don’t own the franchise, nor do I run the studio, but I have a feeling, a strong feeling that it’s going to be Saw VII which will be also known as Endgame. And nothing’s official yet, but that’s where we’re hoping things will go.”

A strong feeling.

And I’m counting on you guys to have some strong feelings.

Personally, I feel a bit scorned. The entire franchise has felt a lot like a first love – the quick, intensity of lust, followed by those magical moments that cement you even further, and then you realize the darker side. I had a feeling that we could work through it together, you and I, but now it looks like the movies might just be giving up on me. Or maybe this is the hail mary, I’m-so-sorry-baby, moment where Saw pulls out all the stops, makes you remember why you fell in love in the first place, and then says goodbye before making things awkward.

Hopefully, it’ll leave some money on the dresser (a refund for my Saw IV and V tickets).

Speaking of which, that lagging performance he talks about is the direct example of diminishing returns that we should have been expecting all along. There was a time when this was a horror juggernaut, smashing through everything and scaring off any competition nearing the end of October. And then it got beaten this year by two scared people and a house haunted by Sony Handicams.

It might have been nice to see the series reach Super Bowl level Roman Numerals, but perhaps it’s time to hang up the bear traps.

What do you think? Should the series soldier on? Is there more story to tell? Has there even been a story to tell since III? Why didn’t they just make Cary Elwes Australian in the first one?

Thoughts abound. Tell us yours.

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