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'Saw' vs. 'Paranormal Activity': Round 2

The horror franchises battle over a director and a release date

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Remember last fall when Paranormal Activity beat Saw VI at the box office? Turns out that was just round 1. In late January, Paramount announced that Saw VI helmer Kevin Greutert would direct Paranormal Activity 2, to be released Oct. 22…the same day as Lionsgate’s Saw 3D. Not one to go down without a fight, the Saw team struck back, exercising an option in its contract with Greutert that would require him to direct Saw 3D — displacing the film’s previously announced director, David Hackl (Saw V). Lionsgate declined to comment and reps for Greutert did not return calls, but insiders say the director is ”upset” and wants to stick with Paranormal 2. Producers Oren Peli (who wrote and directed the original Paranormal) and Jason Blum hope that’s still a possibility. ”We’re thrilled about the concept we’ve developed with writer Michael R. Perry, and we hope to do it with Kevin,” says Blum. ”But if not, we’re confident we’ll find another great collaborator.” And fast. A Paramount rep would say only that the studio is ”on track for an Oct. 22 release.” In other words, horror directors, send your résumés now!