After some preliminary shooting last year, Leatherface (the Texas Chainsaw Massacre prequel) is about to commence principal photography and EastEnders star Sam Strike is apparently in talks to play the title character. You might be asking yourself, “why is this worth reporting? Aren’t these dudes just played by stuntmen?” There are two answers. First, there’s actually some acting that goes into playing Leatherface! Compare Gunnar Hansen‘s fretful and jittery interpretation of the character in the original 1974 film with the bolder, more curious, version Bill Johnson gave us in The Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2. Then there’s the more feminine take in 1994’s The Next Generation contrasted with the more burly and brutal incarnation in the 2003 Platinum Dunes remake. So yeah, it makes a difference.
But the bigger reason is that, since this is an origin story, it stands to reason that Strike might not be donning the flesh mask until later in the film and will be onscreen unscathed for some duration of the runtime. This is possibly a lead role through and through. The Wrap first reported this news.
Julien Maury and Alexandre Bustillo, the French duo best known for helming Inside and Livid, will direct Leatherface from a script by Seth M. Sherwood.
Here’s the current longline for the script:
In this prequel to “The Texas Chainsaw Massacre,” a young nurse is kidnapped by four violent teens who escape from a mental hospital and take her on a road trip from hell. Pursued by an equally deranged lawman out for revenge, one of these teens is destined for tragedy and horrors that will destroy his mind; molding him into the monster we now call Leatherface.
I’ve got nothing to complain about so far and will always be down for a new Texas Chainsaw movie, even if this franchise has burned me a few times in the past.