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PostPosted: Mon Oct 13, 2008 5:52 pm 
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The Top 10 silly sequel rumours of the year

Michael Moran

The last couple of months have seen a rash of implausible, nay impossible film sequel news stories. Most have them have already been debunked, some remain in that mysterious Schrödinger’s Cat movie rumour state, and one has even been confirmed. Click on the titles to read the original implausible rumours, and marvel at the majesty that is Hollywood.

10: Blade Runner 2
Blade Runner, despite needless criticism from nitpickers like me pointing out that it doesn’t quite make sense, is one of the most revered science fiction movies of all time. The lush, beautifully detailed realisation of a future Earth set the standard for futuristic cinema with everything from Total Recall to Minority Report picking up on its vision of a monetized dystopia.

Bearing in mind that all of the principals either die or disappear by the end of the first film, and that Philip K Dick made no further reference to the characters in any of his numerous novels and stories , to come up with a sequel script would be a temerarious adventure indeed. That hasn’t stopped comparatively little-known scriptwriter Travis Wright from having a go.

9: Watchmen 2
Watchmen is another beloved sci-fi vision from the Eighties, this time in graphic novel format, which is set to become one of the biggest movies of 2009. The story is a standalone classic, which leaves one major character dead, two more in hiding, and two more retired from the superhero business. That’s not even counting The Comedian’s unscheduled base-jump on page one of the comic, the unfortunate end of Nite Owl 1, or the grim fates of the various other supporting characters.

Only the worst kind of fool would even think about sequelizing Alan Moore’s perfectly constructed superhero story arc. Which is why an un-named Hollywood suit has done just that. In an unguarded interview moment Patrick Wilson, who plays the relatively sane Nite Owl 2 in the film was quoted as saying:

“It’s all been talked about, financially, they like to do that”

Of all the ill-advised moneymaking ventures on this list, this is the only one that you can be certain will never, ever happen. If the idea ever got as far as script stage you can be sure Alan Moore would set fire to his beard and run amok on the Warner Brothers backlot with a cutlass.

8: 300 2
Yet another movie based on a comprehensively closed narrative arc. Yet another movie where absolutely everybody dies. The sole difference between 300 and Watchmen though is that in the case of 300 creator Frank Miller is completely happy with the Hollywood method and knows which side his brioche is buttered. He’s said to be already working on a treatment in the same style as his Thermopylae epic that focuses on the Greek armies who fought at less the well-known, but equally bloody Battle of Plataea

7: 28 Months Later
At the end of Danny Boyle’s enthralling and much-imitated zombie reinvention 28 Days later everyone in the UK was almost certainly dead. At the end of the sequel, 28 Weeks later, lots of new people had been brought in and they were pretty much dead too. What might conceivably have happened in order to precipitate yet another round of fast-moving Rage virus horror is hard to imagine. Nevertheless, Boyle is doing his best to imagine it.

You can be assured though that whatever he comes up with, I’ll be there on day one with a ticket in my sweaty little hand.

6: Ghostbusters 3
The first Ghostbusters movie was originally planned as a picaresque transdimensional romp for Dan Aykroyd and John Belushi and a bunch of their pals, mashing up their Blues Brothers success with the cosmic sensibilities of Dr.Strange. Casting complications and the cold hand of financial realism constrained the action to New York, and the team to the fondly remembered lineup of Dan Aykroyd, Bill Murray Harold Ramis, and (always at the back) Ernie Hudson. The film was a huge success, and both the sequel and the spinoff animated series are a key part of every thirtysomething’s childhood.

Why now, after a twenty year layoff, we’re looking down the barrel of the Proton Packs once more is anybody’s guess. But as long as Bill Murray gets the script compomises he’s after, we’ll probably be crossing the streams again in 2010.

5: Under Siege 3
You’ve got to love Steven Segal. Ploughing the same stolid action-hero furrow that Arnie, Sly and even Jean-Claude gave up years ago – when the star performers were off making movies with kids, movies with songs, and movies with pet rabbits the Michigan Mumbler has continued to dispatch an endless parade of goons with his peculiarly flatfooted brand of martial arts.

Now he’s talking about a return to the Happy Shopper Die Hard franchise that made his name – Under Siege – but this time he’s going to mix it up a little by introducing some rapacious extraterrestrials into the mix. Remember Predator? Steve does.

4: I am Legend 2
The first half of Will Smith’s remake of a remake of a Richard Matheson adaptation was a terrific high concept end of the world tale that took a lot of inspiration from the original 28 Days later. The second half was an unconvincingly CGI’d high speed zombie siege caper that echoed inferior survival horror jobs like Resident Evil and only really made the grade because of Will Smith’s limitless charm.

Given that Smith’s character dies and passes into legend at the end of the first film though, the only way forward in this franchise is a prequel. A prequel that will probably take the form of an extended biology lesson with Will fooling around with test-tubes and the like while the audience yawns and picks out people who are definitely going to die (because we saw that in the first film) and people (and dogs) who are definitely going to survive, thereby deflating any dramatic tension. I’m not sure even Big Willie’s easy grin is going to get him out of that one.

3: Goonies 2
Like Ghostbusters, The Goonies appealed to an audience who are now adults, perhaps with kids of their own, and are expected to have enough disposable income to finance the odd guilty pleasure dip into the entertainment experiences of their youth. The comparatively modest showing for Lost Boys 2 (although there's already talk of Lost Boys 3!) suggests that, especially in these Credit Crunch times, those thirtysomethings are going to need a little more than a reminder of their schooldays to lure them into the cinemas and DVD shops.

Still the talk continues, as it has done for close on a decade, that the Goonies will be back.

2: Cloverfield 2
They destroyed New York, they killed the creature, what’s left to say? There’s reputedly a sequel on the cards though, it reputedly has an even more incomprehensible title than Cloverfield, and it’ll probably provide the same high quality of brain-in-neutral popcorn-munching entertainment.

1: The Wicker Man 2
And you thought you’d heard it all. Demonstrating that any wildly implausible thing that American producers can do, British suits can duplicate: we’re going back to Summerisle, where the natives are friendly and an ignorance of The Golden Bough can be fatal.

http://timesonline.typepad.com/blockbuster_buzz/2008/10/the-top-10-sill.html

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PostPosted: Mon Oct 13, 2008 10:17 pm 
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No matter what an original authors feelings there is always the chance that he or she did not lock up the sequel rights.


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 14, 2008 8:32 am 
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Richard wrote:
Blade Runner 2...
Philip K Dick made no further reference to the characters...
That hasn’t stopped comparatively little-known scriptwriter Travis Wright from having a go.


There are sequel novels by K.W. Jeter (and I have copies, but I still haven't read them!), so I wonder if they'd make a worthwhile franchise..?

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 14, 2008 1:55 pm 
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Tony wrote:
There are sequel novels by K.W. Jeter (and I have copies, but I still haven't read them!), so I wonder if they'd make a worthwhile franchise..?

Ditto - I read the first few pages of Blade Runner 2 but didn't get much further for some reason. It didn't seem very PKD - a bit too actiony somehow. I enjoyed Jeter's earlier work ("Dr Adder", "The Glass Hammer", "Infernal Devices") but he seems to write mainly franchise stuff now (Star Trek, Star Wars etc.).

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 14, 2008 2:40 pm 
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The Jeter sequels are cleverly done. One of them - the second (er, i.e., third), I think, Replicant Night - opens with Deckard working as a consultant on a film of the events shown in the original Blade Runner film. The first of the sequels, The Edge of Human, also contains references to Dr Bloodmoney.

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PostPosted: Fri Oct 17, 2008 12:30 pm 
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^i did have a hard back called 'blade runner 2' that was actually pretty good. where they meet the man that roy batty (rutger hauers android) is based on.
in that i believe (if my memory isn't completely shot...) that deckard freezes his android love and she comes out of hibernation every six months to spend a week with him (thereby extending her life).


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