Sequels are rarely as good as the original. Only a few times in cinematic history have the follow-up films outshone the first installment, but it doesn’t stop Hollywood from spitting out film after film based on one blockbuster hit after another. When a movie makes money, producers and studios can almost guarantee that adding to that film with another movie that includes the same characters and ideas will make money too. Who can blame them?
But, every now and then, a sequel does better than good. Not only are they better films–thanks in large part to better special effects or increased budgets–but the momentum built from the first movie creates buzz, and a larger audience sits ready to see the sequel when they might not have seen the first. For movie makers, the films also tend to be a bit easier to write, shoot, and produce.
Every year, there is a list of movies ready for release. Many of them are sequels and 2018 is no different. We’ve compiled a list of the 10 most anticipated but potentially unknown films ready to hit the theater and have people judge them based on how good they were compared to the films that came before them. No one should be surprised to see the names of some of the franchises that are making another installment. Others may surprise you.
We’ve also taken some time to include five movies that we believe should be made into a sequel. Of these five, a couple of them have already been discussed and, while nothing is official, could actually be made. Then again, a couple of them are just wishful thinking. Read through the list of these 15 films and comment on your favorites. Share if you know of any others on the list or give us your feedback on what movies you think should be made into a sequel that aren’t already on Hollywood’s docket.
15. Sequel Coming: Bumblebee
Set in the 1980’s, the movie will center around the early Earthly years of a striped yellow and black Autobot named Bumblebee. As was reported by The Hollywood Reporter, Steinfeld will star in the movie as a student/mechanic, and she befriends the iconic Transformer.
This film already has some interesting tidbits sneaking out through the press including needing to find a location that could house a 20-foot character and that the film producers are receiving a $22-million tax credit to shoot in California. It’s the largest tax break given to date to under a state program. The other Transformers films have grossed over $4.3 billion dollars.
14. Sequel Coming: Goosebumps Horrorland
The famous books written by R.L. Stine were turned into a feature film in 2015 titled Goosebumps. The film made about $150 million worldwide, and while it didn’t shatter any box office records, the film itself was actually pretty good. For those who have seen the first film, it’s clearly indicated that a sequel is likely, but there isn’t much detail on whether or not the first film will continue where the last left off.
Producers are hoping that a sequel will do a bit better in terms of gross revenue. Otherwise, a third film isn’t likely. The film is set for release around September of 2018, and both the director (Rob Letterman) and screenwriter (Darren Lemke) are returning. Most importantly, Jack Black is set to return as the R.L. Stine character.
13. Should Be Made: Ferris Bueller’s Day Off 2
This would be an easy movie to make and would guarantee some big money for the studio. It’s kind of shocking that it hasn’t been discussed more, especially considering some of the movies that have been given sequels decades after the originals. Matthew Broderick actually said in an interview that he was disappointed that he didn’t push harder for the studio to get the movie made.
The premise is easy. Either, Bueller himself grew up disappointed in where his life took him and needs a break from a boring job he’s been doing for 20 years or it could be that Bueller had a son and he’s following in his father’s footsteps—one step ahead of Ferris who thinks he knows all the tricks but is behind the times. Again, easy sell, inexpensive to make, and guaranteed an audience.
12. Sequel Coming: Mary Poppins Returns
Set in Depression-era London of the 1930’s, Mary Poppins Returns sees Michael and Jane Banks (the kids from the first movie) now grown up. After Michael suffers a personal loss, Mary Poppins magically shows up, once again becomes an important part of the Banks family and helps Michael and the rest of the group find happiness. Fans of the film will also be introduced to a new character. He’s a street lamplighter named Jack and in much the same way Dick van Dyke helped Poppins in the first film, Jack will likely help Mary learn important lessons as well.
The Poppins character will be played by Emily Blunt, Jack will be played by Lin-Manuel Miranda (star of Broadway hits like Hamilton and In the Heights). The film will be released more than five decades after the 1964 classic film first played in theaters, and Disney is sure to have another blockbuster on their hands. Meryl Streep and Colin Firth will also make appearances.
11. Sequel Coming: Bad Boys For Life
Will Smith and Martin Lawrence are expected to return, but story details are literally non-existent at this point. This film has been doomed with repeated changes and push-backs. From changing directors to schedule conflicts for Will Smith, the Bad Boys for Life movie is tentatively set for a November 9, 2018 release. Don’t be surprised if it gets pushed to 2019.
It’s still happening, but we hear that Will Smith was juggling some projects around in his schedule (he was in talks for Dumbo). The people behind the movie think it’s a good idea, as there is already a plan in place for Bad Boys 4. Although, it too has been moved back from its originally planned Memorial Day weekend date. When these movies do finally get made, they should be a ton of fun.
10. Should Be: Hancock 2
Will Smith is not shy about looking for superhero roles in films. Before he took on the role of Deadshot for Suicide Squad and after he turned down the role of Neo in the Matrix, he played Hancock, a vigilante who drank hard and didn’t care much about people, his surroundings, or even himself. Eventually, Hancock gets reacquainted with his long lost love and starts to remember a bit about his past, becoming the stereotypical hero he thinks he’s supposed to be.
It’s surprising that Peter Berg and Will Smith didn’t push harder for a sequel considering that Hancock made $624 million at the box office. According to both the star and the director, a followup was being discussed in 2012 but as it stands now, Will Smith may just be too busy, especially if they do finally get to making the Bad Boys sequels.
9. Sequel Coming: Maze Runner: The Death Cure
There were fans expecting this movie to come out a while ago. It would have if the star (Dylan O’Brien) hadn’t gotten injured during shooting of the project and placed the film on hold until he’d recovered from his injuries.
But the filming of the movie wrapped last June, and it should be ready for its February 2018 release date. Hopefully, the delay hasn’t hurt the film’s ability to draw an audience since it’s been a sizable gap between films. The Death Cure is the third and final installment of the series, and it will center around the group of Maze Runners still looking for a disease cure and taking on the WCKD organization. The other two films have made a total of $660 million at the box office. If the three films gross over a billion together, they wouldn’t have hit the mark of some of other huge franchises but will still be considered successful.
8. Sequel Coming: Mission Impossible 6
It’s crazy to think these films are already in its sixth installment, but the first five have made almost $3 billion worldwide, with the two most recent being the highest grossing of them. It makes sense to produce another one.
Tom Cruise, Rebecca Ferguson, Ving Rhames, Simon Pegg, Michelle Monaghan, Alec Baldwin, and Sean Harris will all reprise their roles from previous films. Henry Cavill (Superman), Vanessa Kirby, Sian Brooke, and Angela Bassett will join the franchise. It is scheduled for release on July 27, 2018. Jeremy Renner will not be back for the sixth film due to scheduling conflicts with the Avengers: Infinity War movies. While the film is set to include all sorts of action, it will also discuss in greater detail some backstory to Ethan Hunt’s personal life.
7. Should Be: Inception 2
The only sequels Christopher Nolan has ever worked on are the Batman films. If he were to add another to his list, we could only hope that it was a sequel to Inception. The movie is so good and so full of twists and turns that the possibilities are endless in terms of the direction he could take on a new movie. There are so many cool special effects that could be added to an already visually iconic franchise that whatever Nolan could muster up in his brain, the movie can achieve.
The first film made an incredible $825,532,764 at the box office and got eight Oscar nominations. Some of the cast members already expressed interest in a sequel, and when Tom Hardy mentioned that the cast already signed on to do a sequel, it’s now just a matter of whether or not Nolan wants to.
6. Sequel Coming: Sherlock Gnomes
Gnomeo and Juliet made about $193 million at the box office. Not bad, but not really something that you’d consider worthy of both making a sequel or, even more, hiring Johnny Depp to star in that sequel. Depp doesn’t exactly come cheap or at least he didn’t. Perhaps his recent financial woes have changed his tune on what films he accepts and which he doesn’t. Or, maybe he’s simply feeling like something different is in order.
This film will introduce us to Sherlock Gnomes (the famous detective). His job will be to find out what exactly happened to a number of other garden gnomes who have gone missing. The first film starred James McAvoy and Emily Blunt, and both are rumored to reprise their roles as Gnomeo and Juliet, respectively. Tim Curry will voice Watson, Holmes’ famous sidekick.
5. Sequel Coming: Ralph Breaks The Internet: Wreck-It Ralph 2
Scheduled for release on November 21, 2018, Ralph Breaks the Internet: Wreck-It Ralph 2 is the sequel to the 2012 film that grossed $471 million at the box office. It makes absolute sense that Disney animations would try to cash in on another film (and, of course, the merchandise sales that go with it).
Taking place six years following the events of the first film, the story will center on Ralph’s adventures in the Internet data space when a WiFi router gets plugged into the arcade as he must find a replacement part to fix Sugar Rush. Ralph will encounter new ideas, customs, worlds, and characters, such as the trendy algorithm and even the Disney Princesses. John C Reilly will reprise his role as Ralph.
4. Should Be: Beetlejuice 2
It wasn’t long ago that a rumor about Beetlejuice 2 being confirmed for release went viral. It wasn’t true. What happened was, Beetlejuice director Tim Burton let Seth Grahame-Smith pen a script for a followup simply to see what became of it. Once that word leaked, the fans ran away with things, and the cries for Beetlejuice 2 grew louder. Tim Burton has admitted that he’d like to make the film, and it would star Michael Keaton and Winona Ryder (even with Winona saying she could pretty much confirm it was happening). But Burton is committed to making the live-action Dumbo feature for Disney, and he’s got other things on his plate, without a worry in the world should Beetlejuice not see a sequel.
3. Sequel Coming: The Incredibles 2
Pixar will be teaming with Disney and coming out with The Incredibles 2 on June 15, 2018. After the first movie made $633 million, it was kind of a no-brainer. Brad Bird will be back to write and direct the film.
The Incredibles 2 follows the adventures of the Parrs, a family of Supers (humans with super abilities). According to Pixar’s chief creative officer, John Lasseter, the sequel wastes no time getting back into the story and will start one minute after the end of the first film. This means that the movie should start with a battle of the Parrs against the Underminer. In that respect, this is a true sequel meant to feel like one film.
2. Sequel Coming: Fifty Shades Freed
Fifty Shades Freed is the third and final installment of the erotic romance, Fifty Shades Trilogy, by British author E. L. James. If you’ve read the books, you already know that after accepting entrepreneur CEO Christian Grey’s proposal in Fifty Shades Darker, Anastasia Steele must adjust not only to married life but to her new husband’s wealthy lifestyle and controlling nature. The two go on a long honeymoon in Europe and return to Seattle where Christian is upset that Ana has kept her maiden name. It goes on from there as twists and turns with Ana’s old boss, Christian, and others provide some questions about her new marriage.
The film is set for a February 9, 2018 release. The first two movies have grossed about $950 million at the box office. It’s no wonder why they decided to shoot the second and third films back to back.
1. Should Be: The Big Lebowski 2
Jeff Bridges has said that he’d be on board with another Lebowski movie. But the Coen Brothers seem to have shut down most rumors that this type of film would be in the works. The original film is considered a cult classic and with that comes the risk of tarnishing fine, dark comedic art. That said, if “The Dude” himself wants to make the movie, or at least appear for a cameo in a spin-off, who are we to disagree?
Rumors swirled that there was a project called Little Lebowski in the works, and it centered around how Bridges’ character impregnated Maude [Julianne Moore]. The premise makes sense. But alas, these are just rumors, and it looks like fans who were hoping for this to happen will be disappointed. Maybe it’s for the best. After all, why mess with a masterpiece, right?
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