With 2017’s The Lego Batman Movie having grossed over $311 million worldwide, constructing on the block toy franchise’s cinematic success, a sequel appeared like a no brainer for studio Warner Bros. Nonetheless, exterior constraints intervened when Common Photos landed an unique deal for the rights; a accident that basically canceled the sequel in the midst of its development. Consequently, director Chris McKay’s most up-to-date—sadly inauspicious—replace on that entrance additionally got here with intriguingly bittersweet plot particulars.
How’s this for a pitch for The Lego Batman Movie 2? A dramatic ordeal resembling themes from The Godfather Half II and Boogie Nights teaches Batman the worth of friendship. After all, these relatively random sources of inspiration—from a dour early Seventies-era epic and 70s-nostalgic Nineteen Nineties cinematic caricature—could look like a puzzling plot construction for the kid-friendly animated movie franchise, however there was a technique to the obvious insanity, which was to be primarily based on a script by Rick and Morty’s artistic duo, Dan Harmon and Michael Waldron. Nonetheless, in an interview with Collider, McKay sadly states that he doesn’t suppose the sequel will ever get made.
“Dan [Harmon] and [Michael] Waldron had achieved a primary draft of the script that was actually nice,” he explains. “It was really epic… each from an motion standpoint and from a narrative standpoint. The construction was Godfather Half 2… a narrative about Batman’s relationship to the Justice League (and Superman) now in addition to the formative moments of the Justice League (and Batman’s relationship with Superman) then.”
If that concept wasn’t intriguing sufficient to followers, McKay subsequently tweeted the script’s cowl web page, which bears a title that additional displays the sequel’s Seventies leanings, Lego Superfriends. That, in fact, is a reference to iconic Saturday morning cartoon collection Tremendous Associates, which created an indelible—intrinsically lighthearted—thought of DC’s Justice League heroes by having them headquartered within the Corridor of Justice, commonly combining their efforts to battle an all-star tandem of supervillains often called the Legion of Doom. Whereas it stays unknown how such an idea could possibly be relevant to the grim concentrate on the ethical ambiguities of household loyalty of 1974’s The Godfather Half II and the meteoric, sex-and-drugs-driven rise and abrupt fall of a porn star in 1997’s Boogie Nights, the important thing idea that McKay has teased for Lego Batman’s nixed cinematic solo sequel is friendship.
“Friendship. And alter,” emphasizes McKay on the driving forces for the halted Lego Batman sequel. “It was about how onerous it’s to vary. To commit to vary. To remain on the brand new street you’ve carved for your self. Particularly when possibly you weren’t such a superb man to your folks. Your outdated associates may not be capable to see the brand new you. They may nonetheless dwell previously. However because the film (and Robin) finds out… the previous may be extra sophisticated than it appears.”
Consequently, with Batman’s previous and current probably offered in a poetically pertinent method right here, the comparability to the Godfather sequel may simply reference the six-Oscars-generating movie’s twin narrative between the early-1900s flashback exploits of Vito Corleone (Robert De Niro) throughout his regular rise to energy, and the “current” 1958-set story of his son, Michael (Al Pacino), because the ascended head of the crime household. Moreover, the evocation of Boogie Nights—on which the aforementioned script cowl says it’s “loosely primarily based”—may seek advice from a possible rise to a type of area of interest fame for Batman akin to Mark Wahlberg’s Dirk Diggler, adopted by a self-inflicted, hubris-brimming fall, albeit one buoyed by the lifeline of unwavering friendship with fellow onscreen porn cop Reed Rothchild (John C. Reilly).
Nonetheless, Universal’s plans for the Lego film franchise, that are stretched throughout a five-year interval, don’t appear destined to contain Batman or some other DC heroes for that matter, making the probabilities that The Lego Batman 2, Lego Superfriends—or regardless of the sequel was to be titled—all however nonexistent. Furthermore, even when the property remained energetic, it will have needed to fight the notion that it already peaked, notably as a result of disappointing field workplace efficiency of 2019’s The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part, which solely grossed $192 million worldwide—lower than half of the 2014 unique movie’s $468 million. There was additionally the failure of 2017 offshoot The Lego Ninjago Movie, which, having solely grossed $123 million, may need initially revealed the franchise’s weaknesses. Thusly, whereas The Lego Batman Film was a considerable hit, the concept of a sequel— brilliantly outrageous-sounding because it may be—might have been a riskier proposition than one may suppose.
Regardless of the setback, McKay has been maintaining busy, and can quickly unveil his newest directorial effort, a live-action sci-fi movie titled The Tomorrow Struggle, which stars The Lego Film’s Chris Pratt. The movie, having been knocked off its theatrical schedule in the course of the pandemic, is now set to stream on Amazon Prime Video on July 2.