As summer movie season gets underway and people start heading back to theaters, we’re thinking about our favorite film franchises, past, present and future. So, all this week, TODAY is celebrating sequels — the sequel to a beloved franchise you might have forgotten about, the sequel that’s become a cult classic, the upcoming sequels we can’t wait to watch and the sequels we wish had been made.
We're only midway through July, yet the summer movie season has already been filled with sequels. In the last few weeks alone, theaters have welcomed the release of "F9," the latest film in the "Fast & Furious" franchise; "The Boss Baby: Family Business"; and "The Forever Purge." More sequels will follow in the months to come, from a new James Bond movie to a long-awaited "Top Gun" follow-up.
But Hollywood can never have too many sequels. At least, that was our thinking when we came up with these six ideas for sequels to fan favorites, from "Pulp Fiction" to "Ferris Bueller's Day Off."
So sit back, relax and let us make our pitches.
‘Pulp Fiction 2: Jules Walks the Earth’
Convinced what happened in the apartment with Big Kahuna Burger Brett and Flock of Seagulls was an act of God, a now-devout Jules Winnfield has quit the life of crime and set out on his quest to walk the Earth, like Caine in “Kung Fu.” But when a dark figure from his past reemerges, Jules is once again forced to confront the tyranny of evil men and decide whether to choose the path of righteousness ... or vengeance.
Poster tagline: He was trying real hard to be the shepherd. That s---’s over now.
‘Jerry Maguire 2’
Show me the ... Bitcoin? Tom Cruise had an awakening of the conscience in the original “Jerry Maguire” and appeared to get the happily ever after he sought. A quarter of a century later, though, the world has changed. Athletes are earning even more money and chasing endorsements, while social media means fans can follow their every move. How would Jerry navigate this new world? Would Rod Tidwell still be pushing him to be his best? Would Dorothy still want to be inspired? And what about Ray, Dorothy’s adorable pint-size son who’d be all grown up now? Maybe he’s gone into business with Jerry and has lost his way, with Jerry needing to show him what really matters in life. The possibilities here have us at hello.
‘Inside Out 2’
I’m not the biggest fan of animated movies, but "Inside Out" — which I have seen, and cried to, several times — easily made me appreciate Pixar and animation so much more. As an only child myself, I related to Riley and her adorable, close-knit relationship with her parents. Pixar did a wonderful job of portraying mental health and the inner workings of a person’s mind in a way that children and adults could not only understand, but also appreciate. At the very end of the film, Pixar teased viewers with a little foreshadowing to young love and boy band obsessions in Riley’s future. A sequel that involves exactly that — and more of the struggles that come with teen life (high school, college apps, toxic friend groups, puberty) — is something I would love to see in an “Inside Out 2.”
‘Ferris Bueller’s Day Off 2’
Once the coolest kid in his high school — heck, in any high school — what if Ferris Bueller had grown up to become a total square? And what if he had a son who is just as much of a schemer as he was? And maybe he learns a lesson that it’s important to retain that lovable kid inside of all of us? Is it a stretch? Sure, but it’s a stretch to think Ferris could’ve done all of those things he did with Sloane and Cameron when they cut school, yet they somehow squeezed in about a year’s worth of fun before the sun went down.
Since the late 1990s, there have been two “Star Wars” trilogies and some spinoff films and TV shows. In other words, there is a lot of material for Mel Brooks to work with if he were to have any interest now in creating a new “Spaceballs” film. Admittedly, the losses of original cast members like John Candy, Joan Rivers and Dick Van Patten would be deeply felt. Still, it would be fun to see how Brooks would spoof recent characters and stories from the “Star Wars” universe. Maybe Lone Starr (Bill Pullman) comes out of seclusion to train the next “Spaceballs” hero. Or maybe we get an origin story on Rick Moranis’ Dark Helmet (already touched on in an animated series more than 10 years ago). More than anything, I just want to see a modern-day spin on classic “Spaceballs” gags like the villain fast forwarding through his own movie (though this time on a streaming service, not on VHS). Whatever the premise, if “Spaceballs 2” were to actually happen, I would buy tickets at ludicrous speed.
‘Romy and Michele’s High School Reunion 2’
A reunion of a reunion? Romy and Michele showed how outsiders could eventually find their place. But so many years later, maybe they go to another reunion and maybe they’ve gotten too big for their britches. Maybe they need to help Christie turn her own life around. Maybe we meet someone else who graduated with them. Maybe we start jotting down some ideas on the Post-it notes they claimed to have invented.
“I think it's been long enough that there could be some really fascinating twists and turns,” Julia Campbell, who played Christie in “Romy and Michele’s High School Reunion,” told TODAY earlier this year when asked about the possibility of another film.
“I think it could be fantastic,” she added.