Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson’s inherent likeability, barrelled biceps and willingness to fight any cinematic opponent has transformed the one-time wrestler into a studio’s dream. His presence in several waning franchises has earned him several tags attesting to his ability to pep up the most exhausted of series. From Fast & Furious to G.I. Joe, the mere sight of Johnson has bolstered box office takings every single time. Based on a recent interview with director Brad Peyton, Johnson’s similar effect on Journey 2: The Mysterious Island looks set to continue in its follow-up sequels, Journey 3 and 4.
Taking some time out at this weekend’s Wonder-Con, the director chatted with the folks over at Collider to offer an update on those two future installments. While Warner Bros. secured Johnson last year, a very smart move indeed, since that time there has been a dearth of new information on the family-oriented franchise until now. During the interview, Peyton revealed the genesis of the upcoming movies, and when it was they decided to spawn additional outings:
“When we finished Journey 2 and were like, ‘I feel pretty good about this,’ and the movie went on to do really well, you instantly go, ‘Well this is what I would do. I would do this and this,’ based on the Jules Verne works that we have, so we had concepts right away.
He then went on to talk about where he is in the scripting process, and how the studio plans to roll out the next adventures. Understandably, Peyton makes reference to a back-to-back shoot:
“We are working on a script for 3 and 4. There’s no official status but it’s one of those things we chip away at and I’m gonna do a meeting on it next week, so we’re still figuring it out… If I’m gonna do three of ‘em or two of ‘em, let’s just do it, because it’s hard to get there and then it’s hard to sustain. As soon as you get that release down you’re like, ‘Okay I need a vacation.’”
As both flicks are still positioned in the preliminary stages of development, there is plenty of time to secure a bigger cast to expand the Journey brand. The Hunger Games’ Josh Hutcherson may opt back in to reprise his role from the first two movies, and with Carey and Chad Hayes (The Conjuring) hammering out the most recent draft, might we see some horror thespians board the pic?