While there’s no shortage of sequels/remakes/reboots of ’80s movies these days, Gremlins 3 has yet to come into fruition — though not for a lack of trying. Those involved, including producer Chris Columbus, have attempted to get the project off the ground for a few years now, at least, to no avail. But they are persistent. According to Gremlins star Zack Galligan, Columbus, Warner Bros. and Steven Spielberg all want it to happen, and Columbus has been “aggressively working” to make it a reality.
Galligan revealed the update to Bleeding Cool, where he stressed that the film will be a sequel, not a reboot, and will be set in modern day, following a formula similar to Star Wars: The Force Awakens.
I think you can tell what’s happening with Gremlins 3 the same way you could tell with Gremlins 2. It’s the same people and they tend to work the same way. There is a huge time gap but it’s Warner Bros, Spielberg and Chris Columbus. Now, Chris Columbus didn’t have anything to do with Gremlins 2 – because by his own admission he didn’t see a franchise. He kind of regrets it, I believe, but he was ‘one and done’ I don’t think he cared for Gremlins 2 and the direction some of the characters went in, so he’s kind of wrested control back. Everything I’m quoting is stuff he’s publicly said…
“There will NEVER be a remake, there will NEVER be a reboot, there will only be a SEQUEL.
“He has been aggressively working on a Gremlins 3 that takes place in present day. He tantalizingly says there will be some new characters and some old characters – I guess in the style of a Force Awakens type sequel – One thing we know for sure is they have a writer on board. The only insight I can give is the following: There was a 6 year gap between Gremlins and Gremlins 2 most of that time was spent with them writing and rejecting ideas and re-writing. One of the ideas that was rejected was ‘gremlins in Vegas’ they went with that for 18 months and felt it was too expensive. Eventually they came up with the tower idea, where essentially I’m working for Donald Trump, our new President! That took six years to happen.
Carl Ellsworth has been apparently working on the script for a year and a half now. If no new names start appearing on the IMDB listing, then that means they like the script. If new names start appearing, [like] y’know Kevin Smith appears, it means it’s back in rewrites with a new vision. Warner Bros definitely wants it, Chris Columbus wants to do it because he’d like to undo the Gremlins 2 thing as he wasn’t thrilled with it and Spielberg wants to do it, I imagine – because he’s Spielberg – and why wouldn’t he want to do it? Once he’s found the right script, he can attach his name and make a ton of money. Not that there’s anything wrong with that.
This isn’t an official confirmation, of course, nor is it a greenlight from the studio. But it’s promising all the same. It’s a little worrisome not to hear Joe Dante’s name mentioned, as he was the director behind the first two films, but if Columbus wasn’t “thrilled” by Gremlins 2 — as Galligan says numerous times in the quotes above — then there might be a reason that he’s not involved.
In any case, it looks like more progress is being made than not with Gremlins 3. Whether or not it’ll ever see the light of day (or midnight, more appropriately) though, remains to be seen.