‘M3GAN’ director shares excitement at knowing there’s an appetite for sequels

'M3GAN' director says reshoots to land PG-13 rating actually made film more scary
Image: Universal

It’s been a week since M3GAN hit theaters across the States, and director Gerard Johnstone, who also worked on Housebound, can’t hold himself back from planning a sequel. Working with a budget of $12 million, M3GAN has already grossed $54.7 million at the box office, and considering Friday, Jan. 13 marks the date of the UK release, that number is expected to rise substantially. Starring Get Out star Allison Williams as Gemma, an accomplished roboticist, M3GAN sees Gemma’s niece, Cady (Violet McGraw) befriend her latest creation: a life-like AI doll named M3GAN. However, when M3GAN grows over-protective of Cady, it gains sentience and begins imposing its will on those around it, especially those who threaten the safety and happiness of her BFF.

Johnstone’s last horror, 2014’s Housebound — which also happened to be his directorial debut — stars Morgana O’Reilly as Kylie, a would-be thief whose estranged mother warns her of evil forces at work in their family home. Considering Housebound was originally a New Zealand horror/comedy, it was announced in February 2015 that it would be receiving a US remake. There hasn’t been a sequel to Housebound yet, which gives us the impression that it didn’t perform so well at the box office. However, Rotten Tomatoes‘ scoring begs to differ with a 95% “certified fresh” rating.

That being said, Johnstone is already campaigning for M3GAN, his second stab at a horror flick, to receive a sequel — just a week into its theatrical run. Speaking to The Playlist, Johnstone communicated how he and James Wan, director of Saw, agreed that there were many more ideas in the pipeline for the up-and-coming M3GAN franchise. It certainly seems that we might have another Annabelle on our hands.

“All I can say is what’s already out there, which is that James certainly had some ideas. There were so many ideas that I had that we couldn’t squeeze into the first movie, and so many more directions we wanted to go. We wanted to make a tight, entertaining 90-minute movie, and there were so many facets of M3gan’s character we just didn’t have time to explore. So the chance to do another one is very exciting. I’m in talks to do it, and I really do hope it happens. And I think, especially now that I know that there’s a real appetite for it, that certainly helps.”

For now, let’s not run before we walk. We’ll see how M3GAN fairs for the remainder of its run, then we’ll see if the sequel discussion is still on the table.