The weekend hasn’t even started yet, but it would appear that everybody’s favorite gravelly-voiced action star is already hinting at potential sequels involving his stoic, night vision equipped anti hero, Riddick.
The original film, Pitch Black, came out in 2000 and was a bit of an underdog that managed to gross $53 million dollars despite its dead of winter release date. The film then went on to become a sleeper hit/cult classic amongst action movie fans. What’s interesting to note is that the film itself was a decent popcorn affair, but people really liked Vin Diesel’s characterization of the anti-hero, which, in Hollywood, translates into a sequel and a video game tie-in. You could literally hear the ‘Ca-ching!’ shortly after the credits rolled.
Thus, we have The Chronicles of Riddick. The game was excellent. The flick, on the other hand, was weighed down by its own ambition and seemingly rushed execution; not to mention its poor showing at the box office, plus a less than lukewarm critical reception. This should have spelled the end for the character and his franchise. Yet, despite all of these factors the franchise persists and more films could be on the way.
In an interview with Screen Rant, Riddick‘s director, David Twohy, speculated on how many sequels he’d like to see.
“I believe there are two more movies. And I think it’s good that we are looking at ending the series so it doesn’t feel like an open-ended thing, like we’re doing it just for monetary reasons and we’ve just got to keep rolling it over and rolling it over. I think there’s a real end to this and I know what that last movie looks like. The real question is: is it like a two-parter rather than a one-parter? So I think we’re both thinking the same thing, that there’s two more movies in the series.”
In the same interview, he also talked about where he’d like the sequels to go in terms of story direction and setting.
That’s where we end up. I know what that movie looks like, I’ve talked it out. It has all the right notes, it’s a great movie. The real question is: what do you do before you get there? Is it a voyage through the Necromonger universe? Do you have to earn the right to return home by some trial of fire? That’s what we’re talking about doing. Perhaps.”
For those who skipped The Chronicles of Riddick, Furya is the main character’s home planet, so they are essentially wanting to showcase him as he roams from planet to planet in an attempt to return home. See, he’s not such a bad guy after all; the aging killing machine just wants to go home. The series is like some intergalactic and murderous Homeward Bound, minus the puppies and kitties, and with bounty hunters and alien monstrosities instead. All kidding aside, it is an interesting idea nonetheless, but Vin Diesel also brings us back down to reality a bit.
“I don’t want to mislead anybody with the recent success of Fast & Furious. I’m not going to be able to do Riddick at the same pace as Fast & Furious. It’s just… It’s just too dark,” said Diesel.
This shouldn’t be much of a surprise, as Diesel recently revealed that he had to leverage his house to help finance Riddick. As rich as the man is, I’m pretty sure he’d probably hate having to continue leveraging houses to finance films, it’s a risky business practice to say the least.
Several things can be said of Vin Diesel; he loves what he does, and, more importantly, he loves his fans. And in this day and age of celebrity worship, he may be one of the few that is actually worth paying attention to. Hopefully the franchise continues this upward trend, and of course continues to buck the odds.