Robert Rodriguez and Disney hardly seemed like an obvious partnership, with the filmmaker’s fierce independence completely at odds with the Mouse House’s desire to assimilate every aspect of pop culture. Rodriguez made his name directing stylish and violent action movies, and while he eventually segued into family-friendly territory with increasing regularity, his Troublemaker Studios gave him complete creative control over all of his projects from conception right through to post-production.
The maverick filmmaker had never been regarded as a director for hire during his 25 years in Hollywood, but he certainly jumped into uncharted territory when he signed on to tackle $170 million sci-fi blockbuster Alita: Battle Angel. Working closely with producer and co-writer James Cameron, the manga adaptation did solid business at the box office, but the profit margins weren’t enough to make a sequel worth the investment.
However, fans have been desperate to change that, launching regular campaigns in favor of more Alita. Of course, Disney acquired the rights following their takeover of Fox, and Rodriguez is already under contract with them having been announced as one of The Book of Boba Fett‘s executive producers. Many believe that this could help bolster the chances of an Alita sequel and in a recent interview, he’s admitted that a second installment looks a lot more likely than it ever has.
“I think anything is possible. Disney bought Fox, and they have Disney Plus, so that is worth the conversation. I know other people would love to see another, and I would love to do another one. As far as where it would go or how it would be made, I think streaming has opened up many opportunities such as sequels. It’s already a pre-sold concept, it’s already got a built-in audience that wants to see it, and then it’s delivered to them in a way that’s the easiest for them to consume. So, it’s not a bad idea.”
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Disney announced a massive amount of streaming exclusives at the recent Investor Day, but anything Alita: Battle Angel-related obviously wasn’t part of it. However, you can’t rule it out happening in the future, especially with the fate of the theatrical industry set for some seismic changes and fans making it abundantly clear that there’s still an appetite to see more of the post-apocalyptic steampunk world brought to life in last year’s instant cult classic.