1999 was the year that M. Night Shyamalan burst onto the scene out of nowhere and instantly established himself as one of the most exciting talents in Hollywood after writing the screenplay for massively popular family movie and box office smash hit Stuart Little, as well as performing uncredited rewrites on the script for beloved teen rom-com She’s All That. Oh, and he also directed The Sixth Sense.
The supernatural chiller was one of the year’s defining movies, earning over $670 million at the box office and going on to scoop six Academy Award nominations including Best Picture, Best Director and Best Original Screenplay, not to mention it had a shocking twist ending that would go on to dominate popular culture for months and launch a thousand parodies.
Over the next two decades, Shyamalan’s career saw plenty of ups and downs as he succumbed to his own worst tendencies, with his next several movies gradually declining in quality as he became more and more self-indulgent. After years in the doldrums, he then returned in a huge way with Split, which was revealed to be a secret Unbreakable sequel all along. Following that, Glass gave fans the Shyamalan-verse crossover they’d always wanted, but the end result was muddled and underwhelming.
The filmmaker seems unlikely to repeat that trick again, but in a recent interview, Haley Joel Osment admitted that if the opportunity arose to play The Sixth Sense‘s Cole Sear once more, he’d grab it with both hands.
“I doubt that he would do a third crossover, but anytime Night calls, that’s his universe, so I’d definitely be up to dive in there with him again. It’s crazy, we had the 20th anniversary of the film last fall and we did a screening at Hollywood Forever and all that stuff, and it’s wild that it’s been that many years.”
Osment picked up an Academy Award nod for Best Supporting actor at the age of just ten for his phenomenal performance, but has never managed to recapture that success despite working solidly ever since. Shyamalan, meanwhile, didn’t pull off the Glass experiment as well as everyone was hoping, and all things considered, The Sixth Sense is probably much better left alone as a standalone movie anyway.