Fresh off the release of his MCU limited series Moon Knight, Jeremy Slater teases that the script for Mortal Kombat 2 will have his sensibilities. Video game adaptations have a bad reputation among movie-goers. Even Sonic the Hedgehog 2, the highest-grossing video game movie in the U.S., cannot compete with the MCU and its consistent box office returns. Still, the subgenre has been growing and improving in recent years.
One contributor to the recent trend was the 2021 Mortal Kombat. The reboot of the infamous Mortal Kombat film series was directed by Simon McQuoid and starred Lewis Tan, Jessica McNamee, Josh Lawson, Tadanobu Asano, Mehcad Brooks, Ludi Lin, Chin Han, Max Huang, Joe Taslim, and Hiroyuki Sanada. Despite average reviews, Mortal Kombat grossed over $83 million and became HBO Max’s most successful film launch when it was released. The sequel, Mortal Kombat 2, is currently in development.
With fans still awaiting the Mortal Kombat sequel, writer Jeremy Slater gives an update on its development. Slater tells The Direct that the script is about halfway written, and the experience has been very fun. He explains that the goal for the sequel is to create a satisfying yet unpredictable movie, saying the team working with him learned from the first movie what the audience would respond to. Still, Slater asserts that the script will not adopt the MCU’s tone, but instead it will stay in Mortal Kombat‘s “weird universe“ while using the writer’s sensibilities. Read Slater’s full update below:
“It’s really fun so far. We’re about halfway through the script. I’m working really closely with the director and the studios, and the game guys, and I think—I can’t say anything about the actual story, but I think they definitely learned some lessons the last time around in terms of, ‘Here’s the stuff fans responded to, and here’s what people liked out of the movie, and here’s the stuff that didn’t work out as well as we hoped.’ So we’re really looking at this as a chance to take everything that worked in the first one and do it even better and give the audience even more, and make something that is just incredibly satisfying, and really exciting, and unpredictable. I don’t think it’s necessarily going to have the same tone as the MCU, but it’s definitely going to have some of my sensibilities. That was part of my pitch to them. This is Mortal Kombat. We have guys who are ripping off their faces and breathing fire—it’s a weird universe, let’s embrace some of that weirdness, and let’s make a Mortal Kombat sequel that no one is expecting and that can kind of sneak in and blow everyone away.”
While Mortal Kombat managed to perform well for a video game adaptation (particularly amid the pandemic), its reception could not compare to recent MCU blockbusters like Spider-Man: No Way Home, which was released the same year and became the sixth-highest grossing film of all time. Considering the drastic difference between those two films, it may be tempting for the studio to imitate the MCU’s tried and true style in Mortal Kombat 2, but Slater asserts that won’t be the case. He will instead apply his sensibilities – which were present in Moon Knight – to the distinct universe the video games created. Hopefully, this results in a Mortal Kombat 2 that both long-time fans and brand new viewers can enjoy.
Slater’s goal of blowing everyone away may seem like a tall order for a video game adaptation, but he already has two successful genre adaptations to his name. Slater worked as a writer and executive producer for The Umbrella Academy season 1, which led to the Netflix series earning a second and third season, and his latest work Moon Knight just released on Disney+ to generally positive reviews. If Slater can duplicate the same level of success, Mortal Kombat 2 may indeed be a surprising sequel.
Source: The Direct
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