Bad Santa - directed by Terry Zwigoff (Ghost World) - followed the misadventures of Willie (Billy Bob Thornton), a drunken mall Santa who sets out to rob shopping centers around Christmastime. It was both critically and financially successful and started Thornton down a path of portraying foulmouthed authority figures (Bad News Bears, School for Scoundrels).
Pink is no stranger to raunchy and offbeat comedies, having directed – in addition to Time Machine - Accepted and episodes of New Girl and Happy Endings. However, his potential involvement in the Bad Santa sequel doesn’t end at directing.
According to Deadline, he may have a hand in re-writing John Rosenthal’s original script. Pink’s writing credits include arguably one of John Cusack’s best films, High Fidelity, where Cusack played man-boy record store owner and music aficionado, Rob Gordon.
Thornton is expected to return as the bad Santa himself, but it’s still yet to be confirmed if any other characters from the original, such as Lauren Graham, Thornton’s quirky love interest, will return.
The original film, produced by the Coen Brothers, opened at $12 million at the box office and racked up $76 million worldwide (against an $18 million budget). But has the relevance of a potential sequel diminished from the nearly ten-year gap between films? And if so, can Steve Pink give Bad Santa 2 the direction it needs to be successful?
The original film was incredibly vulgar and cynical, but with a high level of tolerance and an open mind, it also revealed a certain amount of heart at its core. It’ll be interesting to see if the film holds onto the same tone or ventures down another avenue with a different director at the helm.
Are you interested in seeing Billy Bob Thornton return to the role of Willie in Bad Santa 2? Or has it just been too long?
Bad Santa 2 is expected to hit theaters December 2013.