Over the next few years, many classic action/adventure franchises will be revisited. Jurassic World, Terminator Genisys, and Star Wars: The Force Awakens will open later this year; not one, but two Ghostbusters films are in the works at Sony; and 20th Century Fox and director Roland Emmerich are returning to the world of the 1996 sci-fi action film, Independence Day.
Independence Day 2 has long been in the works at Fox, but it was officially given the green light last fall with production set to start in Spring 2015 – aiming for a Summer 2016 release. Now, a new cast member has been added as filming officially gets underway.
Emmerich announced via Twitter that Maika Monroe (It Follows) has signed on to Independence Day 2 in an unspecified role. She will join fellow new cast members Liam Hemsworth (The Hunger Games franchise), Jessie Usher (Survivor’s Remorse), Charlotte Gainsbourg (Nymphomaniac), Travis Tope (Boardwalk Empire), and Joey King (Fargo). Additionally, Jeff Goldblum, Bill Pullman, Judd Hirsch, Brent Spiner, and Vivica A. Fox will reprise their roles from Emmerich’s original alien invasion blockbuster.
Check out Emmerich’s casting announcement:
I have another addition to announce. The beautiful & talented Maika Monroe is officially signed on 2 the Independence Day Sequel!— Roland Emmerich (@rolandemmerich) April 27, 2015
Monroe has quickly made a name for herself with her performances in The Guest and, especially, the horror film It Follows (read our review). Though Monroe has largely stuck to non-blockbuster fare, the same could be said of her Independence Day 2 costar Gainsbourg. At least, in Monroe’s case, she has some experience fighting off an alien invasion after costarring in the sci-fi thriller The 5th Wave, a young adult adaptation set to hit theaters in early 2016.
Though production on Independence Day 2 was set to begin in May, it seems the sequel is ahead of schedule. Both costar King and producer Dean Devlin have tweeted about filming getting underway on the feature. While Devlin threw it back to another project on which he worked with Emmerich, King posted a photo with a few Independence Day 2 producers:
As we begin shooting Independence Day sequel, here's a TBT from when Roland and I made The Patriot https://t.co/N4Oj6vuLkR— Dean Devlin (@Dean_Devlin) April 23, 2015
The casting of Independence Day 2 is widely varied with returning characters and new players, the latter of which are also a mix of action stars and genre film actors. It’s likely Emmerich and those at Fox are hoping to appeal to fans of the original Independence Day with all the returning characters, while still making the sequel accessible to new audiences.
Of course, with so many new and returning stars whose roles have yet to specified – and how much time will be devoted to each character – it’s difficult to understand Emmerich’s vision for the upcoming sequel. We won’t know the balance between the new generation and the returning stars until more about the sequel is officially revealed. However, with filming underway it may not be long before more details about the film’s plot, characters, and how it fits in with its predecessor become available.
Independence Day 2 is set to hit theaters June 24th, 2016.