Now that Oscar snub talk is behind them, fans of the critical and commercial success The LEGO Movie can instead focus on looking forward to the sequel, which is slated to arrive in theaters three years from now. LEGO Movie co-writers/directors Phil Lord and Chris Miller are handling scripting duties on the next installment, which the pair have indicated will pickup in real-time after the original film, is going to include more female central characters, and… well, that’s all we know plot-wise for now.
Warner Bros. has confirmed that LEGO Movie 2‘s official title is The LEGO Movie Sequel: a title that, frankly, is perfectly in keeping with Lord and Miler’s general habit of instilling their projects with a good-natured sense of self-awareness. Expanding the LEGO universe isn’t the only task currently on Lord and Miller’s to-do list (they’re also still working on keeping the Jump Street franchise going), so it doesn’t come as a huge shock to learn that the duo have passed the LEGO Movie Sequel helmer duties to someone else.
Director responsibilities on LEGO Movie Sequel will instead be handled by Rob Schrab, a longtime TV comedy director who’s previously called the shots on episodes of such television series varying from The Sarah Silverman Program and The Mindy Project to Community. Schrab, as it were, has experience working on animation for both the small screen and big screen; last year, he called the shots on Community season five’s animated G.I. Joe parody episode, “G.I. Jeff”; prior to that, Schrab penned the script for the generally well-received animated kids movie Monster House.
Here is the official statement from Lord and Miller, on Schrab directing The LEGO Movie Sequel:
“We are so excited to collaborate with Rob. He is a comedy genius, a visual savant, and we have been stalking him for years. No one works harder than Rob, and his aesthetic, combined with his sense of humor, bring a strong, unique, thoughtful, and passionately nerdy voice to this project. People who know him are slapping their foreheads today and saying, ‘Of course!’”
Schrab, as mentioned before, will be directing LEGO Movie Sequel from a script by Lord and Miller, based on a screen story that the pair helped develop after Jared Stern (Bolt, Wreck-It Ralph) and Michelle Morgan (Girl Most Likely). It will be the third LEGO universe-based film to reach theaters over the next three years, following the ninja-themed spinoff Ninjago in 2016 and then LEGO Batman (with Will Arnett reprising as the voice of the title character) in 2017.
Lord and Miller have, in essence, already addressed concerns that three additional LEGO films might be too many, saying they’re committed to making sure each of the upcoming LEGO features “feel like its own thing.” Case in point, Ninjago is being directed by Chris Bean, who developed his own quirky action-driven storytelling style working as a storyboard artist on cartoon series like The Powerpuff Girls and Samurai Jack (before he was bumped up to directing on Disney XD’s TRON Uprising animated TV show).
Similarly, Chris McKay is calling the shots on LEGO Batman, having previously worked on Adult Swim’s zany animated pop culture parody series Robot Chicken, before he served as the animation director on The LEGO Movie. Schrab, like McKay, has worked in the field of joke-a-minute TV comedy, but also knows a thing or two about crafting a proper animated film narrative. Which is to say, Scarabs sounds like someone whose ideas for LEGO Movie Sequel will mesh well with Lord and Miller’s creative sensibilities
Ninjago opens in U.S. theaters on September 23rd, 2016, followed by LEGO Batman on May 26th, 2017, and The LEGO Movie Sequel on (most likely) May 25th, 2018.
Source: Warner Bros.