Mark Millar is settling into his role as the newly-instated shepherd for Fox’s shared X-Men/Fantastic Four cinematic universe and has the adaptation of his Kick-Ass 2 comic book arriving next year. However, a sequel to Timur Bekmambetov’s (loose) adaptation of Millar’s Wanted comic is progressing down the pipeline at a slower pace; in fact, Wanted 2 was essentially on hold for a couple years, before screenwriters Derek Haas and Michael Brandt were brought back in 2011.
We reached out to Haas about Wanted 2 last year, where he teased plans to subvert The Fraternity’s mantra from the first film (“Kill one, save a thousand”). In a new interview, Haas touches on another intriguing matter: what Wesley (James McAvoy) has been doing over the past four years.
There were once plans for Angelina Jolie to return from the grave as Fox in Wanted 2, but such an approach was jettisoned after the actress walked away from the project. Haas reaffirmed as much during a recent talk with Hollywood.com, while also talking up the benefits of having a few years between installments:
“After four years, from a creative standpoint, it’s almost better, because we can pick up the story four years later. It’s ‘Where is Wesley four years after the events of the first movie?”… Angelina Jolie gets shot in the head and everyone’s like, ‘Oh, are you going to bring back Fox?’ I said, ‘Did you see the bullet go into her head?’ And they say, ‘Oh, she can take one of those milk baths!’ We never wanted to do that movie.
“The only thing I can tell you is that Wesley is now, four years later, recruiting a young woman who is in his situation in the first movie. She’s got a sh**ty life. He’s sort of in the Fox role. This new girl is brought into the world.”
Bekmambetov previously teased that Wanted 2 is going to offer “a great twist” on the mythology of the first film, but we presume (hope?) he wasn’t referring to Wes stepping into Fox’s role as mentor. What few details we have so far do beg certain questions (Has Wes formed his own Fraternity? Will history repeat itself, with Wes’ student eventually turning against him?), but things are so vague right now we can offer little more than speculation.
Hass and Brandt are coming off the latter’s directorial debut (The Double, which they wrote together), while Bekmambetov released Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter over the past summer. Both films failed to win favor with the majority of critics and general audiences (as reflected in the box office), so perhaps now is the perfect time for all three gentlemen to reunite on a Wanted sequel – since they’ll all have something to prove.
More on Wanted 2 as the story develops.