Something about August seems to make the month – which serves as the tail-end of the summer movie season – a breeding ground for lucrative R-Rated comedies (see: The 40 Year Old Virgin, Superbad, Tropic Thunder, etc.), and that remained the case last year with We’re the Millers. The raunchy faux-family marijuana-smuggling comedy ended up grossing $150 million here in the States, while also taking in $270 million worldwide.
We’re the Millers only cost $37 million on top of that, so presumably your monocle won’t pop out at the news that a sequel is currently being developed by New Line Cinema. None of the original movie’s cast is officially set to return yet, though it’s expected that the main four – Jason Sudeikis, Jennifer Aniston, Emma Roberts and Will Poulter – will be reprising their previous roles (drug-dealer, stripper, punk teen and socially-aloof nice guy, respectively) in the next installment.
THR is reporting that the first movie’s four-man writing team – composed of the duos behind Wedding Crashers and Hot Tub Time Machine – have been swapped out on We’re the Millers 2 with solo writer Adam Sztykiel, who previously contributed to the scripts for the Patrick Dempsey/Michelle Monaghan rom-com Made of Honor as well as the Robert Downey Jr./Zach Galifianakis road trip Due Date; chances are, though, at least one more writer will be recruited to work on the We’re the Millers sequel script, before production starts up.
We’re the Millers director Rawson Marshall Thurber – who also helmed the popular Vince Vaughn/Ben Stiller sports comedy Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story (which also has a sequel being assembled) - is expected to come back and take the steering wheel on the sequel. Thurber also recently became attached to direct the Choose Your Own Adventure movie, so depending on which project comes together faster, that one might pull Thurber away from the other.
Then again, regardless of who ends up calling the shots, there’s not exactly any reason to expect much from We’re the Millers 2 beyond a standard rehash of its predecessor (itself, a fairly enjoyable formulaic comedy vehicle). To be fair, though, comedy sequels in general are difficult beasts to tame; the cast chemistry and/or idiosyncrasy of the original movie aren’t often factors that can be easily replicated, but that doesn’t prevent studio heads from attempting to catch lightning in a bottle again, given the proper motivation (read: $$$).
There will be a handful of comedy sequels arriving later this year, such as 22 Jump Street, Think Like a Man Too, Horrible Bosses 2 and Dumb and Dumber To – maybe one or two (or more) of them can buck the trend?
We’ll keep you posted on the We’re the Millers sequel as it develops.