Sony hasn't even proven that the 21 Jump Street reboot - starring odd pair Channing Tatum and Jonah Hill - is going to play well at the box office - but they're banking on the fact that it will. Literally.
E! reports the exclusive that a 21 Jump Street sequel is already in the works - and that's coming right from the mouth of one of the film's stars.
Hill reportedly dropped the following to E! during the 2012 Oscars this past weekend:
"We are writing the sequel now...We got [the greenlight] by the studio to start writing the sequel."
The actor also had the following to say about the first film - and if true, it would explain why the studio is willing to gamble on a second installment:
"It's punk rock...It's total mayhem. It's two young-looking cops going to back to high school and they party with high school kids and go crazy....I'd say it's the funniest movie I've ever been in—that and Superbad. It's like a two-hour or hour-and-a-half party."
The 21 Jump Street red-band trailer came out of the gate and made something of a dent in all the negative perception, primarily by not being as terrible as so many had predicted it would be. There's only been increased buzz as the general public has become aware of the film: in most theaters I've been in where the trailer screened, people have, by and large, been sold on the (literally) sophomoric humor of this buddy cop flick. Add bonuses like having a cameo by Johnny Depp are only going to help the film's chances.
I say all that to say: there's no reason right now to expect 21 Jump Street to flop. The modern Hollywood system is one that waits for no man (or movie) in pursuit of profit - and that means sometimes betting on a win before it's even in the bag. Hopefully Sony won't isn't repeating Warner Bros.' mistake of betting on a Green Lantern 2 before Green Lantern 1 even had a chance to disappoint.
On the other hand, those who have been waiting for J.J. Abrams to get Star Trek 2 into theaters (4 years when all is said and done) are probably friendly to the idea of keeping sequels coming sooner rather than later. Having already scheduled a date for Amazing Spider-Man 2 before the first is even out, and now 21 Jump Street 2 moving forward, Sony is clearly playing the long term game, and showing confidence in their properties, to boot.
Hopefully it all works out for moviegoers.
21 Jump Street will be in theaters on March 16, 2012.