Denzel Washington doesn’t know what happened to planned follow-up Safe House 2. Earlier in his career, Washington used to stay clear of the action genre after mixed reactions to movies like 1995's Virtuosity, but in the last decade or so he’s been a regular leading man in several action movies. This includes buddy comedy 2 Guns with Mark Wahlberg and the big budget remake of The Magnificent Seven with Chris Pratt and Ethan Hawke.
His most popular action role would be McCall from The Equalizer. Based on the popular 1980s TV series starring Edward Woodward, Washington played the soft-spoken ex-CIA agent who dusts off his lethal skills to take on the Russian mob when they hurt one of his friends. The movie’s mix of brutal action with Washington’s charismatic turn made it a hit, and the movie’s upcoming sequel The Equalizer 2 marks a small piece of history by being the actor’s first sequel.
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Washington has previously stated he wasn’t itching to revisit The Equalizer and only signed up for a sequel because he liked the script. Now in a new interview with Yahoo! the actor explained what happened to Safe House 2, which was announced shortly after the success of the original in 2012. When asked if he ever wanted to revisit a character, Washington replied, "They talked it with Safe House, like a prequel to Safe House, but I don’t know what happened to that."
Safe House starred Washington as a former CIA agent turned criminal who is arrested and brought to a safe house run by a rookie agent, played by Ryan Reynolds. The two men are forced to go on the run when assassins break into the location and a reluctant partnership grows between them. Safe House didn’t do much new with the buddy formula, but it was an efficient action thriller grounded by the two leads. The movie didn’t end on a note that easily lent itself to a sequel, though, and rumors suggested Safe House 2 would be a split narrative: one strand would be a prequel following Washington’s Tobin Frost and another would be present-day following Reynolds character.
Little has been heard about Safe House 2 since 2012, however, and with both actors busy on other projects it probably shouldn’t come as a surprise the sequel plans went nowhere. This is probably for the best, since it was hard to picture how the story could have organically continued while still keeping Washington’s character in the loop.