Robert Rodriguez' long-delayed Sin City 2 is inching closer and closer to actually happening. The independent filmmaker is all but set to make the comic book sequel his next project - and has even recruited Oscar-winning screenwriter William Monahan to help ensure the final product is worth the wait.
It's long been expected that Sin City mastermind Frank Miller's original story, "A Dame to Kill For," would be the primary basis for the cinematic followup - and, according to the comic book legend, that is indeed the case.
However, Miller - who also received co-directing credit for the Sin City movie - says the sequel will still retain the multi-storyline structure of its predecessor. He also went on to reveal that Sin City 2 is going to feature some brand-new narrative material of his own creation.
Here is what the writer/artist told MTV, in his own words:
"'Sin City' number two is primarily an adaptation of the book 'A Dame to Kill For'. It also features the short story, 'Just Another Saturday Night' and two new stories. One involving Jessica Alba's character, Nancy Callahan, that I came up with for the movie in order to tie things together and make it be more united with the first."
For those not familiar with the comic, here is an official synopsis for "A Dame to Kill For":
Enter Dwight McCarthy, a clean-living photographer who tries to avoid trouble because he knows what he’s capable of. His tactics don’t do him much good when a girl from his past (who he can’t say no to) shows up and professes her love for him. When he finds out she’s in way over her head, it looks as though trouble has found him. What’s going to happen? You guessed it: people get hurt.
While Clive Owen portrayed Dwight in Rodriguez' Sin City, that does not guarantee his return in the followup - simply because the character is supposed to have undergone significant facial reconstruction between the events of "Dame" and "The Big Fat Kill" (i.e. the Dwight-centered storyline in the first Sin City movie). However, this does set the stage for the return of badass prostitutes Gail (Rosario Dawson) and Miho (Devon Aoki), along with the villainous Manute (Michael Clarke Duncan).
"Just Another Saturday Night" is a short story that follows Marv (Mickey Rourke in the first Sin City flick) on an adventure the same night that Nancy (Alba) is reunited with John Hartigan (Bruce Willis). In other words, it occurs concurrently with the events of the third section in Rodriguez' first movie (ie. the section based on Miller's "That Yellow Bastard" comic book). Whether or not Rourke is guaranteed to reprise his role is not yet clear - if only because he previously expressed some reluctance about the idea.
(POTENTIAL) SPOILER ALERT
It's long been rumored that the new Nancy-centered story which Miller has devised for Sin City 2 will pick up with the character sometime after Hartigan commits suicide - in order to protect her from the vengeful Senator Roark (Powers Boothe) following the murder of his pedophile son (Nick Stahl). That would seem a fitting way to weave together a couple of plot threads left dangling from the first Sin City movie with its followup.
Whether the other original Sin City 2 story Miller referenced in his MTV interview will offer a chance for Willis to reprise his turn as Hartigan or feature another familiar/new face from the Sin City universe - and/or serve as a framing device for the sequel (a la "The Customer is Always Right" in the first film) - all three seem possible, at this juncture.
END SPOILER ALERT
While it's likely that at least eight years will have passed since the first film's release by the time Sin City 2 reaches theaters, many a fan remains pumped to see the sequel. The relentlessly gritty tone, stylized brutal violence, neo-noir atmosphere, and desaturated visuals of Rodriguez' adaptation made Sin City popular with both casual moviegoers and hardcore Miller comic book lovers alike. So, hopefully, the followup can bottle lightning again - and not follow the trend of numerous other belated franchise sequels that failed to justify the long delay between installments.
Miller is now saying that Sin City 2 likely won't begin production until Spring 2012. We shall continue to keep you posted on the status of the project in the meantime.