Disney's Future is Full of Sequels Galore!
An interesting scoop has popped up over at AICN that claims that in 2011, Disney will be bringing us four new sequels! Included amongst them are Tron 3D, Cars 2, Pirates of the Caribbean 4, and National Treasure 3. Has even Disney ran out of original ideas? Or is this just a case of building off of guaranteed successful franchises so they can support more original ideas? No matter what the case, all but just about one of these (Tron 3D) makes me go "huh?" when asking why they'd even consider these.
Their scooper didn't provide them with too many details, which not only means that this isn't a very solid scoop (and probably a big rumor), but considering 2011 is three years away, most of this will probably change by then anyway. However, what does sound fairly official is that Disney is at least trying to plan for these four sequels by 2011, if not before or after.
Back in September last year, we brought you the news that Joseph Kosinski had been signed to direct "the next chapter" of Tron. Our guess is that this means Tron 3D is the "next chapter" and that they're going to dabble in 3D this time around instead of just focusing on a straight sequel. Well there goes all the good geeky values of the original movie. I can tell you right now that by trying to develop this movie for 3D, it's going to lose all of the great storytelling values it should have in exchange for cheap gimmicks. Especially Tron, with the lightcycles and everything.
As for Cars 2, this is one of the more interesting possibilities to come out of this. We've already heard that they're putting out the entire Toy Story trilogy in 3D, with Toy Story 3D arriving in 2010. Even Brad Bird has said that "Pixar does not look at sequels as a financial plan" and they rarely consider them, give or take Toy Story. But if there was one other movie that I would expect them to possibly consider making a sequel for, it would be The Incredibles. Cars was even Pixar's lowest box office performer ever - so how does this make sense? But SlashFilm has reported rumors about a Cars sequel previously, so maybe it is legit.
And finally, both National Treasure 3 and Pirates of the Caribbean 4 seem almost inevitable. The second National Treasure made $43 million more at the box office last December (for a total of $216 million) than the first movie. And the third (and supposedly final) Pirates of the Caribbean made $309 million at the box office last summer, which was $114 million less than the second film. Either way you look at it, both films made more than enough money to warrant sequels - and it would seem likely that Disney would want to continue both of them.
Jim Hill of Jim Hill Media reported last month that the plot for National Treasure 3 might involve sending "the Gates family off to Easter Island and beyond in search of Atlantis. More importantly, the pure, clean power source that was supposedly lost forever when this ancient civilization sank beneath the sea. Which - were it to be harnessed today - would immediately put an end to global warming. Not to mention making gas & oil obsolete."
As for Pirates of the Caribbean 4, two plot rumors have surfaced, including one involving a journey to find the lost city of Atlantis (didn't we just mention this?), and the other involving an apparently "less expensive" search for the Fountain of Youth (as seen on the map at the end of the third movie). The big question here, though, is whether anyone even wants another Pirates of the Caribbean movie. But the sad fact of the matter is that even if they make it, the movie is going to make money, a lot of it, no matter what you and I think.
I'm curious to know whether this plan for numerous sequels in 2011 seems that terrible or if it just seems like Disney is (appropriately) taking advantage of successful franchises that they've created? All four of the films mentioned above could turn out to be enjoyable popcorn summer flicks, so I'm not too worried. Disney doesn't exactly have the worst track record, but they might be going too far this time. We'll be sure to update you on Disney's official plans for the future once we know more.