Universal Unnecessarily Putting Johnny English Back in Action

April 8, 2010

Johnny English

Universal may not have the backbone to risk putting up the money for a potentially heavy-hitting drama like Cartel with Josh Brolin, but damn it if they won't pony up the dough for an unnecessary comedy sequel as Variety reports the studio is looking to make Johnny English 2. The sequel to the 2003 "comedy" brings back Rowan Atkinson (Bean) as the titular clumsy, bumbling British spy with Oliver Parker (St. Trinian's) set to direct from Mr. Bean's Holiday writer, Hamish McColl's, new screenplay. Yep, you're right Universal, this sounds so much better than an engaging drug trafficking drama. Ugh, why wasn't this done years ago!?

Sadly, this sequel is (only) being done as a safe move for Universal to rake in some dough as the first Johnny English, which cost $40 million to make, earned a pathetic $28 million stateside but made a mind-boggling $161 million worldwide. People just love Rowan Atkinson's slapstick antics and his goofy facial expressions.. at least everywhere outside of the US. So did I when I was 9-years-old. We live in a great time in the industry when crappy unnecessary sequels get greenlit over countless other projects, whether its a drama like Cartel, or a plethora of overlooked original spec scripts that are out there. Anyone else a little upset by this?

Find more posts: Casting, Movie News, Opinions



Oi! Johnny English/Rowan Atkinson are awesome while Josh Brolin is only okay. People clearly like it so get off the high horse. Not every movie has to be mindblowingly serious, arty and generally up itself. It's okay to have a bit of a laugh.

Not amused... on Apr 8, 2010


This stuff isnt funny, maybe who you have down syndrome. (or british)

Classified on Apr 8, 2010


Johnny English was mediocre at best, I don't think I could watch a sequel I would cringe the whole way through

Kaiser on Apr 8, 2010


#2... hahah. You're so funny. I mean everyone hates the british right? So you're american right? Yay for casual racism - what you guys are best at really.

Not amused... on Apr 8, 2010


You know actually that's the most annoying thing about americans. Your ridiculous arrogance that if something didn't make a lot of money in America it's no good. Last time i checked the rest of the world is a whole lot bigger and interesting than America.

Not amused... on Apr 8, 2010


For Rowan Atkinsons best work check out Blackadder series, he's much better than the Johnny English, Bean, bumbling vicar film roles he seems to go for these days.

napoleonblownapart on Apr 8, 2010


#6 Totally agree, Blackadder was Rowan's best work by far. When the hell will Universal grow a set of nuts and get the ball rolling on the GOD OF WAR movie.

Anti-Fox on Apr 8, 2010


@ #5, You know what's most annoying about people like you? Your hasty generalizations that aren't based on any sort of fact, but rather some sort of unreasonable justification for not liking a terrible comedy like Johnny English. There are plenty of things that haven't made money in America that are stellar films. The Hurt Locker only made $16 million last year and it wont Best Picture. Or how about a British movie just to prove the point even further? Because In The Loop didn't make anything stateside (or apparently anywhere) and that was my favorite comedy from last year. Just because I don't like a movie that international audiences apparently went crazy for to the tune of $161 million, doesn't mean that I'm not aware of the rest of the world. I saw the movie and it was terrible, and that's not based on the fact that it didn't make money in the U.S. If you're going to respond to a deliberately offensive and unnecessary comment (looking at you #2) then don't make a blanket statement about an entire country to retaliate. Bottom line, Johnny English sucks. I'm all right with having a laugh (comedy is my favorite genre), but not when they are cheap, exploitative, and absolute shit. Regards,

Ethan Anderton on Apr 8, 2010


I found the first movie amusing, but not sure if a sequel is necessary.

Chase on Apr 8, 2010


I liked the first and cannot wait, who cares what it did in the states, american audiences sometimes have different tastes then other countries. Atkinson is beloved world wide.

WB Exec on Apr 8, 2010


If you want to see Cartel so much then fund it yourself (and never see any of your money back). Universal are a business. They are not a charity.

adam on Apr 8, 2010


Those bastards at Universal! How dare they want to make a profit! I'm as disappointed that "Cartel" was shut down (and a big Josh Brolin fan), but to suggest that any company's decision to make a surefire winner precludes them from investing in more prestigious projects is infantile logic at best.

Profiteer on Apr 8, 2010


Johnny English is one of my favourite films. it is so funny! and yes, i am an english person, (and im only 13). ben miller is really funny when teamed with rowan atkinson. I am sooooooooooo excited!!!!!!!!!!!!!

yumyumfish on Apr 8, 2010


At the risk of ruining the internet by posting what i hope is a resonably reasonable opinion... Anything that keeps Rowan Atkinson in a gig is ok by me. And I'm 32. And not English. [ Take away the physical comedy (kinda like blackadder after series 1) and I always thought he'd make a really good Discworld Patrician. ] Very dissappointing that Cartel isn't being made though, after No Country I am now pro any gig that gives Josh Brolin something decent to chew on. It really would be nice if they made a Johnny English with a decent story, with all the Bond and Bourne and dodgy modern international politics, you'd think there would be a crackerjack cautic political espionage parody waiting to get made. Physical gags for the kids, and an engaging plot for those that read a broadsheet occasionally. I am, however, quite sure that in their effort for a "sure fire hit" Universal execs will relentlessly redact anything interesting. And bring back Natalie! Anyone?! Anyone? Anyone.... ahem.

jimminy on Apr 8, 2010


I must also agree whole-heartedly with #6. Blackadder and the character Zazu from the Lion King were the best things to come from Rowan Atkinson. Blackadder Movie= Full of WIN

twittwit on Apr 8, 2010


I didn't hate Johnny English. I'd much rather see a badass sounding movie like Cartel get made, yeah. And it was far from Rowan's best work. But I didn't hate it.

Craig on Apr 8, 2010


It wasn't the best film but I thought it was pretty funny.

DiR3cT on Apr 8, 2010


Yeh, I'm upset at your bias. If this was a comic book character you'd be having an orgasim.

p liu on Apr 8, 2010


This guy makes Pee Wee Herman seem like Clark Gable.

Classified on Apr 8, 2010


I love Rowan!

Colt on Apr 8, 2010


#8. Okay. fine. You make a credible point. Sorry about the blanket comment - saw red over the british comment and the tremendous bias in the post. But at the end of the day - get off the high horse. #18's right - the bias on this site is making it unreadable.

Not amused... on Apr 9, 2010


@6 & 7 -- Agreed. Blackadder II, Blackadder the Third, Blackadder Goes Forth, and Blackadder's Christmas Carol are the best work Rowan has ever done. I don't count The Black Adder, since the series didn't come alive until Ben Elton replaced Atkinson as second writer on the show. A Johnny English sequel seems like a joke, but (box office) money talks...

sausage time! on Apr 9, 2010


blackadder movie should be made...and jhonny english was absolutely hilarious...if this is as good as the 1st GO FOR IT! if not then please dont make it really...

Jasveet on Apr 9, 2010


No #2 is fucking stupid. You racist asshole!

Tits Hemingway on Apr 9, 2010


Nope! I love Rowan Atkinson.

Manda on Apr 10, 2010

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