In recent months, we’ve heard chatter about the making of a sequel to Kevin Smith‘s ‘Mallrats’, his second feature film released 21 years ago that starred a whole mess of talented actors. Ben Affleck, Jason Lee, Shannen Doherty, Joey Lauren Adams, Michael Rooker, Jason Mewes and Smith himself. Even Stan Lee had an appearance, one much, much longer than anything he’s done in his Marvel cameos. As the months rolled on, we heard more and more of the original cast had signed on to be a part of the sequel. Last count, Smith had nearly everyone game for a reprisal.
So now we have ‘Mallrats 2,’ or rather ‘Mallbrats’ as it’s being called, on our minds. What will it be about? What is this new mall like? How will it look seeing everyone 21 years older than the first time? And the big question… WHEN IS IT COMING?! It looks like we have an answer. Smith called in to 93.3 WMMR radio in Philadelphia and chatted with the morning team of Preston and Steve. On the show, Kevin divulged why this has been hanging in limbo and just what the plans are now.
The director had intended on discussing his live podcast ‘Hollywood Babble-On‘ at The Trocadero this coming Saturday, but when the conversation turned to Mallbrats, the director obliged with the scoop:
“I called my agency and I said, ‘Hey man, can I just make a Mallrats sequel? Universal owns it, but do I really need to make this with Universal? Can’t I just write a script and buy the title from them?’ And the agent told me, ‘Yeah, absolutely, they’ll let it go.’ And I said, ‘Are you positive? Because I don’t want to start this if that’s not the case.’ He says, ‘Oh yeah, there are three ways you can make this movie: You finance it yourself; you finance it with the studio, co-financed; or they finance it, but, you know, it’ll probably be, since it’s an old movie and it’s a small title, it’ll probably be you financing it yourself.’
— KevinSmith (@ThatKevinSmith) June 10, 2016
“So I wrote my script, put everything together, and then I told my agent, when I was done, ‘Alright, I’m ready to go, do we have to reach out to Universal for approval or something or let them pass or whatever?’ And he said, ‘Yeah, we have to submit the script.’ And I was like, ‘Why do we have to submit the script?’ ‘Because they own the property and it’s a formality … it’s going to be fine.’
“And so we submitted the script and my agent comes back to me and he goes, ‘Well, apparently Universal has never let a catalog title go, any title they own, they’ve retained, they’ve never done something where they’re like, ‘Oh, you can take it back and go make a sequel. Never in the history of the studio.’ So, I was like, ‘Wait, but you told me that was one of my options.’ ‘Well, apparently I was wrong. So, right now there are two options: you make it fully studio financed or you co-finance it with the studio.’ So we entered a protracted negotiation with Universal trying to get it made in different pockets of the studio.”
— Preston & Steve Show (@PrestonSteve933) June 10, 2016
Smith revealed that his plans for a sequel went Askew (<— someone will get that) when he learned that Universal wouldn’t release the title to the first Mallrats and allow him to make a sequel on his own. So now it looks like we will be getting more Mallrats than we first anticipated. A 10-episode run is a great start and could potentially lead to more episodes or a series renewal. No word on an affiliation with a network, or streaming service, that will host the show.
Mallbrats will see the return of 18 familiar faces along with six new characters. Filming will still be done at the Exton Square Mall in Exton, PA as previously announced.