Kevin Smith Confirms & Explains Just Why He's Writing 'Mallrats 2'
Just last week, writer and director Kevin Smith seemed to be hinting that he might be working on a sequel to his infamous box office bomb turned cult classic, Mallrats. The hint came in a Facebook update that revealed his filmmaking timeline over the next couple years, and now Smith has gone on the record to confirm that he is indeed in the middle of writing Mallrats 2. Speaking on his own Hollywood Babble-On podcast (via SlashFilm), Smith explained the motivation behind getting the sequel off the ground 20 years later. With self-awareness, he said, "I hate to disappoint people but, yes, I am doing a Mallrats sequel."
Here's how Smith explained his motivation to make Mallrats 2:
"About a year and change now Jim Jacks, who was a producer on 'Mallrats,' died. And we talked about him during the show and what a good dude he was….'Mallrats' came out and died at the box office. It only found an audience later on. But for years Jim Jacks would always be like 'We should do a sequel.' Because when we were making the movie he was like 'This is gonna make $100 million.' He was obviously off his fuckin’ rocker. But he was like 'You’ve gotta come up with a sequel.' And I was like, 'I have one already.' 'What is it?' 'Mallrats 2: Die Hard in a Mall.' And he was like 'Oh that's perfect we’ll do it.'
So the movie came out, didn’t do any business and no talk of a sequel ever came up again at the studio and what not. But Jim Jacks never fucking lost faith. Even when I would kick 'Mallrats' and make fun of it, Jacks was always the guy going 'No man. Know what would be funny and what’s gonna redeem us? 'Mallrats 2: Die Hard in a Mall.' So it was one of those things that was an on going theme in his life.
As I said, he passed away a year ago. I had lost touch with him for quite a few years before that and this was the biggest fucking fan of movies you’ve ever known in your life. And 'Clerks' was the thing that kicked off my career but 'Mallrats' brought me into a complete different world and that movie doesn’t get made without this dude at Universal going “Let’s make it, let’s make it.”
So I felt real shitty about missing the last years of his life and I met some people who were like, 'We ate with Jim every fucking Thursday night and he still talked about you.' I hadn’t seen him in years and he was still talking about me and that movie. So a year ago I was sitting here talking about this shit and I was like 'I wanna honor the man in some way' and this is how we’re gonna do it. We’re gonna finally make the movie I wish to Christ I made when he was living, man. So we're finally going to make 'Mallrats 2.'"
That's actually pretty touching, though it seems a bit excessive to just make a sequel to a financial failure of a film as a tribute to a man, but this is Kevin Smith we're talking about. When he sets his mind to make a movie, he'll make it, come hell or high water. Considering how badly Mallrats did at the box office, despite its moderate success on home video as a cult classic, I'm surprised financiers actually wanted to let Smith make it, but he's indicated that the film has support, and as soon as he's done with the script, it will get in front of cameras eventually. Whether or not the idea is still "Die Hard in a Mall" remains to be seen.
So when can we expect to see Mallrats 2? Well, as Smith explained in our last post on the matter, he's busy shooting up through February of 2016. But Variety reports Smith was speaking about Mallrats 2 on Tucson’s Rock 102 KFMA on Friday, and he said, "It’s half scripted right now and we’re pulling our loot together. We’ve got up until the beginning of 2016. By the time we get to May 2016, we’re going to be shooting." So if all goes according to plan, Smith will script the film as quickly as he can, and the plan is to be shooting Mallrats 2 in May of 2016. No word on who will be back, but we've got plenty of time to kill for now.