In cinema, great films have left audiences wanting to see more. Often there are no plans for a sequel. Then fan popularity and trends change so and studios can decide to release a sequel for these movies many years later with a big gap in between. These are some of the movies with the longest gap before a sequel that has reached the public.
10. Incredibles 2 (2018)
13 years, 184 days between theatrical releases
Movies like The Incredibles or Toy Story had the fans waiting for a sequel for many years.
If a Pixar movie deserved a sequel, it was The Incredibles, released in 2004. The animated movie about a family of superheroes was still a favourite, and fans were dying for a sequel. Nearly 14 years later, it was finally released.
Even though there was a huge gap between the films, the sequel picked up right where the last left off. With the Park family ending their battle with the Underminer and then on to a new adventure. This movie was as well-received as the first, so the wait was worth it.
9. Jurassic World (2015)
13 years, 326 days between theatrical releases
The Jurassic World movie had probably the best hook for any sequel on this list “What if they really did open Jurassic Park”? With that simple premise, Jurassic World was made. Everyone knew it was going to be a hit. But no one knew how monstrous it was going to be at the box office.
It broke all kinds of records in its opening weekend, becoming the first movie to gross $500 million in a single weekend. Then it became the third highest-grossing movie. This was impressive, especially since interest in the franchise seemed to have died out years ago, with the release of Jurassic Park 3. The latter, while was a commercial success, was not as well-received as the previous two films.
The long wait between the third and fourth instalments benefited the film as a whole. It allowed audiences to miss out on all the killing of the dinosaurs and let them make a more believable and intriguing sequel. If you’re a big fan, don’t worry, as Jurassic World: Dominion is scheduled for a 2022 release.
8. 2013: rescue in L.A. (1996)
15 Years, 78 days between theatrical releases
Fifteen years after 1997: Rescue in New York, Snake Plissken, played by Kurt Russell, returns to another island. This time Los Angeles, isolated by sea due to a gigantic earthquake, to free this time not the president of the United States, but his daughter.
John Carpenter has confessed, it was Russell who most insisted that the film go ahead since Plissken is one of his favourite characters. Despite everything, it was a total failure at the box office. This is no surprise since many critics have commented that this is one of the worst films for the director.
7. Dumb and Dumber To (2014)
20 years, 341 days between theatrical releases
Comedy sequels are one of the hardest to do. If you have a blockbuster comedy, there’s a need to do another, but it isn’t easy to come up with a fresh idea full of the same energy as the first.
You can give the public different versions of the same jokes that worked the first time, but you run the risk of failure as the original jokes were better. Or you can go in a different direction than the original. But, there is a chance that you will miss out on what made the first movie work, and this is how the fun is lost.
Sometimes comedy sequels work, but other times they get results like Dumb and Dumber To. This is the sequel to one of the most popular comedies of all time that came out 20 years after the original. This movie reunited Jim Carry and Jeff Daniels again, but critics weren’t impressed with it. It gets just 30% on Rotten Tomatoes and a less-than-stellar box office, so it’s clear this was a sequel that, for many, wasn’t necessary.
6. Psycho II (1983)
22 years, 352 days between theatrical releases
23 years separate Alfred Hitchcock’s film Psycho from its sequel, also starring Anthony Perkins. With a script by Tom Holland, the film recognized for the suspense films, Fright Night I and II and Fatal Beauty, was a success in the USA. It raised over $34 million, and a movie was made with just $5 million in budget.
This sequel does not have much relation to the novel Psycho 2, written by Robert Bloch, which inspired Hitchcock. In the book, Bloch made a satire of Hollywood slasher movies. Here Bates escaped from the mental hospital to go to L.A. to stop the production of a movie based on his life. So Universal decided to make his own version by hiring Holland as a screenwriter.
At first, Perkins refused to play Norman Bates again. But when he learned that the person who was going to take his place was Christopher Walken, he immediately agreed.
5. Mad Max: Fury Road (2015)
29 years, 309 days between theatrical releases
This movie is a sequel to the classic Mad Max franchise from the 70s and 80s, but was it worth the 35 years of waiting? Let’s look at it like this, watching this film is like walking through the gates of Valhalla, and many would say that this is just the standard concept.
Although the box office was not that big for the film, it was a critical favourite with just less than $400 million worldwide. On Rotten Tomatoes, it scored 97%. Besides, it received ten Oscar nominations, including the best film and best director categories.
Even though Mel Gibson didn’t appear in this instalment, Tom Hardy takes over, we get to still see George Miller at the steering wheel. The final product exudes creativity, style, and glamour. In this sequel, Miller turned Mad Max into a supporting character. The movie focuses on Charlize Theron. It has even been suggested that she may have her own spin-off. So, even though this film took 35 years to make, it’s very likely that you won’t have to wait another thirty years to see this character again.
4. Coming 2 America (2021)
33 years, 174 days between theatrical releases
After 33 years, a sequel to one of Eddie Murphy’s best-known comedies, Coming 2 America, was released. Here you can see an Akeem, now as a King with the love of his life and with three daughters. In this film, there are many flashbacks of situations from the original production that they have not mentioned before. For instance, one scene where they show how the now-King Akeem had ‘relations’ with a woman while he was under the influence.
Since people knew that there would be a continuation of this 80s film, everyone wanted to know what happens to the young prince who sought his own path. The first part of this story was directed by John Landis, with a story by Eddie Murphy and scripted by David Sheffield and Barry W. Blaustein. Sheffield and Blaustein repeated as screenwriters, with Kenya Barris. She is the creator of series such as Black-ish and Grown-ish.
The direction of this sequel is the responsibility of Craig Brewer, who directed Dolemite Is My Name. The latter is a film in which Eddie Murphy also participated recently.
Critical opinion was not very positive. Many felt that this sequel is nothing more than an attempt at a script written at the last minute to fulfil a commitment. Coming 2 America is a work that tries to recall past glory by rescuing characters that were once key to rhythm and humour. We see the famous barbers or the decadent preacher from the first part, but they are no longer funny. All the secondary ones are relegated to a nostalgic function, without the grace for which they are remembered. Unfortunately, it is a failed attempt.
3. Blade Runner 2049 (2017)
35 years, 103 days between theatrical releases
Ridley Scott’s Blade Runner was released in 1982 and is considered one of the most influential science fiction films of all time. Although Scott did not return as a director for the sequel, the franchise was put in the hands of Denis Villeneuve. Villeneuve is proving to be one of the best directors today.
Harrison Ford returns as Rick Deckard, but this time, it is a supporting role. Ryan Gosling took on the role of K, a Blade Runner who questions everything around him. The 35-year wait was worth it, as the gap between the films helped to see how different the world had become since the first Blade Runner. While it didn’t answer the age-old question of whether Deckard was a replicant or not, it was still a beautiful drama to watch.
Although it lasted almost three hours and the box office was not that great considering its original budget, the film became a huge success. It had five Academy nominations and won two of them, Best Visual Effects and Best Cinematography.
2. The Jungle Book 2 (2003)
35 years, 110 days between theatrical releases
This animated film, aimed primarily at children, came 36 years after Mowgli and Baloo’s first adventure from 1967. Originally Disney had the idea to release this sequel only for home video. In the end was released in theatres, topping a staggering $135 million worldwide. Yet, the critics did not see the magic of the first instalment.
1. Mary Poppins Returns (2018)
54 years, 120 days between theatrical releases
The return of Mary Poppins holds the record for the longest sequel gap for live-action films. The sequel of this film released 54 years after the original. The first is a classic that garnered 13 Oscar nominations and 5 won, so it would be hard for any sequel to top that.
Despite Mary Poppins Returns being a moderate success. It garnered four Oscar nominations and a $350 million box office. The wait was worth it? Yes, and No. Although Julie Andrews did not take part in this film, we did get to see 91-year-old Dick Van Dyke dancing on a table. This lead many to think that it was worth the wait all this time.
Better late than never
Although sometimes decades have passed before we can enjoy the sequel to a movie that marked a part of our lives. On many occasions, the wait pays off but it can be a mixed bag. In any case, it is always an excellent detail to be able to enjoy a version current with the new adventures of our favourite characters.
That’s our list of 10 movies with the biggest gap before a sequel. Did we miss any? Let us know in the comments below.
Check out our list of Disney movies scheduled for release this year HERE.
No Time To Die – Review
No Time To Die is the 25th instalment in the official James Bond series. It’s the VERY long-awaited follow-up to 2015’s Spectre. The 6-year gap between the two films is only matched by the same gap between Timothy Dalton’s last outing in 1989’s Licence To Kill and Pierce Brosnan’s debut in 1995’s Goldeneye. Here’s our review of No Time To Die.
SPOILERS: If you’re reading this then you’ve probably seen the film, but if not there are spoilers ahead.
Of course, there are mitigating factors in that enormous gap. Namely COVID. Which made No Time To Die the first major film to delay its release due to the pandemic. Although, this film has had a difficult gestation irrespective of the global situation in the last 18 months. As soon as Spectre was released the speculation over Daniel Craig’s future in the role began. With him initially suggesting he would rather slash his own wrists than play the iconic spy again. He did a mea culpa on Stephen Colbert’s Late Show in August 2017, where he confirmed he would appear as Bond for a fifth and final time. The original director and writer, Danny Boyle and John Hodge, left the project a year later over creative differences. Cory Joji Fukunaga took over as director. While Bond script veterans Robert Wade and Neil Purvis took charge of the screenplay – with a sprinkling of magic from Fleabag’s Phoebe Waller-Bridge.
Originally slated for release in April 2020, at long last, we finally get to see Daniel Craig’s denouement as 007. His portrayal of Bond has been very much in keeping with the character of Ian Fleming’s original novels. His performances have certainly followed the dramatic lineage of Sean Connery and Timothy Dalton. Rather than the lighter portrayals by Roger Moore and Pierce Brosnan. Yet his Bond has displayed a vulnerability only really demonstrated with any plausibility by George Lazenby in his solitary outing as 007 in On Her Majesty’s Secret Service.
The deference to On Her Majesty’s Secret Service is presented in stark relief throughout this 2h43min epic. Making this the longest Bond film in the series. As this was the first film I’ve seen at the cinema since before the pandemic, I was already excited before I even sat down. As a massive James Bond fan as well, I was close to apoplexy! I felt a tangible shiver go down my spine as the iconic gun barrel sequence appeared before we see James cruising around Italy in the classic DB5 with Madeleine Swann at his side. This anticipation was clearly felt by other cinema-goers. They have made No Time To Die break the UK box office record for the biggest opening weekend. It took almost £26m, breaking the record previously held by Skyfall.
I’m not going to spoil the plot for those who’ve not seen it. I had made a conscious decision to avoid spoilers before I went.
A step up?
This film is another shot in the arm for those who see Craig as the definitive Bond. This was aided by a refocusing of the Bond canon after the main tropes of the series were stretched to breaking point by the invisible cars and melting ice palaces of Die Another Day. And then stretched still further by Madonna’s cameo as a fencing instructor. Daniel Craig was given leeway to truly regenerate James Bond for the 21st Century. The stripped-back nature of Casino Royale, without most of the supporting characters that have been a staple of the series like Q and Moneypenny. Gave him licence (pardon the pun) to explore the deepest and darkest recesses of the Bond psyche. Some well-drawn female leads and villains really allowed Craig’s Bond to spar with them with depth and genuine emotion.
That exploration continues and grows in No Time To Die. We get to see an ageing, truly world-weary Bond, whose past he appears unable to escape. This leaves him in a state of almost constant angst. Paradoxically though, we also see him truly relaxed at times. In a way I can’t recall ever seeing James Bond in any of his previous cinematic outings.
The issue with that exploration is that a number of characters then have their screen time cut. Moneypenny is reduced to little more than a cameo. And Remi Malek’s Safin is almost secondary as he features in the opening moments as his story is told, but then disappears for what seemed like an eternity. He of course reappears but he almost seems a mild irritation within the plot and merely a conduit to allow us to see the climax of Daniel Craig’s Bond era. It’s a disappointing underuse of a terrific actor. One with a captivating screen presence, who could have been one of the most menacing Bond villains of all time. That said, the influence of his dastardly but highly sophisticated plan is felt by all of the main protagonists. Christoph Waltz’s Blofeld continues to wreak his havoc with malevolent glee from his cell. He again revels in the chaos of his twisted sibling rivalry with Bond.
Lea Seydoux is wonderful again as Dr Madeleine Swann, picking up where she left off in Spectre and giving Bond as good as he gets in every way imaginable.
There are new characters who definitely cut through. Ana De Armas is utterly charming in her relatively brief time on-screen as Paloma, while Lashana Lynch takes no nonsense from Bond as Nomi. She also gives us a potential indicator as to the future direction of the franchise. Which has been the subject of much discussion in all quarters. That debate has even made its way into the political sphere with even Boris Johnson weighing in on what gender the next actor to play 007 should be.
Hans Zimmer’s score is classic Hans Zimmer, adding power and bombast to the usual mix of stunning scenery and brilliantly choreographed stunts. He brilliantly weaves nods to previous entries in the Bond musical tapestry throughout his score. While his cues are always thunderous, they never overpower the action on screen, but do add a sonic rumble that I don’t think has been heard in a Bond score for quite some time. I found Fukunaga’s direction a bit mixed, with some of the cinematography unnecessarily showy. Some of the tracking shots almost gave me motion sickness while some (admittedly beautifully composed) shots of the scenery seemed to have made the edit purely so as whoever the drone operator was could demonstrate their skills.
The film is much too long, although at no point did I check my watch. It’s not that any of the plot points are superfluous, more that the pacing is a little slow in places. Some of the dialogue feels cliched and clunky, making what is a great story feel a tad generic. Which doesn’t do anyone justice. However, there were some excellent jokes, and I laughed out loud several times. You don’t have to be a 007 super fan to get some of the self-referential humour that they seem to enjoy sprinkling throughout the film.
Billie Eilish’s theme song is a worthy addition to the collection and certainly sits comfortably within the top half of the ‘Bond Theme Chart’. It’s definitely more memorable and evocative than Sam Smith’s ‘Writing On The Wall’ for Spectre. Her voice trembles at times as you can almost feel she recognises the significance of singing the theme for Daniel Craig’s final appearance in the franchise.
It was also very pleasing to see that this film has moved with the times and reflects the world of 2021 with its portrayal of women. Every single female character had a genuine purpose and important role within the plot. While of course, the female actors playing those roles are all irrefutably glamorous and attractive. There was genuine respect and no objectification of women.
I came out of the screening with mixed emotions. Glad to be back in the cinema on one hand, sad that Daniel Craig’s stint ordering Martini’s was over on the other. I was pleased that such a good climax had been created to bring this era of Bond to a close, and all its story arcs had been brought to conclusions. I’m also excited and apprehensive in equal measure for the future of such an iconic film series. But I was disappointed with some of the characters not getting the necessary screen-time to truly develop their characters. Surprisingly, I was almost tearful at the final few moments, especially as the credits rolled.
Overall, this is a loving homage to the James Bond series, past and present. It’s a solid if unspectacular film in its own right, but the performances of Daniel Craig and Lea Seydoux, as well as the Bond history it wraps itself in, elevate it beyond that.
It’s not Craig’s best Bond film, as Skyfall is almost untouchable in my opinion, but it does bring closure to his tenure in the tuxedo in a manner that should please Bond fans across the board. It also tantalises us as to what the 6th age of Bond will look like. Let the intense speculation begin!
CULTURE CROSSING SCORE 7/10
Thank you for reading our review of James Bond No Time To Die. Do you agree or disagree with our points or have anything to add? If so, leave us a comment below.
Check out who we think could be the next James Bond and why HERE.
Read IMDB information about No Time To Die HERE.
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