It was a disappointment when it was first released and only resuscitated thanks to TV reruns in the ’70s and ’80s and a brief tenure in the public domain which saw copies of the movie flood the market (read all about that here). Considering that, it’s something of a minor miracle that “It’s A Wonderful Life” has become a holiday staple. So what better way to honor Frank Capra‘s timeless classic of suicidal depression turned heartwarming community building than ….a sequel? Oh lord. Yes it’s really happening….
Bob Farnsworth and Martha Bolton (the latter whose entire resumé is nothing but Bob Hope TV specials) have put their pens to work on “It’s A Wonderful Life: The Rest of the Story” (#facepalm), and that sound you’re hearing is Capra turning over in his grave. The story would follow George Bailey’s “every-time-a-bell-rings-an-angel-gets-its-wings” daughter Zuzu, who is now an angel herself and will stop in to visit his unlikeable grandson (also George Bailey), who is also apparently in the midst of a personal crisis because she will have to show him what would happen if he was never born. And oh yeah, Karolyn Grimes—who played Zuzu in the original and hasn’t acted in a film since 1952—will reprise her role. Sigh.
Other secondary characters and the surviving actors who played them are also being contacted to play their parts again, and if they could they’d probably dig up Jimmy Stewart while they’re at it. Anyway, production is aiming to start in February for a 2015 release with directors being interviewed now. We’re sort of curious what Paramount might have to say about this since they currently own the rights to the original and presumably the characters too. We’d guess lawyers are already looking into it. [Variety]