Writer/director Adam McKay has been threatening to get serious for quite some time now, or at least leave the world of comedy. There are two genres he had been chomping at the bit to get to —namely, comic-book movies and dramas regarding financial malfeasance, the latter being a topic he brushed upon in his comedy “The Other Guys.” In 2015, he’s basically done both. He wrote a draft of Marvel’s “Ant-Man” and seems to be continuing a dialogue with Marvel to possibly direct one of the studio’s upcoming movies, and he also wrote and directed, “The Big Short,” his star-studded look at the 2008 financial crisis in North America starring Steve Carell, Christian Bale, Ryan Gosling and Brad Pitt. But has he left comedy entirely behind? Not a chance.
What about “Anchorman” which felt like it hit its logical conclusion with “Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues”? In a Yahoo Movies interview regarding “The Big Short,” the filmmaker revealed the team behind the films have another idea that they could one day use for another movie.
“We talked about doing [an ‘Anchorman’ movie] that was about the rise of the new media,” McKay said of the rise of the digital age (the second one was about the rise of 24 hour cable news networks). “I also thought there was something to the idea —and who knows, maybe we will do one some day— to have Ron Burgundy get embedded in the Iraq War. But we’ve never got that serious about it, but it would have to be the next stage of what the media has become. And I think you’re right, I think it’s the internet. The only thing is, by then Burgundy would be getting pretty old. So maybe it’s a movie we make in 10 years, when Will Ferrell’s aged up and it actually makes sense that you can set it in 1997 or ’98.”
So there might be another “Anchorman” movie in ten years? I’m not sure I’d hold my breath. McKay and Ferrell had to fight Paramount for several years to get “Anchorman 2” greenlit, and its domestic gross was a somewhat lackluster $127 million ($173 million worldwide), only a 33% increase from the original; those are not the kind of numbers you expect for a comedy sequel that audiences were apparently adamantly demanding.
One movie that is getting a sequel is “Zoolander,” but in another interview with Slashfilm, McKay revealed that he nearly ruined the chances of a follow-up to Ben Stiller‘s fashion-world comedy. The filmmaker reveals that he did an uncredited rewrite on the original 2001 “Zoolander,” which ended with Stiller attempting to use his ‘Magnum’ look to stop a speeding train.
“I convinced Stiller,” he tells the site, “and Stiller said ‘God, that’s fucking funny.’ Scott Rudin had to go ‘You’re not fucking killing the character! We’re going to hopefully make three of these.’ I got in trouble for it.” We’ll see if McKay gets his wish with the second movie when it opens in February. In the meantime, “The Big Short” starts rolling out next weekend.