Director Doug Liman says EDGE OF TOMORROW 2 is both a sequel and a prequel

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Earlier today we heard about director Doug Liman’s “unconventional” methods on DC’s Dark Universe. Well that ain’t the only the movie the filmmaker has in the pipeline that will be taking an unexpected approach. Liman has never directed a sequel before – he kicked off the Bourne franchise and then handed the reins over Paul Greengrass – but when he recently spoke to Collider, he revealed that he’s making an exception for Edge of Tomorrow 2 for a very specific reason:

“That is the only sequel that I’m considering doing, and it’s because first of all the story is so amazing—much better than the original film, and I loved and loved the original film—and second of all, it’s a sequel that’s a prequel.”

Edge of Tomorrow was a bit of a surprise hit for Liman and stars Tom Cruise and Emily Blunt. Sure, in retrospect you would be hard pressed to understand how such a high profile movie could not have a sure thing, but you have to remember that that when it released at the time in 2014, things were a bit different.

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Public sentiment towards Cruise was still fairly negative due to his personal antics, Blunt had had some great roles (like in Rian Johnson’s fantastic Looper) but her name had not yet become synonymous with action heroine, the movie was based on a Japanese novel with a weird sci-fi concept that wasn’t that well known in the US, and Warner Bros completely flubbed it’s marketing campaign by giving it a confusing, non-descriptive title which got even worse when the studio seemingly couldn’t decide what to call it several overseas markets.

In short, the odds were stacked against Edge of Tomorrow. But then everybody watched it and promptly got blown away by this tale of Cruise’s douchey military PR guy who gets thrust unprepared into the frontlines of a war with an alien invader, only to die within minutes… and then wake up again the day before with all his memories still intact. It was essentially a sci-fi Groundhog Day as he was forced to relive that fatal beach landing over and over again, but each time he got better at it, changing events through trial and error to produce a better outcome. And it was amazing.

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So yes, with a timey-whimey concept like that, it does sort of sound fitting that the upcoming sequel is also a prequel at the same time. Liman went on to explain that much like how he played around with time and causality in the first film, this new one will help to express some ideas about how sequels work that he’s had for a while now.

“I’ve had some radical ideas about how to make a sequel that would interest me, in the same way that I had ideas of how you make an independent film and then Swingers came along and it was like ‘Aha, that’s the perfect movie for me to test these ideas out on.’ I had these intellectual ideas on how you should make a sequel that are unlike how anybody else makes a sequel, and this script and this idea fit perfectly into that idea. So it’s gonna revolutionize how people make sequels. And again that’s why I try to do things like [the scripted virtual reality series Invisible for the Samsung Gear] that are just, the revolution’s sort of built into the idea. It’s more heresy in the film world for me to pitch things that are sort of unheard of.”

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Edge of Tomorrow 2 will see Cruise and Blunt reprise their roles, and while original scribe Christopher McQuarrie is returning, he will only be involved in an advisory/tweaking capacity it seems as the screenwriting duo of Joe Shrapnel and Anna Waterhouse (Race) has actually written this “amazing” script that Liman is stoked about. Just when he gets to shoot it is a different matter though, as all the principal parties have really full schedules right now.

Last Updated: October 31, 2016

Kervyn Cloete

A man of many passions - but very little sleep - I've been geeking out over movies, video games, comics, books, anime, TV series and lemon meringues as far back as I can remember. So show up for the geeky insight, stay for the delicious pastries.

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