'The Expendables' aims to come back -- but with Stalllone in a different guise
Now it looks like they'll get their wish-- but without Sylvester Stallone behind the camera.
The follow-up movie is a priority at producer Millennium Films, where it's being developed by Stallone, the creative force behind the original. But Stallone, who both starred in and directed the 2010 summer hit, isn't, at the moment, planning on helming the new movie. Instead, he's been meeting with directors to tackle the sequel, said a person who was briefed on the project but was not authorized to speak about it publicly.
The script for the new movie has been written by David Agosto and Ken Kaufman, the latter of whom counts the Clint Eastwood adventure "Space Cowboys" and family comedy "Curious George" among his credits, said the source. (Stallone co-wrote the script for the original with David Callaham.)
A spokeswoman for Millennium declined to comment.
Made essentially outside the studio system and distributed by Lionsgate, "The Expendables" became a $275-million global grosser on the strength of an action-hero ensemble cast that included Stallone, Jet Li, Jason Statham, Dolph Lundgren and Steve Austin. In the movie, a motley crew of action heroes gather to overthrow a South American despot. There's no word yet on the mission in the new movie.
Stallone has been talking about an "Expendables" sequel since before the first movie opened, telling 24 Frames last August that he "had an idea ready to go," and adding that he's "going to try to do something that's quite radical." He's subsequently said he'd like to dial in new characters and reduce the role of older characters.
Some of the casting speculation for a possible sequel has centered on Bruce Willis getting a larger role, fueled by Stallone's tweet last summer that he wanted the actor as a "super villain." But maybe more intriguing is the prospect of Arnold Schwarzenegger making an appearance: The former governor had a walk-on part in the first "Expendables." But he has a lot more time now that Sacramento has made him, well, you know.
Photo: Stallone & co. in "The Expendables." Credit: Lionsgate