When it comes to making movies, sequels are Hollywood’s easiest way to hit paydirt. The 2000s have provided plenty of fodder for the bean counters in Tinseltown. Spider-Man spawned several sequels and has already been rebooted; ditto Superman. But what about those pastel-hued movies from the 1980s that are collecting dust in the box marked ‘VHS’ in your garage?
Other than Tron: Legacy (which came out almost 30 years after the original’s 1982 release) and Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull (19 years after the third instalment), we’ve been starving for follow-ups to beloved movies from the 1980s.
What happened to the Gremlins after the New Batch? Wasn’t there supposed to be a Buckaroo Banzai Against the World Crime League? And now that Kurt Russell is suddenly hot again, what about revisiting Jack Burton from Big Trouble in Little China?
The list is endless. Well, not really. Here are ten movies from the 1980s that still need a sequel. Let me know what you’d like to see a sequel to in the comments below.
10. The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai Across the 8th Dimension!
Thanks to Star Trek Into Darkness and the upcoming RoboCop reboot, Peter Weller (Buckaroo Banzai) is finally cool again. This was perhaps the strangest movie I saw as a youngster – a rock musician/physicist battling the Red Lectroids from Planet 10 (yeah, I had to Google that). The special effects are cringe-worthy when viewed against today’s CGI masterpieces, but they did promise us a sequel in the end credits – Buckaroo Banzai Against the World Crime League.
9. Big Trouble in Little China
On the plus side, Kurt Russell is hot again. On the negative side, the last time he tried doing a sequel to one of his ‘80s classics – Escape From L.A. – he failed spectacularly. Still, who wouldn’t want to see Jack Burton spouting one-liners and dodging karate kicks one more time?
8. Say Anything…/ When Harry Met Sally
Two of the greatest romances were released in the ‘80s. Both ended on a bit of a cliffhanger, but who wouldn’t want to see where Lloyd Dobler (John Cusack) and Diane Court (Ione Skye) ended up after their flight to England? Did Harry (Billy Crystal) and Sally (Meg Ryan) actually stay together? In 2005, I asked Say Anything… director Cameron Crowe why he never did a follow-up and he told me that he liked the ambiguity of the ending and that he viewed Cusack’s High Fidelity as a type of sequel.
Once upon a time there was supposed to be a sequel – Beetlejuice Goes Hawaiian – but then Tim Burton got preoccupied with Mars and working with Johnny Depp. Well, the good news is, part two is coming. Writer Seth Grahame-Smith tweeted a photo of himself in Beetle gear earlier this year. Michael Keaton, Winona Ryder and – gasp — Tim Burton are all set to return. No word on when it will be released.
6. Top Gun
C’mon, who doesn’t feel the need for speed at least once a year? Top Gun is a landmark ‘80s film that deserves inclusion in the Smithsonian. Actually, maybe it’s there. A sequel was planned in 2012, but the project was shelved after director Tony Scott committed suicide.
5. Blade Runner
There was the original theatrical cut that alluded to a happy ending for Rick Deckard (Harrison Ford) and the android Rachel (Sean Young). Then there was the 1992 Director’s Cut that hinted at something far more sinister (Deckard, too, is a replicant). But I’ve always wondered what happened to the pair after the elevator door closed. We might not have to wait too much longer. A sequel is in the works with Ford considering his return to the role.
4. The Breakfast Club
In 1985, they were a jock, a nerd, the outcast, a criminal and a princess. Today, I bet they are a TV analyst, the CEO of Microsoft, a notoriously shy, world-famous fashion designer, an imprisoned bank robber and a washed up movie star. Bret Easton Ellis should write the screenplay.
3. The Princess Bride
Like Buckaroo Banzai, this is another one that has had a long-promised sequel in the works. Dubbed Buttercup’s Baby, writer William Goldman has offered up a chapter in subsequent printings of the book, but nothing more. It involves a villain kidnapping Westley and Buttercup’s daughter. In 2012, Goldman said that other than the initial snippet, he was stumped as to how he should continue. “I’m desperate to make it and write it and I don’t know how.”
2. Ferris Bueller’s Day Off
Picture it: Cameron has a big presentation due at work. Ferris and Sloane convince him to blow it off, and hit Las Vegas with them to celebrate their 25th wedding anniversary. Ferris and Cam wake up after a night of partying and they can’t locate Sloane… wait, that sounds like The Hangover. Okay, how about a Honda ad for the Super Bowl. That we can do.
1. The Goonies
This is the Holy Grail of ‘80s movies, and it’s one that begs for a sequel. The kids, of course, would be grown up (hey, Josh Brolin has turned out okay), and the adventure would probably focus on their children, but I don’t bet there’s a person out there who wouldn’t mind seeing Chunk, Data, Mikey, Mouth and the rest of the gang again. Goonies 2 is something that comes up every now and then, and the cast reunites every so often to celebrate various anniversaries. In 2007, Sean Astin (Mikey) said a sequel was an “absolute certainty.”
We’re still waiting.