After its underwhelming opening weekend at the box-office, a Life sequel appears very unlikely. Nobody was expecting a follow-up to the lean sci-fi horror movie anyway, but screenwriters Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick actually have an idea or two for how to continue the story. It turns out that the duo has a bigger Aliens-esque sequel in mind for their Alien-esque film.
Below, check out their thoughts on a Life sequel (SPOILERS for Life ahead).
Daniel Espinosa‘s film ends on a comically dark note, a laugh – boosted by a song choice – that relieves the tension nicely. David Jordan (Jake Gyllenhaal) and Miranda North (Rebecca Ferguson) fail to contain deadly little Calvin. The alien ultimately outsmarts them and makes the trip down to planet earth with a barely alive David. Considering all the damage Calvin caused aboard the International Space Station, it could very easily destroy the planet. The organism can reproduce, too, so just imagine what a dozen of those buggers could do.
Reese believes that watching the rest of the planet react to Calvin would make for an interesting sequel (via The Hollywood Reporter):
Just the fact that Calvin can now possibly reproduce, I think, is an interesting idea. We’ve dropped him in a situation that is teaming with life to hunt and to eat. That being the ocean, or the coast of Indonesia or Vietnam or wherever we are saying he’s landed. So that opens it up right there. But just the idea of firewalls could extend to Earth in the sense that now they’ve failed to contain Calvin to the station. The question is, how would the Earth react? Obviously, this was an international effort, so there are a lot of countries cooperating. And again, they would be trying to contain this thing from moving forward and yet there might be more Calvins to deal with. To us, that screams interesting sequel.
The ending technically does leave the door open for future installments, but it does so naturally, not by leaving behind loose ends or some in-your-face sequel flags. The ending is another example of Calvin besting some of humanity’s finest, but Reese wants audiences to wonder what’s next:
We always wanted it to end in a creepy fashion that set up at least the possibility for future movies and but the script is very much a seesaw between Calvin having an advantage and the astronauts having an advantage. We always wanted them to be smart, but then a new problem present itself so when they got out of the frying pan they found themselves in the fire. And it just so happened that the last twist was that despite all their best intentions, Calvin was once again once step ahead of them at the end of the movie.
For Espinosa, the ending closes the door completely. The story of Life is over once the credits roll, he told /Film in a spoiler-filled interview set to run on the site tomorrow. A part of the reason why the Snabba cash director wanted to make the film was Wernick and Reese’s bleak and old school ending:
There’s no sequel coming. It ends like that. It’s American pulp fiction. Not like the movie, but pulp fiction, The Twilight Zone, and The Night of the Living Dead. It’s a great tradition. If you look at American movies in the 1900s, those kind of endings solely exist in American cinema. It’s a great, great American tradition of those great turns. It’s almost like a joke on life. That’s why I put that poppy song afterward.
The ending of Life is more of a joke than anything, and it’s a good joke because it’s unexpected. Even the fact David is still breathing, and that he failed after everything he’s gone through, is pretty funny. Espinosa’s film makes some unpredictable turns here and there, but when the story begins, probably not too many people – myself included – saw that ending coming. Since we probably won’t ever see Calvin again, at least Espinosa and the screenwriters gave audiences an immensely satisfying final image to remember him by.
Life is now in theaters.
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