Sony Wants F .Gary Gray To Relaunch Men In Black Franchise
Sony and Amblin might have finally found a way forward to revive the Men in Black franchise. Having once considered merging the worlds of 21 Jump Street and M.I.B, Sony has long since abandoned a mash-up and are firmly in spin-off/reboot territory.
Fast and Furious 8 and Straight Outta Compton director F. Gary Gray is in talks with Sony/Amblin to helm the new M.I.B, and it sounds as though this one is on the fast track. Iron Man co-writers Matt Holloway & Art Marcum have written the script, and according to Deadline, this is an entirely new story not based on any previous drafts. Will Smith and Tommy Lee Jones aren't expected to return in any capacity as this is being approached as a relaunch. Naturally, I'm sure there will be connections to the original trilogy, just don't expect to see Will Smith pop up to impart some wisdom to the new recruits.
Men in Black isn't the only long-running Will Smith franchise to be moving forward. Bad Boys 3 (aka Bad Boys For Life) has found a new director, and a TV series spin-off starring Gabrielle Unionreprising her role from Bad Boys 2 is also in the works. Adil El Arbi and Bilal Fallah (Black) have reportedly signed up to direct Bad Boys 3, but after a decade of delays and false starts, I think it's wise to remain skeptical for now.
Sony has enjoyed a successful year with Spider-Man: Homecoming and Jumanji rocking the box office, a stark contrast to where the troubled studio was this time last year. While a fourth Men in Black doesn't immediately fill me with excitement, I said the same about Jumanji and that turned out surprisingly well.