It's A Wonderful Life is one of the most beloved classics to watch around the holidays, and it is ranked number one in the American Film Institute's "100 Years, 100 Cheers." More than 50 years after the original, just in time for the holidays, this Christmas classic is getting a sequel.
The follow-up will focus on the grandson of James Stewart's main character, George Bailey, and it will feature actress Karolyn Grimes. She played Bailey's daughter Zuzu in the original, and she will play the angel in the sequel.
Grimes was just six years old when It's A Wonderful Life was released in 1946. The producers Bob Farnsworth and Martha Bolton say that the storyline will stay the same, and it's message will too: every life is important as long as you have friends,
It's expected to be released for the 2015 holiday season. The question now is: will this movie feel like an unnecessary attempt to cash in on the success of the original and be panned by critics and audiences alike? To answer this question, let's take a look at sequels for some other classic movies.
Grease 2 tried to follow the success of the original. The original movie came out in 1978 and starred John Travolta and Olivia Newton John. It popularized hits like Summer Loving and Beauty School Dropout. The sequel came out in 1982 and tried to tell a similar story of the romance between a polished goodie-goodie from Australia and a street-toughened American. However, it was not as well received. While the original made more than 8 million on opening weekend, the sequel only made half that money on opening weekend.
Speed 2 came out to follow in the success of its predecessor. The idea of a speeding object and its imminent crash with passengers onboard was adrenaline pumping for audiences. The original came out in 1994, and it starred Keanu Reeves and Sandra Bullock as their tried to navigate an out-of-control bus to safety. The sequel came out 1997 and took place on a humongous cruise ship. Although grander in scale, the reception wasn't great. While the first one has a 7.2/10 on IMDB, the second one has a lowly 3.5/10 rating.
Jaws 2 came out in 1978, three years after the original hit forever changed how people around the world saw sharks. Despite following the same formula--Great White Shark terrorizes a beach community--the remake only has a 53% fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes, while the original has a 98%.
Other sequels that are widely panned include The Godfather Part 3, Caddyshack II, Dumb and Dumberer, Indiana Jones and The Kingdom of The Crystal Skull, Son of The Mask, the myriad sequels to the Halloween, Friday the Thirteenth and Nightmare on Elm Street franchises. Listen to the segment above to hear what the Good Day anchors had to say about these popular movies and their sequels.