Alita: Battle Angel fans have been clamoring for a sequel to the 2019 sci-fi/action film, but things have looked pretty dismal for the follow-up. The movie underperformed at the domestic box office but managed a respectable haul through its international distribution. Supporters of the film have continued to beat the drum from a new movie, but considering the massive budget that the first film needed, it seemed like they weren’t going to get it. But, The Mandalorian may have just provided the key to getting a sequel to the film.
Insider Daniel Richtman is reporting that the Alita: Battle Angel sequel is a serious possibility thanks to director Robert Rodriguez’s recent work for Disney. He recently attached himself to the Star Wars universe by directing the fourteenth episode of The Mandalorian, “The Tragedy”. He is also going to be an executive producer on the upcoming miniseries, The Book of Boba Fett. It seems like he has a very good working relationship with the folks at Lucasfilm and Disney. And Richtman says that this has led to some serious talks between Rodriguez and Disney about a follow-up to Alita: Battle Angel.
Richtman says that Disney is considering making either a sequel film or even a series that would act as a continuation of Alita: Battle Angel. The original movie was actually a 20th Century Fox production, but Disney now owns the rights to it when they merged with the studio. Because the Mouse House has made such a strong commitment to their original streaming projects, Richtman is saying that this has given them more of an inclination towards letting Rodriguez make some kind of sequel project that would be exclusive to Disney+.
This has to be a pretty big deal for Alita: Battle Angel fans. Many have assumed that the sequel was not going to happen because it would require a sizeable budget and Disney would not take that risk by releasing it in theaters when the first film did so poorly in domestic release. However, if they can structure the budget to where it makes sense for a streaming film option or a prolonged series, they might be able to craft their marketing strategy around making this a product to nab hardcore fans into becoming Disney+ subscribers. It would essentially be the same strategy that HBO Max is using for Justice League: Director’s Cut: create a product with a strong fanbase that is guaranteed to subscribe just to see this one thing.
We will keep our eyes and ears peeled for any other substantial updates to this story. It seems like Robert Rodriguez definitely feels passionate about continuing the story of Alita: Battle Angel. If his work on The Mandalorian and The Book of Boba Fett has been that well-received by the powers-that-be at Disney, they could very well give him the leeway to craft a follow-up to this cult sci-fi film. For those who are hoping to see the story get another installment (and a proper conclusion), we will keep our fingers crossed that this new report is true.