Gremlins 3 is coming and as usual there are rules. Don’t get them wet. Don’t expose them to bright light. Don’t feed them after midnight. Pretty simple. Follow these “Don’ts” and life remains fine. Of course, it wouldn’t be Gremlins if those rules were followed properly.
Steven Spielberg brought Gremlins to life 36 years ago in 1984 and while he was the executive producer, the film was written by screenwriter/director Chris Columbus (The Goonies, Adventures in Babysitting) and directed by Joe Dante. The success of Gremlins hatched a sequel, Gremlins: The New Batch, which saw Dante back in the directors’ chair and since that time there has been plenty of talk of a threequel. Now Gremlins 3 is happening, or at least it’s supposed to be.
GREMLINS 3: IS IT REALLY HAPPENING?
As it stands now, today, Gremlins 3 is on the way. Unfortunately, it’s been standing that way for a long time. The writer of the original, Chris Columbus, explained to Slashfilm in a 2017 interview that his script was complete and that it is more reminiscent with its tone to the original Gremlins than the wild and crazy affair of the second movie.
It should be noted, Columbus did not pen the second film, those duties fell to screenwriter Charles S. Haas.
Chris Columbus continues talking about his plans for Gremlins 3 as often as possible. He told Collider that the movie will retain its original feel, and that means the creatures will not be CGI.
THE CAST OF GREMLINS 3
It is unknown who, if any, from the original will return for Gremlins 3. Zack Galligan’s Billy Peltzer may be the one “for sure” back for the third since he was the main star in the first two movies. In fact, Galligan had been one leading the charge to bring Gremlins back to their fans. His twitter campaign started (or continued) the push to bring Gizmo and company back.
The actor even went so far as to give fans a peek at what a Gremlins 3 would look like when he did a Mountain Dew commercial in character. It’s surprisingly charming and makes it easy to see a third film could be a great addition to the franchise.
So, when Gremlins 3 is made, look for Galligan to reprise his role. But what about the others?
Unfortunately, a couple of actors from the original are no longer with us, those being Hoyt Axton (Billy’s father who brings Gizmo to his son) and Dick Miller (Murry Futterman). Others are still around but because of their age have not been on the screen for quite some time.
One big question to answer would be the status of Phoebe Cates for Gremlins 3. She played Galligan’s girlfriend, Kate Beringer, in both movies so would she be willing to come back for a third? There are other actors from the original who could play a part in Gremlins 3. Judge Reinhold and Corey Feldman would be easy gets, most likely, if they want them.
DON’T FEED THEM AFTER MIDNIGHT
There seems to be a misunderstanding as to what exactly a Gremlins 3 will look like. According to Galligan, a third movie would be a sequel to the first two. But according to writer Columbus, the third movie will be a reboot. So, which is it?
Back in 2015 (we know, that IS a while back), Galligan answered the question in a Q & A session at London’s Prince Charles Cinema (via Games Radar) stating, “It’s not going to be a reboot. It will not be a remake in any way, shape, or form. Chris Columbus has come out and said that the first film is very near and dear to his heart and as long as he is alive it will never be remade.”
Columbus, though, followed this up in an interview saying, “Gremlins we are actively talking about that. So that’s what I am working on with my production company 1492 Pictures. It will almost definitely be a reboot.”
So, what is Gremlins 3? A sequel or a reboot? We may literally not know until the film is actually shot. But Columbus also told SlashFilm he likes his Gremlins 3 script. “I’m really proud of the script,” Columbus said. “It is as twisted and dark as anything, so we’ll see. It’s always a budgetary conversation when we’re going to shoot it. I wanted to go back to the really twisted sensibility of the first movie. I found that was a very easy place for me to fall back into and start writing again so hopefully we’ll see that movie soon.”
THE FATE OF GIZMO
One thing we do know, well, sort of, would be the fate of that loveable Gizmo. If you remember, it all started with Gizmo and the Gremlin creatures created from his body.
According to Columbus, Gizmo may not survive Gremlins 3. He told Slashfilm, “I think [Gizmo’s death] is probably a good idea, to be honest,” he said. “Too many people are dying.” Say it isn’t so!!! That isn’t a good way to motivate fans to want to see this movie happen.
With so many unknowns, it should not be a surprise to learn there is currently no release date for Gremlins 3. Given that the film does not have an official green light and delays from the COVID-19 pandemic have changed studios’ expectations, don’t expect to see a Gremlins 3 until at least 2023.
It’s been 36 years since the original, 30 years since the sequel came out, what’s another two or three years? One thing is for sure. Writer Chris Columbus and actor Zach Galligan aren’t giving up hope.