These days, when we hear about an anticipated or exciting sequel it’s usually of the franchise variety or maybe even something about a once-popular character coming back into the mix. It’s rarely about an ensemble-ish comedy from decades ago. Those aren’t typically the kind of things that get a sequel. Reboot? Maybe. But sequel? Not really. This is why it’s all the more exciting to get the news that Mel Brooks is putting out a follow-up story to one of his best movies ever. That’s right, History of the World, Part I is finally getting a sequel story a mere 40 years after the original.
Variety reported on Monday that Mel Brooks would be on board to deliver History of the World, Part II, this time as a series of episodes on Hulu. It’s an exciting event and considering the nature of the original, could go a lot of different ways with how it unfolds. They are bringing along some other comedic heavy hitters into the mix, and there is sure to be a musical element as well considering how the first one was structured and we could see a number of different cameos as well if they decide to look at all different timelines.
In addition to Mel Brooks signing on to help script the show, Nick Kroll is on board as well after creating and writing the Emmy-nominated Big Mouth from Netflix. Additionally, the great Wanda Sykes is taking part as well after working in the writer’s room for Roseanne as well as her own comedy specials. And Ike Barinholtz is part of the team after working on a number of different comedy series and movies over the last many years including The Mindy Project and Eastbound & Down.
When Mel Brooks first came out with History of the World, Part I all the way back in 1981, it was a send-up of the movie industry as a whole by taking a retrospective look at certain parts of history. Its five parts were The Stone Age, The Old Testament, The Roman Empire, The Spanish Inquisition, and The French Revolution. Each one looked back at the time in a mocking fashion, mostly poking fun at movies made about those eras. Brooks had a part in each era with the stories thematically overlapping but standing on their own as well.
Hilariously, at the end of History of the World, Part I, Mel Brooks did originally tease a sequel which was going to have sections like “Jews in Space” and “Hitler on Ice”. He, no doubt, never intended to actually put these up on the screen (right?), using them more as a way to gently poke fun at other pieces of history. But now, with this new series, we might actually see it happen.
The 95-year-old Mel Brooks isn’t working on the screen as much these days, but he’s had a hand in plenty of productions over the last few years. He’s taken a number of different voice roles including parts in the Hotel Transylvania franchise as well as Toy Story 4. History of the World, Part II will be one of his first writing credits in some time, but it’s a great one to return to after all these years.