MGM recently announced that Tomb Raider 2, their follow-up to 2018’s Tomb Raider has been delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and completely taken off their upcoming schedule. While it’s unclear when the Alicia Vikander starring sequel will be released, or even when production will begin, we know a bit about what is planned for the future adventures of Lara Croft. We also know it’s coming, at some point.
Since it seems like the wait for this sequel could be extensive, here’s everything we do currently know about Tomb Raider 2.
History of Tomb Raider
For those not in the know, Tomb Raider is a popular video game series that has had 16 different games, along with a number of spin-offs on various platforms. The series’ star is British archaeologist Lara Croft, who uses her high intellect and athletic ability to venture the globe, going on dangerous adventures, exploring ancient ruins and tombs in search of mystical artifacts and rare objects.
Lara Croft has been onscreen prior to the 2018 Alicia Vikander Tomb Raider reboot (and of course the impending Tomb Raider 2). Angelina Jolie was the first actress to bring Lara Croft to life, in the 2001 film Lara Croft: Tomb Raider, then again in the 2003 sequel Lara Croft Tomb Raider: The Cradle of Life. Jolie’s first go-around as Lara Croft was a huge commercial success, while the sequel still brought in a nice box office return. This set up plans for a third, which Jolie eventually declined, stating via the World Entertainment News Network, “I just don’t feel like I need to do another one. I felt really happy with the last one.”
Since the Alicia Vikander-led reboot film was a Lara Croft origin story, it was vastly different from Angelina Jolie’s films. Vikander was able to play Croft from the beginning, as she had not yet become the Lara Croft we know from the video games. Vikander’s take was more brutal, as she learned the hard way how to become Lara Croft without the benefit of Croft’s trademark dual pistols.
While Alicia Vikander’s Tomb Raider was a fun origin story, many complained that her take didn’t portray the badass Lara Croft from the games and the Angelina Jolie films. Despite the criticism that this Lara Croft was an incomplete version of this hero, the 2018 Tomb Raider fared well enough at the box office to warrant Tomb Raider 2.
Tomb Raider 2
Alicia Vikander said before the release of Tomb Raider that if there was an opportunity for a Tomb Raider 2, she would be up for it. “Yes, I adored taking on the role of Lara,” the actress said to fans via DigitalSpy “So yeah, we’ll see. If there’s an audience out there for it, then I would love to.” With Vikander ready to reprise the role of Lara Croft, the only other actor we know who might return from the first one would be Kristin Scott Thomas as Ana Miller, an associate in Lara’s father’s company, Croft Holdings.
Other than those two, it’s probably unwise to expect Dominic West back as Lara Croft’s father, Lord Richard Croft, since he sacrificed himself to save his daughter. Walton Goggins also seems unlikely to return for Tomb Raider 2, as his villain Mathias Vogel also perished in the first movie.
There could be a chance that Daniel Wu would return to Tomb Raider 2 as Lu Ren, the ship captain who helped Lara find her father. Maybe an appearance by the original Lara Croft, Angelina Jolie? Vikander would love it. She told NME, “I wouldn’t mind! I adore Angelina, so we’ll see… We should definitely ask.”
Tomb Raider 2’s Plot
The end of the first Tomb Raider could hint at the potential direction Tomb Raider 2 might explore. With Lara saving the world by stopping a deadly virus from escaping a tomb, she travels back to London to accept a position at her father’s company. Soon after, Lara discovers that Trinity – the organization that wanted to release the virus – was directly tied to her father’s company, due to the deceptive actions of Kristen Scott Thomas’ Ana Miller.
Also in a sequence during the credits, Alicia Vikander’s Lara Croft is seen purchasing her iconic twin guns. Expect to see those in action for Tomb Raider 2.
Director and Writer
Where Alicia Vikander’s Lara Croft goes in Tomb Raider 2, only husband-and-wife duo director Ben Wheatley and writer Amy Jump can say. The two have worked together previously on the films High-Rise and Free Fire.
It was also recently announced that Wheatley has been hired to direct the sequel to Jason Statham’s 2018 shark movie, The Meg. Most recently, Wheatley directed the Netflix adaptation of Daphne du Maurier’s classic novel, Rebecca.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s uncertain when we will see the return of Tomb Raider. Tomb Raider 2 was planned for a March 2021 release, but was pulled from its scheduled release date, without being given a replacement date. With production being delayed, and a release date uncertain, a 2022 release could still be possible.
For anyone excited for Tomb Raider 2, it’s coming, but it may be awhile before we see Lara Croft return to the big screen played by Alicia Vikander.