I’ve got high hopes for the Riddick sequel. That’s in spite, not because of, how Vin Diesel and David Twohy handled the first sequel, 2004’s Chronicles of Riddick. Pitch Black was a great spin on a familiar concept buoyed by excellent execution and a memorable antihero in the form of Richard B. Riddick. Chronicles, on the other hand, seemed to forget all the things that made Pitch Black a cult classic, and instead immersed Riddick into an overly complicated mythology in which the character seemed completely out of place. Everything we’re hearing about Riddick 3, however, makes it sound like Diesel and company are getting back to the basics of what make Riddick work so well: throw him into a situation where he is both predator and prey, then watch the blood fly. With a solid cast including Karl Urban and Katee Sackhoff, there is good reason to be excited for Riddick 3. Unfortunately, it sounds like we won’t be seeing it before 2013.
The word comes from Vin Diesel’s Facebook page, where he updated fans about the project earlier this week. Even more interesting, Diesel hints that there may be more than one sequel on the horizon. Here’s what he said:
The studio said the earliest they could release the new “Riddick” is in January… was hoping for 2012… but, it’s on the horizon.
P.s. I think they are liking what they are seeing… haha, cause they asked when both Underverse and Furya would be ready to make and release… haha… now that’s a ways in the future but it is exciting.
If you remember back in 2006, before Chronicles hit theaters, Diesel said in interviews that he had already planned out a trilogy of Riddick films, of which Chronicles was supposed to be the first. The second film was to deal with the dark parallel universe called the Underverse, and the third film was to explore Riddick’s origins as the last survivor of a race known as Furyans. Based on Diesel’s quote, it sounds like he hasn’t totally abandoned his original storyline, but it also sounds like Riddick is more of a self-contained storyline that going to be a lot more similar to Pitch Black than Chronicles. In my opinion, that’s a good thing. And if Riddick 3 actually does well enough to merit further sequels, hey, more power to Diesel.
These movies are obviously passion projects for the actor, so I wish him success. I just hope that he finds a way to be more true to the elements that make Riddick a compelling character, rather than swamping him in an overly complicated mythology. Both Pitch Black and the excellent Riddick video games have proven that the character has tons of potential; I just hope Diesel doesn’t squander that potential any further.