Sequel To ‘It’s a Wonderful Life’ Due Christmas 2015 [UPDATE]
The cinematic gods have smiled upon us and it looks like there will be no sequel to It’s a Wonderful Life.
According to several sources, producers of the intended sequel, It’s a Wonderful Life: The Rest of the Story, failed to realize that they don’t have the necessary rights to do a sequel. At the present time, the rights to the story and characters are owned by Paramount Pictures who do not intend to make a sequel. In an official statement, a rep from Paramount said,
No project relating to It’s A Wonderful Life can proceed without a license from Paramount. To date, these individuals have not obtained any of the necessary rights, and we would take all appropriate steps to protect those rights.
Adding to the list of sequels that don’t need to be made, cinematic classic It’s a Wonderful Life will be getting a sequel due in theaters for Christmas of 2015.
Star Partners and Hummingbird Prods. will collaborate on the sequel, titled It’s a Wonderful Life: The Rest of the Story, focusing on the grandson of Jimmy Stewart’s George Bailey, who is visited by an angel who shows him what the world would be like had he never been born. The angel is set to be played by Karolyn Grimes, who played George’s daughter Zuzu in the original film and who spoke the iconic line about every time a bell rings and angel gets his wings.
Bob Farnsworth of Hummingbird is set to produce the film based on a screenplay written by him and Martha Bolton. Commenting on the spirit of the film, Farnsworth said,
The storyline of the new film retains the spirit of the original – every life is important as long as you have friends.
Grimes noted that this isn’t the first time she’s been approached for a follow-up film, but it is the first time the script was worthy,
I’ve probably read close to 20 scripts over the years suggesting a sequel to It’s a Wonderful Life, but none of them were any good. The script by Bob Farnsworth and Martha Bolton was wonderful, and I wanted to be involved with his version of the film immediately.
It’s a Wonderful Life: The Rest of the Story is set for a late 2015 release, though it is still in the early pre-production. Producers intend to shoot most of the film in Louisiana with a budget of $25 to $35 million. Casting is scheduled to begin in February, though producers have already started negotiations with original cast members Jimmy Hawkins (Tommy Bailey) and Carol Coombs (Janie Bailey) to reprise their roles.