In April 2020, the world was given a new live-action Mortal Kombat movie, which had been in development for almost a decade. The cinematic reboot based on the popular video game series performed decently at the box office and, thanks to the day-and-date release plan Warner Bros. implemented for all its 2021 movies, was one of HBO Max’s top feature titles last year. Well, good news for those of you who had a blast watching Mortal Kombat: following a cryptic message from producer Todd Garner in December, Mortal Kombat 2 has taken a big step forward with a key behind-the-scenes hire.
Jeremy Slater, the head writer of Disney+’s upcoming Marvel series Moon Knight, has been hired to write Mortal Kombat 2, as shared by Deadline. Slater is also notable co-writing 2015’s Fantastic Four with Josh Trank and Simon Kinberg, as well as developing the Netflix series The Umbrella Academy and the short-lived Fox TV show The Exorcist. Along with now working on Mortal Kombat 2, Slater has the Looney Tunes movie Coyote vs. Acme coming up.
Last year’s Mortal Kombat was written by Greg Russo and David Callaham, and now Jeremy Slater is getting to put his stamp on a property that’s been entertaining video game enthusiasts for almost 30 full years. Simon McQuoid directed the reboot, but at this stage in the development process, it’s unclear if he’ll reprise those duties for the sequel. There’s also no word yet on which cast members will return for Mortal Kombat 2, like Lewis Tan, Jessica McNamee, Mehcad Brooks and Hiroyuki Sanada, among others.
Mortal Kombat saw Lewis Tan’s Cole Young, a washed-up MMA fighter, learning about his secret heritage and being recruited to help keep Earth safe from the sinister forces of Outworld. Although the reboot was packed with gruesome fights, the actual tournament that the Mortal Kombat franchise is famous for never actually happened in the movie. As laid out, in this continuity, Outworld has beaten Earth in said tournament nine times before, and if Earth loses a tenth time, Outworld will conquer our planet. It stands to reason the tournament will finally unfold in Mortal Kombat 2, though whether it will wrap up by the end of that movie or extend to a hypothetical Mortal Kombat 3 remains to be seen.
Since Jeremy Slater is in the middle of writing Mortal Kombat 2, it may be a while until we learn any story details and what new characters will be added to the mix. That said, we can almost certainly expect to see Johnny Cage, one of the main protagonists from the video game series, show up, as he was teased at the end of Mortal Kombat. As for why Johnny was left out of the first movie, Greg Russo previously told CinemaBlend it was due to the inclusion of Josh Lawson’s Kano, and he preferred to introduce Johnny and various other characters “correctly” later rather than “try to jam them into a role where it doesn't feel natural.”
We’ll keep you apprised on how Mortal Kombat 2 is coming along when more updates come in. For now, Mortal Kombat is back on its original streaming home, among plenty of other HBO Max movies to check out.
Connoisseur of Marvel, DC, Star Wars, John Wick, MonsterVerse and Doctor Who lore. He's aware he looks like Harry Potter and Clark Kent.
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