Bill and Ted 3 is one of those sequels that has been sitting on the shelf just waiting to be made. More than a few original castmembers - including Keanu Reeves - have expressed interest in getting the movie into production, yet Hollywood keeps stalling and not getting the job done. There are likely multiple reasons for this, but now William Sadler - one of the stars of Bill and Ted's Bogus Journey - has identified one key issue that is preventing the project from moving along: the death of George Carlin.
The Hollywood Life recently interviewed Sadler, and it was during their conversation that the subject of Bill and Ted 3 came up. The actor has spoken before about the idea of reprising his role as The Reaper from Bill and Ted's first sequel, and while he's still game for the part, he identifies the fact that George Carlin isn't around anymore as a key problem in getting a new film made. He explained,
As I understand it, the biggest problem to overcome is that now that George Carlin has passed, because he was the catalyst, he was their host or their guide on these journeys that they took. He always turned out to be the one who was helping them along, and now that he’s gone, you have to write around him.
The fact that a script actually exists for Bill and Ted 3 would suggest that the folks behind the sequel have found some way to write around the fact that George Carlin has died - but it's understandable that this would be a roadblock in the project's development. In the first two Bill and Ted movies, the legendary comedian played Rufus, a time traveling guide from the future who helps the two titular characters fulfill their most excellent destines. Not having Carlin around obviously closes an easy gateway back into the fictional world, which presents a challenge to continuing the story.
Of course, there are other factors that are preventing Bill and Ted 3 from being made, and the really big one is money. Late last year, Keanu Reeves went on the record saying that the prospective budget for the sequel they want to make hovers around $150 million - which is way too much for a mid-level and old franchise like Bill and Ted. This means that if the movie is going to get made, the filmmakers can either pray for some Bill and Ted superfan/angel investor to arrive, or change the script so that it can be made on a much tinier budget.
Do you still think there's a future for Bill and Ted 3, or do you think that issues like money and the lack of George Carlin will prevent it from ever existing?