After more than a decade of waiting, we’re finally going to be treated to the return of the prettiest people in the world in Zoolander 2. While we had no idea just how funny the world of male modeling would be, the original Zoolander was absolutely hilarious and the sequel looks to be continue be a worthy follow-up.
The original film essentially established that the fashion industry has the ability to brainwash models – thanks to their low intelligence - in order to perform political assassinations. It now appears that there is something even darker going on in the world of fashion. Zoolander 2 deals with the most terrible crime of all, the death of pretty people. Pop stars are being killed, and all of them seem to have exactly one thing in common - which leads the authorities to go in search of the one man who might be able to solve the mystery: Derek Zoolander. Somehow there's a connection between Zoolander and the deaths, as all the dead celebrities shared images of themselves near death and flashing the Zoolander signature look, Blue Steel.
We're expecting a host of entertaining new characters to join the party in Zoolander 2, but if we’re being honest we're even more excited for our returning favorites. The first film had a collection of hilarious characters and we know that many of them will be returning for the new movie. While most are the major names you might expect, even some of the actors playing very small parts have returned in their respective roles as well. Here’s a rundown of just those that we know we’re going to see again.
Derek ZoolanderHe was once the greatest male model in the world. And he was dumber than a bag of hammers. It wouldn’t be a Zoolander movie without the great Derek Zoolander, so of course Ben Stiller will be back once again (also returning to the director’s chair).
Derek Zoolander was once the greatest male model in the world. He thought his career was over when he was dethroned by Hansel. His signature look, Blue Steel, while still one of the greatest looks in the history of modeling, was getting old and he needed something new to refresh himself. Then he was nearly brainwashed into assassinating the Prime Minister of Malaysia. You know, like you always hear about in the news.
In the last film, Derek Zoolander had the ability to stop a throwing star with a look, and he was at the top of his game. Kind of a lot has happened since then.
As we learned in the first movie, Derek Zoolander has a son, and we will see him all grown up in the new film… though it’s worth mentioning that he is very much not a model. Exactly how the son will play into the larger story in Zoolander 2 is not clear. While our brief view of the child of Derek and Matilda from the original implied that he would be a natural model, something has happened that has drastically changed this, and we have to assume that dad is not happy about it.
The sequel will find Derek Zoolander retired. He’s much older now of course, so what good is he anymore? It appears there may not be much more to life for Zoolander than being really, really, really, good looking. The implication is that he's not even capable of performing his signature looks anymore. If we thought Zoolander was feeling low in the first film, he may have found new depths to sink to this time around. He will have one last run in the fashion world, however, as the fashion division of Interpol (which is a thing we really wish exists) calls on him for help with this strange case.
HanselWhile Hansel was a rival for much of the first movie, he and Derek Zoolander eventually found common ground, mostly over their shared love of Derek Zoolander. Where Ben Stiller goes, Owen Wilson often follows. They were there together the first time and, of course, they will be together again.
While Hansel was the hot young thing of the male model world in the last movie, it appears he’s in much the same boat as his best friend in Zoolander 2. It has been well over a decade since the last movie, and – like in our world - the shelf life of the male model is not particularly long.
While what we know of Zoolander 2hasn’t shown us much of what Hansel will be doing (beyond playing sidekick to Zoolander) that’s pretty much what his job was before, and he handled it fairly well. Obviously we hope that Owen Wilson has a chance to shine in the new film. The title may be Zoolander 2, but we know that Hansel is as much a part of the film as Derek.
Early reports on the film's script stated that Hansel will have suffered a disfiguring injury that took him out of the modeling game in between films, and while he looks pretty normal in the trailer (if that nose didn’t take him out of modeling, what else could?) we do see him sporting something around one eye in multiple scenes that could imply that something terrible happened to him. We're going to guess that whole idea was scrapped, or at the very least drastically changed, as Owen Wilson had previously made comparisons to Vanilla Sky when referencing the severity of his disfigurement.
Jacobim MugatuThe trailers for Zoolander 2 have shown us that Will Ferrell will return as the designer Jacobim Mugatu. They have also teased that he will once again be the villain of the piece, which may seem like too much of a spoiler, but let’s face it, the plot will not be the point of this movie.
Jacobim Mugatu apparently holds the distinction of being the one person in the world who realizes that Derek Zoolander isn’t as impressive as everybody else thinks he is. While it’s not clear exactly what Mugatu is up to in Zoolander 2, or how he’s connected to the celebrity deaths, we want to believe he’s still working for the shadowy organization from the first film, because a secret cabal working within the fashion industry is a hilarious concept of which we want to see more.
While the trailer sets up Magutu as the bad guy in the movie, we have no idea how killing Justin Bieber could ultimately play into a grand scheme that he is part of orchestrating. In the end, we’re guessing that while Magutu will be on the antagonist team, he may not be the ultimate villain. It’s even possible he may not be a bad guy at all. As much as we enjoyed Will Ferrell and Ben Stiller on opposite sides in the first film, we’ve now seen it. While Magutu will probably not be a hero, he may be more help than harm to our protagonists. When Zoolander 2 was first being considered, years ago, the rumor was that Jonah Hill would be the newest villain. It’s been five years since those first rumors so it’s likely that a lot has changed since then. But, having said that, we don’t know that it’s not happening just like that. As far as we know, they’re still working off that same script, so time will tell.
Matilda JeffriesChristine Taylor has confirmed that her character Matilda Jeffries - the reporter/love interest to Derek Zoolander - will be back for Zoolander 2, but she’s staying very quiet about exactly how she fits into the film – and the marketing has not shown her at all. At the end of the original Zoolander Matilda had given birth to a son, and we know that son has grown up in the fifteen years since. Obviously, Zoolander and Matilda will always have a connection through their son, but as we haven’t seen her at all in the trailer for Zoolander 2 we’re a bit worried that we may not see enough of the smartest character in the entire series.
Since we know there’s a new major female lead in the movie, it’s possible we’ll only see Matilda briefly as she gets written off to give more focus to Penelope Cruz
Nothing that we’ve seen of Penelope Cruz implies that her character is designed to be a love interest, so we don’t expect Matilda to be completely written off. Still, with the plan for Zoolander and Hansel to go undercover, there may not be much available for the mother of Derek Jr. to do.
We really hope that Matilda’s role isn’t reduced to the level of a Billy Zane cameo, simply because Taylor’s a great screen presence and played well off of her real-life husband in the first Zoolander. She played an excellent straight woman in the movie, and we don’t necessarily want anybody taking her place.
ToddTodd was Magutu’s assistant who is played by Nathan Lee Graham in the original Zoolander. We’ve already seen him take one latte to the face in the trailer, and as that was his primary job in the first movie, we don’t expect a great deal will change this time around.
Exactly what possessed Todd to continue to work for Magutu, even while the man was in prison, is beyond us. The man known for inventing the piano key necktie has to be the worst boss in the world. Still, we’re glad that Todd will be returning, as Graham's perpetually terrified character was some of the best physical comedy in the first film. His perpetual look of abject terror was funny all by itself, and nobody reacts to getting a latte thrown on them quite like Todd does.
We expect that wherever Magutu goes, Todd will follow. While we don’t expect the sequel will turn Todd into a pivotal character, it’s not likely that the studio/production would have made a particularly big deal of announcing Graham's return if he wasn’t going to be worthwhile to the film. Besides, we always felt there was something about the relationship between Todd and Magutu that the first film never explored. The way that Will Ferrell's character would look at him always seemed to say something we never quite understood.
The original Zoolander was actually the first film job ever for Nathan Lee Graham, so for him it's a homecoming and should be something special.
Billy ZaneZoolander had some great cameo moments. We got to see the immortal David Bowie, Paris Hilton, and even Vince Vaughn get bit parts (some even without lines). While the sequel is set to have many of its own special appearances, like Justin Beiber and Katy Perry, we also look forward to the return of some of the great moments from the first film. While a new cameo from Donald Trump is unlikely, we know of at least one actor who will be returning to see his friend Derek again. While not the biggest celebrity from the first film, Billy Zane may have been the most memorable. When Derek and Hansel finally reached the point where they could stand each other anymore, it culminated in a runway battle, and it was left to Billy Zane to announce that "It’s a walk-off" to anybody who would listen.
We can’t imagine what Billy Zane will be doing in Zoolander 2, and we can’t say if he’ll have a much larger role this time. His job could just be to show up, say what winds up being the best line of the movie, and then disappear.
We would love to see Billy Zane (he must always be referred to by his full name when talking about Zoolander) take on a more important role in Zoolander 2. We know both Derek and Hansel think Billy Zane is really cool, so it would make sense that he hangs out with them a lot. Wouldn't you? Besides, he can’t just call for another walk-off. Without David Bowie, who would judge it properly?