Hollywood hates killing cash cows. If your franchise is earning money, it's likely going to get another movie. That's how we ended up with so many Police Academy movies. And when your franchise stops earning money, you might go to TV. (Right, Shailene Woodley?) Eddie Murphy knows this, which is why he confirmed in a recent interview that plans for Shrek 5 are rolling right along. And he even updated us on what he knows about a release date. Murphy said:
They took a nice long break [after 2010's Shrek Forever After]. The next Shrek ... I think Jeffrey [Katzenberg, producer] told me 2019? 2019 or 2020, it will be ready. But they've got a good script, they wrote a nice good script.
That's the closest we have come to confirmation that Shrek 5 (or whatever they will choose to call it) is coming to theaters. Most recently, we had reported that Universal and its animation partners at Illumination Entertainment were exploring options, but there was no hard confirmation on a script, or any talent involvement. If DreamWorks Animation head Jeffrey Katzenberg is sharing progress like this with Eddie Murphy, who has voiced Donkey in every Shrek movie and TV program since the very beginning, then it feels like Shrek 5 is an inevitable certainty. As Murphy also explains in this interview with Collider:
Anything that's been as successful as Shrek, anything that people really like, they're always going to make those movies. They don't stop making those types of movies until the audience says 'no more!' If it's been successful you'll see another Toy Story, and Shrek is one of those movies.
Animation tends to be a lot more forgiving on the passage of time. Ten years can pass between Shrek Forever After and a possible Shrek 5 in 2020 because the voices behind the characters don't change. So it's not like seeing old Arnold Schwarzenegger in another Terminator movie. Shrek 5 can have the same energy and humor that we have come to expect from the series.
The question now becomes, who else besides Eddie Murphy is on board? There are three names that a potential Shrek 5 will need, and none are bigger than Mike Myers. The Canadian funny man, and the voice of Shrek, hasn't acted in years, though he did participate in the SNL 40 anniversary special... as one of his other famous characters.
Outside of Murphy and Myers, Shrek 5 definitely would need Cameron Diaz, and likely Antonio Banderas, although he did spin his Puss in Boots character off into a standalone movie, and doesn't NEED to come back. So, are you willing to wait three or four more years for another Shrek movie? Weigh in below.