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By the bedpan of Gene Rayburn! Adam McKay’s Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues got off to a decent start over the weekend, banking an estimated $40 million over its five-day frame but failing to unseat Peter Jackson’s second Hobbit film, The Desolation of Smaug, which held on to the top slot. Surprisingly, it was the lowest weekend opening of McKay’s career. His last film, The Other Guys, opened to $35.5M back in 2010, while the first Anchorman banked $28.4M way back in 2004. Now, if the Anchorman sequel had limited its release to the weekend (instead of spreading the wealth to Wednesday and Thursday), we might be writing a different headline. For now, it’s a good start to a sequel that hopes to have legs.
Could it have legs that extend to a third chapter? It’s the lingering question we have been kicking around the CinemaBlend offices. Do we want a third Anchorman movie? Should they have left well enough alone? And if they are going to reunite for a third Anchorman movie, should they wait ANOTHER decade before bringing Ron Burgundy and his news crew back?
Here is that feature I discussed, the 10 Anchorman quotes we continue to quote to this day (and why). And no matter how you felt about the Anchorman sequel, there’s no denying that the screenplay is LOADED with instant quotes that people will be tossing around their offices, classrooms and holiday parties for years to come.
But there are precious few successful comedy trilogies. The Hangover Part III proved how difficult it can be to continue milking laughs out of a premise. McKay and Ferrell don’t have to stick to their Anchorman blueprint if they wanted to do a third movie. They don’t have to do a third movie at all. Ferrell thrives on creating original characters. Sequels haven’t been his bag. Heck, fans have been clamoring for sequels to Step Brothers and The Other Guys for a while, and they have yet to happen.
But with dollars rolling in for the well-reviewed Anchorman 2, could this inspire Ferrell and McKay to dive back in for a third Ron Burgundy movie? Should they?