MGM is moving forward with a sequel to its Alicia Vikander-led Tomb Raider movie reboot, with Amy Jump writing the script. While the campy Angelina Jolie-led Tomb Raider movies from the 2000s certainly have their fans, the second of the two films (Lara Croft Tomb Raider: The Cradle of Life) was a box office misfire when it hit theaters in 2003. Fifteen years later, the series finally got a gritty makeover modeled after the 2013 Tomb Raider video game reboot, with Jolie’s fellow Oscar-winner Vikander stepping in to play a younger version of the death-defying adventurer Miss Croft.
Directed by Roar Uthaug, Tomb Raider (2018) earned lukewarm reviews, with critics praising Vikander for her action star-worthy performance as Lara, but taking issue with the film’s uninspired origin story and forced attempt to set up a sequel. The reboot ultimately turned a healthy profit at the global box office, but its struggle to take off in the U.S. (where it grossed less than a quarter of its $275 million worldwide total) left some wondering if a followup would ever actually come to pass. Well, MGM certainly wants one to, by the look of things.
According to Deadline, MGM has gotten the ball rolling on a Tomb Raider sequel and recruited Jump to write the screenplay. The latter, who’s known for collaborating with her filmmaking partner Ben Wheatley on projects like Free Fire and High-Rise, reportedly managed to impress Vikander with her pitch for Lara Croft’s next adventure.
It’s encouraging to hear that Vikander and MGM have hired a woman with experience writing action movies to work on the Tomb Raider sequel, after Geneva Robertson-Dworet (Captain Marvel) cowrote the previous film. The Tomb Raider reboot arguably benefitted from having a woman involved with writing Lara for the big screen, and presented a version of the character who was far less sexualized than Jolie’s iteration, yet equally reckless, scrappy, and willing to live her life on the dangerous side. At the same time, the reboot’s narrative left something to be desired (as mentioned earlier), so there’s very much room for Jump to build upon the foundation that Uthaug and Robertson-Dworet laid down and deliver a more compelling storyline, this second time around.
Similarly, fans of the Tomb Raider reboot should be happy to hear they’ll be getting some actual payoff to the movie’s Trinity plot thread (which was left – somewhat precariously – dangling by the end of the film). With so much of the setup out of the way and done, the sequel’s also free to include more scenes of Lara actually raiding tombs like she does in the video games, and not just during the third act either (a la the reboot). All in all, it will be interesting to see how Tomb Raider 2 – or whatever it winds up being called – comes together from here.
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