Spoiler warning: If you don't know how M. Night Shyamalan's latest film ends yet, then you should make like a banana and split.
Known for pulling the rug out from under audiences with his mind-bending twists, M. Night Shyamalan has now pulled off the biggest surprise of his career — actually making a decent film again.
Once upon a time, The Sixth Sense director numbered among Hollywood's brightest — but as time went on, each of Shyamalan's films became progressively worse, until we were just left with the likes of After Earth and The Last Airbender. Like the Benjamin Button of directors, Shyamalan seemed to regress in talent as the years passed. Luckily, with the success of his latest smash Split, M. Night has proved that his directorial prowess is ultimately unbreakable.
Of course, it certainly helps that Split's twist ending hearkens back to one of Shyamalan's greatest films, leaving audiences speechless with that surprise cameo. Honestly, who would have ever suspected that Split would feature the return of Bruce Willis as David Dunn, the hero of Shyamalan's Unbreakable?
Fifteen years in the making, Shyamalan's first attempt to build his very own Shyamaverse was extremely promising, but as one of the cafe patrons stated in the final scene of Split, "what about that crazy guy in a wheelchair?”.
Will Samuel L. Jackson Return As Mr Glass For 'Split 2' Or 'Unbreakable 2'?
M. Night Shyamalan has teased us with an #Unbreakable sequel for years, but now that the film's connection with Split has been revealed, the secretive director explained to The Hollywood Reporter that he hopes...
"... To make one final movie that combines the two."
Following his cameo in Shyamalan's latest film, Bruce Willis is clearly on board for some kind of Split/Unbreakable sequel, but what about Samuel L. Jackson? It's impossible to imagine David Dunn returning to our screens without his arch nemesis following closely behind. Fortunately, the return of Mr Glass is looking extremely likely.
Check out the moment when Mr Glass reveals his true nature in the clip below:
Speaking to Entertainment Weekly last year, Jackson revealed his thoughts on a potential Unbreakable sequel;
"People talk to me about that movie all the time. Night’s still around. Bruce is still around. I’m still around. And I’d love to break out of the asylum."
Now that Shyamalan has confirmed that he's keen to explore this universe in more detail, it looks like Jackson's involvement in a future Split/Unbreakable sequel is a given. There's just one problem; The last time we heard from Mr Glass, he'd been imprisoned in an institution for the criminally insane. Fortunately for Jackson fans though, Elijah Price could be far stronger than we ever realised...
Will Mr Glass Remain Imprisoned In Future Sequels?
Sure, it would be entertaining to see Mr Glass give advice from prison, using his intellect to help David Dunn track down The Horde — Hannibal Lecter style — but there's a strong possibility that Elijah could escape confinement instead, perhaps even joining Kevin to assemble more 'unbreakable' allies.
We know what you're thinking — Jackson's character may be supremely intelligent, but his fragile bones would break the moment that a prison guard or even a small baby knocked into him. However, a new fan theory from Redditor vm-artist suggests that Mr Glass is far more powerful than Shyamalan first led us to believe.
Fan Theory Reveals How Mr Glass Could Escape Incarceration Using Special Abilities
The entire concept behind Unbreakable is one of balance. As Mr Glass regularly points out, he and David Dunn mirror each other in basically every way.
"However unreal it may seem, we are connected, you and I. We're on the same curve, just on opposite ends."
Both characters have weak spots that can be turned against them — so why is it that only Dunn possesses special abilities? Closer analysis of Unbreakable reveals that this may not be the case. Whether he does so consciously or not, it appears that Mr Glass actually uses hidden psychic abilities to manipulate those around him, much like Kilgrave in Jessica Jones.
Remember how Price effortlessly persuaded a hotel employee into revealing the structural weaknesses of the building that he was planning to destroy? David's wife openly expresses surprise at her openness with Elijah, declaring that she "doesn't even know why she's even willing to tell it all" to a stranger like him in the first place. How else could you explain that everyone reveals to Mr Glass exactly what he needs to know, exactly when he needs to know it?
Check out the official Unbreakable trailer below for a quick refresher:
While this could be simply blamed on bad writing or Mr Glass's unassuming appearance, this fan theory actually makes a lot of sense, tying into Unbreakable's need for balance. After all, if Mr Glass really is David's counterpart in every way, then it makes sense that he would possess powers of the mind, standing in direct opposition to Dunn's physical gifts. The entire concept of Split is that sufficient trauma enables people to develop powers, and few have suffered as much as Mr Glass.
If that's the case, then, it would be a simple matter for Mr Glass to manipulate the guards of his institute into releasing him whenever he pleases. Why hasn't Price tried this before in the fifteen year interim between Split and Unbreakable? It could be that Mr Glass isn't ready to return to the world until news of more 'unbreakables' breaks out, or perhaps he simply feels safer in a cell with padded walls.
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Whether he returns for a brief cameo or takes a central role in Shyamalan's upcoming sequel, Samuel L. Jackson's involvement in Split and/or Unbreakable is absolutely pivotal to the success of this franchise. What remains unclear though is whether Price will possess special abilities or simply use his impressive intellect to plague David Dunn again, perhaps with The Horde in tow. Either way though, without Mr Glass, the whole thing shatters.