So you've made a movie huh? Did well at the box office? I hope it did, because you followed my great advice and stuck to it all the way to the final release! So now you've made your millions at the box office and are sitting down and wondering, "what should I do next", well that's incredibly simple! Make a sequel.
Trust me if there's one thing moviegoers love, its seeing an idea milked to oblivion. That's why Paranormal Activity and Saw received multiple sequels. Trust me its the number one way to make more cash, have a hugely successful (or rarely) a mildly successful first film? Well good because now we're going to make seven sequels and two spinoffs to it. Now before we dive into sequels you should know, there is an art form to this, you can't just up and make a new movie and slap a 2 at the end of it. But don't worry, I'm here to hold your hand through the whole process as there are many different types of sequels out there.
THE CARBON COPY:
Aw the carbon copy, this is the tried and true formula for crafting a sequel to your masterpiece of a film. Why is it called the Carbon Copy? Well for one simple reason, it is quite literally the first movie over again it should retread virtually the same plot with very little variation. This can range from simply putting another number at the end of the title or by having a set of new characters that add nothing to the film's mythos
This is prevalent in the horror movie genre just look at Halloween and Friday the 13th, both great movies with just the right amount of sequels so great and so unique anyone can tell one sequel from the next with just a quick glance. For Friday the 13th the plot stays the same Jason, our killer, comes out of the water and murders a bunch of "innocent" horny teenagers without mercy one after the other with no signs of slowing down. Suddenly random hero shows up and finds a way to kill Jason, or does he? Yeah probably not since Jason comes back in the next movie without much trouble and goes back to killing. This is quality film making at its finest eat your heart out Citizen Kane!
So yeah the basic formula is to literally do what you did last time but change one or two things, throw in a new character or have it take place in a new location and that's it. Its quick, its fast and it is ripe with creativity.
THE CANON WRECKER
This is the sequel that basically destroys things established in earlier movies. I have to cite my above example, in one of the Halloween movies our killer is actually killed, but he's back two movies later although we saw him die. This movie basically rewrites the entire canon. Look at Ghost Rider 2, in the end of the first movie Johnny Blaze had full control over the Ghost Rider, not in Ghost Rider 2. Johnny Blaze is unable to control when the rider comes or what he does. Established in the previous movie, who gives a damn.
Also this can apply to movies that maybe had a finality to their ending Alien 3 comes to mind. The main character kicks the bucket in a somewhat satisfying way and takes the franchise with her. Until they revived it and her by cloning her and giving a sequel everyone asked for despite the last film's very clear ending.
This technique really comes in handy if you've made the fatal mistake of having an ending wrap up with a pretty pink bow around it and didn't leave anything open for a sequel. Now you can dig yourself out of a hole by saying XYZ never happened or throw in something never mentioned, reference, or seen in the previous film and shoehorn it in regardless of it making any sort of sense. We aren't here to tell a story, we're here to make that cash.
Well marvel changed the sequel game for all of us, they it did in such a genius way, instead of having fifty sequels, they made a ton of movies within the same world that periodically link with each other. Its so genius, let's copy it, DC's and Warner Brothers are already doing it with Man of Steel, Batman v. Superman Dawn of Justice, Justice League part 1, and Justice League part 2. Oh and not just them, Paramount is trying to get in on that sweet sweet action and trying to make a Transformers cinematic universe! Who isn't jumping for joy about a cinematic universe!? Seriously they're on the rage right now and prevent franchise fatigue, why didn't I think of this! It's not like anyone's getting bored watching Marvel churn out Superhero movies faster than Activision churns out Call of Duty games.
BIGGER AND BETTER
Had a movie with great action scenes and characters? Good because get ready to crank up those action scenes up by two-hundred-percent. We need more action, forget a cohesive gripping story or interesting characters, everything needs to be bigger, louder, and just have more.
Have a movie with great humor, fill every last scene with so much over the top humor it makes the last one seem about as humorous a lynching. It needs more of everything, more villains, more characters, and more explosions, trust me, people will fill up those seats.
THE SETUP SEQUEL
This is one of my most genius inventions, what's better than a sequel, a sequel who's sole purpose is to set up another sequel ! It's like a sequel Inception! Forget about making this movie a masterpiece, its just setting the stage for a much bigger and better sequel. Just focus all of your creativity on setting up the next film and forget about making sure this one's good. The set up will be so exciting you'll be green lit for the sequel before it even opens up! Fans will still say its a great movie and won't hesitate to throw you more cash when the next one comes out.
So that's my advice if there's one thing the audience loves, it seeing a film turned into a series spit out sequel after sequel with no end in sight. Once again I am your friend the movie expert and I'm here to help you make the best movie ever!