James Cameron and Robert Rodriguez announced on February 6, 2019 that they were planning to work on Alita Battle Angel 2 in future. The casting of Edward Norton in a non-speaking role as Nova in this film was intended to be a setup for the sequel. The interesting fact is that Edward Norton refused to appear in Avatar 2 so that he could make the cameo appearance in the second instalment.
Robert Rodriguez-directed Alita: Battle Angel ended up getting mixed reviews and criticism. The movie grossed USD 404.9 million globally, making it Rodriguez’s highest-grossing film. The movie itself was not a major critical success, yet there was a considerable appreciation for Salazar’s stunning performance. The title character, the animated cyborg Alita, wakes up in a new body with no memory of her past and subsequently embarks on a journey to learn about her identity and destiny. Viewers now want to see Vengeful Alita in the imminent movie due to Hugo’s demise.
Alita: Battle Angel To Have Multiple Sequels?
Rodriguez and producer Cameron had always intended for the franchise to spawn multiple sequels. But following Disney’s acquisition of 20th Century Fox, which had produced and distributed Alita: Battle Angel as its last independent title, the plans for a follow-up feature were canned. Christoph Waltz, who played the role of Dr. Dyson Ido (a renowned cyborg scientist), hinted that the decision could only be taken by Disney following its (Disney’s) acquisition of 20th Century Fox. Waltz opined in April this year–
“Maybe it doesn’t fit into the Disneyfication, but I have no clue. I have no clue. Maybe they’re working on something and I wouldn’t be the first person to hear, but meanwhile, I haven’t heard anything.”
The beautiful actress, Rosa Salazar (who played Alita) said in July last year that she had not heard about the making of Alita: Battle Angle 2. However, we already cited above that Cameron and Rodriguez revealed their plan of making a sequel quite a few months before (in February 2019).
Rodriguez is hopeful about the sequel happening at Disney+. The iconic futuristic movie is Rodriguez’s 2019 blockbuster cyberpunk action film based on Yukito Kishiro’s 1990s Battle Angel Alita manga series and its 1993 original video animation adaptation.
Re-Release Of Alita: Battle Angel
Fans of the film, especially the online group Alita Army, however, quickly launched a campaign demanding a sequel. They appealed to Cinemark theatres to re-release the film before the end of 2020, arguing that the screenings will help revive interest in making Alita: Battle Angel 2. The campaign was backed by Cameron and Rodriguez and Alita: Battle Angel returned to Cinemark theatres on October 30. Rodriguez has since weighed in on the future of the movie.
— James Cameron (@JimCameron) October 7, 2020
While promoting his upcoming Netflix feature film We Can Be Heroes, Rodriguez revealed to Forbes his plans for an Alita: Battle Angel sequel. As per Rodriguez, now that Disney has its own streaming service in the form of Disney+, he is quite optimistic about returning to the Iron City. Rodriguez says that Disney+ has opened up the avenue for several franchise revivals and sequels. He believes that Disney knows that there is a default audience waiting for another Alita: Battle Angel movie, so it’s quite likely that the entertainment conglomerate will greenlight a sequel to please the movie’s ardent fans. Rodriguez said:
“I think anything is possible. Disney bought Fox, and they have Disney+, so that is worth the conversation. I know other people would love to see another, and I would love to do another one. As far as where it would go or how it would be made, I think streaming has opened up many opportunities such as sequels. It’s already a pre-sold concept, it’s already got a built-in audience that wants to see it, and then it’s delivered to them in a way that’s the easiest for them to consume. So, it’s not a bad idea.”
Disney+ To Host A Sequel And A Prequel?
Recently there have been whispers within the Alita Army about Disney discussing the possibility of launching both a sequel and a potential prequel series on Disney+. There is, however, no official confirmation about the same and Disney is also actively refraining from talking about some of the big-ticket projects that it has inherited from Fox. Disney’s recent Investor Day, for instance, contained no mention of Avatar 2, which is an undisputed magnum opus. Perhaps, Disney is waiting for the right opportunity to discuss the titles it has acquired from Fox. So it will probably be a while before the fate of this movie becomes clear.
Alita: Battle Angel was a futuristic sci-fi epic that left fans wanting more. Whatever the critical response to the movie may have been, the film demonstrated that Kishiro’s cult manga series had a built-in base of admirers.