Warning: SPOILERS for Alita: Battle Angel ahead!
Since its release a little over a year ago, the passionate fanbase for Robert Rodriguez’s Alita: Battle Angel has been fighting the good fight, going to impressive measures trying to convince the powers that be to greenlight a sequel film. As of yet the good works of the Alita Army have not borne fruit, but they are keeping hope alive that eventually Disney will decide to give us more of the battle angel.
A sequel may be the first step, but one of the stars of the film has even more lofty dreams. Alita: Battle Angel star Keean Johnson, who played Hugo in the first film, thinks there should actually be more than one sequel to the sci-fi film, saying:
After hearing stuff from [James Cameron] and Robert [Rodriguez] about where the world could go – I think the more that could come out, the better it’d get. There’s so many different things that could happen and so much material.
Fans may be holding out hope for just one more Alita sequel to start with, but Keean Johnson believes that the potential is there for so much more. As he tells UNILAD, that belief is based on what the actor heard from producer James Cameron and director Robert Rodriguez about where future films could go and how much material there is to draw upon for those hypothetical films.
After hearing Cameron and Rodriguez’s comments about all the different things that could happen if this story were to continue on the big screen, Keean Johnson is now convinced that there is enough story to support not just one sequel, but multiple of them. And Keean Johnson wants to see it too, even if he might not be a part of it following his character’s death in Alita: Battle Angel.
Keean Johnson, who recently starred in Roland Emmerich’s Midway, seems to echo the pleas of many Alita: Battle Angel fans too in his beliefs about this franchise’s potential. He seems to think that the more Alita sequels come out and the more this world and these characters are explored, the better the films and the franchise would get.
It’s an interesting point that surely many Alita fans would agree with, but it is unfortunately one of those things that’s merely unprovable conjecture until a sequel film actually gets made. One thing that is not up for debate though, especially after Alita: Battle Angel’s cliffhanger-ish ending, is the fact that there is more story to tell. There’s plenty of source material for Alita 2 to take advantage of.
Alita: Battle Angel is based on the Battle Angel Alita or Gunmn manga by Yukito Kishiro. Although Robert Rodriguez’s film is not a one-to-one adaptation, it’s my understanding that it only covers roughly two volumes worth of story. The manga has nine volumes overall. We’ve heard from Robert Rodriguez about how James Cameron basically had notes for a whole trilogy of Alita films mapped out, presumably drawing from the rest of this source material.
So Keean Johson is right, the material is absolutely there for more than one sequel to Alita: Battle Angel. Will it happen though? It’s anyone’s guess at this point and just because there is a story to tell doesn’t mean it makes sense as a business decision to tell it.
Alita: Battle Angel was not a cheap movie and there’s no way a sequel would be either if you wanted to match the first movie and do the material justice. It’s really a matter of whether or not Alita could grow and whether sequel films could become more successful than the first movie. Keean Johnson certainly thinks so.
It’s an interesting thing, because how much of a chance do you give new would-be blockbuster franchises to develop? The Fast and the Furious didn’t have $1+ billion blockbusters right away and the MCU wasn’t what it is now in the beginning. Game of Thrones didn’t start as a global phenomenon, it took time to get there, time it was granted. The Mummy killed the Dark Universe right away. Alita wasn’t a complete flop, critically or commercially, but its box office didn’t demand a sequel either.
So it remains a waiting game to see if the people with the power to make Alita 2 happen see the same potential that Keean Johnson and so many fans see.
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