We may be more than a decade into the 21st century, but with each passing year, Hollywood is proving to be more and more fixated on resurrecting long-dormant franchises and cashing in on the pervading sense of nostalgia. In 2015 alone, some of the most successful films were the latest installments in the Star Wars, Mad Max, and Rocky series. Moreover, Jurassic World proved that the 1990s are now ready for a revival, a revelation that’s proving even more true with the upcoming release of films like Independence Day: Resurgence. Here are five more films with roots in the 1990s that could be the next big franchise revisit. For the record, we’re not including projects that have some forward momentum, such as the in-development Trainspotting sequel.
1. Léon: the Professional (1994)
Most notable for being the film debut of Oscar winner Natalie Portman, this crime thriller from writer/director Luc Besson centers on a hitman who ends up training a young girl (Portman) seeking revenge for her family’s murder. The film has developed a devoted fanbase since its initial release, and despite the fact that Besson has gone on to direct hits like The Fifth Element and Lucy, Léon is perhaps his most famous work. Its ending leaves the door open for Portman’s Mathilda to headline her own story. However, rumors of the actress teaming up with Besson for a sequel have died down over the years. If nothing else, it will likely receive less polarizing reviews than Lucy.
2. Interview with the Vampire (1994)
Anne Rice has become synonymous with her long-running The Vampire Chronicles novels, a series which began back in 1976 with Interview with the Vampire. So when the film version finally hit screens — with “The Vampire Chronicles” as a subtitle, no less — fans were likely excited at the idea of a film franchise centering on such popular characters as Lestat, played in the film by Tom Cruise. Yet, despite its box office success, no proper sequel has ever come to fruition. Rather, the forgettable 2002 film Queen of the Damned is the closest moviegoers got. With 11 novels in the main series and even more focusing on other characters, Rice’s work has the opportunity to become some studio’s next big-screen shared universe. Here’s hoping a reboot happens soon.
3. Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery (1997)
Nearly 20 years have gone by since Mike Myers’s swinging superspy was frozen in the 1960s and unthawed in the 1990s to battle his arch-nemesis, the appropriately named Dr. Evil. That initial comedy/adventure — which brilliantly lampooned the James Bond franchise — kicked off a full trilogy of wacky, time-hopping antics that became a pop cultural phenomenon. Yet, Myers hasn’t had a live-action hit since the critically reviled (but commercially successful) The Cat in the Hat. Following the monumental failure of The Love Guru, the actor could use a much-needed career boost, and with 1990s nostalgia all the rage (and Bond bigger than ever), now might be a good time for Austin “Danger” Powers to stage his big comeback.
4. Starship Troopers (1997)
Director Paul Verhoeven has already seen big-screen re-imagined versions of his beloved hits Robocop and Total Recall (with the latter being particularly dreadful). As a result, some fans may be wary of yet another remake of one of the filmmaker’s signature works. However, the original film — which serves as a sci-fi military satire — has already spawned a few home video sequels, and with a built-in fanbase and the right team behind the scenes, a new take on Starship Troopers could easily help launch the franchise into the mainstream once more.
5. Blade (1998)
Long before Deadpool finally convinced Hollywood that R-rated comic book films are a worthy investment, this Marvel character brought the day-walking vampire hunter to the masses. Wesley Snipes was perfectly cast in the lead role, and the film’s rich mythology and frenetic action led to two more films and a short-lived television series. Since then, he has remained dormant, but now that Marvel has the rights back to the character, the time seems right to give Blade another shot at big-screen success. With the success Marvel has seen with its Daredevil series on Netflix, perhaps there’s a chance a Blade series is on the horizon.
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