If you haven’t had a chance to check out the crime thriller Sicario yet, it’s probably because the movie only just opened in a handful of theaters on September 18. But it seems that Lionsgate is already counting the film a success. Case in point? Less than a week after it hit theaters, the studio has reportedly already begun planning a sequel.
According to Variety, Lionsgate is working on developing a follow-up to Sicario that would center on Benicio Del Toro’s mysterious assassin character, Alejandro. No specific details are available, but the studio has already brought on writer Taylor Sheridan to work on a script for the project. Director Denis Villenueve is also already involved in the film in some way, although whether he’ll helm once again has yet to be determined.
“Before the release of this movie, I was talking to Denis [Villeneuve] and I said, ‘What happened to this character? Where is Benicio going?'” Lionsgate co-chair Patrick Wachsberger told Variety of the idea.
Sicario stars Emily Blunt as Kate Macy, an idealistic FBI agent who is enlisted by a government task force to help them in their plan to take down the brutal leader of a Mexican drug cartel. Led by the intense and shifty consultant Alejandro (Del Toro), the team travels back-and-forth across the lawless border between the United States and Mexico. Meanwhile, Kate – insecure in her own abilities to take on such a dangerous task – must question everyone and everything in order to survive.
The movie, which first premiered at the Cannes Film Festival in May, has earned rave reviews and currently holds an 89% fresh score on Rotten Tomatoes. Critics have not only labeled the film as “blisteringly suspenseful” and a “stern, robust, abandon-hope-all-ye-who-enter thriller,” but also praised the highly compelling lead performances.
In addition to performing well critically, Sicario also earned the year’s best opening-weekend average after debuting in six theaters. The movie grossed an average of $66,881 per theater in its first few days of release, for a total of $401,288. Given the overwhelmingly positive response and its strong box office presence so far, it’s no wonder that the studio already sees big potential for a possible sequel.
Whether a follow-up will be able to live up to the haunting and powerful original remains to be seen. Del Toro’s return is a good sign, given his compelling portrayal of Alejandro has been. Still, the premise may come as a bit of disappointment to those hoping to see more of Blunt, whose performance as Kate has been highly lauded and even has some hoping it will put her on track for an Oscar nod.
Audiences will have to stay tuned for more details on the potential sequel. In the meantime, Sicario still has a ways to go before it reaches its full theatrical release. Lionsgate is planning to give the movie a slow roll out, expanding distribution to 11 cities and 65 locations on September 25 before going wide on October 2.