‘Alita: Battle Angel’: Star Christoph Waltz Has ‘No Idea’ If a Sequel Will Happen
2019 was a year packed to the gills with some of the most anticipated films in recent memory. Films like Avengers: Endgame and Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker served as the concluding chapters in their ongoing story arcs. Yet, amidst all the franchise fare, some fans found solace in Alita: Battle Angel.
For years, the project — based on 1990s manga series Gunnm — was in the works for filmmaker James Cameron. Yet, ultimately, Cameron passed the project on to Robert Rodriguez (Sin City) in favor of his Avatar series. Now fans are wondering if Alita (Rosa Salazar) will get a sequel of her own.
‘Alita: Battle Angel’ was a moderate box office hit
Both Rodriguez and Cameron are known for their technological savvy and ambitious visual styles. So naturally, Alita: Battle Angel bears trademarks of both filmmakers. With a reported production budget of $170 million, the film — set in a post-apocalyptic future and centering heavily on cyborgs — certainly pushes the limits of motion-capture performances.
When it hit theaters in February 2019, Alita: Battle Angel failed to earn mainstream success, with a domestic total of only $85 million. Still, fans have been holding out hope for a sequel. Given Alita: Battle Angel managed to make just over $400 million worldwide, such a project isn’t out of the realm of possibility.
After all, overseas markets have become increasingly key in deciding whether a film is deemed a success or failure. And judging by Alita: Battle Angel‘s overall total, Fox certainly made its money back. So perhaps the battle angel could fight on at least one more time.
Christoph Waltz is interested in coming back for more
A devoted fan base has already been actively campaigning for an Alita sequel. In a similar — though not as intense — way as DC fans are still clamoring for Zack Snyder’s cut of Justice League, Alita die-hards have been anxiously waiting for any update.
Christoph Waltz — who played Alita’s surrogate father, Dr. Dyson Ido, in the film — doesn’t have news on a potential sequel. But, according to a recent interview with Collider, the two-time Oscar winner is just as hopeful as fans. Asked whether he’d be interested in returning for an Alita sequel, Waltz was very emphatic.
Of course! Of course I would! But, you know, I’m as wise as you are. I haven’t heard anything. And I’m a little disappointed and surprised that I haven’t heard a thing so far because I know that it has followers. I know that people liked it, and aside from what others said, I loved it. And I liked working on it, and I liked the result.
As Waltz points out though, Alita‘s fate might rest on the fact the first film was a Fox project. Since Disney’s acquisition of the company, the studio has reshuffled and reconsidered many properties formerly owned by Fox. With so many other comic adaptations on their plates, the same company behind the Marvel Cinematic Universe might not be willing to invest in an Alita sequel.
“Maybe it doesn’t fit into the Disneyfication,” Waltz said,” 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.”
‘Alita: Battle Angel’ certainly has tons of sequel potential
If Disney does see fit to move forward on an Alita: Battle Angel sequel, there are certainly many directions the story could take. In fact, some moviegoers’ main criticism of the film was its lack of concrete resolution. Rather than concluding with a showdown between Alita and the villainous Nova, Alita: Battle Angel hints at a confrontation audiences never get to see.
A sequel would likely follow Alita into the sky city of Zalem. As a result, it could introduce an entirely new set of characters and subplots. Alita: Battle Angel is really a coming-of-age story mashed into a sci-fi thriller with a cyberpunk sensibility. So fans who loved the movie in theaters — or who discovered it on digital and Blu-ray — will continue hoping for a follow-up.