Eva Mendes Has an Idea for a ‘Hitch’ Sequel, But Would Will Smith Be Interested?
Eva Mendes chose years ago to put her acting career on hold to focus on being a mom to her two daughters. But back in the 2000s, the actress was everywhere. Mendes starred in hit films such as Training Day, 2 Fast 2 Furious, and Ghost Rider. Now she’s not really keen on making anything too inappropriate for her kids. But Mendes recently discussed one project for which she’d gladly come out of retirement: Hitch 2.
‘Hitch’ was a monster hit, especially for romantic comedies
In Hitch, Will Smith stars as a professional matchmaker who finds himself struck by cupid’s arrow when he meets a reporter played by Mendes. Naturally, Sony released the film just in time for Valentine’s Day in 2005. And director Andy Tennant’s movie debuted with a stunning $43 million opening weekend.
At the time, Smith was still mostly known for sci-fi and action films. Some of his biggest hits included the previous year’s I, Robot, the Bad Boys films, and the Men in Black series. So Hitch marked a bit of a departure for Smith. Rarely had he starred in a straight comedy or as a romantic lead. In fact, Hitch was probably the closest he had come to tapping into the character he perfected during The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air‘s six-season run on NBC.
Among its genre, Hitch still stands as one of the highest-grossing romantic comedies ever made. Against a $70 million production budget, the film earned $371 million at the worldwide box office. Although comedy sequels tend to underperform, Sony would probably be interested in getting Mendes and Smith to come back. But the first step is to have a new way in to the story. Luckily, Mendes already has that covered.
Eva Mendes is down for a sequel more than 15 years later
In a recent interview with Entertainment Tonight, Mendes talked about her personal life, her career, and her new clothing line with New York & Company. But when the interviewer reminded her Hitch came out a full 15 years ago, she was taken aback.
“You’re kidding? Oh, my God. What the hell?” Mendes said before missing a beat. “You know what? It’s time for a Hitch 2. Will, let’s do this. Hitch 2.”
Mendes’ willingness to hop back into Hitch is a testament not only to how huge the movie was but also her experience making it. In interviews at the time, she had said she hoped to work with Smith again. But that never came to pass. She even has a concept in mind for how Hitch 2 could build on the story.
“It’d be in the world of all these dating apps,” Mendes said. “What would Hitch do? He’d be out of a job.”
When the first film came out, online dating was still in its relative infancy, with companies like eharmony and OkCupid starting in the early 2000s. Moreover, social media was a new idea. Hitch‘s release came, after all, only a year or two after both MySpace and Facebook launched. It even — gasp — predates Twitter. So Mendes may be on to something about how Hitch 2 could reflect the changing times and their effect on its lead character.
Would Will Smith return to the role now?
The biggest question swirling around the notion of a Hitch 2 is whether Smith would sign on. In the years since its release, he’s fallen back into sci-fi and action territory. But he has also taken occasional detours into failed awards contenders such as Concussion and Collateral Beauty. The closest to Hitch‘s mix of romance and comedy is the 2015 heist film Focus. That movie paired him with Margot Robbie, whom he reunited with for Suicide Squad.
2019’s Aladdin earned enough to ascend to the top of Smith’s hit list. And he has several more projects in the queue. If Hitch 2 were to happen, it probably wouldn’t come together for a while. Still, audiences who have continued to revisit the film would likely turn out. So it falls to Sony to decide if it wants to try and jumpstart the project. We know Mendes wants in. Someone get Smith on a conference call ASAP.