Samuel L. Jackson Reveals His Reaction to Seeing ‘Split’; Teases Sequel
Spoilers for Split follow in the article below and the video above.
Fans who turned out for filmmaker M. Night Shymalan’s low-budget, contained thriller Split were treated to a whopping surprise at the end of the film that teases the potential for a new Unbreakable movie. Indeed, Split it turns out was an origin story for James McAvoy’s villain The Horde, and the whole film takes place inside the Unbreakable universe as Bruce Willis’ David Dunn pops up at the end. Fans have been clamoring for an Unbreakable sequel for years, and in true Shyamalan fashion, the filmmaker managed to do it entirely as a surprise.
So what’s next? Surely that’s not the end of the story. Indeed, Shyamalan recently revealed that he’s got an outline planned for a Split sequel that will bring Willis’ David Dunn, McAvoy’s The Horde, and Samuel L. Jackson’s Mr. Glass all together in one story. So when Collider’s own Steve Weintraub spoke with Jackson recently at the press day for Kong: Skull Island, he had to ask about Split 2.
So how did Jackson first find out Split was a secret Unbreakable sequel? It’s a great story:
“I got a call and [Shyamalan] said, ‘Call me I wanna talk to you about something.’ And I called him, because I always do when I get a message from him always hoping [it’s Unbreakable 2], and he said, ‘I just did this film called Split, I want you to see it,’ and I was like ‘OK, I’m down with that.’ I had no idea what Split was about or anything else, and he said, ‘We’ll talk after you see it.’ So I went to the arranged screening and I called him immediately and was like, ‘OK dude does this mean what I think it means?’ and he was like, ‘Well first we gotta see how the movie does’. And I think the movie’s done well enough now to merit the ‘OK, let’s put this together.’”
Indeed, against a budget of just $9 million Split has already grossed $172.9 million worldwide, so I call that a smashing success. Of course the next movie would carry a larger budget, and there are still rights deals to work out with Disney as the studio let Shyamalan use Willis’ character in the Universal-released Split as a show of good faith but still wants in on the sequel. So there are certainly hurdles to cross, and Shyamalan has only just started writing, but it would seem the timing is perfect for a sequel and the box office receipts of Split promise there’s an audience for it.
As for what Split sets up for the next movie, Jackson considers McAvoy’s character a worthy adversary:
“I think he’s an adequate foe for what Bruce’s Unbreakable character is in terms of him being sort of unbreakable too in that kind of way, and me having found now—fuck, that would be two people that Elijah would look at and go, ‘Why are they so this and I’m so this on this end of the spectrum?’ It’s just a matter of breaking my ass out of wherever that mental institution was they had me locked up and let’s get it on, let’s see what happens!”
When asked whether Jackson’s heard that this Split sequel is moving forward soon, he offered up this:
“I would look at the box office receipts from a film that cost what it cost him to make that movie and the success of that particular film in the form of saying, I think that might move forward.”
Jackson is game, Willis is game, Shymalan is game, and now audiences are invested. It’s time for Unbreakable 3/Split 2.
Look for Steve’s full interview with Jackson on Collider closer to the release of Kong: Skull Island, and if you missed what the actor said about The Incredibles 2, click here.