It turns out that Vin Diesel is no longer full of shit. After many years of what seemed like manufactured buzz from the actor to keep his fans interested, Variety now reports that Diesel and writer/director David Twohy will finally make the third installment in the Chronicles of Riddick franchise. Diesel has continued to keep hope alive in a sequel ever since the cliffhanger ending of 2003′s The Chronicles of Riddick. Despite the lackluster box office of part two, the film did manage to gross $116 million worldwide and spawn two successful videogames (Escape from Butcher Bay and Assault on Dark Athena) Universal has decided to finally give the greenlight to telling the next chapter in the tale of the eye-shinin’ anti-hero.
Hit the jump for details on the project and speculation on why it’s finally come to life.
The script, written by Twohy who will also return to direct, is being kept under wraps but, “insiders say the third outing will hew closer in tone to the cult hit Pitch Black and will focus on the character of Riddick as opposed to the universe he inhabits.” Translation: They’re going to make this film cheap. Not necessarily cheap-looking, but closer to the $23 million budget of Pitch Black as opposed to Chronicles $105 million budget. I have no problem with this since the bigger budget softened the character up to a PG-13 rating and watered down his bad ass attitude and anti-hero reputation. If a meaner, leaner Riddick means we have to sacrifice prison planets and “Necromongers,” I’ll make that deal.
Variety also notes that Universal is working out the dates to make sure that Riddick 3 and Fast and Furious (aka The Fast and the Furious 5) don’t overlap. Hopefully this means that Riddick 3 will shoot this year as well and like Fast and Furious we’ll be seeing it in 2011. It’s also worth noting that Diesel may have only agreed to do Fast and Furious if Universal agreed to finally make the third Riddick film.
No matter the reasons, I’m just happy we’re getting to see Riddick tear shit up again (hopefully in a nasty R-rated fasion) and that we no longer have to say that Vin Diesel is a full of shit.