Who would have thought that the 2008 remake of Journey to the Center of the Earth would have sparked a franchise that went all the way to four films? Not me, but it appears that when Dwayne Johnson signed on to replace Brendan Fraser as the lead in Journey 2: The Center of the Earth, he had such a big impact that the studio wants more. I’m guessing they got Johnson to sign a three picture deal, because THR reports that Journey 3 & 4 are in development, and Johnson is attached to star in both.
Chad and Carey Hayes, the brothers who wrote New Line’s terrifying film The Conjuring, will be writing the screenplays for both of these sequels, which may end up shooting back to back if the timing works out. The Hayes brothers wrote the screenplay for San Andreas, the earthquake film that Johnson has coming up, and they’ve also taken over writing the screenplay for Seal Team 666, a ridiculous-sounding genre project that also has Johnson attached to star. Interestingly enough, San Andreas is directed by Brad Peyton, the guy who also helmed – wait for it – Journey 2: The Mysterious Island. So this whole thing seems like a big reunion, and though Peyton isn’t officially on board to direct Journey 3 or 4 yet (or even in talks), I wouldn’t be surprised if that announcement was made sometime in the next few months. No word yet on what the films will be about, but expect them to keep up the same family-friendly explorer tone of the first two.
The bigger question is when is Johnson going to have time to make these movies? I’m not sure if you’ve noticed, but the dude is busy these days: he’s been talking up a big DC project for a long time now (and we suspect that will take one of the release dates the studio has set aside), he has a new HBO series coming out, he could be in a Bourne-esque new film, he has a dramatic survival film on the way, and a movie adaptation of a TV show called The Fall Guy in the works. So we’ll be seeing Journey 3 & 4…sometime around 2030?
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