While Roger and Jessica Rabbit are known by millions, the 1988 classic has yet to receive any sort of sequel. In this era of sequels sequels everywhere, it's hard to fathom how that remains the case, but the odds aren't good that it will ever change.
Director Robert Zemeckis is currently doing press for his newest film Allied starring Brad Pitt and Marion Cottilard, but in a recent interview with The Telegraph, he did touch on the status of his long in development Roger Rabbit sequel.
He already has what he calls a "magnificent" screenplay for the project, which would move Roger and Jessica "into the next few years of period film, moving on from film noir to the world of the 1950s”. Zemeckis is also open to recreating actor Bob Hoskins, who passed in 2014, in digital form. “it would be very hard to do but we would do a digital Bob Hoskins”. While it will feature almost everybody from the original, Zemeckis did comment that the film would be "more a continuation than a sequel”.
It all sounds great, right? Unfortunately, it doesn't look to be in production anytime soon. That screenplay is firmly in Disney's control, and according to Zemeckis “the current corporate Disney culture has no interest in Roger, and they certainly don’t like Jessica at all.”
That's a real downer, but even if Disney were to give the project the green light, they still have the daunting task of creating a sequel that everyone can get behind, which is no small task by itself.
“Most sequels, you’re behind the eight-ball on them,” he says. “When audiences clamor for a sequel, what they’re really doing is expressing their enthusiasm for the movie they just saw. And that means they’ll have a love-hate relationship with whatever comes next because they want it to be the same movie, but different. If it’s too similar, they don’t like it. And if it’s too different, they really don’t like it. There’s nothing more difficult.”
Who Framed Roger Rabbit is still beloved all these years later, and it's hard to not envision some interest in a new entry. The original was made on a $70 million dollar budget and went on to gross over $156 million stateside and over $329 million worldwide.
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