Director Francis Lawrence Reveals I Am Legend Sequel Talks (Exclusive)

When it comes to post-apocalyptic thrillers, few in the modern age stand out as much as I Am Legend. Earlier this year, it was revealed Will Smith is returning to the property, both starring in and producing a picture alongside Michael B. Jordan. While Francis Lawrence directed the first feature, he has yet to make connections with the studio to helm the follow-up. That said, the filmmaker confirms that no official talks have taken place, he's managed to talk story a bit with Akiva Goldsman, the writer behind both iterations.

"I have spoken to Akiva [Goldsman] a little bit about it, but I think that is still aways away. I'd love to do it," Lawrence tells's Brandon Davis. "I've heard some things about I Am Legend. We actually don't have much, just brainstorming things for Constantine, but I'm sworn to secrecy on I Am Legend."

The film is set in New York City after a virus—originally meant as a cure to cancer—decimated humanity and creating nocturnal mutants that Smith's Robert Neville is careful to avoid.

Shortly after the initial film was released, Lawrence said he didn't think he had it in him to develop a sequel. Now, that sentiment seems to have changed.

"[The studio] was really, really, really into coming up with something, and I just didn't know how to do it," the filmmaker shared with the Happy Sad Confused podcast in 2018. "I saw very quickly after the movie came out, and I went, 'People came to see the last man on earth. We've done the last man on earth, he died at the end of the movie, we can't do it again.' But people weren't in love with him as a character. It's not Indiana Jones, like this kind of iconic character that you just want to see again and again and again."

He added, "And it just felt forced to do a prequel. We would have been doing Contagion. And to do something that's a follow-up either doesn't have him in it, or you have to do something really dumb, which is, you know, 'Scientists have taken his DNA and reanimated him somehow!' And that would have been really dumb, and so I just kind of bowed out."

I Am Legend is currently streaming on HBO Max.