Men in Black: International is shifting the focus of the franchise away from Agents J and K, with Thor: Ragnarok co-stars Chris Hemsworth and Tessa Thompson taking over for Will Smith and Tommy Lee Jones. While it may not seem like the former Men in Black will be appearing in the new film, you might not want to rule out the possibility.
This week, Entertainment Weekly ran a new cover story about Men in Black: International, speaking with the film's cast and crew to shed some light on the upcoming sequel. Hidden within the story is one short sentence that alludes to the possibility of Smith and Jones donning the suits and sunglasses one more time.
Producer Walter F. Parkes talked about characters from previous installments, saying "Don't be surprised if you see the Worm Aliens make a brief appearance." This was followed by a cryptic aside regarding other popular characters from the franchise's past.
"As for cameos by certain Earth-born alumni from past installments? Don't hold your breath - but okay, maybe go ahead and put it on standby."
That certainly doesn't confirm that Smith or Jones could appear in International, but it doesn't deny that possibility either, meaning there is still a chance it could happen.
Whether the classic MiB duo appear in the new movie or not, their legacy will certainly be an important part of the franchise going forward. Director F. Gary Gray was quick to assure fans that he's not trying to make anyone forget about the beloved characters that came before.
"We went into this project knowing the deep affection we and the fans have for Will and Tommy," he said. "We're not replacing them, simply adding to their team."
"The first three pictures are very dependent on Will and Tommy's particular chemistry and on the comic approach that [director] Barry [Sonnenfeld] brought," Parkes added. "So we knew we needed performers with these vivid personalities and an inherent rapport, and luckily we could see the seeds of that in Thor."
Men in Black: International hits theaters on June 14th.