Kevin Smith is turning his “Mallrats” sequel into a television series

Go figure, just a few days after I wrote last week about Kevin Smith’s next film Yoga Hosers, some news pops up about another project of his. This one is his sequel to Mallrats, which he is going forward with, just in a new form. As you’ll see below, he’s opted to take the sequel and make it as a series on television, instead of as a film, due to some previously unforeseen circumstances. This is a lemonade out of lemons situation, as well as perhaps a hint as to where Smith could see his career begin to focus in the years to come. Either way, it’s something new and exciting in his evolution as a storyteller.

The behind the scenes story here is that initially Mallrats 2 or Mallbrats was going to be a movie, but when Smith submitted his script to Universal, he found out it wouldn’t be quite so simple, as they wouldn’t just release the property to him. However, considering how popular his episode of The Flash was on CW, as well as the upcoming television series take on Buckaroo Banzai that he’s launching (and recently sold), Smith quickly pivoted. Now, we’re getting Mallrats: The Series, a TV show which could really be something fun. It’s everything we want from Smith going back to the mall, just spread out over a season of TV instead of in one movie. Count me in.

Here’s what I wrote last year when the sequel was announced as a film:

“The initial reason that Smith decided to make Mallrats 2 into a film was to honor his friend and Mallrats producer Jim Jacks, who passed away back in 2014. As a way of honoring Jacks, a man who had once upon a time championed a potential sequel, Smith then decided to make it a reality. As much as this could be just another one of those interesting announcements that go nowhere, that hasn’t been the case. Over the weeks and months, Smith would go on social media slowly teasing all of the former cast members who are coming back to the mall, as it were. That’s pretty impressive, regardless of the cast. For those who don’t remember, Mallrats starred Jeremy London, Jason Lee, Shannen Doherty, Claire Forlani, Ethan Suplee, Michael Rooker, Renee Humphrey, Joey Lauren Adams, Jason Mewes, Ben Affleck, as well as Stan Lee in a cameo and of course Smith himself as Silent Bob. Right now (as of March 2015), only Adams, Affleck, and Forlani have yet to sign on.

Sequels tend to be inherently unnecessary, but there’s something about this one that feels like it could be a ton of fun, especially when you consider what a lovely place this idea is coming from. Honoring a fallen colleague and pushing his own early whimsy is a winning formula in my book. Smith has already said that he’s got three more cast members to rope back in, so while that could mean Adams, Affleck, and Forlani are up next, there’s probably someone else who’s the final name, with Affleck just an added bonus if he has time for his old friend. Smith has said as much already.

The two things I really like about Mallrats 2 happening have to do with how it will influence future productions. One factor is that we rarely see 90’s reunions, and when we do, they don’t particularly light the world on fire. This announcement has been one of the more well received of Smith’s recent career, indicating that there’s a desire to see this group together again. The other thing is that it continues to show how reinvigorated Smith is as a filmmaker. It was only a few years ago that he was announcing how Red State was going to be his final film. Then, slowly, he opened things up to include his hockey miniseries Hit Somebody and the sequel Clerks III. Then, he came up with potentially the first film based on a podcast in Tusk, which in turn has led to the upcoming Yoga Hosers and Moose Jaws. This new stage in Smith’s career, which will continue on with Mallrats 2, is exciting and unique, bringing him back to his indie roots while also introducing him to a whole new generation of film fans. I for one am all for a director doing that. It’s just a bonus that it happens to be with Smith’s View Askewniverse.”

Basically, Smith is branching out his cinematic universe and bringing it to the small screen. It’s essentially the best of both worlds, which I’m all about. I’m looking forward to seeing Yoga Hosers soon, even more intrigued by Moose Jaws, and absolutely can’t wait to eventually see Clerks III, so this is just something else to anticipate from Smith (I do like where he’s going, television wise, between Mallrats, Buckaroo Bonzai, and Hit Somebody). Sit tight for more on Yoga Hosers soon, but also for plenty more on how Mallrats continues to evolve. I’ll be just as eager to find out as you all are…

Stay tuned for much more on this project when we have it!

About Joey Magidson

A graduate of Stony Brook University (where he studied Cinema and Cultural Studies), resides in Brooklyn, New York. He contributes to several other film-related websites and is a member of the Broadcast Film Critics Association.

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