TV & Movies
Twitter Has 1 Major Question About Will Smith & Michael B. Jordan’s I Am Legend Sequel
“Did they see the end of I AM LEGEND?”
I Am Legend is coming back from the dead, and, this time, Will Smith and Michael B. Jordan could both be dodging zombies. In addition to co-starring in the upcoming I Am Legend sequel, which is reportedly still in development, Smith and Jordan will also serve as producers, per Deadline. No director is attached to the post-apocalyptic sci-fi thriller just yet, but the outlet also reported that Oscar winner Akiva Goldsman, who adapted Richard Matheson’s 1954 novel for the original 2007 movie, is returning as a writer and producer.
Though the studio has yet to make a formal announcement, Smith seemed to confirm the news with a March 4 Instagram photo of a deserted New York City street, reminiscent of the first film. He didn’t include a caption, but the 2022 Oscar nominee tagged Jordan, who shared the image on his own grid. “And I ooooppp…,” Jordan’s girlfriend Lori Harvey commented along with eyes emojis, while DJ Jazzy Jeff wrote, “Wait…WHAT?????”
Smith’s longtime friend and musical collaborator wasn’t the only social media user who had questions, though. Plot details for the new movie are yet to be revealed, but those who saw the original know that — spoiler alert! — Smith’s character, U.S. Army virologist Robert Neville, sacrificed himself in order to preserve a possible cure for the zombie apocalypse for the rest of humankind. While some Twitter users pointed out that it would be nearly impossible for Smith to appear in a proper sequel, others noted that a 2008 special edition DVD featured an alternate ending in which his character lived.
The sequel will mark Jordan’s first major movie role with Smith, whom the actor has long referred to as one of his idols. “Will [Smith] took an enterprise approach, and that’s something I connect with,” he recently told The Hollywood Reporter of why he most identifies with the King Richard star. “He says all the time that he doesn’t feel like he’s the most talented, but he works the hardest. It’s work ethic, big vision, marketability.”
In 2018, Jordan also revealed to Vanity Fair that he’d sought advice from Smith because there was “nobody that really helped him” navigate the pitfalls of fame. “I remember when it used to be like, ‘He’s the next Will Smith,’” Jordan said. “Now I’m the example of the next — they’re looking for the next me.” The same year, he told GQ that he aspired to Smith’s “worldwide” movie star status, describing him in very positive terms: “Great actor. Extremely hard worker. Focused, business-savvy movie star that can open up all over the world.”
Meanwhile, it comes as little surprise that Smith would return to his I Am Legend role: He said in a 2015 THR interview that he was “obsessed with trying to put small character dramas into the middle of blockbuster packages,” and the sci-fi film is the “most successful” he’d ever been with that concept. “I Am Legend easily could’ve been a stage play, right? You know, a one-man show, a dude with a dog — you generally would think you need a little bit more than that for a blockbuster, but to date that’s my biggest opening and my second biggest film,” Smith explained.
If nothing else, the role prepared him for real-life 2022 — and not just the current I Am Legend gas prices. “When I was preparing for I Am Legend, my character was a virologist, so I had an opportunity in my preparation for the role to go to the CDC, and there was a basic foundational comprehension of viruses and viral pathogens that I developed and it really changed my life and how I looked at the world,” he explained on wife Jada Pinkett Smith’s Red Table Talk in March 2020.
Let’s just hope zombies aren’t on anyone’s 2022 bingo card.