Why 'Kingsman' Will Stick Around For A Long, Long Time

Kingsman: The Golden Circle is out now in theaters delivering even more over-the-top spy action and ridiculous celebrity cameos than its predecessor. Unsurprisingly, rumors have been swirling about the possibility of a third movie in the franchise ever since the sequel was officially announced, and while so far, nothing's been confirmed, all signs point to yes that Kingsman 3 is happening.

After coming in second only to runaway hit It on its Thursday preview night opening, The Golden Circle is poised to take the #1 spot at the box office in its opening weekend. Given that director Matthew Vaughn hinged a sequel on the success of the first Kingsman, saying in a Red Carpet News interview that he'd "wait and see" what audience reaction was before going ahead, it's looking likely that if The Golden Circle makes bank and gets solid reviews, a third film's guaranteed to follow.

A surprise box office hit might not even be necessary. Vaughn said in a Deadline Hollywood interview he and and writer Jane Goldman were talking ideas for a third film while scripting the second. “We’ve got a big idea for [Kingsman 3]. This is sort of the bridge and if we can pull this off, we’ll make another one," Vaughn said, referring to The Golden Circle. In a Variety interview, meanwhile, the director said he and Goldman thought of the second film as their Empire Strikes Back, with a third film resolving the full arc of the first two. And if you need word right from the horse's mouth, Vaughn straight up said in a Hey U Guys interview, "I am planning a Kingsman sequel. I've written the treatment and planned some of the scenes," but hedges a bit, noting, "The idea of making a movie right now is, um....I've got a few scars that need to heal."

That said, no official word has come down from the studio, not even a confirmed contract for any cast or crew. Kingsman 3 has already appeared on Goldman's IMDB page, though the fan-updated site sometimes jumps the gun on rumors by listing films that never come to fruition and deals that fall through. In an interview with Entertainment IE asking about the Kingsman 3 credit, Goldman explained,

"Ideas have been thrown around, we've been scripting things down, we've been talking about it...I can't see why we wouldn't do one, but it's definitely not an official announcement. I think."

Interestingly, it turns out that we might have had two Kingsman sequels already if 20th Century Fox had gotten its way. In a Collider interview, Vaughn revealed that the first cut of The Golden Circle clocked in at a whopping three hours and 40 minutes long. With film franchises like Harry Potter, The Hunger Games, and Twilight splitting lengthy sequels into separate films, the studio brought the idea up with Vaughn for Kingsman. The director said,

There was a moment where the studio said, ‘Hey should we do The Golden Circle Part 1 and Part 2?’ and I went ‘Absolutely no way we’re doing that, this is The Golden Circle.’”

Vaughn trimmed over an hour and a half of footage from the original cut, whittling it down to The Golden Circle available to catch in theaters now.

The Kingsman films haven't hewed closely to their original source, so news the latest comic arc has finally come out shouldn't cause hearts to leap too high about a third film. Kingsman Vol. 2, The Red Diamond will be released on a monthly basis through 2018, so if you need your spy fix right now, issue #1 of the six-part series is in stores now.

Fans should keep waiting on official word for a third Kingsman movie, but as of now it's a lock, at least in the minds of the film franchise's current creators.