In news nobody was expecting, Deadline reported that Mulan actor and action director Ron Yuan would be directing a sequel to the 2013 movie 47 Ronin.
The original 2013 movie was directed by Carl Rinsch and written by Chris Morgan and Hossein Amini from a story conceived by Morgan and Walter Hamada. It starred Keanu Reeves, Hiroyuki Sanada, Tadanobu Asano, Rinko Kikuchi, and Ko Shibasaki. That movie was based on Chūshingura, the real-life 18th Century tale of the 47 rōnin, a band of samurai who set out to avenge the death of their master after a merciless shogun killed him. 2013's 47 Ronin banked over $38 million at the US box office and a total of $151 million globally off a budget of $175 million. That made it one of the biggest bombs of 2013.
The sequel, which still lacks a title, will be set 300 years in a cyberpunk future that will incorporate elements of the horror genre as well as the expected samurai and ninja tropes. John Orlando, Share Stallings, and Tim Kwok will produce for Universal 1440 Entertainment, a production entity of Universal Pictures Home Entertainment. Netflix has distribution rights.
Yuan, who plays Sargeant Qiang in Disney's upcoming Mulan, has a track record for action choreography and directing. He previously directed CMC/Lionsgate's Step Up China: Year for the Dance and was the action director for Jason Statham's Wild Card and the China-Taiwan cop show co-production Black and White: Dawn of Justice, as well as Sony's Black Dynamite and Angel of Death.
"I'm incredibly excited to be working with Universal and the producing team on this genre-blending, martial arts, action, horror, and cyber-punk film," said Yuan. "This will be a fun, intense, supercharged thrill ride for viewers globally."
The big question, though, is WHY? The original 2013 movie was a bomb, years before Keanu Reeves became a box office draw again with the John Wick movies. This was not a sequel anyone asked for. There is no fanbase clamoring for another movie that doesn't sound like it would have anything to do with the original. Why even call it a sequel? It doesn't even have a title yet, nor is Keanu Reeves confirmed to appear in it. The fact that Netflix has distribution rights suggests that the streamer put up a substantial portion of the budget. Who thinks this sequel is a good idea? That is the biggest mystery here.