It's hard to believe it's been 27 years since Kevin Smith's original breakout hit Clerks (1994) hit cinemas introducing the world to Dante Hicks (Brian O'Halloran), Randal Graves (Jeff Anderson), Jay (Jason Mewes), and Silent Bob (Smith). Launching what would be known as the View Askewniverse, Smith would return to the Quick Stop at least briefly before it burned down in the 2006 sequel Clerks II that introduced Becky (Rosario Dawson) and Elias (Trevor Fehrman) at their new place of employment, Smith's fictional fast-food chain Mooby's. Now, Smith's original masterpiece is a trilogy in Clerks III that finds the four back to the iconic convenience store following the events of the 2006 film with the director talking to Vanity Fair about their next chapter.
Clerks III began from an inspiration from Smith's personal life years ago. "The film is predicated on the idea that Randal survives a heart attack, a massive heart attack, quite like I did, and then winds up, you know, deciding that he's wasted his life," Smith revealed. "But before he dies, he wants to memorialize himself. He wants to make a movie. So our boys essentially wind up making Clerks." The conclusion of the 2006 film found Jay and Silent Bob telling Dante and Randall that they have a modest fortune that can restore the Quick Stop to its former glory as long as they can also become owners themselves as partners.
The new film, which will be released courtesy of Lionsgate, is shooting in Leonardo, New Jersey, at the same locations as the 1994 original. Like the 2006 sequel, the third film will be in color, but to retain the nostalgia, the home movie the pair makes will be in black and white, as was the format of the original. "That allows us to reshoot so many of the key moments from Clerks in their movie. Randal's movie is called Inconvenience," Smith said.
The director is well aware of the films growing demographic and how Clerks III is aimed more for those who were there at the beginning. "I know we've got fans who age with us…and it's going to hit in a lot of personal places," Smith said. "I don't think the 20-somethings are going to be like, 'He's still the voice of a generation!' They're going to be like, 'Well, he's the voice of middle age, if anything, at this point.' I hope young people will find something to enjoy about it, but it's definitely a movie about people who try to be young while being old." For more on Smith's commentary on the first and second films, how things aren't likely going to dramatically change given the actors and their characters' ages, a new image, and his Clerks regrets, you can check it out on Vanity Fair.