Mortal Kombat Director Simon McQuoid Set to Return For Sequel

Development on Mortal Kombat 2 is speeding up as Simon McQuoid, who directed the 2021 original, has boarded the sequel. McQuoid made his feature directorial debut with Mortal Kombat, and while the film wasn’t a big hit with critics, his execution and faithfulness to the games were praised.

Mortal Kombat debuted simultaneously in theaters and on HBO Max as part of Warner Bros.’s controversial strategy but ended up overperforming. Mortal Kombat grossed $84 million at the box office against a $55 million budget and became the most-viewed Warner Bros. title on HBO Max, beating giants like Godzilla vs. Kong, Zack Snyder’s Justice League, and Wonder Woman 1984.

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New Line Cinema, which owns the rights to the games, was quick to greenlight a sequel, but for some reason, it has taken more than a year to find a director. McQuoid was reportedly developing an original sci-fi movie, Omega, for Sony this May, but it seems he’ll finish up Mortal Kombat 2 first. And the studio was keen to bring him back as well, as per Deadline. Jeremy Slater (Moon Knight, The Umbrella Academy) has been tapped to pen the screenplay and has promised a bigger, better, and bloodier sequel as if the first one was light on the gore.

Apart from the updated visual effects, something the 1995 film is often ridiculed for, and the jaw-dropping fight sequences, 2021’s Mortal Kombat was heavy on fan service. The film remained accurate to the games for the most part, even though it featured an original character, Cole Young (Lewis Tan) in the lead. Slater understands the reason behind Mortal Kombat’s success and is mindful of both the complaints and compliments of fans while writing Mortal Kombat 2. Hopefully, the sequel tops the original.

Mortal Kombat 2 Will Feature Fan-Favorite Johnny Cage

Warner Bros, NetherRealm Studios

Johnny Cage, a fan favorite, was missing from Mortal Kombat. The change wasn’t well-received by many, but the filmmakers promised that it was for the best, as otherwise, the film would have felt overstuffed. However, the ending of Mortal Kombat teased Johnny Cage, and the character has been confirmed to appear in the sequel, although there is still no word on the extent of his involvement. Slater discussed Cage with ComicBook.com recently, saying:

“Johnny Cage is one of my favorite characters, and I think there’s definitely a promise with the way the first movie ends of seeing Cole being like, ‘Okay, my next stop is to go recruit Johnny.’ So I think if he wasn’t included in the sequel at all, it would feel very strange. It’s still a little bit up in the air how much he will be included, it’s one of the things we’re currently working on. But yeah, I love Johnny and I would love to really do the definitive version, if possible, and really take everything that’s fun about that character and bring that to live action.”

Let’s hope they don’t pull an X-Men: First Class and include Johnny Cage, a central figure in the Mortal Kombat franchise, just for a cameo.

As for who will play the movie star/expert martial artist, fans are calling for Ryan Reynolds to take up the role, but let’s admit, that’s not happening. Charlie Hunnam was rumored to be in talks, but that was a year ago. Professional wrestler The Miz has been campaigning hard for the role since last year, and being a WWE veteran, he certainly has the brash persona and charisma of Johnny Cage. The Miz has also received endorsement from Mortal Kombat co-creator Ed Boon.

If the director has been announced, we can assume that more Mortal Kombat 2 news, including the cast and plot details, will be coming soon. Until then, stay tuned.