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“I Am Legend 2” is already looking legendary. In what can only be described as movie-casting heaven, it was recently announced that Will Smith is set to star alongside Michael B. Jordan in the film’s sequel. The O.G. Fresh Prince and Wakanda’s Killmonger are both scheduled to produce the film as well.
According to Deadline, Smith and Jordan’s movies combined have grossed a massive $12.3 billion worldwide. “I Am Legend’s” 2007 writer, Oscar-winner Akiva Goldsman, will also write and produce the tectonic shifting sequel.
Based on the 1954 post-apocalyptic novel by Richard Matheson, “I Am Legend” starred Smith in a nearly deserted New York City amid zombies. It went on to gross $256.4 million domestic and $585.4 million worldwide.
SPOILER ALERT: For movie buffs who remember Will Smith’s character sacrificing himself to save someone else at the end of the original movie, according to IGN, that’s only if you watched the second version of the ending. The original ending, which test audiences supposedly disliked enough to make Warner Bros. reshoot it, is actually closer to the novel’s ending.
As Smith’s character fends off a final attack from the infected, he sees their leader draw a butterfly symbol in blood on a pane of glass. Smith realizes that the infected woman he’s been experimenting on has a butterfly tattoo, and is the leader’s mate. Smith gives the infected woman back to the leader and says he’s sorry, realizing (much like in the book) that he’s become a boogeyman monster to the infected, in effect becoming a “legend.” This scene potentially sets up the story for “I Am Legend 2.”
In the ending to the first film that most theatrical audiences saw, Smith manages to create a vaccine just in time, saves a woman and child, and sacrifices himself in a fiery explosion. Yet, the audience never sees him die on screen.
Regardless of the story direction, with indelible characters to both their names, the master creative Smith and scene-stealing Jordan are on a collision course to cinematic history with “I Am Legend 2”.