‘Men in Black’ Returns in 2019; Gray a Choice to Direct

by Sean McLaughlin

It appears that the Men in Black are……back.  Deadline is reporting that the comedy sci-fi franchise, which enjoyed massive box office success beginning in 1997, is scheduled to hit theaters once again in 2019.  They also report that F. Gary Gray (Friday, Straight Outta Compton) is being sought to direct the film, which is said to be a new film in the Men in Black universe and not necessarily a direct sequel.

Men in Black opened in 1997 to huge crowds and mammoth ticket sales, and enjoyed two sequels along the way.  The last sequel, Men in Black 3, premiered in 2012 and would represent the final cinematic team-up of its two leading men, Will Smith and Tommy Lee Jones.  Sony, which is coming off another huge reboot success with Jumanji, is hoping the same success can follow the MIB franchise into the future.  This opportunity presents a possible clean slate for the story about covert government agents working to keep the presence of Earth’s aliens under wraps.  Neither Smith nor Jones is expected to be back, so Gray will most likely be working with a crew of young up-and-coming actors who can carve out their own niche.

There have been a number of possible spinoff and sequel theories floating around the Hollywood rumor mill for years regarding Men in Black, which was originally based on the comic series by Sandy Carruthers and Lowell Cunningham.   One of the more far-fetched ideas saw the secret agents teaming with Jonah Hill and Channing Tatum in a crossover picture with 21 Jump Street.  While the possibilities are humorous, the premise may have been too crazy to pursue.

Other than the news on the director search, no other details have yet been released regarding the next installment in the Men in Black franchise.  However, that didn’t stop the studio from announcing a June 14, 2019 release date nationwide.  HNN will be sure to report any news on this film project as it breaks!

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