A new Sony hack reveals that Pineapple Express 2 was in the works. According to the Hollywood Reporter, the studio had several projects in the works, and one of them was the long-awaited sequel Pineapple Express 2.
The studio was hoping to make a sequel to the 2008 hit starring Seth Rogen and James Franco, the same team involved in the now canceled film The Interview. The controversial comedy was shelved after hackers threatened a 9/11 style attack on movie goers. Even before the world knew about the drama surrounding The Interview, people were still pumped for Pineapple Express sequel, so why didn’t it happen?
The newest Sony hack reveals it had to do with a dispute over the budget. Judd Apatow, the producer behind the film, emailed Sony head Amy Pascal about how excited he was to get the project off the ground.
“I am so glad we are so close to getting Pineapple Express 2 figured out. I am very excited to make this thing real. We are very inspired creatively on this one. We have hilarious ideas. Marijuana is so popular now!”
Seth Rogen also sent a similar email to Pascal, probably in hopes to get Sony excited about the upcoming sequel.
“Got some stuff we are pretty psyched about. It would be a blast.”
That said, when the team got talking about the budget, that’s when problems started to come into the picture. Sony wanted a $45 million dollar budget, while Pineapple Express’ Apatow wanted $50 million for bigger explosions and an action sequence that would be bigger than the first.
Despite Columbia Pictures’ co-president Michael de Luca coming around to the idea of a $50 million budget, it was SPE’s Motion Picture Group president Doug Belgrad who killed the Pineapple Express project.
In an e-mail he wrote, “In my heart, I don’t believe Pineapple is Austin Powers or even Anchorman; I think it’s more like This Is the End.”
Translation? They didn’t think Pineapple Express 2 was worth investing in because it wouldn’t make them enough bank, and wouldn’t act as a nice film to warrant a third for a trilogy like Austin Powers.
Back when Rogen was promoting his film This Is the End (also with Franco), he spoke about needing a $40 million campaign on Kickstarter to get Pineapple Express 2 off the ground.
“We’re open to it. $1 million to make the movie and $39 million just to pay all us. If we get that, we’ll talk about it.”
[Image via Sony Pictures]