Detective Pikachu 2 Doubt Slay Pokémon Best Movie Future Risks
Detective Pikachu was relatively successful after it was released in 2019. Why has there been no official news about the sequel? Can that change?
The future of Pokémon's best movie is in jeopardy as there is still no official update on the development of Detective Pikachu 2. Detective Pikachu introduced the world to the possibility of live-action Pokémon, adapting the events of the Detective Pikachu game made for the Nintendo 3DS. During its theater run, Detective Pikachu was hailed as one of the best video game adaptations to date. Critics and Pokémon fans praised Pokémon's compelling story and live-action design, as well as the charming interplay between Tim Goodman (Justice Smith) and the infamous Detective Pikachu (Ryan Reynolds).
However, nearly four years after the film's premiere in 2019, there is still no official word on Detective Pikachu 2, despite Legendary Pictures announcing a sequel before the first film even premiered. Sadly, while Pokémon's best movie hope is Detective Pikachu 2, development has stalled to the point where Smith says he doesn't think a sequel will ever be made, regardless of his enthusiasm for the Pokémon franchise. The only live-action Pokémon project in active development ended at Netflix, but that relegated the concept to the small screen when the big screen was where live-action Pokémon really shined.
Detective Pikachu's Release Timing May Have Doomed Sequel Chances
The Detective Pikachu movie was first announced in 2016, when Legendary Pictures acquired the rights to make a live-action Pokémon movie. This coincides with the resurgence of the Pokémon brand following the success of the globally popular mobile game Pokémon GO. Pokémon is poised to make its first foray into reality television. Three years later, when Detective Pikachu was a box office success, audiences were excited to see the possibility of bringing Pokémon into the real world. When Legendary announced the sequel ahead of Detective Pikachu's official release, many had reason to assume the sequel would debut somewhere in 2021 or 2022 at the latest.
The pandemic changed everything. The development of many major titles has stalled, and Detective Pikachu 2 seems to be lagging behind. There has been some speculation that development on Detective Pikachu 2 has stalled because of the lack of an adaptable video game sequel, leaving few story ideas after the first film's happy ending. Regardless, the pandemic wiped out any momentum the live-action Pokémon had had at the time. Although Legendary Pictures is allowed to make other live-action Pokémon movies and is not limited by the detective concept Pikachu, hasn't moved since 2019.
Could Detective Pikachu 2 Still Be Made In The Future?
Live-action Pokémon are well-suited for the big screen, as the action can be more realistic and visceral, bringing staples of childhood to life. Unless Legendary decides it's no longer worth the risk, there's no reason why Detective Pikachu 2 can't be made in the future. However, Pokémon is one of the most lucrative IPs in the world and has recently regained momentum following the release of Pokémon Scarlet and Violet and Satoshi's world title win in Pokémon Anime Stories. It seems Pokémon has no intention of slowing down. Now is the perfect time for Legendary to announce a sequel to Detective Pikachu.
Interestingly, IMDb currently lists the release date of Detective Pikachu 2 as July 2024. The screenwriter is the same one who wrote the sequel when Legendary first announced the sequel, Oren Uzil, known for writing such films as 22 Jump Street and The Lost City. While IMDb's release date should always be held back until an official announcement is made, this could mean that development on Detective Pikachu 2 has progressed. Given the news last September that a sequel to Detective Pikachu The Pikachu video game is nearing completion, which will give the writers a story to adapt, and renewed interest in Detective Pikachu 2 now makes more sense than ever.