I may be a few thousand miles away, have no showbiz experience (unless an acting class in college counts) and write reviews on a blog with five followers, but I understand Hollywood. I've been immersed in media (esp. movies) for most of my life and while I'm no closer to selling a film script than I am to walking in space, I'm a smart enough to understand the business of entertainment.
Two years ago, The Hangover quickly and easily became the highest grossing R-rated comedy of all time. The raunchy romp about three oddly matched guys trying to find the lost bachelor after a night of insanity was bawdy enough to stand up with classic sex romps but smart enough to be unpredictable and, honestly, hilarious. I find very few mainstream comedies genuinely funny but The Hangover was.
So, Hollywood reacted the only way they could...they made a sequel...and when it came time to plot out said sequel, the conversation might have went something like this:
Producer: "Well, that made us a ton of money...we need to get started on another one."
Director and/or Screenwriter: "Sweet...I have this idea...Stu and Phil have a startup business and need to woo some investors. But Alan shows up--"
P: "Whoa, whoa...back up...who's getting married?"
D/S: "I'm sorry? No marriage...we did that in the first one."
P: "Someone needs to be getting married...not Phil, he's sexy and the women in the audience need to be able to fantasize about him."
D/S: "Phil's already married, anyway."
P: "Yeah, whatever...just make sure he's shirtless at some point. So who's going to get lost this time? It can't be Alan...he's gold...Phil can't for the same reasons we discussed. Can we lose that other guy again? From the first one? I'll let you work on that."
P: "We need Alan to screw things up again...maybe not roofies this time, but they have to have a (air quotes) 'hangover' for some reason, right? Stu needs to get jacked up in some way...maybe cut off an ear or something...that tooth thing was funny the first time."
D/S: "This sounds like the same movie..."
P: "No...don't be ridiculous. We'll set this in another city...New York maybe...wait...somewhere foreign! Americans lost in foreign cities is hilarious. And no baby this time...people got upset when we bumped its head. Make it an animal of some kind...we can deal with PETA."
D/S: "I'm sorry...this goes against all of my artistic integrity. It sounds like we're just trying to cash in on the same movie. I don't want to trick people with 'hey, look, it's just like what happened last time' shenanigans."
P: "Here is a gigantic stack of money."
D/S: "You got it..."
P: "And don't forget to put that Asian guy in there."
Look for The Hangover, Part III in 2013.