This year has not been kind to Sony's long-gestating sequel Bad Boys 3, with the studio first pushing the release date to late 2018 in February, before director Joe Carnahan backed away from the project a month later, and now Martin Lawrence doesn't think it will happen at all. This comes just a few weeks after Sony Pictures pushed the project, which had been set for a November 9, 2018 release, off of its release calendar altogether. When asked about the project in a recent interview, Martin Lawrence revealed that the project is essentially dead.
"I don't think we're going to get one, not the way everything's turning out. Will is off doing another movie, and I don't think it's going to happen. I'm there, I'm ready right now. If they wanted to do it, I'm ready, but I don't have control of that. That's the studio's decision."
The actor didn't reveal any additional updates in his interview with Entertainment Weekly, but things certainly aren't looking good for the project. Sony Pictures announced back in August 2015 that both Bad Boys 3 and 4 are coming, with the studio setting a February 17, 2017 date for the former and a July 3, 2019 date for the latter. Joe Carnahan was brought on board to write and direct, with Sony announcing Bad Boys 3 will now be called Bad Boys for Life, while issuing a new January 12, 2018 release date.
During an interview last August, Joe Carnahan explained the Bad Boys 3 script delay, stating that he wanted to get Will Smith, Martin Lawrence and producer Jerry Bruckheimer in a room together to make sure everyone was on the same page with the script, but that never happened due to Will Smith's commitments to Suicide Squad. The writer-director did claim that the script he wrote was easily the best in the franchise, which offered a "modern take" on the main characters Mike Lowrey (Will Smith) and Marcus Burnett (Martin Lawrence). The writer director also claimed in another interview from November that Bad Boys 3 will be R-rated, with multiple villains, but then things started falling apart.
Back in January, a report surfaced that Bad Boys 3 may be cancelled because of Will Smith taking on a leading role in Disney's Dumbo, but the actor ultimately passed on that project for another Disney movie, Aladdin, where he will lend his voice to the iconic Genie, originally voiced by the late great Robin Williams. The previously-mentioned report from February, where the studio pushed the release date back, also revealed that Bad Boys 4 was dropped from the schedule entirely, and it seems that Bad Boys for Life has now suffered the same fate. Michael Bay made his directorial debut with the first Bad Boys in 1995, which took in $65.8 million domestic and $141.4 million worldwide, from a $19 million budget. The 2003 follow-up Bad Boys II took in $138.6 million domestic and $273.3 million worldwide, from a $130 million budget. Unfortunately, it doesn't seem that this third installment will happen, to round out the trilogy.