It looks like Bad Boys 3 is finally, really happening this time. We hope. This project has been stuck in development hell for a long time now and there have been more than a few false starts along the way. But Martin Lawrence, one of the most crucial elements of making this movie happen, has just provided a very encouraging update, confirming his return. That was later made official when Will Smith posted a crazy video officially announcing the sequel is finally happening on social media.
Development on Bad Boys 3, which is officially titled Bad Boys for Life, has really been going on since 2013 when writer David Guggenheim (Safe House) was brought on board. Since then, it's been a revolving door of writers and possible directors. But have things finally smoothed out? Taking to his Instagram account, Martin Lawrence provided a very brief, but firm update on the status of the project. Here's what he had to say, to go along with a picture of himself and co-star Will Smith.
"It's official. Bad Boys for Life. #teammartymar #badboysforlife @willsmith #weback"
A short time later, Will Smith posted a video on his Instagram, where he joined Martin Lawrence in celebration, screaming with excitement as he said this to fans.
"Yo, yo, I'm telling you all, this is crazy. Wait, wait, just wait. It's official, baby! Bad Boys 3, it's happening. It's official! It's official! That's all. You all can't handle no more of that."
This is surely good news for those who have been dying to see Mike Lowrey and Marcus Burnett back in action. We haven't seen the duo on screen together since 2003's Bad Boys 2, back in the days before Michael Bay was churning out Transformers movies and was making recklessly expensive, highly entertaining action movies. What's interesting here is that Will Smith has seemed committed firmly to Bad Boys for Life for a while now, having even shifted around his schedule to shoot the movie next year. Whereas it's been Martin Lawrence that was something of the unknown factor. Whatever reasons were preventing Lawrence from committing previously seem to have been cleared up.
Will Smith isn't exactly hurting for work and it's actually his very busy schedule that, in part, has kept this movie from getting off the ground. He just finished shooting Aladdin for Disney and he's also got Gemini Man coming down the pipeline, with Bright 2 and Suicide Squad 2 on his to-do list. Whereas Martin Lawrence hasn't starred in anything since 2014, which was in the TV series Partners. He hasn't starred in a movie in much longer, dating back to 2011's Big Mommas: Like Father, Like Son. Perhaps, as these things often do, it came down to money.
As interested as the studio is in getting this project going, it's worth remembering that Bad Boys 2 grossed $273 million worldwide, working from a $130 million budget. That would be considered a flop these days, without question. It's quite likely they would try to keep the budget down this time around. Joe Carnahan left the project last year and that was a major setback. However, Sony brought on up-and-comers Adil El Arbi and Bilall Fallah to helm the movie and it looks like that may actually work out. If all goes well, Bad Boys for Life will shoot in early 2019, though, the movie is currently without a release date. We'll be sure to keep you posted as additional details on the project are made available. You can check out Martin Lawrence's Instagram post for yourself below.