Hollywood is more reliant on franchises than ever before. Practically every major new live-action movie is meant to be the start of a new cinematic universe. The recently released Mortal Kombat is no exception. The writer of the film, Greg Russo confirmed to ComicBook.com that Mortal Kombat is meant to be the start of a new trilogy.
"I'm hopeful. I'm hopeful. Fingers crossed that we can do more of this. I certainly... When I wrote this, I'll tell you, I wrote it as a trilogy. I didn't write the trilogy, but I wrote it with a trilogy in mind. I always think as a writer, we need to make sure that we leave ourselves places to go, that we don't paint ourselves into any corners."
Although based on the iconic gaming franchise, Mortal Kombat does not feature the titular "Kombat", an interdimensional tournament where the strongest fighters from different realms compete and destroy each other in an effort to save their realities. In the past, Russo had explained that he has constructed the Mortal Kombat trilogy in a manner where the first movie deals with events prior to the tournament, the second movie is about the tournament itself, and the third movie deals with the fallout of the tournament.
That is why Mortal Kombat ends with a tease for a sequel that promises to introduce the most popular Earth realm warrior from the games, Johnny Cage, as the tournament is set to begin in earnest. Still, Russo asserts that the sequels are not guaranteed to get made at this point, and whether or not they get greenlit depends on how many fans watch Mortal Kombat in theaters and on HBO Max.
"There are places, there are worlds, there are characters and things that I would love to explore, but ultimately, that is up to the fans. It's up to the viewers. If an audience comes out, if they go to the theater, if they watch the movie on HBO Max, it will send a message that Mortal Kombat is valuable, and hopefully more stories can be told. So I'll leave that one up to the viewers."
Considering the positive response to the film so far, fans seem eager to see Russo's planned Mortal Kombat trilogy get completed. It now remains to be seen whether the movie has a strong enough showing at the box office and on streaming to convince the studio that the two sequels are worth making.
Directed by Simon McQuoid and produced by James Wan, Mortal Kombat features an ensemble lead cast consisting of Lewis Tan as Cole Young, Jessica McNamee as Sonya Blade, Josh Lawson as Kano, Tadanobu Asano as Lord Raiden, Mehcad Brooks as Jackson "Jax" Bridges, Ludi Lin as Liu Kang, Chin Han as Shang Tsung, Joe Taslim as Bi-Han and Sub-Zero, Hiroyuki Sanada as Hanzo Hasashi and Scorpion, Max Huang as Kung Lao, Sisi Stringer as Mileena, Matilda Kimber as Emily Young and Laura Brent as Allison Young. The film is now in theaters and available to stream on HBO Max. This story originated at Mortal Kombat 2.