Before Friday Night Lights, both the movie and hit TV series of the same name, fans got a glimpse at the football-crazed way of life in West Texas in the 1999 film Varsity Blues. The R-rated movie, one of the first under the nascent MTV Films banner, was a modest hit, earning $52.8 million from a $16 million budget, and now it seems we may be returning to this world with a sequel set in modern-day. While nothing is set in stone, James Van Der Beek hinted in a recent interview that there are talks under way to continue this story.
The actor made this surprising revelation during a Facebook Live Q&A with Yahoo! Movies, when a fan asked, since everything is getting a remake or a sequel these days, what are the chances that a new Varsity Blues movie may happen. There was talk of a Varsity Blues TV series happening with CMT, but James Van Der Beek reveals that isn't happening anymore, and now there are plans to make a theatrical sequel, which will revisit his character Mox. Here's what he had to say below.
"You might be onto something. I'm not sure how much I can say, but there are some very serious talks about that. I really have thought about where is Mox today? I've given a lot of thought about it. There have been some meetings taking place with the people who actually made the movie. Originally, CMT was going to do a series with somebody who had not been really associated with the movie that we made, then that went away. So now it's not going to be a CMT series. But I met with the actual producer and we've been talking actively about that world and modernizing it. And where is Mox now. I really want to tell you what I have in mind but I don't think I can."
If a new movie does happen, it will likely have to address the recent loss of Ron Lester, who played the gregarious Billy Bob in the movie, who passed away from liver and kidney failure last summer at the age of 45. While the original movie wasn't a massive hit, it went on to become a cult classic on home video, helping to launch the careers of rising stars like Paul Walker, Scott Caan, Amy Smart, Ali Larter and Jesse Plemons. The film also gained notoriety for an infamous scene where Ali Larter's character greeted James Van Der Beek's Mox by wearing only a whipped cream bikini. When asked if that scene would be revisited, James Van Der Beek said "You've gotta throw in that element," while adding more on his take on this sequel.
"I say you take Mox, who is this good teammate, and you put him in a hole. And you make it some kind of redemption story."
The original movie ended with the young players essentially ousting their iconic head football coach, Coach Kilmer (Jon Voight), with the injured Lance Harbor (Paul Walker) taking over as the makeshift coach, leading his team to victory, with Mox at quarterback. The original movie also ended with a bit of Mox's own narration, where he revealed that he will graduate from the prestigious Ivy League school, Brown University. It's possible that Mox could have come back home to West Canaan, Texas after getting his education, but that's all speculation at this point. It also isn't clear if original Varsity Blues director Brian Robbins, writer W. Peter Iliff or producers Michael Tollin and Tova Laiter will be involved.