Chronicle writer reveals the dark sequel we'll never get to see

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Aug 12, 2013, 4:29 PM EDT (Updated)

This aborted version of Chronicle 2 might be one of the best superhero films never made.

Last year, we heard that the sequel to the low-budget superhero hit Chronicle was in trouble because the studio, Fox, wasn't very fond of the script that writer Max Landis turned in. Apparently the script was a bit too dark, and a bit too different from the teenagers-get-superpowers premise of the first film. Landis addressed the problem earlier this year, saying that he and the studio were looking for ways to "compromise to get something we want."

Apparently the compromise didn't work, because last month Landis said he's no longer attached to the project. But what might have been? Just what about Landis' original script was so dark and so different?

Over the weekend, Landis took to Twitter to break down some of his original ideas and hopes for the sequel, which seems to have been called Martyr. You can read the whole feed on his Twitter page, but here's a selection of the best bits, courtesy of Bleeding Cool's Brendon Connelly:

In retrospect, I’m not even sure if fans of the first film would’ve been ready or eager for my second instalment as originally written.

Gone was the aspirational “what would you do,” gone were the pranks and bromance, gone were lovely tragic Andrew and hopeful, bright Steve.

In their place was a dark, frustratingly unblinking stare into a complicated world that posed the question is it worth it to be a hero, old from the point of view of a heartbroken and insane woman who would martyr herself to the cause of being the world’s first villain.

It was, in my estimation, a sequel that elaborated on the ideas and situations from the first to create a different genre of movie.

In the best of worlds, in my optimistic but wildly prejudiced eyes, this could make it an Aliens, a Terminator 2…in the worst a Grease 2.

So at the end of the day, maybe it’s better that Martyr never saw the light of day. Sad I didn’t get to do some of my other versions.

The most frustrating thing is that I don’t know if I’ll get the opportunity to explain what MOGO was or what he was doing in that cave.

That's certainly a very ambitious, very different story to add to the Chronicle mythos Landis had already built, but he went on to say that Martyr was only the tip of a bigger found-footage superhero iceberg:

The multi-movie low budget Chronicle-based found footage superhero universe culminating in an Avengers type team up was a real good one.

So, we could have gotten a whole Chronicle-style superhero universe, and instead we've got nothing (so far). At this point it seems that even if Chronicle is continued, it won't be with the guidance of Landis or director Josh Trank (who's off working on that Fantastic Four reboot for Fox). That's a shame, because this sounds like a hell of a film.

What do you think? Was Landis on the right track here?

(Via Bleeding Cool)