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Development: ’Bright’ future at Netflix, Final Space renewed, and Peter Rabbit gets a second tale

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May 7, 2018

We’ve known for a while that Netflix was moving forward with a sequel to Bright, the Will Smith-starring buddy cop fantasy flick that drew some of the streaming giant’s biggest-ever viewer ratings  (and middling reviews) when it debuted last year. 

Now Netflix has shed some light on one of Bright 2’s lingering grey areas: who’ll write the script. The service has picked up writer Evan Spiliotopoulos, who co-wrote last year’s live action Beauty and the Beast movie for Disney, according to The Hollywood Reporter

Spiliotopoulos will write a screenplay that brings back Smith and costar Joel Edgerton (who serves a future LAPD as its first-ever orc cop), with David Ayer (Suicide Squad) returning to direct the sequel. The big-budget first installment threw Smith and Edgerton into a near-future that swirled the buddy cop formula with fantasy, supernatural, and techno elements into a high-stakes mission to save the world.

Even though critics weren’t illuminated by Bright’s story, the first film drew huge viewer ratings for Netflix when it released in December of 2017. The service wasted little time following Bright’s big premiere to announce there’d be a sequel, a move that was all but inevitable for one of the most-streamed original movies in the history of the platform.

Also getting a second shot is TBS’s Final Space, the animated original series that’s innovated ways to engage young viewers, even when they’re not watching, with a heavy presence across media platforms. In a release, TBS announced it’s bringing back series creator Olan Rogers, along with Fred Armisen, Tom Kenny, David Tennant, Tika Sumpter, Steven Yeun and Coty Galloway — all of whom will continue to lend their vocal talents in the show’s second season.

Final Space follows astronaut Gary (Rogers) and his alien pal Mooncake (also voiced by Rogers) on a series of weekly adventures in their never-ending quest to discover the limits of the universe — quite literally, the “final space.” TBS hasn’t yet revealed when Season 2 will debut, so stay tuned.

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Finally, it looks as though a little pesky horror, panic, and anaphylactic shock are no match for the endearing (and profitable) storytelling power of Beatrix Potter. Sony has announced its successful reboot of Potter’s iconic Peter Rabbit tale will be getting a feature-length sequel.

Deadline reports that James Corden and the rest of the first film’s voice cast will be back to join the Will Gluck-directed second installment, demonstrating that the current film’s rough patch of bizarre distractions  — including the accidental screening of a horror film preview in Australia, as well as a controversy involving Peter’s devious onscreen exploitation of Mr. McGregor’s food allergy — aren't enough to deter Sony from seeking to multiply Peter Rabbit’s box office success.

Peter Rabbit 2 is set to bounce into theaters — hopefully without scaring any children or making people break out in hives — on Feb. 7, 2020.