Considering all the badass talk Vin Diesel has been doing about Riddick, it makes perfect sense it’d be an R-rated flick. But apparently the actor had to fight the studio to make it happen.
In an interiew with HitFix, Diesel opens up about the development process and how the studio originally wanted them to try and hit a hard-PG 13 target with the latest sequel. But Diesel felt it would be impossible to make the movie they wanted to make under those guidelines — so he fought.
Luckily for all of us, he won, and this flick at least has a chance to be awesome when it opens later this year. With the previous big-budget installment Chronicles of Riddick they toned it down to PG-13 to positively terrible effect, and it looks like everyone has (hopefully) learned a lesson from it.
Here’s an excerpt from the interview, with Diesel explaining exactly why Riddick had to be R-rated:
"Oh my God, of course they wouldn't, nobody's doing them. You can't count on your hands a bunch of rated-R movies that are getting a lot of play. They're so far and few between. In fact, we were victims of that in going the studio route with Chronicles of Riddick. Budget went up, and we went into that film we were going in rated-R, and the first thing taken out was rated-R. You want to spend that kind of money, you want to expand the mythology like that, you have to reconfigure the way you're going to produce this movie and make it PG.
Some people argue, ‘Hey, there's the 'Dark Knights' that are PG but pushing the R envelope,’ but it does mean something. It means something in your approach to making a movie. There's something appropriate and liberating and honest and free about going into a picture like this and being able to make it a rated-R picture and not have to comply with an understandable studio mandate of PG filmmaking for the blockbusters in Hollywood."
Diesel seems to know what he's talking about, and he's taken the Riddick franchise to heart as a true passion project. The footage we've seen has looked intriguing, and we're still holding out hope that passion shines through when this one opens Sept. 6.