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Sequel Round-Up: Universal Soldier, Cloverfield, Twilight

Ah, there's nothing quite like the scent of a sequel on the morning breeze. Like the lingering aroma of yesterday's leftovers, mixed with the heady perfume of a flower about to open. Depending on the sequel, there might also be a whiff of something coming from the bottom of your shoe. Today, at least, it looks (and smells) like the crap is pretty minimal. There's been a lot of news in the last day or so about follow-up movies (Alvin & the Chipmunks 2, anyone?), but let's start with the most obvious and go from there.

Sometimes it seems like jumping the gun when the sequel talk for a movie starts before the first even hits the theater. In the case of vampire flick Twilight, it seems more surprising that Summit Entertainment waited this long to snatch up the next three novels in the series. The movie's not out till next week, but the buzz has been at a fever pitch since filming started earlier this year. It's especially important to pin down your sequels in a vampire franchise ASAP, before your immortal stars start growing up. To that end, Melissa Rosenberg, who wrote the screenplay for the first movie, has been hired now to write the next two.

Director Matt Reeves isn't in quite as much hurry to get moving on a sequel to Cloverfield. He says the studio wants it to happen, which... yeah. It made enough money on a small enough budget that it's essentially a given. He's got his hands full right now, though, with his screenplay for The Invisible Woman and the English-language remake of Let the Right One In. Plus, he wants to wait for "something that would be incredibly fun" when it comes to the follow-up. He tosses out the idea of setting the next one in Japan, to which Japan says, "Like we don't have enough giant monsters already?"

Finally, there's news of a sequel to 1992's Universal Soldier. Ignore the 1999 sequel, and the made-for-TV movies that were part of the franchise. For this one, they want to get back the original soldiers, as played by Jean-Claude Van Damme and Dolph Lungren. Sort of. Lundgren says he's been approached, but he's hesitating over what would essentially be a cameo part. Van Damme, meanwhile, seems to be on-board, and the guy is due for a career upswing after playing a semi-fictional version of himself in JCVD. Whether these action movie veterans get put out for battle or put out to pasture remains to be seen.

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