Sequels are notorious for being box office riots but critical flops. Matthew Vaughn, a director who has taken on a gangster film, two comic book films and a light-hearted fantasy film starring Charlie Cox, knows this more than anyone. Vaughn is known for not carrying on as director for his films. To begin with, we have X-Men: First Class. A brilliant start to a rebooted franchise but not good enough to keep Vaughn attached for its sequel, X-Men: Days of Future Past. Then we have the Kick Ass franchise starring Aaron Taylor Johnson. This movie duo is perhaps the most similar to Kingsman in tone and style.
Vaughn speaks about this apparent abandonment in the Kingsman early screening production notes, “I set up the first (Kingsman film) so there could be a sequel,” says Vaughn. Perhaps he did the same with Kick Ass but intentionally knew that he was to leave for a new director to take his place. “As a director, I enjoyed making the first one so much that the idea was appealing. But sequels are very hard. The audience loves what’s gone before, but if you do the same thing, it’s boring and unoriginal.”
The Curse of the Sequel
Due to this ‘curse of the sequel’ that flies around Hollywood unable to be caught, Vaughn looked at many different sequels to inspire Kingsman: The Golden Circle. One of these films was The Empire Strikes Back. In the Star Wars franchise, many of the films are stories that continue from the last and never feel unoriginal or unauthentic. Matthew was admittedly afraid of Eggsy becoming too static and too much like “James Bond”. His writing partner Jane Goldman says that they both wanted Eggsy to “have another journey to take,” rather than him facing another threat in every movie.
Kingsman is nothing but subversive and in the original sketching of Eggsy’s path as a hero, Vaughn kept circling back to Star Wars. “The best example for me of a mainstream character taking a journey over several films is Luke Skywalker. There is this feeling that your hero is still not a hero, he’s still got conflict going on. I tried to apply that to The Golden Circle.”
Matthew Vaughn has already expressed that a lot of the content in The Golden Circle will set up what is to come in Kingsman 3, but if anything, we just hope he stays attached.
Now Read: Kingsman: The Golden Circle Review