While there hasn’t been a new installment of the Back to the Future film series in nearly 30 years, that hasn’t stopped the audience from making it clear that more than any other film franchise they would love to see Michael J. Fox as Marty McFly, Christopher Lloyd as Doc Brown, and their time-traveling DeLorean make a return to the big screen in Back to the Future 4.
Given the fact that we’re living in an age of a never-ending stream of sequels, prequels, reboots, and remakes, it certainly makes sense that The Hollywood Reporter and Morning Consult (a company that specializes in online survey) would gauge the audience’s feelings about what they would most like to see.
Twenty-two hundred adults were polled between Nov. 8 and 11, and the response was clear that BTTF was their franchise of choice. That being said, Indiana Jones garnered 68% of the vote, while Jurassic Park was right behind it at 67%. Further down the list the Jennifer Lawrence sci-fi series Hunger Games came in at 55%, Keanu Reeves’ reality-bending The Matrix scored 54%, and Avatar had 53%.
Tyler Sinclair, vice president of Morning Consult, muses, “There’s a strong consumer demand for movie reboots and sequels, which spells good news for movie studios looking to capitalize on that nostalgic feeling. Our polling finds half of Americans say they are much more likely to watch throwbacks and revivals.”
One question about the results above: do those questioned really want to see all of those franchises return? Don’t get us wrong, the Back to the Future trilogy is one of the best ever produced, but it’s inevitable that a new installment would just disappoint. In the decades since the back-to-back sequels Back to the Future Part II and Part III were released, Michael J. Fox has been struggling with Parkinson’s Disease and it’s difficult to imagine he and Christopher Lloyd engaging in a new time-tripping adventure. Would the fans want a reboot or a sequel featuring different actors in the roles? Or maybe using the DeLorean as a jumping off point with entirely new characters discovering it?
It’s good that Indiana Jones scored so high, because director Steven Spielberg and actor Harrison Ford will be reuniting for a fifth big-screen adventure, which is scheduled for release in 2021 (at which point Harrison will be 79, so it will be interesting to see what sort of approach they take in terms of the action). This film will follow Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981), Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom (1984), Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (1989), and Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull (2008).
Jurassic Park‘s score is not surprising, considering how that particular franchise has so successfully been reborn with the Jurassic World films (and there’s already a third chapter in development). The Hunger Games, on the other hand, doesn’t seem likely to return as all of the books have been adapted and Jennifer Lawrence was apparently ready to move on.
The Matrix‘s high ranking is a little surprising when taking into account that while the first film was highly-regarded and successful, you would be hard-pressed to find people truly behind the other two chapters, The Matrix Reloaded and The Matrix Revolutions, despite how much money they made. The critics and the fans were not… well, fans.
And then there’s Avatar, which recently wrapped production on the first two sequels to the highest-grossing film of all time, with another two in active development.
But the truth is, any of these, and so many others, could very easily re-connect with the audience. Seriously speaking, how likely was it really that Sylvester Stallone’s Rocky franchise could have so successfully been reborn as the two Creed films? With that in mind, virtually anything is possible.