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Hallelujah, ‘Detective Pikachu 2’ Isn’t Dead!

Already hoping for a Rowlet cameo in this one

Pikachu is the cutest detective ever in Detective Pikachu.

Hollywood is truly exceptional at giving us sequels and remakes we don’t want or need. For example, a new Lord of the Rings trilogy, barely twenty years after the still-beloved original film trilogy kicked off? Why?! A live-action version of Disney’s Pinocchio where he ogles and pokes at horse poo? WHY?!

However, there is one sequel I both want and need: Detective Pikachu 2. (Okay, and I’m also beside myself about Shadow being in the next Sonic movie.) Upon its debut in 2019, Detective Pikachu thrilled and shocked Pokémon fans the world over by breaking the so-called “video game adaptation curse.” It’s a delight, and I love it dearly. I saw it opening night, and when I realized the birds in the first establishing shot were Pidgey, I started tearing up. Incredibly, the film went uphill from there.

Detective Pikachu was a slam dunk, so you would think that committing to a sequel would have been an easy decision. Right? Sadly, that’s somehow wrong! Rumors floated about the internet for years, like overly playful Litwick. But it seemed like a sequel was not happening. Even the film’s human star, Justin Smith, thought as much. However, evidence has surfaced recently that the film’s still alive and in active development. Eureka!

What’s the status of Detective Pikachu 2?

jigglypuff detective pikachu

In early 2023, a representative from Legendary Entertainment told Polygon that Detective Pikachu 2 was in development. However, they told Polygon the exact same thing in 2019. Which is somehow four whole years ago. Before the first film even premiered, Legendary had hired a scriptwriter, Oren Uziel (22 Jump Street, Mortal Kombat), to start penning the sequel. Apparently, that script was scrapped. And we’ve heard nothing sense.

But this week, we received the most encouraging, concrete news yet. Deadline revealed that Jonathan Krisel is currently in negotiations for directing the sequel. This is a promising choice. Not only did Krisel co-create Portlandia and Baskets, but he’s also collaborated a lot with the famously bizarre comedy duo Tim & Eric, even directing most episodes of Tim & Eric Awesome Show, Great Job!. Krisel would ensure that Detective Pikachu 2 has an off-kilter sense of humor, and I’m 100% here for it.

Deadline also reports that Chris Galletta is writing the film. Galletta has one produced writing credit: the 2013 dramedyThe Kings of Summer, which premiered to positive reviews at Sundance. I imagine the internet might be rough on Galletta because of this small public-facing body of work. But Hollywood is hard. People work their asses off for years on projects which never see the light of day. (Especially since Galletta’s Instagram says he’s been working at Netflix, which axes projects with giddy abandon.) As long as the film is funny and good and has a Slowpoke in it, I say: go get ’em! (Slowbro is also acceptable.)

If the film is currently in talks for a director, that means we’re still in deep pre-production. Like we’ve been for four years, apparently. So it’s possible this news is just another red herring, but it’s the most definitive-sounding development we’ve gotten on Detective Pikachu 2 in aeons. And it’s a good sign that the project isn’t dead. So hooray!

Even if nothing else goes awry, it will definitely be a few more years until this film comes to our screens. At least we’ll have a few new Pokémon series to check out in the meantime.

(Featured image: Warner Bros / Legendary Entertainment / The Pokémon Comapny)

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Kirsten (she/her) is a musician, audio person, writer, and nerd. When not talking about One Piece or Zelda (among other anime and games), she's finding surprising ways to play the guitar.