Daisy Edgar-Jones as Kate Cooper, Anthony Ramos as Javi and Glen Powell as Tyler Owens in Twisters

How Does ‘Twisters’ Connect to the 1996 Hit Disaster Thriller ‘Twister’?

As Twisters gears up for its theatrical release, fans of the 1996 movie Twister are likely wondering how the films are connected.

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Twister is a disaster thriller film that follows a group of storm chasers who have developed a device they believe could aid in detecting tornados further in advance. However, to test the machine, the device must be deployed incredibly close to an active tornado. When Oklahoma is hit with severe weather, the group—which included ’90s A-listers Helen Hunt and Bill Paxton, along with then-rising star Philip Seymour Hoffman, among others—sets off on a daring mission to get as close as possible to a powerful tornado.

The film was a critical and commercial success, becoming the second highest-grossing film of 1996. Twister is also credited with raising interest in storm chasing and meteorology in Oklahoma and across the country. At the time of its release, storm chasing was fairly obscure. However, many viewers found themselves intrigued by the film’s depiction of the field and were even inspired to enroll in meteorology programs. The University of Oklahoma saw its meteorology program enrollment double within years of the movie’s release. Given the enduring legacy of Twister, many were excited to learn that Twisters was in development.

Is Twisters a sequel to Twister?

a woman being taken away by a twister
(Universal Pictures)

It’s not surprising that confusion has arisen over what Twisters is, especially since Universal Pictures originally announced the film as a reboot of the original. When reports arose that Universal rejected a sequel pitch from original Twister star Helen Hunt, it seemed to further confirm the studio’s interest in a remake or reboot.

However, Twisters is not quite a reboot or remake, but a standalone sequel to the original film. This means it’s set in the same universe as Twister but, aside from references and callbacks, it won’t be significantly connected to the original movies. Twisters will not serve as a continuation of the original characters’ stories. Instead, it will follow a new generation of storm chasers as they venture into a violent storm.

In the new movie, Daisy Edgar-Jones stars as Kate Cooper, a young woman who has turned her past traumatic experiences with storms into a desire to study them closer. Soon, she and her friend, Javi (Anthony Ramos), decide to venture closer to tornados with the help of prominent storm chaser Tyler Owens (Glen Powell). Javi will also use the opportunity to test his own groundbreaking new weather-related tech.

Some may still be skeptical of the movie’s sequel status, given that the plot is almost identical to the original but with different characters in a modern setting. Meanwhile, although it technically is a sequel, one won’t have to watch Twister to understand the new movie. It remains to be seen how Twisters differentiates itself from Twister and how it will choose to reference the original movie.

(featured image: Universal Pictures)


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Rachel Ulatowski
Rachel Ulatowski is a Staff Writer for The Mary Sue, who frequently covers DC, Marvel, Star Wars, literature, and celebrity news. She has over three years of experience in the digital media and entertainment industry, and her works can also be found on Screen Rant, JustWatch, and Tell-Tale TV. She enjoys running, reading, snarking on YouTube personalities, and working on her future novel when she's not writing professionally. You can find more of her writing on Twitter at @RachelUlatowski.