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October 14, 2014

Taken 3 Out in January, but is it The End for the Franchise

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Taken 3 is being touted as the final installment in 20th Century Fox’s mega-blockbuster action trilogy. The movie promises an epic goodbye to Bryan Mills, the film’s main character (an ex-covert CIA operative). Only, is this really goodbye? Are we really supposed to believe this is the last time Mills will use his very “particular set of skills?”

Let’s review the evidence:

History Repeats Itself

Fans of the series, fret not. In the past, you’ve been promised sequels wouldn’t occur. You’ve been told not to get your hopes up. Yet, somehow Taken 2 is available for rent and purchase, and Taken 3 is slated to hit theaters January 9th, 2015.

After the critical acclaim of the original Taken, reporters asked director Olivier Megaton if there would be a sequel. He was firm that a sequel would never occur. He expressed disdain for sequels, and shot down the idea of a second movie. Despite these vehement protestations, a sequel was filmed and Megaton directed it.

In late 2012, while promoting Taken 2, Megaton expressed there were no plans for a third installment, and actor Liam Neeson agreed it was the end of the road for the character Bryan Mills. (When asked about filming a third installment, Neeson famously replied: “That’s just bad parenting.”)

In regards to filming a third installment, Megaton said:


“I don’t think that it will go on for Taken 3. I don’t see the point. The second one, it was fine. We closed the books.”

They did not – in fact – close the book.

Megaton went on to state (about the film’s producer and screenwriter):

“If this one’s a success too, maybe they’re going to think about it; money is money for them. But, it will be very difficult to ask Liam to be back again. The logic of his character has ended for this one; for me.”

FYI: Megaton has directed every single Taken film, including Taken 3. And, Liam Neeson has acted in the leading role each and every time, despite once suggesting that a third movie would only occur if actress Maggie Grace, who plays his daughter in the franchise, takes the lead role. He said he wouldn’t act in another Taken film, “…unless Maggie takes over and once in a while she calls me.”

Liam Neeson Earns $20 Million for Taken 3

Twenty million is a lot in Hollywood. He’s on the A-list now.

That amount of money ranks Neeson on a short list beside Hollywood’s biggest power players, such as Angelina Jolie, Leonardo DiCaprio, Brad Pitt, and Robert Downey Jr. It’s not easy scoring so high in Hollywood, so it’s no wonder he reconsidered his position.

The real question is: Will he do it again? And, it’s very possible that he will.

In Taken and Taken 2, Mills dealt some epic butt-whoopings in order to rescue his daughter and ex-wife from kidnappers. Hence the franchise’s name, Taken. But, in regards to Taken 3, Neeson has promised: no one will be taken. This goes against the franchises’ formula, which is a good thing for a third installment. It also means Mills doesn’t need to lose a relative to become pissed off.

If Mills is capable of utilizing his particular skills when family members aren’t taken, there’s plenty of room for another installment. Perhaps, this franchise will build to indomitable standards, such as Death Wish and Rocky. In a perfect world, there would be five movies. In each one, he’ll combat human trafficking, until he’s rid the world of it.

 

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