21 Jump Street directors, Phil Lord and Christopher Miller, open up about the planned crossover with the Men In Black franchise that almost happened.
Phil Lord and Christopher Miller, directors of 21 Jump Street, open up about the Men In Black crossover that never came to be. Lord and Miller directed 2012’s 21 Jump Street reboot, which saw Jonah Hill and Channing Tatum playing undercover cops working to infiltrate a high school drug ring. The film was a huge success, raking in over $200 million worldwide off a $42 million budget. They followed it up with a sequel in 2014 called 22 Jump Street, which brought back Hill and Tatum to work a new case in college. 22 Jump Street ended up being even more successful than the first film, leading many to believe that a third installment was ensured. However, rumors began to circulate that the Jump Street franchise was looking to crossover with another high-profile Sony property, Men In Black.
The Men In Black franchise started in 1997, featuring Will Smith and Tommy Lee Jones as agents tasked with monitoring and policing alien activity on Earth. Smith and Jones returned for two sequels, 2002’s Men In Black II and 2012’s Men In Black 3. Following the success of the Jump Street films and Men in Black 3, rumors of a crossover between the properties were proven true, with a working title of MIB 23. However, after a few years in development hell, the proposed crossover was eventually scrapped.
During a recent appearance on the Happy Sad Confused podcast, Lord and Miller discussed details surrounding the failed 21 Jump Street/Men In Black crossover. Lord said there was “a Men In Black/Jump Street crossover script that was very funny and very crazy that we really adored.” Lord continued by explaining that the film would’ve seen Hill and Tatum working a case in medical school when they got embroiled with the Men In Black. However, the complications of merging the two franchises were staggering, with Lord adding, “it was crazy trying to manage these two franchises and not drive them both into the ground.” Still, it seems like the crossover was set to happen, with Miller adding, “it came very close to happening.” Check out Lord and Miller’s comments below:
Lord: “It’s true that there have been a lot of these things developed. There was, believe it or not, a Men In Black/Jump Street crossover script that was very funny and very crazy that we really adored.”
Miller: “One of my favorite ideas was the Men In Black, the Black Suits were like martial arts belts that you had to work your way up to black and [the Jump Street guys] were issued powered blue Men In Black suits.”
Lord: “Basically, the idea was Jonah and Channing, a thing happened while they were doing their medical school adventure that got them embroiled into the world of Men In Black and that got them teaming up to stop an alien takeover type of thing. It was very funny, it was crazy trying to manage these two franchises and not drive them both into the ground seemed like a real challenge.”
Miller: “I will say it came very close to happening.”
Lord: “Very, very close.”
The Jump Street/Men In Black crossover ultimately fell apart for various reasons. While Hill and Tatum were on board, Smith and Jones were not involved from the Men In Black side. The idea was eventually deemed “an impossible match-up” by producer Walter Parkes, and the crossover was dead in the water. Most audiences would agree that they were somewhat mismatched franchises, as aside from being comedies, the Jump Street films were a bit more grounded in their premise, making the extraterrestrial exploits of the Men In Black movies an awkward fit.
Men In Black trudged on without its original stars, releasing 2019’s Men In Black: International, starring Chris Hemsworth and Tessa Thompson. Men In Black: International proved profitable, but it missed with critics and audiences, leaving the franchise dormant ever since. As for the Jump Street franchise, a third installment has not come to fruition, though Lord and Miller stated that things are being softly developed. There were also rumors of a Jump Street spinoff focusing on female undercover cops called Jump Street: Now For Her Pleasure, though it’s unclear if that is still moving forward. As each franchise contemplates its next move, all fans know for sure is that they’ll never see a 21 Jump Street and Men In Black crossover.
Source: Happy Sad Confused
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