Nearly two decades since the world was amazed by the image of a mammoth space ship obliterating the White House, INDEPENDENCE DAY 2 is finally pushing forward. Writer and director Roland Emmerich has gone on his official Twitter and Facebook accounts to announce the new cast additions of Liam Hemsworth and Jesse Usher as well as the return of original star Jeff Goldblum reprising his role as computer genius David Levinson. Emmerich will be back in the director’s chair with a screenplay written by him, Dean Devlin, James Vanderbilt, and Carter Blanchard.
— Roland Emmerich (@rolandemmerich) March 4, 2015
Hemsworth is rumored to be playing the son of the President Whitmore character played by Bill Pullman in ID4. Usher, best known for the Starz original series SURVIVOR’S REMORSE, will be playing Dylan Hiller, the son of Will Smith’s character from ID4 and was originally played by Smith’s FRESH PRINCE OF BEL-AIR co-star, Ross Bagley. Though Pullman has been rumored to be appearing in the sequel, Smith is not expected to return.
Is it a sequel that the public is screaming for? In an age where Marvel, DC, and a plethora of new Star Wars films have moviegoers salivating, this news does not get me hyped and it has nothing to do with the lack of Will Smith. Though ID4 was a blockbuster smash in the summer of 1996, the film has not aged all that well due to its stereotypical characters, some dated special effects, and absurd plot devices. Emmerich’s recent output has not been all that impressive either. For every earthshaking smash hit like THE DAY AFTER TOMORROW and 2012, most of his work has been downright terrible (i.e. 1998’s GODZILLA and WHITE HOUSE DOWN). So returning to the glory days with a new ID4 as well as talk of a STARGATE reboot seem to be the best way for Emmerich to become hot property again.