Alex Garland Came Up With The Story Idea For '28 Months Later'

Ex Machina director Alex Garland's second major film was 28 Days Later, which he wrote for director Danny Boyle. The sequel to that film was only exec produced by Garland, and in general the writer/producer/director hasn't seemed much interested in making sequels.

But there is talk of another sequel, and as it turns out, if that film does actually shoot the 28 Months Later story will be based on an idea Garland came up with. That'll be it for him when it comes to that movie, however — Garland won't be involved in 28 Months Later otherwise.

First, let's get down some of Garland's ideas about sequels in general. Garland told The Playlist,

Sequels are generally done in a rush. It's done with a sense of urgency. The first movie, you spend a long time developing to get it over the line. The second thing, you don't. Your expectations are different and your motivations are different.

So part of what makes 28 Months Later (or whatever the title may be) different is that it isn't based on a fast-turnaround demand for a sequel, but based in a more organic process. Garland said,

Don't you think those are, in a way, better? Because there is no momentum now, and you've had an organic, real spark about where I can take this. And it just popped into your head, kind of thing. Rather than, 'Okay, I'm going to make a sequel.'

Of course, he's not willing to go into the sequel idea in detail, but Garland did discuss the origin of the concept:

About two years ago, Danny [Boyle] started collaborating on the potential to make Trainspotting 2, another sequel.  In that conversation, an idea for '28 Months' arrived. I had a sort of weird idea that popped into my head. Partly because of a trip I'd taken. I had this thought, and I suggested it to Andrew and Danny, but I also said I don't want to work on it. I don't really want to play a role, and Andrew said, 'Leave it to me.' So he's gone off and is working on it.

"Andrew" there is producer Andrew Macdonald, who worked on the previous two films, and has been a part of Garland's career for years, working on more recent projects such as Dredd and Ex Machina. We'll have to see what "working on it" really ends up meaning in the long run. Danny Boyle has said he might be interested in making the film eventually, but some of those comments came a long time ago. With the three at least talking about it, there's a decent chance we'll see the film, but perhaps made by a different crew.