Clerks 3 Happening Again

With the upcoming Jay and Silent Bob Reboot, it seemed like Kevin Smith was saying goodbye to all of the characters who have populated the cinematic world known as the View Askewniverse. Over the years, Clerks, Mallrats, Chasing Amy, Dogma, Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back, and Clerks II have featured interconnected stories and references to characters in the other movies, and the upcoming sequel will bring back nearly everyone who ever had a significant role in a Kevin Smith movie, including Ben Affleck. But apparently that won’t be the end of the View Askewniverse after all.

Kevin Smith is out on the publicity tour for Jay and Silent Bob Reboot right now, and while making an appearance to sign some stuff for auction, the director revealed that he was reunited with Clerks co-star Jeff Anderson after the two had a bit of a falling out sometime after Clerks II. The reunion turned to a discussion about finally getting Clerks 3 off the ground, but it’ll have a whole new script after the first attempt to make the sequel didn’t pan out.

The announcement of Clerks 3 reopening for business came from Kevin Smith himself on Instagram with this photo:

Kevin Smith, Jason Mewes, Jeff Anderson

Accompanying the photo was this caption, explaining how the resurgence of Clerks 3 came to be:

“I spent Saturday signing stuff and catching up, seeing so much movie merch that’s been made over the last 25 years! But even better than that? We talked about making a movie together. It’ll be a movie that concludes a saga. It’ll be a movie about how you’re never too old to completely change your life. It’ll be a movie about how a decades-spanning friendship finally confronts the future. It’ll be a movie that brings us back to the beginning – a return to the cradle of civilization in the great state of #newjersey. It’ll be a movie that stars Jeff and Brian O’Halloran, with me and Jay in supporting roles. And it’ll be a movie called CLERKS III! To be great is to go on. To go on is to go far. To go far is to return. And we’re all gonna return to the scene of the crime! This won’t be the old script we almost made a few years back: this is a completely new screenplay that I just started writing last night! And so far, it’s like a dream come true!

After mending fences with Ben Affleck earlier this year, I was hoping for a chance to do the same with Jeff – so huge thanks to Leeloo Multiprops for getting us all in the same room. But the biggest thanks ever go to Jeff, for being receptive to the idea at all. This means I’m gonna get to play with my two favorite inaction figures again: Dante & Randal! Two weeks from the debut of Jay and Silent Bob Reboot, I’m ecstatic to announce our imminent return to Quick Stop! So I assure you: we’re open!”

Clerks 3 has been in the works in some form at various points throughout the past decade. At one time, Kevin Smith wanted it to be a stage play, another time he wanted it in theaters for the 20th anniversary of Clerks in 2014, then it was supposed to start as an interactive book before becoming a movie. But when the time came for Clerks 3 to actually happen, with funding set in place just a couple years ago, co-star Jeff Anderson just didn’t feel compelled to do it, so the project just didn’t come together. Unfortunately, the process of trying to make it happen created a rift between Smith and Anderson, but now they’ve patched things up and are ready to end the trilogy.

Clerks co-star Brian O’Halloran has always been up for reprising the role of Dante, and he’s appeared as several other characters in Kevin Smith’s movies over the years. So now that Jeff Anderson is ready to get back in front of the camera, everything is in place to make Clerks 3 as soon as Smith finishes the script that he only just started.

Since we never learned any significant details about the previous draft of Clerks 3, we have no idea if there are elements of that script that Smith will use for this completely new script. He says the movie will be “about how you’re never too old to completely change your life,” but I thought that’s what Clerks II was already about. It wouldn’t be surprising if we find Dante and Randal at a point in their life when their age is really starting to get to them, especially after Kevin Smith had a brush with death when he had a heart attack not too long ago. Maybe they’ll even have some kids of their own and learn more grown-up life lessons.

Though I was happy to see Kevin Smith seemingly put a cap on the View Askewniverse with Jay and Silent Bob Reboot, I suppose it makes sense for everything to come to an end with Clerks 3 instead. The end of the trilogy can also be the end of the cinematic universe he started 25 years ago this year. Hopefully Jay and Silent Bob Reboot doesn’t leave a bad taste in our mouth while we wait for Clerks 3.

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