Jay and Silent Bob Reboot

Nearly two years ago, Kevin Smith announced that he was working to bring back his two most famous characters with a movie called Jay and Silent Bob Reboot. Now, that project has become a reality, as it has been picked up by Saban Films.

Jay and Silent Bob are, of course, the two stoners (played by Jason Mewes and Smith himself) who stole scenes in 1994’s Clerks before going on to appear in numerous other Smith movies: Mallrats, Chasing Amy, Dogma, and Clerks II. In 2001, the characters stepped into the spotlight with Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back, which saw the duo heading to Hollywood to stop the production of a movie based on the characters they created. This new film will be a direct sequel of sorts to Strike Back and will “skewer reboots, remakes, and sequels while simultaneously being all three at the same time,” according to the press release.

Smith, who rewrote the script last year after suffering a near-fatal heart attack and losing an astonishing amount of weight, described how his brush with death influenced the movie (and provided some plot details for good measure):

“Last February, I almost died. So on the one year anniversary of my widow maker heart attack, as a celebration of life and a big ol’ F you to Death, my best friend and I will be rolling cameras on a sequel/remake/reboot of a movie we first made nearly twenty years ago! In Jay & Silent Bob Strike Back our herbal heroes found out Hollywood was making a movie based on them, so they journeyed out to Hollywood to stop it. But I’ve learned so much as a storyteller and have grown immensely as a filmmaker since then, so audiences can expect something completely different: In Jay & Silent Bob Reboot our herbal heroes find out Hollywood is making a reboot of the old movie that was based on them, so they journey out to Hollywood to stop it again. I offer my (literal) undying thanks to our amazing partners at Saban and Universal for making this dream come true and backing this cinematic silliness!”

As you’d expect, Mewes’ statement on the film is a bit less verbose:

“I’m tired of doing Shakespeare all the time so it’ll be nice to get back to playing Jay again. It may be 25 years since I first played the idiot man-child from Jersey but this time’s going to be the best because I’ve really grown into the role of idiot man-child in my old age.”

Jay and Silent Bob Reboot arrives at an interesting point in Smith’s career. While I’ve never stopped rooting for the guy (he seems like a genuinely decent dude and he’s a killer live storyteller), it’s been an often-rough time to be a Kevin Smith fan. His big studio comedy (Cop Out) was a lifeless dud. His ventures into horror range from ambitious mixed bags (Red State, Tusk) to abominations (Yoga Hosers). Honestly, his work on episodes of The Flash and Supergirl rank among his most robust recent output.

So with all of that in mind, here’s the big question about Jay and Silent Bob Reboot: is Kevin Smith going back to this particular well simply because he’s nostalgic or because he has a genuinely killer idea and something to say? I genuinely hope it’s the latter. There’s nothing I’d love more than to love a Kevin Smith movie again.

Saban Films has not announced a release date for Jay and Silent Bob Reboot quite yet, but with cameras rolling soon, it’s easy to imagine a later 2019 or early 2020 release date. We’ll keep you posted.

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