Nineties' entertainment nostalgia is all the rage right now and it seems like everyday there's an announcement about an updated classic from the decade. Here's some news I can't be mad about: A The Sandlot prequel is reportedly in the works. 2018 marks the 25th anniversary of the baseball fave, so now's as good a time as any to bring back the magic for another generation (and the now-adults who fell in love with the original).
David Mickey Evans, the writer and director of the first Sandlot, is returning to pen the film alongside Austin Reynolds. According to Deadline, the legend of The Beast will be a part of the prequel.
If the story ends up taking place prior to The Sandlot — which is set in 1962 — there are so many directions the prequel narrative could go. Will it be set in an even earlier time period? Will it show a young Mr. Mertle (James Earl Jones)? Will the beloved characters get acknowledged? Will fans get to see The Beast as an adorable puppy or perhaps meet his doggie family? Will familiar faces at least get cameos? The teenaged cast members from the 1993 film are all in their 30s and 40s at this point. I have so many questions.
Rumblings of a Sandlot follow-up have been making the rounds for a while now. Evans revealed to the LA Times back in April that he and his co-writer Reynolds were cooking up a remake:
Recently, a young writer named Austin Reynolds sent me an idea for a Sandlot reboot and we're actually going into Fox in the next month or so and saying, 'Here's how we do it. Here's how we reboot the franchise and give it more life.' And I hope it works out.
Well, looks like it worked out.
The Sandlot already got sequels in the form of 2005's The Sandlot 2 (which David Mickey Evans also helmed) and 2007's The Sandlot: Heading Home. Both films were direct-to-DVD and did not receive theatrical releases. The initial Sandlot was not an immediate box office success. Instead, it garnered cult status over the years and now it's considered one of the most beloved baseball films ever. Evans explained to GOOD Sports:
It has absolutely grown in popularity and has been more successful every subsequent year than the year before. It went into the video rental market at the height of the VHS rental days and found a new and larger audience. Then when the DVD revolution hit, the rentals and purchases went off the charts.
The writer and directer has additionally touched on its widespread and long-lasting appeal:
Audience-wise, it doesn't seem to matter who you are, where you came from or how you were raised — and I've been told this a million times by fans — people identify with the characters because they either were one of those characters or they see in those characters kids they wanted to be.
Details about the Sandlot prequel are clearly slim at this stage, but hopefully it will be able to capture the accessible coming-of-age charm of the original.