The surprise success of After on the big screen in 2019 is giving way to an entire franchise. The romance story between Tessa Young and Hardin Scott was initially published via Wattpad in 2014 and spawned several sequels. The first sequel, After We Collided, has already been adapted, with its U.S. debut being pushed back to Oct. 23 due to the coronavirus pandemic. But luckily for fans, there's some good news to make that delay sting a bit less: After is getting two more sequels beyond that, covering the final two books, After We Fell and After Ever Happy.
After is famous for starting as One Direction fanfiction, with the character of Hardin Scott based initially on Harry Styles. From there, it evolved into a standalone love story with college-aged Tessa Young, who meets her roommate's friend Hardin and begins an on-again, off-again romance. The original story ended with Tessa discovering Hardin only dated her on a dare, just as Hardin realized he was in love with her. Starring Josephine Langford and Hero Fiennes Tiffin, the film version brought in $69.7 million, a huge return on a film made on a shoestring $14 million budget.
After We Collided adds a secondary love interest in Tessa's co-worker Trevor Matthews (Dylan Sprouse), as Tessa graduates and heads out into the working world. The film hasn't arrived in the U.S. yet but is expected to premiere Oct. 23 in both theaters and VOD. The VOD part is critical, as it's not the kind of film that might drive people to the theaters during a pandemic. But it is the type of film audiences at home will order in droves.
With the anticipation of a second hit on its hands, indie producer Aviron Pictures has moved to put both the third and fourth sequels into production. Director Castille Landon will direct both movies, which will film back to back.
Without spoiling the second film, suffice to say it ends on a cliffhanger when Tessa reveals a secret of her own. After We Fell will pick up, ahem, after her big reveal and as her life "begins to come unglued." Moreover, Hardin will becoming furious when he learns the truth and will apparently attempt to sabotage their relationship.
As for After Ever Happy, in the book, Tessa suffers a tragedy just as Hardin learns something about his past "that shakes him to the core." According to the synopsis:
As the shocking truth about each of their families emerges, it’s clear the two lovers are not so different from each other. Tessa is no longer the sweet, simple, good girl she was when she met Hardin — any more than he is the cruel, moody boy she fell so hard for.
After is currently streaming on Netflix. After We Collided arrives in theaters and VOD on Friday, Oct. 23, 2020.