MANILA, Philippines - “Trainspotting” fans may not have long to wait. The film’s director, Danny Boyle, says a much-awaited sequel to the 1996 film is in the works.
In an interview with The Playlist last March 9, Boyle said, "This has been a long time coming. There's always been this long term plan for 'Trainspotting 2'.”
Boyle, who also directed the Oscar-winning film “Slumdog Millionaire,” said he hopes to make the film in 2016, 20 years after the release of “Trainspotting,” the film adaptation of Irvine Welsh’s novel of the same name.
The director is only waiting for a screenplay from “Trainspotting” writer John Hodge who has also written “Trance” (a Danny Boyle film showing at this year’s South by South West Festival), “A Life Less Ordinary,” and “The Beach.”
Image from the 'Trainspotting' Facebook page
Boyle is confident of his timetable and the return of its main stars.
“If John can produce a decent enough script, I don't think there will be any barriers to Ewan or any of the cast coming back. I think they'll want to know that the parts are good so they don't feel like they are letting anyone down,” he said.
But he clarified that “Trainspotting 2” will not be a straight adaptation of “Porno,” the sequel Irvine Welsh wrote.
"It's very loosely based on 'Porno.’ There's a couple of things that are based on the book, but obviously we'd have to have Irvine on board."
In an article on Huffingtonpost.com, Welsh said that though there is already “a very good first draft of the script” written by Hodge, “there are still a lot of issues to be resolved.”
“As the author of the sequel you want a script to remain as true to the spirit of the book and the characters as possible, but putting on my film head, I'd say we would have to play more fast and loose with the original text of 'Porno' than on previous adaptations of my stuff,” he said.
In “Porno,” the motley crew of heroin addicts composed of Renton (Ewan McGregor), Sick Boy (Jonny Lee Miller), Spud (Ewen Bremner), and Begbie (Robert Carlyle) are 10 years older.
Renton, who ran away with the cash the group had made from a drug deal, is now a successful nightclub owner in Amsterdam. Sick Boy is a divorcee with a son and owns a pub in Leith. Spud attends group sessions to kick his heroin addiction and Begbie is released from prison.
Led by Sick Boy, who needs cash after several failed business ventures, the gang reunites to make a porno film starring a 25-year-old university student who is attracted to Sick Boy.
Living up to the legend
Watch the 'Trainspotting' trailer here:
Boyle knows that the biggest challenge is living up to the legendary status of “Trainspotting.”
The film, which earned Hodge an Oscar nomination for Best Adapted Screenplay, has been ranked the 10th best British film by the British Film Institute and was voted the best Scottish film of all time in 2004.
“The reason for doing it again is that people cherish the original; people remember it or have caught up with it if they never saw it because they were younger. So you want to make sure you don't disappoint people," Boyle said. "That will be the only criteria I think."
McGregor, the star of “Trainspotting,” was once skeptical about a sequel but has since been more open to the possibility.
He told Huffingtonpost.com last February: "I was always a bit loathe to do it, because 'Trainspotting' is so important for me... It was such an amazing film that still stands up today. I think making a sequel to it is almost a dangerous thing to do.
“You don't want to damage the reputation of the original film if you make a lesser version... That said, it could be interesting because it's been so long, and ['Porno'] is set 10 years later."
Despite the obvious challenges the film faces, many “Trainspotting” fans may just as well be thinking it’s worth a try. - With reports by Pia Ranada/Rappler.com