Journey with us, if you will, back through the mists of time to September 2012. Britain was still in a post-Olympics glow and Liam Neeson was talking Taken 2with this very magazine’s Podcast. Asked if he saw Taken 3 as a likely possibility, he was quick to dismiss it. "I don't see it," he said. "I don't think it's going to happen. I really don't. I can't see a possible scenario where audiences wouldn't go, 'Oh, come on...! She's taken again?'" Apparently a possible $20 million pay day is quickly changing his mind as Deadline reports his deal is closing for that the third outing.
Yes, though the sequel was critically mauled compared to the original Taken, it still did big business at the box office ($374 million worldwide from a $45 million budget) so the gears are clanking on a third in Luc Besson’s franchise factory (which also makes delightful jam).
Besson and regular writing partner/Taken veteran Robert Mark Kamen are working on the script for the new film, with details still shrouded in mystery. Will there be a whole new threat? A continuation of the Albanian villains from before (perhaps the gang’s dog wants a crack this time, Jaws: The Revenge-style) or will it all be re-imagined as a comedy with Bryan and family taken for a ride by a wacky car dealer? The possibilities are both endless and too terrible to contemplate properly.
There’s no director aboard yet and assuming Neeson signs on the dotted, the filmmakers will start looking to recruit Famke Janssen and Maggie Grace for one more go-around. Besson’s EuropaCorp company wants this one before cameras next February.