Will Ferrell explains why he turned down $29 million to do Elf 2

Will Ferrell, elf 2

Not many people would turn down a hefty payday but Will Ferrell did just that when the prospect of doing a sequel to the holiday movie classic Elf, came to the table. Elf is considered one of the best Christmas movies of all time by many and due to its massive box office success, some have wondered why we have never gotten a sequel and now Will Ferrell is filling in some of those blanks.

In a new interview with “The Hollywood Reporter“, Ferrell reveals that there was a script written for Elf 2 and he was offered a staggering $29 million to return for the second installment (perhaps if they would’ve made it a solid $30 million he would’ve reconsidered) but, in all seriousness, Ferrell said the screenplay just wasn’t up to par because it felt like a “rehashed premise.” Ferrell said if he would’ve taken the $29 million payday and did the script as it was, he would’ve ultimately lied to the fans about the film’s quality to collect a paycheck:

“I would have had to promote the movie from an honest place, which would’ve been, like, ‘Oh no, it’s not good. I just couldn’t turn down that much money.’ And I thought, ‘Can I actually say those words? I don’t think I can, so I guess I can’t do the movie.'”

Ferrell has only revisited one of his hits for a sequel and that was 2013’s Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues. Ferrell likely thought that script was worth championing but it does provide an example of certain sequels not living up to the original. Most fans thought the Anchorman sequel was lacking compared to its 2004 predecessor and that could’ve very well happened with Elf 2. The first film is so beloved that I think it’s probably best to leave it alone at this point.

Elf, directed by Jon Favreau, centers on Buddy (Ferrell), a human who was adopted and raised by Santa’s elves. He learns about this and heads to New York City to meet his biological father while also spreading Christmas cheer in a world of cynics in the process. Made for $33 million, Elf went on to gross $175 million domestically and $222 million worldwide. Critics also enjoyed Elf, gracing it with an 85% fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes. The film also stars James Caan, Zooey Deschanel, Mary Steenburgen, Daniel Tay, Bob Newhart, and Ed Asner.

Do YOU think Will Ferrell should’ve done Elf 2 for that money?

Source: The Hollywood Reporter

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