Poor Duncan Jones. The director should always be remembered as a sci-fi mastermind with Moon. Instead, people currently hear his name and can quickly turn to the failed World of Warcraft adaptation, Warcraft: The Beginning. And remember when that film was just called Warcraft? Universal Pictures tacked on the extension with hopes of a franchise. In the words of Robot Unicorn, their dreams were dashed against the rocks below.
So that franchise failed to impress to the likes of the massive multiplayer universe, but it did still do fairly well at the box office thanks to China. Critically, it sucked. Bouncing back, Jones is hoping to recover with his next sci-fi installment, Mute. Directing off a script he wrote, both he and audiences are hoping the film is a return to form. But to discuss Mute we will need to go back to where it all began and discuss Moon. If you have yet to see Moon -- shame on you -- you might not want to continue. Some spoilers are ahead to help setup the plot point on how Mute will (somewhat) be a sequel to Moon.
Duncan Jones Begins Production on Mute
If you have yet to hear about Mute, know that Duncan Jones has been hoping to tell this story for years. And what a story it is! Check out the synopsis below:
Berlin. Forty years from today. A roiling city of immigrants, where East crashes against West in a science-fiction Casablanca. Leo Beiler, a mute bartender has one reason and one reason only for living here, and she’s disappeared. But when Leo’s search takes him deeper into the city’s underbelly, an odd pair of American surgeons seem to be the only recurring clue, and Leo can’t tell if they can help, or who he should fear most.
The film has been in the works for quite a while. Just how long? From the mouth of the director himself.
"I've been working towards making Mute for 12 years now. I cannot tell you how thrilled I am that we’re finally going to shoot this utterly unique film. The fact that I get to make it with Alexander Skarsgard and Paul Rudd makes it all the more exciting. Mute is a film that will last. It is unlike any other science fiction being made today."
Mute is a Sequel of Sorts for Moon
Over a decade, but that doesn't mean there weren't developments in the latter half at least. Dark Horse Comics got the rights to Mute for a Graphic Novel from Duncan Jones back in 2013. The film itself finally kicked into gear in 2015, with the casting of Alexander Skarsgard, Paul Rudd and, wait for it, Sam Rockwell. Sam Bell's clone is back!
Just in case you forgot, Moon ends with the two Same Bell clones teaming up to ensure that one of them, the healthy one, successfully escapes his fiefdom on the moon to return to Earth. The film ends with recordings of talk shows discussing this "immigrant" and the realization that their are clones on the moon. And that's all we're given. Well, that and a beautiful score. Cut to credits and audiences are left not knowing what might have come to our favorite Sam Bell clone, leaving the ending up to speculation.
Mute will fill in those blanks. To retract the article's title, the film won't actually be a sequel, but it will be within the "Duncan Jones universe." If you watch this interview, you will hear Jones explain that Mute will provide the epilogue for Sam Bell that audiences have been waiting for. It's hard to say just how in-depth this epilogue will be, but the Sam Rockwell cameo will definitely have meaning and give insight on how his character is doing.
Sam Bell a Part of Duncan Jones' Sci-Fi Universe
And, just when you're scratching your head on the sci-fi complexities that Duncan Jones is building, the director makes the connection. The story of Mute takes place eleven years after Lunar Industries set up their clone-habitat moon station. Which means it is even less time after Sam Bell's escape from the very same base.
If you are impressed, know that Duncan Jones has a secretive third sci-fi film in the works as well. And that will also take place within this same universe and feature another tidbit on Sam Bell. A trilogy... but not a trilogy. Still confused? Just relax and listen to this awesome track from the Moon soundtrack courtesy of composer Clint Mansell.