Director Adam McKay Discusses the Relevance of Ron Burgundy and Spills Anchorman 2 Details
04.11.12 by Ryan
Will Ferrell's appearance as Ron Burgundy on Conan last month was a welcome sight for fans of the 2004 comedy Anchorman, especially after Ferrell (as Burgundy) announced that Anchorman 2 is officially in the works. The only question is where the sequel plans to take San Diego's Action4 News team.
Enter Adam McKay. Anchorman's director and co-writer recently spoke to Salon and explained why it took so long for Anchorman 2 to get off the ground.
Well, first off, we went and did some other movies; that was the initial delay. By the time we heard from enough fans and heard enough of the demand for a sequel, it had been a few years. We went to the studio and they kind of weren't into it initially. They said the original one made pretty good money, but for what it made we'll give you this and this, and it was a very low budget. We would have all been working for free to do it.
For the next couple of years we'd check in with them every now and then and go, are you sure you don't want to do it? And finally they had said basically no three times and we had given up and thought all right, let's go do another movie. We were playing with the idea of doing Stepbrothers 2 or another original movie. And just at the last second I said, go check in with them again and see if it's just 100 percent dead. And, crazy luck, a movie had fallen through for them, their view on it had kind of changed and that was it.
As for what Anchorman 2 will be about, McKay didn't want to say. But he did reveal that the sequel could involve a "custody battle" and "bowling for dollars."
I don't want to give away too much, but I'll just give a couple pieces of ideas that we've kicked around. Keep in mind we're still writing the story, but I'll say one phrase for you: custody battle. I'll give you that. I'll give you one other one: bowling for dollars.
Whatever the plot of Anchorman 2, it's likely that Ferrell and McKay will use the Burgundy, Veronica Corningstone (Christina Applegate), Brian Fontana (Paul Rudd), Brick Tamland (Steve Carell), and Champ Kind (David Koechner) to express further "ridiculousness" about the news industry. McKay admitted that Anchorman has remained a relevant movie because of "just how ridiculous the news had become."
Since we made the movie it’s gone even more so in that direction. We talk about all these anchormen on the air now and they're all kind of Ron Burgundy-esque guys. So yes, sadly, the character has gotten more and more relevant as the news has gotten to be nothing more than a ratings-driven profit machine that is never going to examine any of the real power in this country. The ridiculousness of Anchorman got less and less observed.
McKay told THR that he and Ferrell are "going to start next week" with the script writing which will take "a month and a half to two months" to finish a "rough vomit-y draft," followed by "five months" of rewrites. Then, McKay's hope is to start shooting "in February" for a possible Winter 2013 or summer 2014 release date. "They’ve said Christmas, they’ve said March, and then they’ve gone as late as May."
McKay was a bit more forthcoming about the sequel's plot to THR, admitting that it will deal with "the next stage in the development of American media and news."
The fun of these characters is they confront change very poorly. [laughs] So they've got some more change coming their way. I can say that pretty safely.
Should McKay and Ferrell be able to deliver Anchorman 2 by next Christmas, that's still a over a year and a half away. In the meantime, here's a behind-the-scenes clip of Applegate and Ferrell reading a scene from the Anchorman script.