Roger Donaldson reveals ambition to make a Cocktail sequel
New Zealand film director Roger Donaldson has admitted he would love to make a sequel of ‘Cocktail’
The 72-year-old director helmed the 1988 rom-com starring Tom Cruise – who has also expressed interest in a sequel – and Bryan Brown, and Roger has revealed he’d relish the opportunity to return to the story.
Asked about the prospect of a sequel, Roger replied: “You know, there never has been talk of a sequel, not that I’m aware of, but I do agree. It’s a great idea and would make a great movie.
“I’m not dying to do sequels, but it was very successful and people loved the movie. I’m sure everyone would love to know what happened to those characters.”
‘Cocktail’ – which tells the story of a business student who takes up bartending to make some much-needed money – was recently referenced in the Steven Spielberg-directed ‘Ready Player One’.
And Roger has admitted to being surprised that cultural references from the movie continue to crop up.
Speaking to Forbes, the director explained: “I keep being surprised where it pops up.
It all started with his first feature film, Sleeping Dogs, a tour de force action thriller from 1977 that starred then newcomer Sam Neill. That movie, which is finally getting a Blu-ray release, not only kicked off Donaldson’s film career after years of making commercials, it also changed the face of filmmaking in New Zealand.
I caught up with Donaldson to discuss the film’s seismic influence and the Hollywood legend who passed on the project, as well as the ongoing impact of his 1998 pop culture phenomenon Cocktail, and his thoughts on doing a sequel.
“I remember being in a fish and chip shop in London a while back and the guy behind the counter was putting on vinegar and tomato sauce and throwing the bottles around when one of the other guys turned to him and said, ‘Who do you think you are? Tom Cruise?’ I just had a quiet chuckle to myself.”
Roger also revealed how he tried to bring some light relief to the movie’s original script.
He shared: “I can’t believe it’s been 30 years. I remember that when I got the script for ‘Cocktail’ it was actually quite a dark story about a young man trying to make his way in the world.
“One of the biggest things that I brought to the project was that I thought these bartenders should have some skills that you haven’t seen before.
“I remembered the entertainment factor of the gunslingers twirling their guns, putting them away and pulling them out and so on in Westerns and thought we should come up with something similar for these guys.”