'It's a Wonderful Life' Sequel in the Works For Christmas 2015

Image: 'It's a Wonderful Life' Sequel in the Works For Christmas 2015 James Stewart, left, Thomas Mitchell, right, and Donna Reed appear in the 1946 movie "It's A Wonderful Life."

Wednesday, 20 Nov 2013 11:32 AM

By Michael Mullins

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A sequel of the classic 1946 holiday film "It's a Wonderful Life" is in the works for Christmas 2015.

The popular holiday film, which starred James Stewart and Donna Reed and was produced and directed by Frank Capra, will be revamped courtesy of veteran producer Allen J. Schwalb and his production company Star Partners, along with Bob Farnsworth of Hummingbird Productions.

The pair hope to have the new movie, titled "It’s a Wonderful Life: The Rest of the Story," in theatres by the 2015 Christmas season, Variety reported.

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Where the 1946 original relayed a hopeful message to the audience in which an angel comes down and convinces a suicidal George Bailey that life would have been worse off if he never existed, the new movie will apparently be the inverse. In the new film, another angel will reportedly visit Bailey's present-day grandson, who is apparently "unlikeable," and will instead show him "how much better off the world would have been had he never been born," Variety writes.

Despite the seemingly dark plot, Farnsworth, who co-wrote the screenplay with Martha Bolton, told Variety that "the storyline of the new film retains the spirit of the original – every life is important as long as you have friends."

Karolyn Grimes, who in the original played George Bailey’s daughter "Zuzu," and is perhaps best known for her iconic line – " Every time a bell rings, an angel gets his wings," will reportedly play the angel this time around, tasked with making sure Bailey's grandson realizes how "unlikeable" he is.

"The new film will retain the feeling of the original, and it simply must be shared," Grimes told Variety. "I’ve probably read close to 20 scripts over the years suggesting a sequel to ‘It’s a Wonderful Life,’ but none of them were any good. The script by Bob Farnsworth and Martha Bolton was wonderful, and I wanted to be involved with his version of the film immediately."

In addition to Grimes, producers have also reached out to original cast members Jimmy Hawkins, who played Tommy Bailey, and Carol Coombs, who played Janie Bailey in the hopes that they will reprise their roles, Variety noted.

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The producers have yet to select a director for the film or cast the lead role of Bailey’s grandson, which Variety reports will likely be made by February. The sequel's production budget is reportedly between $25 to $35 million.

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