This is why Hollywood can be frustrating.
In wake of the overwhelming success of Creed - the semi-reboot/spin-off of the Rocky franchise - MGM is looking to get a sequel out by November 2017, a mere two years after the original (for those wondering, it was three years between Rocky in 1976 and Rocky II in 1979).
Now don't get me wrong, a great sequel that's even better than the first can be done in two years (Spider-Man 2), but the issue here though is that the project may lose the centerpiece that made Creed so great in the first place: Ryan Coogler.
For those who don't know, Creed happened because of Ryan Coogler, period. It was his idea and his story that he had wanted to make since he was a teenager, a passion project he could only dream of doing. Two years ago he got that opportunity when he finally convinced Sylvester Stallone to sign-off on a Rocky spin-off about the offspring of Apollo Creed being trained by Rocky Balboa. The rest, they say, is history.
Here we are, two months after the film's November release with over $100 million at the box office and numerous accolades by critics, as well as strong Oscar buzz for Stallone himself as Best Supporting Actor, and the studio has one thing in mind: sequel.
The problem though is Coogler was just confirmed to be directing Marvel's Black Panther starring Chadwick Boseman. That film is set for a February 16, 2018 release date, three months after a would-be Creed 2 would hit theaters. The question then obviously becomes, can Coogler direct both?
Black Panther would be expected to start filming probably by the end of this year at the latest and well into the first half of 2017. With that timetable, there's no way Coogler could do Creed 2 as well, however, if that November 2017 changed to November 2018 (a three-year gap just like the first two Rocky films) then it's certainly possible. Remember, Creed was a relatively short shoot that only took a little over two months to film from January of last year to March. Coogler could film his sequel in early 2018 and have it ready for that prime November release, without a doubt.
That though, requires patience by a studio when they have the urge to strike when the iron's hot. Just remember, history has shown restraint in making a sequel tends to pay huge dividends: The Godfather Part 2 took two and a half years, The Dark Knight took three. Both those films needed their original director if they were going to be a success in Francis Ford Coppola and Christopher Nolan, respectively. Those films are also regarded as two of the best sequels of all-time. See where I'm going with this? And don't even get me started on James Cameron's seven year wait to make Terminator 2.
The point being is that if MGM, Warner Bros., the producers, and hell even Stallone are smart, they'll wait for Ryan Coogler to make Creed 2. It's his creation (like Rocky was Stallone's) and it's only fair they keep it that way.
We shall see.