'Pitch Perfect 3': Everything to Know About the Third Musical Movie
Anna Kendrick, Rebel Wilson, Brittany Snow and Hailee Steinfeld are all signed on for the a cappella comedy.
Moviegoers were still singing the tunes from Pitch Perfect 2 when Universal and Golden Circle announced Pitch Perfect 3 last summer.
Given the sequel's massive box-office success, it's little surprise that the studio behind the film waited only a month after Pitch 2's release to line up the next installment in its a cappella franchise.
With Pitch 2 still in theaters, The Hollywood Reporter confirmed that screenwriter Kay Cannon and stars Anna Kendrick and Rebel Wilson were already on board for a Pitch 3, and Kendrick took to social media to officially announce the news quickly thereafter. It didn't take long before news trickled out that Elizabeth Banks would return to the director's chair (she later scaled back her role and was replaced with new director Trish Sie, see below), followed by confirmations that alums Hailee Steinfeld, Brittany Snow and Anna Camp would also be back.
Franchise newcomers Ruby Rose, Trinidad James and John Lithgow have also been added to the cast in recent announcements.
With those high notes to grab on to, is Pitch 3 going to be aca-awesome?
It's too early to tell, but The Hollywood Reporter has compiled all of the available information on Barden Bellas 3.0 (so far) into a helpful cheat sheet below for fans to stay updated. Keep checking back for news.
PITCH PERFECT 3 CHEAT SHEET:
Anna Kendrick: Plays Beca Mitchell, one of the leaders of the Barden Bellas. The actress confirmed the news with a simple caption of: "Happening #3" (see above).
Rebel Wilson: Plays Barden Bella Fat Amy. In November, Wilson officially broke the news on Ellen, saying they will start to film "next year."
Brittany Snow: Plays Barden Bella and three-time super senior Chloe Beale.
Anna Camp: Plays Barden Bella graduate Aubrey Posen.
Hailee Steinfeld: Plays Emily Junk, who joined the Bellas as a freshman in Pitch Perfect 2.
Elizabeth Banks: The actress-filmmaker, who has appeared in both films as commentator Gail Abernathy-McKadden, was initially set to return to the director's chair for the third installment. Banks, who made her directorial debut with the second film and co-produced the first, is vacating the director's chair, it was announced in June. She will remain on the film as a producer, along with her husband, Max Handelman, and Gold Circle's Paul Brooks.
Trish Sie: Sie has only directed one film but it was key to her getting the job: Step Up All In, the fifth installment of the franchise. Sie also choreographed the viral music videos for Ok Go, including "Upside Down & Inside Out" and "Here it Goes Again."
Kay Cannon: The screenwriter penned the first two installments and will be returning to write the third script.
Chrissie Fit (Flo), Shelley Regner (Ashley), Ester Dean (Cynthia Rose), Hana Mae Lee (Lilly) and Kelley Jakle (Jessica): On Jan. 6, Kendrick shared the first photo of the cast on her Instagram, confirming a slate of returning stars who were pictured with already confirmed castmembers Wilson, Snow and Camp. She captioned the snap with a single word: “team."
Ruby Rose and Trinidad James: The Orange Is the New Black star and rapper join the cast to play members of two competing singing groups.
John Lithgow: The SAG Award-winning star of Netflix's The Crown has been added to the cast, though his character description is being kept under wraps.
Others in the ensemble cast are still to-be-determined, including Wilson's love interest, played by Adam DeVine, and Skylar Astin (Camp's real-life husband and Kendrick's on-screen love interest Jesse Swanson). In April, Astin has said he was simply waiting for the call: "When the time comes and when it's time to pick up the phone, I know they will and they know that I'll answer."
Plot details surrounding the third film are being largely kept under wraps, with Universal revealing only one detail — "Get ready to have a Merry Pitchmas" — when the studio announced that the film is set to open in the heart of the lucrative year-end holiday season in 2017.
Details are scarce likely because they are still being developed. Several of the castmembers yet to sign on have spoken out about how they are waiting for a phone call to return once the details are indeed locked and loaded.
"This process is such a long one and I've been through it before between the first and second movies," Astin also recently said. "If the script was written and they knew what my role was completely and they were deciding to not let me in on it, that would be strange. But I know that's it's so in flux on a daily basis that they probably want to keep us out of it for our own best interest, and we really understand that."
With three years lapsing onscreen between the first two films, Beca, Fat Amy and three-time super senior Chloe were all presumably in their last year of college in the sequel, with Steinfeld's Emily coming in as the lone freshman Bella. Until more details are released, it's unclear what roles the graduates will have when they return and whether or not Steinfeld will get star billing.
Since both movies were filmed on and around Louisiana State University's campus in Baton Rouge, it seems safe to assume that the franchise will return to its shooting stomping grounds if the plot brings the gang back to Barden University.
The film has changed its release date several times. Given an original summer date of July 21, 2017, the film was then pushed back to Aug. 4, 2017 before returning to its original date. Most recently, Universal again pushed the film back — this time for a holiday season release of Dec. 22, 2017.
Though the cost of bringing back Kendrick and Wilson could not have come cheap (options weren't in place for the pair, who earned $2 million each for Pitch 2), sources also told THR that Universal and Golden Circle were eyeing a franchise when they locked in Steinfeld.
While the sequel wasn't as well received by critics (the first film maintains an 80 percent fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes, whereas the follow-up has a 66 percent rating on the Tomatometer), the reviews didn't hurt the franchise's box-office success the second time around.
To date, the musical franchise has a global gross of $402 million, including 2012's Pitch Perfect and 2015's Pitch Perfect 2.
The original film was a sleeper hit, grossing $115 million on a $17 million budget. The second, which is the highest-grossing musical comedy film ever, raked in $287 million on a $29 million budget.
Photos: Universal Pictures