'Happy Death Day 2U' Stars Talk Switching Genres for Sequel

"By adding the science fiction element, by kind of putting in this emotional core for Tree and amping up the comedy, amping up the scares, we were able to very easily make this film its own new wonderful hybrid," Jessica Rothe said.

Happy Death Day writer-director Christopher Landon follows up his 2017 breakout hit Happy Death Day, in which Theresa “Tree” Gelbman (Jessica Rothe) finds herself in a time loop where she is murdered over and over by a masked killer, by bringing a sci-fi element to Happy Death Day 2U.

The film’s stars, Rothe and Israel Broussard, spoke to The Hollywood Reporter In Studio about the idea of switching genres for the sequel.

“I think the amazing thing for us about getting to make the sequel is Chris Landon, our incredible writer, director, leader, fearless captain, the biggest thing for him was if we’re going to make a sequel, [we] don’t want to make the same movie twice, and I think with any film, especially a loop film, that’s an incredibly easy thing to do and sometimes sequels often feel repetitive,” Rothe explained.

In Happy Death Day 2U, Landon makes the genre switch by taking the killer time loop to another dimension.

“By adding the science fiction element, by kind of putting in this emotional core for Tree and amping up the comedy, amping up the scares, we were able to very easily make this film its own new wonderful hybrid,” Rothe said.

Added Broussard: “You’ll notice in the second [film] that Chris kind of brought all these subtleties that you saw in the first one and brought some light on that, and then flipped everything you know about the first one around. So it’s a little all over the place at first, but it’s a fun little adventure trying to figure everything out.”

Watch the video above to hear Rothe and Broussard talk a possible third film, the upcoming To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before sequel and more. 

Happy Death Day 2U is currently in theaters.