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A Van Wilder Sequel?

Published September 20, 2005 in Casting Update
By Ryan Parsons | Image property of New Line Cinema
Kal Penn Kal Penn
When I first heard of the possibility of a Van Wilder sequel I could only clap my hands and cheer. Based on the film that re-discovered the extremely comedic Ryan Reynolds, I had hoped the sequel would allow us to check in on Wilder and see how he is doing now that he has graduated. I figured this would basically allow for a two-hour showing of Two Guys, A Girl and A Pizza Place with Wilder living his life out of an apartment scrapping to get by as a med student. I know, it sounds far fetched, but it would have come easy to Reynolds and casting would have been beyond simple.

But no, Ryan Reynolds has announced that he will not be involved with the sequel, which should have immediately signaled the red light on this film. Instead, Myriad Pictures decided not to take Ryan Reynolds refusal lying down and has passed the starring role over to... Kal Penn?

Katey Sagal in LOST

The fact that Kal Penn would want to attempt to a sequel to the brilliantly funny Van Wilder initially came as a shock. With a role in Superman Returns, I thought Penn hit a level that would not allow him to stoop to get-an-extra-buck sequels. But here we have it and, according to ComingSoon, the Wilder sequel will be titled Van Wilder: The Rise of Taj.

The story will shift over to Penn's character Taj, Van Wilder's sidekick and protégé from the first film, as he arrives at Oxford University to show the stuffy Brits how to party. Though I liked Penn's performance as Taj in the original Van Wilder, I thought he was above obnoxious in Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle. Can we handle a Wilder film led by Penn? Let's wait and see.

Since I did happen to mention Two Guys, A Girl and A Pizza Place, I will request again that this series finally gets some movement thanks to the WE channel and land itself in a DVD box set on retailers shelves. Just my two cents.

Stay tuned for updates.

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Ryan Parsons
Sources: Image property of New Line Cinema

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