Inside The ‘Buckaroo Banzai’ Sequel That Was To Be, And Which Still May Happen

By Nisha Gopalan

Remember how at the end of “The Adventures of Buckaroo Bonzai Across the 8th Dimension,” there was a cruel teaser for a sequel titled “Buckaroo Bonzai Against the World Crime League?” Or perhaps you don’t…because that promise was made, oh, 24 years ago.

Well, MTV News chatted with that movie’s co-creator/writer Earl Mac Rauch — currently working on a slew of new Buckaroo comic books — to find out if cinema’s only neuroscientist, rock star, race-car driver, physicist, adventurist (in yo’ face, Indiana Jones!) will ever bring his brand of intergalactic, space-time continuum antics to the big screen again. And the answer? Just maybe.

“We had so many ideas,” says Rauch. The scribe also remembers a “Buckaroo” TV series almost coming to light back in ’99, before suddenly falling apart. “The pilot was very close to happening,” he laments. “We would’ve gone to casting.” But he, too, has steadfastly hung onto the hope of another “Buckaroo” feature film and he even has a rough plot for it.

“The World Crime League is a pretty deep subject in itself. It’s basically a dark mirror of the Bonzai Institute [a.k.a. the good guys’ organization],” he says. “The dueling think tanks also kill each other, not for government but for shadowy organizations. They’re constantly engaged in everyday adventures.”

So far there’s no Hollywood interest, but Rauch is keeping those ideas on standby. In this climate where comics are frequently arbitrating cinematic taste, he’s happy to first gage fans’ renewed interest in the franchise through the Buckaroo comics.

“You can never say never. I’ll keep doing this for a few years and just see if people really want to read these things,” he says. “And I’ll hopefully get a few novels out to maybe strike a chord.” If these titles do resonate with readers—or more pointedly, producers—the author would like to submit one idea for the lead role originally played by Peter Weller (Robocop). “At one point, I thought Benjamin Bratt had the look,” he says before demuring, “but it wouldn’t be up to be in any case, it’d be up to some studio guy. Let’s just say it’d be a nice problem to have if they were going to cast the movie.”

Who do you think should star as Buckaroo Bonzai, Perfect Tommy, Penny Priddy, and the rest of the gang? And what’s the consensus on the Buckarro comics thus far? Can this actually help push a sequel into development?