"You've got to go to the Underverse," the actor tells SFX a couple of weeks out from the release of the back-to-basics "Riddick."
Remember how "Chronicles of Riddick" nearly killed the franchise started by 2000's "Pitch Black"? With its mix of high fantasy, Dame Judi Dench's prophetic space ghost, and the revelation that Vin Diesel's Richard D. Riddick was from a race called "Furyans," fans of the gritty "Aliens" riff "Pitch Black" were likely put off by the mismatch in tones and main character.
Well, that's not stopping Diesel from attempting a return to the Underverse with planned sequels in the pipe to September's "Riddick." The actor says he wants to take Riddick's journey back through the Underverse again before finally returning to his homeworld of Furya. Although, since he's the last of the Furyans, what would be there to find? Also, how am I just now realizing that with Riddick, Diesel and director David Twohy have effectively given us the closest thing we're going to get to a big-screen Lobo?
Anyway, Diesel hopes to use "Riddick" to lay the groundwork for the planned fourth movie, with Twohy adding:
[W]e don’t turn our backs on the mythology that we planted in the last movie, and we are actually bringing Karl [Urban] back for a few days of filming
to advance it and lay the groundwork for movie four. We’re concerned with paying off the loyal fans and think that if somebody doesn’t understand something the solution is to look at the other two movies and get up to speed. It does play in a gratifying way as a standalone movie, but there are threads that we continue to sew that we started in previous movies and will continue in future movies.
I might be poking a little fun at Diesel, but I have to confess: the actor has as admirable dedication to a character which should, by all rights be toxic after the last film. He's deeply invested in the fiction and the world he's helped create and that's something you don't see (publicly, at least) with other performers.
"Riddick" is out in theaters on September 4.