M. Night Shyamalan confirmed today what fans have speculated for months: His next film will be a sequel to both Unbreakable and Split, his movies set in a world where mundane people develop supernatural abilities, not unlike they do in superhero comic books.
The director broke the news on his Twitter account:
Since making Unbreakable in 2000, Shyamalan has been open about his desire to return to the setting, especially now that superheroes are so prominent in Hollywood. The film followed David Dunn (Bruce Willis), the survivor of multiple near death experiences, who is approached by Elijah Price (Samuel L. Jackson), a comic shop owner who believes he has superpowers that make him “unbreakable.”
“At the time, [Unbreakable] was completely novel,” Shyamalan told Collider in 2015. “I remember when I made it, Disney was literally like, ‘Comic books?! There’s no market for comic books!’ That’s all they make now! It was a hilarious conversation. I remember it. I was like, ‘Maybe you’re right. Maybe nobody will come see comic book movies.’”
But speculation about the director’s immediate plans was ignited by the release of Split, which hit wide release in January of this year. Split starred James McAvoy as Kevin Wendell Crumb, a man (presumably falsely) diagnosed with dissociative identity disorder. One of his “identities” possesses superhuman abilities, and a final scene in the film confirms that it takes place in the same setting as Unbreakable.
In his Twitter thread about Glass, Shyamalan characterized his new film as a sequel to both Unbreakable and Split, saying “It was always my dream to have both films collide in this third film.” Considering the film’s name, it’s likely that it will focus on Jackson’s Elijah Price, who became known to the wider world as “Mr. Glass,” following the events of Unbreakable.
Willis, Jackson and McAvoy will all return to reprise their roles, as well as Anya Taylor-Joy, who played one of Crumb’s captives, Casey Cooke, in Split. Glass will hit theaters on Jan. 18, 2019.