Legally Blonde fans, here’s good news. Legally Blonde 3, which will see the return of Reese Witherspoon as Elle Woods, is coming in 2022. “Elle Woods is back!” MGM Studios announced. “Legally Blonde 3 coming May 2022. We rest our case.”
It’s been 17 years since Witherspoon played the fan-favorite character. Two years ago, the actress began talking to Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer about producing and starring in the long-awaited sequel. The sequel was scheduled to come out on May 8th, 2020, but the project faced delays and COVID-19. Earlier in the summer, Mindy Kaling, known for The Office and her delightful books, was hired to co-write a new script for the sequel.
Kaling’s hiring was a promising development for the sequel. She’s the perfect writer for the voice of Elle Woods, as well as a friend and collaborator of Witherspoon’s. “I was nervous because the movie is so iconic,” she told People. “But then I thought, ‘It’d be really fun to see that character in her 40s. What is Elle Woods dealing with as a 41-year-old woman?’ And it’s been really funny to write. I’m working on it with my friend Dan [Goor], and I think it’s going to be a great movie for Reese and people are going to love to see her in this part.”
In the first film, Woods navigated the waters of Harvard University, where she got her law degree. In the second film, she was working on a life in politics. Both comedies mean a lot to women, especially those who grew up with Elle Woods. Recently, during an anniversary conversation about the first movie, Witherspoon told her fellow castmates how much the original movie touched people. “I can’t tell you what it means to me to see your faces,” she said. “This was my college. This is where I went to college. I didn’t finish college but I finished ‘Legally Blonde (available on Amazon).’ We all worked together and made this movie together that has inspired so many young people. It’s just such a gift. Every time people come up to me and tell me they love this movie, I give it all to you, I share it all with you all.”
Both movies were box-office successes. With a budget of only $18 million, the first movie made over $141 million worldwide, on top of favorable reviews. It was beloved and quoted instantly when it came out and hit pop culture like a freight train. Two years later, the sequel came out. It was a success but not as popular as the original. With twice the budget, the comedy made around $20 million less than the first movie. The sequel wasn’t as well-received either, but it has its fans.
Woods is a positive character who’d be a delight to watch during these dark days. We could always use more authentic feel-good movies. Witherspoon, too, thought another story about a character as unabashedly optimistic and kind as Elle Woods would be compelling in today’s world. The actress and the producer’s production company, Hello Sunshine, is working on Legally Blonde 3.
With her production banner, Witherspoon has been doing some of her best work in front of and behind the camera, including Wild and Gone Girl. A fun fact about Gone Girl: Witherspoon optioned the bestselling book for herself to star in the adaptation. When director David Fincher boarded the project, he thought she wasn’t right for the lead role. Witherspoon respected Fincher’s vision, and then she produced that vision to great results. Most recently, the actress was excellent in season one of The Morning Show.
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