Star not confirmed to reprise role of Agent J as screenwriter Oren Uziel begins followup to franchise-best third film.
Men in Black will be revived for a fourth instalment of the science fiction film saga – but this time they could be fighting Earth-dwelling extra-terrestrials without original star Will Smith.
Studio Sony has asked screenwriter Oren Uziel to script Men in Black 4 following the critical and commercial success of the belated third film in the series last year. Men in Black 3, which featured Smith alongside older and younger versions of partner Agent K played by Tommy Lee Jones and Josh Brolin, took a franchise-best $624m across the globe.
According to the Hollywood Reporter, it is not clear at this stage whether the famously picky Smith is interested in reprising the role of Agent J, and there's no deal in place for Brolin to return either. Likewise Britain'sEmma Thompson, who played new character Agent O, is not yet contracted for a second film.
Prior to completing Men in Black 4, Uziel will write the screenplay for a second 21 Jump Street film for Sony. Last year's comedic update of the 1980s TV show, about youthful-looking DEA agents sent into high schools to uncover crime, made $200m around the globe. Stars Channing Tatum and Jonah Hill look set to return, this time heading into college in search of lawbreakers.
Uziel appears to be relatively untried in Hollywood. According to the IMDb website, his only completed screenplay to date is one for the 2010 straight-to-video effort Mortal Kombat: Rebirth.