Channing Tatum still wants to make “23 Jump Street” with Jonah Hill: ‘We’ve been trying to get it done’

“We would love to just get to go play again,” the "Magic Mike" star said.

Channing Tatum still has hope that another 21 Jump Street sequel could be on the horizon.

“There is a project that was written and it’s still the best script that I’ve ever read for a third movie,” the Magic Mike star told about the unmade comedy sequel 23 Jump Street. “It’s just a lot of bureaucracy, kind of above-the-line stuff. It’s really hard to get it made, and we’ve been trying to get it done.”

<p>Glen Wilson/Sony Pictures Releasing/Everett Collection</p> Jonah Hill and Channing Tatum in '22 Jump Street'

Glen Wilson/Sony Pictures Releasing/Everett Collection

Jonah Hill and Channing Tatum in '22 Jump Street'

“I would love to see 23,” Tatum continued. “I would love to do it with Jonah [Hill], and Jonah I know wants to do it. We would love to just get to go play again.”

It’s no wonder that Tatum would be keen to revisit the franchise, as 2012’s cheeky reinvention of the crime TV show helped solidify his status as a comedic leading man, and 2014’s 22 Jump Street was an even bigger hit than the already-successful original. The two films collectively grossed over half a billion dollars at the global box office.

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Chris Miller, one of the filmmakers who co-directed and co-wrote the first two movies, said that he and creative partner Phil Lord had crafted a first draft of 23 Jump Street in 2015. The situation got messier, however, when leaked emails from the Sony hacks revealed that that studio was developing a crossover between Jump Street and Men in Black. “jump street merging with mib i think that’s clean and rad and powerful,” Hill wrote in one of the emails, per The Wall Street Journal.

Details on that project are scarce, but early reports suggested that the film, tentatively titled MiB 23, would have seen Morton Schmidt (Hill) and Greg Jenko (Tatum) from the Jump Street movies embark on a case involving aliens from the Men in Black series, and that the characters played by Will Smith and Tommy Lee Jones wouldn’t be a major part of the movie.

<p>Glen Wilson/Sony Pictures Releasing/Everett Collection</p> Jonah Hill and Channing Tatum in '22 Jump Street'

Glen Wilson/Sony Pictures Releasing/Everett Collection

Jonah Hill and Channing Tatum in '22 Jump Street'

Sony officially confirmed MiB 23 at CinemaCon 2016, and The Muppets filmmaker James Bobin was in talks to direct the project; however, Hill expressed doubt that the crossover film would be made later that year.

“They’re trying to make all the deals, but it’s kind of impossible with all the Men in Black stuff,” he said. “The Jump Street films were so fun to make, and the whole joke of them was they were making fun of remakes and sequels and reboots, and then now it’s become a giant sequel, reboot. It’s almost become what we were making fun of, and it’s hard to maintain that joke when it’s so high-stakes.”

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Tatum explained that the crossover’s logistical difficulties came from the two franchises’ expensive executive producers.

“There’s [Steven] Spielberg, Neil Moritz, and Walter Parkes,” he said in an interview with Collider in 2022. “They’re giant producers, and once everybody’s kind of not willing to come off their fee, you end up having a producer fee that’s essentially maybe more than the actual budget of the movie.”

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Both Jump Street and Men in Black have attempted other franchise extensions since the crossover was put on hold. Sony began developing a female-centered spinoff of Jump Street with Bob’s Burgers writers Lizzie and Wendy Molyneux penning a screenplay, though that project never came to fruition. Meanwhile, the sequel Men in Black: International hit theaters in 2019. The film starred Chris Hemsworth and Tessa Thompson, was the first entry in the series to feature neither Smith nor Jones, and was the lowest grossing of the four films at just over $80 million worldwide, less than half that of the previous film in the franchise, Men in Black 3.

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