The late Chadwick Boseman was set to star in L.A. Confidential 2 but Warner Bros. ended up passing on the project.
This news comes by way of The Ringer, which posted a retrospective on the way neo-noirs took over the 1990s, and in it, they state that Boseman would have played a young police officer in the sequel to 1997’s L.A. Confidential. However, the movie never came to be as Warner Bros. passed on it.
“A few years ago, the Oscar-winning filmmaker Brian Helgeland went to Warner Bros. with what seemed like a dynamite movie pitch: a sequel to L.A. Confidential, the 1997 Hollywood cop drama he co-wrote with director Curtis Hanson,” The Ringer writes. “Helgeland had already secured a top-tier cast, including returning Confidential costars Russell Crowe and Guy Pearce, alongside Chadwick Boseman, who’d be playing a young police officer.”
Helgeland had developed the sequel’s story with L.A. Confidential novelist James Ellroy, according to The Ringer, and it was set in the mid-1970s. Helgeland said he had worked the entire thing out, stating that “it was great,” but ultimately, Warner Bros. passed on the project.
“The studio’s veto made for a downbeat, think-what-coulda-been ending — much like the conclusion of L.A. Confidential itself,” The Ringer writes. “But the rejection is especially surprising when you consider that, 24 years ago, L.A. Confidential was one of the most beloved entries in a genre beloved by executives and audiences alike: the neo-noir.”
L.A. Confidential 2 has been making headlines as far back as 2007 when it was reported by IGN that Helgeland and Hanson were teaming up once more to make the sequel. Boseman’s involvement wasn’t known back then, however, as it seems his role was written up a few years ago.
The Ringer’s piece goes on to discuss the 1990’s fascination with the neo-noir genre and it’s well worth a read, but that doesn’t make it any less sad that we’ll never see what a sequel to L.A. Confidential starring Boseman would have looked like.
Boseman died last August, but Marvel’s What If? series will feature the actor’s final performance when it hits Disney Plus next month. Elsewhere, Marvel’s Black Panther 2 is still happening despite Boseman’s death because it’s what he would have wanted, according to director Ryan Coogler. Don’t expect a cameo from Boseman in Black Panther 2, though, as the sequel was reshaped to be respectful of the loss of Boseman.
Wesley LeBlanc is a freelance news writer and guide maker for IGN. You can follow him on Twitter @LeBlancWes.