Cast your mind back to the ancient dystopian days of 2016, reader, and you may recall that at one point, Sony planned to have its hilarious Jump Street reboot series cross over with Men in Black. Flashforward 6 years, and the film MIB 23, which would’ve also effectively served as 23 Jump Street, has sadly not happened. So what was the deal with that?
Phil Lord and Chris Miller, directors of the two Jump Street films, shed some light on the crossover that never came to fruition. On the Happy. Sad. Confused. podcast, the duo talked about how what ultimately doomed the crossover was that the two franchises are fairly different from one another. “It was crazy trying to manage these two franchises,” Lord said, adding that it was challenging not to “drive these two franchises into the ground.” (A little too late for that, even though International was fine.)
The idea at the very least was rock solid according to the duo, and one that they absolutely loved: Schmidt (Jonah Hill) and Jenko (Channing Tatum) would be doing their medical school adventure teased during 22’s credits gag, only to stumble into finding out the Men in Black organisation existed. With MIB agents by their side (the duo were vague on if the agents would’ve been wholly new or Chris Hemsworth and Tessa Thompson’s International characters), the pair would stop an alien invasion and was “really funny,” according to both directors. One of the gags in the film, Miller revealed, would be that the heroes would have to work their way up to wearing the iconic MIB suits. “The Black Suits were like martial arts belts,” he said, “you had to work your way up to black and the Jump Street guys were issued powered blue suits.”
MIB 23 wasn’t the only Jump Street film in the works. Also in 2016, Sony announced plans for a female-led spinoff starring Tiffany Haddish and Nora Lum that never got off the ground. It sounds like the franchise will remain in stasis for a while; Lord said that the female-led one is in “soft development,” though it could also easily be a joke. With how busy the two tend to be, fans will just have to be content with watching the two Jump Street films: the first one is on Netflix, while the second is on Prime Video and Apple TV.