In an unexpected move, Warner Bros. appears on course to develop a sequel to their 2016 feature The Accountant, a thriller that starred Ben Affleck. As reported by Deadline, the studio is looking to court not only Affleck to return, but also the film’s original director Gavin O’Connor (Warrior) and screenwriter Bill Dubuque. No deal at present time appears to be set, but reportedly all players – as well as producers Lynette Howell Taylor and Mark Williams – are looking to come to the table to sort out ideas for a second outing.
The Accountant starred Affleck as a math savant who upon taking a new job, became target of the Treasury Department. He further utilized his former skills as an assassin to save himself and others as the body counts around him started to grow. The film also featured Oscar-winner J.K. Simmons (Whiplash), Anna Kendrick (Pitch Perfect), John Lithgow (Beatriz at Dinner), Alison Wright (The Americans), Jeffrey Tambor (Transparent) and Jon Bernthal (The Wolf of Wall Street).
Deadline also reports that Bernthal, soon to be seen in Edgar Wright’s Baby Driver and the Sundance hit Wind River, may be featured significantly in a second The Accountant installment; Bernthal’s character was revealed to be the brother of Affleck’s main character in the first outing. As of now, it remains uncertain if any of the other actors from the first film will join a sequel.
Curiously, The Accountant is now exactly the type of film typically given the franchise treatment and certainly was considered originally as a standalone thriller. While reviews for the film were fairly muted, the film was a small-scaled hit – raking in $86 million domestically and $155 million worldwide off a fairly slim budget of $44 million – which may have weighed in interest in a second go around. More so and perhaps more importantly, Affleck and Warner Bros. extend a strong relationship. Affleck’s previous WB films include the Oscar-winning Argo (which Affleck also directed), DC Comics flicks Batman v Superman and the forthcoming Justice League as well as last winter’s Live By Night (another film directed by Affleck).
We will stay tuned to the latest developments.