The 1984 mockumentary This is Spinal Tap has a special place in the hearts of both cinephiles AND music enthusiasts. While the film itself, which served as the directorial debut of Rob Reiner, used a mock-documentary format to tell the story about a loud, obnoxious, and crass heavy metal band from England who always seems to be losing and replacing drummers, those who played the fictional band actually took their toles to heart after-the-fact. Ever since the film came out in 1984, lead actors Michael McKean (David St. Hubbins), Harry Shearer (Derek Smalls), and Christopher Guest (Nigel Tufnel) have reunited many times to actual perform full-blown concerts. Some may forget, the actors actually wrote the music and lyrics to the songs in the first place (and co-wrote the script with Reiner). And their music has become endeared by fans of the movie as if they were a real band. Now, we'll get to catch up with their characters as it's been confirmed a sequel, tentatively titled This Is Spinal Tap II, is happening with the original actors and Reiner returning.
Announced today, Reiner explained in a new interview with Deadline why now felt like the time to do a follow-up:
“The plan is to do a sequel that comes out on the 40th anniversary of the original film, and I can tell you hardly a day goes by without someone saying, why don’t you do another one? For so many years, we said, ‘nah.’ It wasn’t until we came up with the right idea how to do this. You don’t want to just do it, to do it. You want to honor the first one and push it a little further with the story.”
Reiner also explained in the same interview how real life inspired the new film:
“They’ve [the actors on their off-time] played Albert Hall, played Wembley Stadium, all over the country and in Europe,. They haven’t spent any time together recently, and that became the premise. The idea was that Ian Faith, who was their manager, he passed away. In reality, Tony Hendra passed away. Ian’s widow inherited a contract that said Spinal Tap owed them one more concert. She was basically going to sue them if they didn’t. All these years and a lot of bad blood we’ll get into and they’re thrown back together and forced to deal with each other and play this concert.”
Sounds like the film will be utter chaos which for a heavy metal band, fictional or not, spells for good material for a documentary, again fictional or not.
Castlerock Entertainment will distribute This Is Spinal Tap II with a release date set for March 19th, 2024. Stay tuned!