Any movie — even a potential follow-up to 2007’s “The Simpsons Movie” — is all about the characters. And the writers, cast, and crew of a potential “Simpsons Movie” sequel already have the opportunity to focus on those characters and tell their stories 22 times a year.
After all, “The Simpsons” is still a primetime weekly series for Fox, and the staff is contractually obligated to produce nearly two dozen half-hour episodes a season. Not only is everyone involved with “The Simpsons” extremely busy and preoccupied with the creative and physical labor of making a network television series, but they also tend to use up any and all good stories for Homer, Marge, Bart, Lisa, Maggie, and the hundreds of other residents of Springfield. To make a movie would require a very grand idea, worthy of the participants’ time and the big-screen treatment.
That may shed a bit of light on comments from several “Simpsons” producers who participated in a panel discussion at the 2016 San Diego Comic-Con. During the event, they indicated why a sequel hadn’t yet entered production. “We talk about it, but if we do it we only want to do it if it’s going to be really good,” writer/producer Al Jean said. “We would never do it just to cash in, so if it comes out, it’s because we believe in it.” Further driving the point home, Jean also spoke with Entertainment Weekly in 2015 and gave them the likelihood of another film: “My guess it’s 50-50.”
More recently, Jean spoke with ComicBook.com in 2021 and indicated that they’d been seriously considering a sequel before COVID-19 temporarily shut down Hollywood. “We were really talking about it a lot before the pandemic,” he said. “And now I think just as a caution, I want to see how movies and, specifically, animated movies come back because I wouldn’t want to do it just as a streaming experience. We really want it to be a theatrical movie because that was the point of the first one, it was a thing you couldn’t get anywhere else.” With the success of films like “The Super Mario Bros. Movie,” maybe that will inspire the “Simpsons” producers to finally get the animated ball rolling.