Almost 17 years have passed nce aliens destroyed the Empire State Building and the
White House in Roland Emmerich’s 1996 film "Independence Day".
Emmerich, whose latest action-packed flick "White House Down" hits theaters June 28, revealed his plans to bring more madness to the Independence Day story in the form of two sequels, ID Forever Part 1 and ID Forever Part 2.
"The films take place 20 years after the original, when a distress call sent by the first wave of aliens finally brings reinforcements to Earth. ”The humans knew that one day the aliens would come back,” explains the director, who completed two scripts with Independence Day co-writer Dean Devlin and has given them to White House Down writer-producer James Vanderbilt for a rewrite. ”And they know that the only way you can really travel in space is through wormholes. So for the aliens, it could take two or three weeks, but for us that’s 20 or 25 years.”
Emmerich says he’s also working with an art department staff to see how the world of ID Forever might look. “It’s a changed world. It’s like parallel history.
have harnessed all this alien technology. We don’t know how to duplicate it because it’s organically-grown technology, but we know how to take an antigravity device and put it in a human airplane,” he explains. And while there may be some familiar faces in the sequels — Bill Pullman has already confirmed that he is on board; Will Smith has not — their story lines will focus on a new generation of human heroes, including the stepson of Will Smith’s Independence Day character (played in that film by Ross Bagley). “It’s still some of the same characters, but also new younger characters; it’s a little bit like the sons take over,” says Emmerich, who promises that the first sequel will have a cliffhanger ending to keep audiences coming back for more. “The first one ends on a little success, but only enough to give the humans hope. And then in the second one they free themselves again .”
After the mass destruction of the original Independence Day, what’s left for new aliens to destroy? “We’ve rebuilt,” Emmerich answers, with a smile. “But
also do different things.”