For the long-awaited sequel Murder Mystery 2, which features the Spitze family flying to a private island, Adam Sandler and Jennifer Aniston return.

Jeremy Garelick (The Wedding Ringer), who is currently writing, producing, and directing Netflix’s unexpected sequel, told another insider that he is willing to shoot 10 more episodes of the mystery-comedy. Sandler and Aniston in a series of murder mysteries? Include us.

Nick (Sandler) and Audrey (Aniston) Spitz are still having trouble getting their own private investigation firm acknowledged four years after their European fiasco. How difficult could it be after they deciphered their first puzzle? That very issue is tested when The Maharajah (Adeel Akhtar) personally invites the couple to a lavish wedding. The Spitzes depart for a private island where a fresh batch of suspects—er, guests—are eager to party. The Maharajah is soon taken prisoner, though, and Nick and Audrey must sort through the evidence and the chaos. Mark Strong, Melanie Laurent, John Kani, Jodie Turner-Smith, Jillian Bell, and other actors can be seen in Murder Mystery 2.

In their one-on-one interview, which you can watch above or read about below, Garelick talks about how Sandler and Aniston “great playing off of each other,” how the script was written for the two of them, and how the opening recap and the cliffhanger ending came about. He gives us a sneak peek at the massive dance number from the sequel, speaks about working on set with second unit directors J.J. Perry and Spiro Razatos on the action-packed sequences, and briefly discusses the abandoned high school he bought for his production company, American High.

JEREMY GARELICK: Yeah, I think it was in post, it was in post-production where we wanted to make sure that even if you didn’t see the first one, you can understand where you’re coming from. We like the idea of the old TV shows, playing it like The Odd Couple type of a thing, or The A-Team. It felt like, you know, “We’re just catching you up, in case you missed it!” So that was how we made that decision.

Speaking of posts, I find the revising process to be fascinating because it’s where everything comes together. What did you discover during early test screenings or screenings for friends and family that truly changed the movie?

GARELICK: When we first screened it in front of an audience, we discovered that everyone adored the film. It was incredible to watch audience members laugh and appreciate the movie, and everyone adored Adam and Jen. We receive comments regarding the pacing or certain quips that we tested and were successful. We observed the audience’s response, so if a story is told and no one laughs, we insert one of 35 alternate jokes. In essence, this is what we did.

In my opinion, Adam and Jennifer work really well together. What makes these pictures work is their chemistry. Can you describe what it’s like working with them on set? How much of the script and how much of them coming up with alternates for many scenarios, as you said, is their responsibility?

GARELICK: Well, a lot of the script is designed for them, written for them, but they’re also putting a lot of– they’re both producers, they’re both writers, and they put a lot of their own voice into the script. So, by the time we get to set, they’ve already really processed and worked out a lot of the kinks, so a lot of the improv and the ideas that they had were already put into the scene.

When we got to the set, you would get what was on the page and then they would contribute to it and play off of it. They are so much fun together and are great at playing off of each other. However, there was a team on set that was writing alternate characters, so we would just attempt all these jokes. There are some murderers there that appear in the film, and it’s entertaining.

Without giving away any surprises, I must ask you how you chose the conclusion. Because there is a bit of a – what do you call it? – suspense.

GARELICK: Yes, we adore the concept of a suspense. Yes, it was simply-

Was that always in the script from the very beginning?

GARELICK: It was in a version of the script, but it was also– Actually, now that I think of it, we were actually planning on shooting a different scene for the ending, but because of COVID, the thing that we needed for that scene didn’t get there in time. So we had to come up with a different idea. So I remember pitching this to Adam, this idea, and then we just kind of did a pass at the scene and it was fun. It was a fun way to end, and it definitely makes the audience wonder what’s happening next, you know?

Since the first movie was such a huge success for Netflix, it makes sense that if this one is effective, they might decide to make another.

GARELICK: I propose performing 10 more.

Yes, I certainly want to ask about filming the wedding dance because it’s such a large number. Amazing costumes aside, I believe you withheld showing Adam and Jennifer the routine until they arrived on set. However, I could be mistaken.

Correct, GARELICK. I did this because I wanted them to feel like the movie’s protagonists. They were the most amazing artists, Mahina and Avishai. When planning an Indian wedding, we wanted to be sure to include a massive Bollywood performance and the best dancers and choreographers. Doing that was so enjoyable. We spent a lot of time working on an amazing original music that our composers created, and yes, I didn’t want Adam and Jen to know what was going to happen during the dance. They were winging their personalities and acting naturally.

Therefore, when others are observing, they ought to focus on their faces. Your second unit director, J.J. Perry, is someone I must mention. I think he created the pattern of the Eiffel Tower. Can you discuss that scene, as it’s a huge feat in this movie?

GARELICK: Huge. So, J.J. did the Eiffel Tower sequence, he did a lot of the fight sequences in there. Spiro [Razatos] did the car chase, the van chase sequence. We just had an incredible team of stunts and second-unit directors. J.J. is not only a great second-unit director, he’s an incredible director. He directed Day Shift for Netflix, did a great job. Such an incredible energy, spirit, so fun to be around, and really protected everybody, made sure everyone was safe, but we had a really fun time.

Do you already know what you’re thinking about doing next, I like to question directors.

GARELICK: I created a business called American High, where I purchased a high school to produce high school movies in upstate New York, and I’m currently writing something for them. John Hughes films, which I have always admired, were the only ones being produced at the time. Thus, I created a company called American High, which only produces high school movies, about five years ago after purchasing an abandoned high school in upstate New York. We worked with Pete Davidson on Big Time Adolescence, Vince Vaughn on The Binge, and Kuhoo Verma from [Murdery Mystery 2] on Plan B. I’m currently working on a high school drama that will be shot in April.


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