With five years now gone since the trilogy capper hit theaters, Screen Rant’s Pitch Meeting series is looking back at Maze Runner: The Death Cure. Based on James Dashner’s novel of the same name, the final installment in the YA movie franchise saw Dylan O’Brien’s Thomas and his friends racing to save Ki Hong Lee’s Minho from WCKED and put a stop to the malevolent corporation once and for all. Again helmed by Wes Ball, the threequel scored largely mixed reviews from critics and was the lowest-grossing of the three movies, bringing in just shy of $289 million against its $62 million production budget.
The latest episode of Screen Rant’s own Pitch Meeting series is racing to the past to target Maze Runner: The Death Cure. The episode, as seen at the top of this article, pokes fun at the YA tropes the entire franchise was privy to during its run, which left many audiences lacking any major memories from the first two movies heading into the trilogy finale. The video also highlights the many flaws of the movie in particular, including its seemingly happy ending that potentially doomed humanity against the Flare virus.
During its run, The Maze Runner trilogy was one of many franchises keeping the YA genre at its peak in the wake of the Harry Potter and Twilight movie series ending. While Lionsgate ultimately came out on top of this heated genre with their successful Hunger Games adaptations, Maze Runner was situated squarely in the middle of the field, scoring largely mixed reviews across its three movies while performing fairly well at the box office, ultimately bringing in over $949 million worldwide.
Though Death Cure was said to be the conclusion to the franchise, as was the case with Dashner’s books, Disney announced shortly after acquiring 20th Century Fox that it had entered development on more Maze Runner movies in early 2019. At the time of writing, there have been no updates on said efforts, with the House of Mouse even infamously canceling Ball’s highly anticipated Mouse Guard adaptation and shifting their focus to rebooting the Percy Jackson franchise, whose rights were similarly held by Fox prior to the acquisition.
Given the YA genre is starting to enjoy something of a resurgence with the likes of the Hunger Games prequel, The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes, and the aforementioned Percy Jackson and the Olympians Disney+ show, it seems likely that if Disney does still have faith in future Maze Runner movies, they will begin moving forward following the ongoing SAG-AFTRA and Writers Guild of America strikes. With almost a decade gone since the movie trilogy first launched, one can hope that Disney is taking any and all lessons from the prior adaptations to heart in the hopes of delivering something that garners more than mixed reviews and modest box office numbers.