This weekend The Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials opens, and while I found the movie's story and script to be a mess I think director Wes Ball is the realest of the real deals, and he shows off a lot of chops this time around. He's a good filmmaker just waiting to explode out of this mid-range YA scifi world.
I've heard Ball's name whispered around a lot of projects - he's been getting attention in Hollywood (he should have been the director of Star Wars Episode IX) - but that doesn't mean he won't finish the story he started. There's one more Maze Runner movie yet to be made, an adaptation of the novel The Death Cure, and Ball will officially be returning to make it. Talking to Variety Ball said:
“We are setting up a lot of things that aren’t necessarily apparent in the second movie, but it will pay off big time in the third movie. So that has been my approach and I’m glad that I can finish the series. I’m lucky and thankful that they asked me to direct all three films. At first I wasn’t sure if I was going to do it or not, but honestly, it was the cast that I wanted to work with again. They are such great people.”
I really like this series! Even The Scorch Trials, which is troubled in fundamental ways, is a fun time at the movies. I especially love that this series will have one vision from beginning to end, a real rarity in the world of Hollywood franchise adaptations. The Maze Runner movies will be all Wes Ball's movies.
And after that? He has Fall of Gods, a Norse fantasy movie lined up. And from there who knows - Ball could be about to carve himself one of those careers that establishes himself as one of the greats in mainstream genre filmmaking. I'm excited to see what projects get his attention.