”Austin Powers in Goldmember” (July 26) finds the anachronistic ’60s swinger boogying back to disco’s golden age to combat a new nemesis, Goldmember. The sequel’s plot seems simple enough, but the task at hand — generating big box office — may prove difficult. After all, its 1999 predecessor, ”The Spy Who Shagged Me,” grossed a rousing $205 meeeellion. In fact, the film made as much money its opening weekend as the 1997 original did in its entire theatrical run. For No. 3, star Mike Myers and director Jay Roach are on a mission to outdo themselves again. ”We wanted to make the ‘Godfather II’ of broad comedy sequels in ‘Goldmember,”’ Myers says.
To get there, the new movie features a multiplatinum Grammy-winning diva, Destiny’s Child’s Beyoncé Knowles, and a guy who’s scored with Oscar twice (Michael Caine, as Austin’s spy dad, Nigel), a complete set of returning cast members, homages to movies as diverse as ”Roller Boogie” and Chaplin’s ”Modern Times,” and cameos from the likes of Tom Cruise, Gwyneth Paltrow, and Britney Spears. Sizewise, ”Goldmember” will be an eyebrow-raising third leg.