Tate Taylor exclusively tells EW his idea for a sequel, which has Ma switching professions.

By Joey Nolfi
February 05, 2021 at 01:07 PM EST
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Ma might not be drinking alone much longer.

Tate Taylor — director of the endlessly meme-d 2019 camp-horror classic starring Octavia Spencer as a murderous recluse targeting a clique of boozy teens in rural America — exclusively tells EW he's toying with an early idea for a sequel after the first film's cliffhanger ending.

"Can you believe how much Ma lives on? Isn't that just crazy?" Taylor says during an interview for his new movie Breaking News in Yuba County, noting that he has faith in Spencer — his longtime friend and collaborator — doing a continuation, though nothing is official just yet. "I don't think we thought Ma was going to have this afterlife as this cult thing, and I think it's worth discussing [a sequel]. I know Octavia would do it, that's why I purposely left her death ambiguous!"

The original concluded with the film's central, tortured teens (led by Diana Silvers) escaping Ma's clutches after she barricaded (and maimed) them in her basement. As the group escapes, Ma's house catches on fire, but instead of fleeing herself, Ma retreats to her bedroom, where she lays down with the body of Ben (Luke Evans), her high school crush (and, as it's revealed, accomplice in a sexual abuse plot against her) that she previously murdered. Her death is implied, but never shown onscreen.

"My idea is that she's moved to another town, and she has open houses in another city and kills people in the open house," Taylor explains of potentially switching up Ma's profession from no-nonsense vet tech to killer realtor. "I think she'd be a real estate agent in the Pacific Northwest, and just murder white people looking at McMansions. That's as far as I've gotten!"

Since its debut in May 2019, Ma has become a viral internet sensation, with social media consistently producing memes related to the film, including a movement that saw users editing images from Ma into other famous films — which Spencer herself eventually got in on.

While the film has gained a cult following, it marked a pivotal moment for Spencer, who played the part after growing tired of seeing Black people "always" dying in horror films: "There are archetypes people only want to see me as," she told EW at the time of release ("wise characters" wearing "period wigs and costumes," as Taylor explained) "So I had to change that for myself [and] the next young woman of color to be able to play every type of role."

Taylor's Breaking News in Yuba County — also starring Ma supporting actresses Allison Janney and Juliette Lewis — releases digitally on Feb. 12.

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