Cocaine Bear: is there a sequel called Cocaine Shark - is Steven Spielberg connected? Rumours explained

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As Cocaine Bear comes to cinemas, director Elizabeth Banks suggests a ‘Jaws with cocaine’ sequel

Horror comedy film Cocaine Bear, ever-so-lightly inspired by the true story of a 1985 drugs case, could be getting a Cocaine Shark sequel, but Steven Spielberg probably won’t be on board to direct.

Cocaine Bear landed in cinemas on Friday 24 February - the schlocky horror comedy follows a grizzly bear that snacks on a duffel bag full of cocaine that literally falls from the sky in a drug drop gone wrong before going on a rampage in a small town in the state of Georgia. A ragtag band of locals, tourists, police, and drug smugglers must work together if they are to survive the bear’s drug induced attack.

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The real story is a lot less exciting - the bear that ate the cocaine in 1985 simply passed out and died from a massive overdose, with no human fatalities. With recent news about another huge drugs discovery in an unlikely locations, rumours have spread online, fuelled by comments made by Cocaine Bear’s director, about a potential sequel featuring a ‘cocaine shark’.

Cocaine Bear is sure to have everyone talking about it.Cocaine Bear is sure to have everyone talking about it.
Cocaine Bear is sure to have everyone talking about it. | Universal

Is a Cocaine Bear sequel in the works?

Cocaine Bear writer Jimmy Warden suggested he would be keen to return for several sequels, he told Empire Magazine: “Yeah, for sure. Not just a sequel. Many sequels. ‘Cocaine Bear in Space’ is where we would probably end.”

Although he was joking about the astrobear idea, he is certainly up for land-based sequels - he added: “The bear’s not the bad guy in this movie. What happened is a product of circumstance and everybody else’s poor decisions. I think that is a story that we can continue to tell over and over again. I’d be excited to tell it because there are some really good ideas that we have for the subsequent movies.”

The film’s director Elizabeth Banks has also spoken about potential sequels - but with the coked-up animal changed. Taking inspiration from a recent news story in which New Zealand police found 3.5 tons of cocaine in the Pacific Ocean. Banks said: “If there’s a great story, then sure. Jaws with cocaine, I don’t see how that loses."

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She told EW: "I would seriously consider anything with a script as good as the script was for Cocaine Bear. I would never want to be compared to Jaws, that’s a classic that I don’t ever want to be compared to. So if it were differentiated enough, then anything’s possible."

Elizabeth Banks attends the Los Angeles premiere of Universal Pictures' "Cocaine Bear" at Regal LA Live on February 21, 2023 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by VALERIE MACON/AFP via Getty Images)Elizabeth Banks attends the Los Angeles premiere of Universal Pictures' "Cocaine Bear" at Regal LA Live on February 21, 2023 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by VALERIE MACON/AFP via Getty Images)
Elizabeth Banks attends the Los Angeles premiere of Universal Pictures' "Cocaine Bear" at Regal LA Live on February 21, 2023 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by VALERIE MACON/AFP via Getty Images) | AFP via Getty Images

Is Steven Spielberg on board to make Cocaine Shark?

The short answer is no, the long answer is no chance. The Oscar-winning director, known for classics including Schindler’s List, Saving Private Ryan, and his recent Oscar-nominated semi-autobiographical film, The Fabelmans, is not attached to a Cocaine Bear sequel.

The connection between Spielberg and a possible ‘Cocaine Shark’ sequel was made when Banks made the ‘Jaws with cocaine’ comment, as Spielberg directed the 1975 horror classic which was so popular that the term blockbuster was coined to describe it.

The 76 year old director has plenty of major high-profile projects in the works, including Gremlins 3, Real Steel 2, a Napoleon biopic, The Color Purple remake, and Transformers and Indiana Jones sequels. It’s very unlikely that Spielberg would find the time or motivation to work on a Cocaine Bear sequel, regardless of how much the internet may want him to.

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If a Cocaine Bear sequel is confirmed, it’s Elizabeth Banks is the most likely candidate to return as director, having already expressed interest in more films, and she will likely be joined by writer Jimmy Warden.

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