Why The Fifth Element never got a sequel
After cutting his teeth on pulpy, hyper-stylistic action fare in his native France, Luc Besson finally caught the eye of Hollywood with his 1990 Golden Globe-nominated action thriller La Femme Nikita. On the strength of that film and the acclaimed Leon: The Professional, Besson quickly made a name for himself as a visually distinctive director with a fondness for genre fare—a reputation he giddily carried into 1997's whacked-out space opera The Fifth Element.
Set largely in the 23rd century and starring Bruce Willis and Milla Jovovich, The Fifth Element was the most hotly anticipated film of Besson's young career when it premiered. Once it blasted its way into theaters, the film more than delivered on the gonzo set pieces and over-the-top action that Besson's fans had come to expect—even if it didn't quite break the U.S. box office. Still, it earned a fiercely devoted following, one that's only grown over the years. In this franchise-hungry era, it might seem surprising that we never got a sequel, but as it turns out, there may be a few good reasons The Fifth Element has never seen a second act.