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Will We Ever Get To See Grown Ups 3?

For the most part, you know exactly what to expect going into an Adam Sandler movie. Sure, every so often, he throws us all for a loop and gives the world an "Uncut Gems," but most of Sandler's movies involve him doing silly voices, making juvenile jokes, and hanging out with a bunch of his friends. The mileage one gets out of each of those aspects varies significantly from one person to the next, but at this point, you only have yourself to blame if you're watching an Adam Sandler movie and get offended by the sight of a grown man projectile-vomiting while riding a bicycle. 

Nowhere is this better exemplified than in Sandler's only live-action film as of this writing to receive a sequel: "Grown Ups." The premise is perfectly Sandler-esque: It follows a group of friends who haven't seen each other in decades as they reunite after their old basketball coach passes away. They decide to spend the Fourth of July weekend together, catching up, reflecting on how much everything has changed, and getting into all sorts of hijinks. The film — which brought together Sandler's buddies like Chris Rock, David Spade, Kevin James, and Rob Schneider — exceeded expectations at the box office and pulled in enough money to warrant a sequel: 2013's "Grown Ups 2."

Surely, there could've been a way for the comedians to find an excuse to share the screen together again. Sadly for fans of the first two "Grown Ups" films, it looks like this series is probably going to stick to being a duology

Don't hold your breath for Grown Ups 3

If a comedy is going to get a sequel, then it's safe to say it'll be released shortly after the first. Two to three years is common, so the fact it's been eight years since "Grown Ups 2" dropped in theaters, it's not looking likely that "Grown Ups 3" will ever materialize. By the sound of it, the studio may have been interested in a threequel at some point, but as Nick Swardson, who plays the bus driver named Nick in the "Grown Ups" movies, explained in a 2020 interview with "The Rich Eisen Show," "[Adam Sandler] had talked about it and then there was another script out there that wasn't approved." 

Swardson isn't the only cast member who's been left in the dark regarding a sequel. Maria Bello, who plays Sally in both "Grown Ups" flicks, was asked about development on a sequel in 2016 while promoting the horror film "Lights Out." As she told Flickering Myth, "People have talked about it and we've heard it might happen. But I don't know if there is a script, I don't know what there is. But I hope so because, boy, it's fun to work with those guys."

It's now been six years since Bello's interview and there hasn't been much word since that time about a sequel. However, if you're really jonesing for some more Sandler hijinks in your life, there is a way you can read a third "Grown Ups" movie.

Technically, Grown Ups 3 is out there ... just not in the way you'd expect

In the event you keep on watching the Swardson interview, he continues to discuss a "Grown Ups 3" spec script that went viral around the same time. What exactly is he talking about? 

In January 2020, "The Best Show" host and television writer-producer Tom Scharpling unveiled on Twitter a spec script for a theoretical "Grown Ups 3" in the same vein as your typical Sandler flick. While the script starts out how you'd expect, a director soon yells "cut!" and it's revealed the actors (Sandler and the gang) are just playing characters. They proceed to portray exaggerated versions of themselves, and soon, a killer goes on the loose, murdering them one by one. Miraculously, the spec script maintains the same tone as a goofy Sandler comedy even with the killer at its center.

The spec script blew up so much online that Scharpling was actually interviewed about it on Vulture, where he discussed how his screenplay manages to capture an emotional pathos to the "Grown Ups" mythology. "It's a 'Grown Ups' movie that becomes a behind-the-scenes movie that becomes a slasher film that becomes this kind of meditation on aging and the inevitability of irrelevance that happens to everyone," Scharpling elaborated. "If you just stay around, then you lose at some point. Nobody ever beats show business, show business beats everybody."

All in all, the idea for "Grown Ups 3" is awesome for an exercise in meta-humor, but it's probably too out-there to ever be made. Still, one can dream.