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Ready Player Two Release Date, Cast, And Plot - What We Know So Far

The novel for "Ready Player One" may have come out in 2011, but it remains prescient a decade later. With themes related to how society becomes over-reliant on technology and how each subsequent generation has an unhealthy obsession with nostalgia, there's a lot to take in. And with so many pop culture references jammed between the covers, the book practically begged for a big-screen adaptation, which it finally received in 2018. 

Directed by Steven Spielberg no less, the film became a box office smash, grossing over $580 million worldwide. Those are some impressive numbers, so one would imagine Warner Bros. would chomp at the bit to do a sequel. Author Ernest Cline answered those prayers in November 2020 with the release of "Ready Player Two," which picks up shortly after the events of the first story. Cline has also confirmed that a film sequel is also in early development, and while details are sparse at this point, here's what we know so far about the movie adaptation of "Ready Player Two."

What's the release date for Ready Player Two?

There aren't many details known about "Ready Player Two" at this point other than the fact it's in the "early stages." Author Ernest Cline spoke with Inverse about the film's development, mentioning how the COVID-19 pandemic, which shuttered numerous productions, has caused everything to be in a state of flux. He goes on to say, "I can tell from the experience of making the first movie that everybody had a lot of fun. We talked about the possibility of there being a 'Ready Player Two' when we were making 'Ready Player One.' In Hollywood you never know. I really tried my best to focus on just writing a sequel to my book."

As for when we might feasibly see "Ready Player Two" on the big screen, it could take a while. It took eight years from Warner Bros. acquiring the rights to "Ready Player One" for that story to finally come out for the general public to watch (via Screen Rant). Hopefully, things will move more quickly for the sequel now that Warner Bros. can be confident that there's an audience for this franchise.

Who's in the cast for Ready Player Two?

While a lot of characters from "Ready Player One" return in the sequel, there's so far only one cast member who's made it public that she'd be back for a sequel. Back in 2018, Olivia Cookie, who plays Samantha/Art3mis, stated in an interview with Digital Spy, "I've signed my life away, so I'm contracted to sequels but I don't know [if they're happening]. I haven't heard anything. We'll see." Hopefully, production on the sequel won't interfere with the actress's commitments filming "House of the Dragon" for HBO. 

None of the other actors from the first film have come forward publicly about whether they signed on for multiple movies in the franchise. Assuming they did, audiences could also anticipate the return of Tye Sheridan as Wade Watts, Lena Waithe as Helen/Aech, Win Morisaki as Toshiro/Daito, Philip Zhao as Zhou/Sho, Mark Rylance as James Halliday, and Simon Pegg as Ogden Morrow. The "Ready Player Two" book also has a plot point where Nolan Sorrento, who Ben Mendelsohn played in the first film, escapes from prison, so he could also return to the proceedings. 

What's the plot of Ready Player Two?

"Ready Player One" ends with Wade, who spent all his life in poverty, inheriting James Halliday's massive fortune and total control of the OASIS. You'll remember that as the online realm pretty much everyone exists in, since war, climate change, and overpopulation have ruined the actual planet. It seems like a fairy-tale ending, but seeing as how a sequel's in the mix, things don't stay that way for long. 

"Ready Player Two" kicks off when Wade uncovers a new technology known as the ONI, a headset allowing users to integrate all of their senses with the OASIS fully. Against Samantha's wishes, who believes the headset could be dangerous in the wrong hands, Wade decides to release the new tech to the world. It's not long after that a new Easter egg hunt commences where gunters attempt to track down Seven Shards of the Siren's Soul.

Even for those who have already read the book, the movie will undoubtedly have a few surprises. All three of the main challenges in "Ready Player One" were wholly changed to be more streamlined for the film. Chances are something similar would occur with the sequel so that everything fits tidily in a two-hour movie.