Director Robert Rodriguez is once again mining his own filmography for the value of nostalgia, and has closed a deal with Netflix to write and direct a new take on his classic 2001 family adventure Spy Kids. This is familiar territory for Rodriguez, and very similar to the same move he pulled with 2020’s We Can Be Heroes for Netflix, which was a belated follow-up to 2005’s The Adventures of Sharkboy and Lavagirl in 3-D. Whereas that film was more or less a sequel set in the same universe, however, the Spy Kids project feels more like a traditional style of remake, rather than the currently popular trend of “legacy sequel.” We would theorize this would mean the original cast from the 2001 film would not be returning, aside from possible cameos.
According to The Wrap, Netflix made its deal with Spyglass, which owns the Spy Kids franchise, and Skydance, which will oversee development and production. The original film already had three sequels, which were all directed by Rodriguez, and featured original stars Antonio Banderas, Carla Gugino, Alexa PenaVega and Daryl Sabara. Together, entries in that series collectively gross more than $550 million at the worldwide box office. This new remake will take the franchise to the streaming world, however, where they’ll fit right in alongside the current fervor for 1990s and 2000s nostalgia that is so popular among millennial audiences.
Before Spy Kids, Rodriguez had been known as a director of edgier, sexier adult action fare, such as El Mariachi, Desperado and From Dusk Till Dawn. The success of Spy Kids sent his career in a more eclectic direction, and in recent years he’s directed the likes of the underrated Alita: Battle Angel and episodes of Disney+ series The Mandalorian and The Book of Boba Fett. We’ll bring you more information on his Spy Kids reboot as it develops.