Scott Hardie | April 27, 2002
Here's another movie subject that Matt and I discussed over lunch today, like the Star Wars thing: What makes a sequel a sequel, and a prequel a prequel? Matt was complaining again about The Scorpion King, and I half-jokingly warned him not to say to Kevin that The Scorpion King is a sequel to The Mummy or The Mummy Returns. Kevin and I had gotten into a stupid argument a year earlier, in which Kevin said it's not part of the original series, since it has a new title. That's dumb, and Kevin's not, so I was a bit thrown off. Matt says maybe Kevin meant it was a prequel, but you know what, same damn thing. Whether it's earlier or later, it's a damn sequel.

Or is it? That launched into another brief discussion. Is The Phantom Menace a prequel to A New Hope, or is it a sequel to Return of the Jedi? Matt's inclined towards the former, myself to the latter. The upcoming Hannibal Lecter movie takes place before The Silence of the Lambs and Hannibal, but it's obviously the next film in this particular series. Prequel, sequel, same fucking thing, it's the next one in the series. Agree or disagree?

Anna Gregoline | April 30, 2002
I don't know about you guys, but I'm clueless as to the sequel/prequel issue, and besides that, after my Star Wars Boyfriend in high school, I'm definitely too terrified to get into any Star Wars discussion with people who are way more into it than I.

Kevin Fiore | April 30, 2002
I thought this was an open and shut case, but obviously that is not the case. A sequel is the second part of a movie which makes it a franchise. This is what has to say about
se·quel Pronunciation Key (skwl)
Something that follows; a continuation.
A literary, dramatic, or cinematic work whose narrative continues that of a preexisting work.
A result or consequence. See Synonyms at effect.

This means it follows a continuing storyline. It comes after the previous one in the series. This stated it cannot be possible to call Episodes I, II, and III sequels. Here is what has to say about prequel

pre·quel Pronunciation Key (prkwl)
A literary, dramatic, or cinematic work whose narrative takes place before that of a preexisting work or a sequel.

I don't see how there can be any argument. The facts have been stated.

Scott Hardie | April 30, 2002
Anna - Present evidence to the contrary, I mostly feel the same way.

Kevin - I still disagree. First of all, is not a definitive source. I can find a dictionary to back me up and you can find one to back you up, and there are few better sources for word definitions than dictionaries, so we're not going to get anywhere by citing them. (Then again, we're not going to get anywhere discussing this anyway. :-) ) Second, while "prequel" is supported by your quote, "sequel" is not. The first and third definitions of "sequel" can both refer to films that are released later than earlier ones in the same series. If Episode IV had been a complete flop, there wouldn't have been any other films, so all the others up to present are consequences of IV. They also follow it - 1977, 1980, 1983, 1999, 2002, 2005. Episodes I, II and III are sequels by publication date and prequels by plot. Agree to disagree? And now for what I'm really wondering: Do you consider "The Scorpion King" to be a sequel, a prequel, both, or neither? Can a film be both?

Kevin Fiore | May 1, 2002
It is all about plot and the timeline of the movies. That I believe is the whole point of a "pre"quel. Something that takes before(pre) the original. As for the scorpion king, the creators themselves say that it is a spinoff, and they consider it, its own storyline. Which means it is its own seperate entity. It is like the talk of having a batman superman combo. So which would that movie be clasified as a sequel for Superman, or Batman. Neither it would be its own enity and franchise. To see what the creators said go to and search under scorpion king.

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