“Forrest Gump” was one of Hollywood’s biggest hits of the 1990s, earning six Oscars (including a Best Actor statue for star Tom Hanks) and bringing in more than $677 million — so why wasn’t there a “Forrest Gump 2”?
According to “Forrest Gump” screenwriter Eric Roth, there actually were plans for a sequel — he even handed in the script. Now, Roth shared with Yahoo! Entertainment details of the film that could have been.
“It was gonna start with his little boy having AIDS,” says Roth, who recently nabbed his fifth Oscar nomination for writing “A Star Is Born”.
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“And people wouldn’t go to class with him in Florida. We had a funny sequence where they were [desegregation] bussing in Florida at the same time, so people were angry about either the bussing or [their] kids having to go to school with the kid who had AIDS. So there was a big conflict.”
As in the first film, Forrest was also going to encounter some celebrities at key moments.
“I had him in the back of O.J.’s Bronco,” Roth said of O.J. Simpson’s infamous 1994 slow-speed car chase. “He would look up occasionally but they didn’t see him in the rearview mirror, and then he’d pop down.”
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Forrest also would have branched out from long-distance running into ballroom dancing, which would have brought him into contact with the world’s most beloved royal.
“I had him as a ballroom dancer who was really good, he could do the [rotation] ballroom dancing. And then eventually, just as sort of a charity kind of thing, he danced with Princess Diana,” revealed Roth.
However, the 9/11 terrorist attacks led to the brakes being put on the project. Roth explains: “[Forrest] meets on a bus a Native American woman and finds his calling, as a bingo caller on a reservation. And the big event in that, which you could see was diminished only in tragedy, I guess, because it’s the same tragedy, but every day he’d go wait for his Native American partner. She taught nursery school at a government building in Oklahoma City. And he was sitting on the bench waiting for her to have lunch and all of a sudden the building behind him blows up,” he divulged, referencing the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing.
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“Literally, I turned it in the day before 9/11,” Roth said. “And Tom [Hanks] and I and Bob [Zemeckis] got together on 9/11 to sort of commiserate about how life was in America and how tragic it was. And we looked at each other and said, ‘This movie has no meaning anymore, in that sense.’”