While The Darkest Minds (2018) was poorly received by critics, scoring 15% on Rotten Tomatoes. Fans of the series, however, seemed to greatly enjoy it, giving the dystopian movie a 72% audience score. With rumours circulating and actors hoping to return, fans are wondering: will there be a The Darkest Minds 2?
Based on Alexandra Bracken’s YA dystopian novel, The Darkest Minds follows teens who mysteriously develop powerful new abilities and are declared a threat by the government and detained.
With diverse characters and a sense of realism in a fantastical situation, The Darkest Minds features grimness that is rare for the YA genre.
While fans are eagerly awaiting the official announcement, it seems clear that The Darkest Minds 2 won’t happen.
Nothing has been set in stone yet, but with the book series’s popularity dwindling and new YA releases emerging, producers may not be able to justify forming a budget for this particular sequel.
The Darkest Minds (2018)
The Darkest Minds follows Ruby, one of the most powerful of the teens with new abilities. She escapes from her camp and joins a group of runaways who are seeking a safe haven.
Betrayed by the adults in power, this newfound family soon realizes that running is not enough — they must use their collective powers to wage a resistance and take back their future.
While popular with fans, The Darkest Minds (2018) did poorly with critics. The movie is often critiqued for being a typical teen dystopian film with little originality.
Despite this, fans of The Darkest Minds book series seemed content with the adaptation, as the adventure they’d imagined is brought to life on the big screen.
Critics, and those who didn’t read the series, don’t have such an attachment and see it as just another YA adaptation. With most book-to-movie adaptations, the books tend to be better, as a lot of personality is cut from the original story to fit into a two-hour time limit.
With dystopian movies such as Maze Runner: The Death Curse and Ready Player One produced and released in the same year as The Darkest Minds (2018), it’s no wonder that critics grew tired of the genre.
The Darkest Minds 2: Will there be a sequel?
So, will The Darkest Minds 2 be greenlit? The short answer is no, probably not. But let’s look at why.
The Darkest Minds (2018) also tanked at the box office, making only $41.2 million worldwide. With a budget of $34 million, that’s a pretty terrible turnaround.
Generally, sequels make more than their predecessor and come with a higher budget, but in this case, producers may not want to risk their money. It’s likely that they may not have broken even with The Darkest Minds (2018). Their $34 million budget doesn’t include the advertising or distribution costs.
The film’s director, Jennifer Yuh Nelson, has said that she would be happy to return for a sequel. She even teased that it’s a possibility as there is a lot of material to work with.
Similarly, actors, such as Amandla Stenberg, who played Ruby Daly, have voiced interest in reprising their roles. Until producers make an announcement, or 20th Century Fox purchases the rights to Never Fade, the sequel to The Darkest Minds, it’s all up in the air.
Perhaps fans can hope for a reboot or remake of The Darkest Minds, with new producers and actors, to come sometime in the future. If Rick Riordan’s Percy Jackson franchise can get a reboot, perhaps The Darkest Minds can too.
What would The Darkest Minds 2 be about? (Spoilers Ahead)
At the end of The Darkest Minds (2018), our favourite characters have split up and are in disarray. Chubs is in the hospital and Zu leaves with a protective family. Then Ruby erases herself from Liam’s memories and joins the Children’s League as a soldier.
So, where do our beloved Psi kids go from here? Let’s take a look at what Alexandra Bracken’s sequel, Never Fade, is about.
Ruby begins using abilities she’s never asked for to lead dangerous missions for the Children’s League. But when she learns an explosive secret, she’ll need to leave the Children’s League to do what is right.
Liam Stewart has crucial information about the disease that killed millions of children and the corrupt government will stop at nothing to destroy it.
As Ruby sets out to find Liam, she is torn between her friends and a promise she made to the League. And what if winning the war means losing herself?
Who would be in it?
As with The Darkest Minds (2018), The Darkest Minds 2 would follow the next chapter in Ruby Daly’s life. Along for the adventure would be the Children’s League, featuring Liam, Zu, and Chubs.
President Gray and Clancy Gray would also return, along with an array of other familiar characters. In addition, as with any sequel, Never Fade would most likely introduce new characters.
Is The Darkest Minds movie based on a book?
Since The Darkest Minds 2 getting greenlit is slim, here’s how to find out what happens next.
Alexandra Bracken’s YA dystopian novel of the same name was released in 2012, right in the middle of the dystopia craze. The Darkest Minds fell into popularity alongside familiar books like Cinder and Shadow and Bone, with an average of 4.2/5 on Goodreads.
The Darkest Minds is a trilogy with a collection of novellas and short stories. It’s a fast-paced, high-intensity series dealing with authoritarianism, a divided community, and a corrupted government. If you’re a fan of The Hunger Games or The Maze Runner, The Darkest Minds should be on your to-be-read list.
The Darkest Minds Books in Order
- The Darkest Minds
- In Time (Novella)
- Never Fade
- Sparks Rise (Novella)
- In The Afterlight
- Beyond the Night (Novella)
- The Darkest Legacy
The Darkest Minds
When Ruby woke up on her tenth birthday, something about her had changed. Something alarming enough to make her parents lock her in the garage and call the police.
Something that gets her sent to Thurmond, a brutal government “rehabilitation camp.” She might have survived the mysterious disease that’s killed most of America’s children, but she and the others have emerged with something far worse: frightening abilities they cannot control.
Now sixteen, Ruby is one of the dangerous ones.
When the truth comes out, Ruby barely escapes Thurmond with her life. Now she’s on the run, desperate to find the one safe haven left for kids like her—East River.
She joins a group of kids who escaped their own camp. Liam, their brave leader, is falling hard for Ruby. But no matter how much she aches for him, Ruby can’t risk getting close. Not after what happened to her parents.
When they arrive at East River, nothing is as it seems, least of all its mysterious leader. But there are other forces at work, people who will stop at nothing to use Ruby in their fight against the government.
Ruby will be faced with a terrible choice, one that may mean giving up her only chance at a life worth living.
In Time (The Darkest Minds 1.5)
Gabe’s life has been devastated in the wake of the economic crash. The only option left for someone like him to escape his tragic past is to leave his small town behind and to attempt to become a skiptracer.
This already almost impossible task is made all the more difficult by his first score, a young girl who won’t speak, but who changes his life in ways he could never imagine.
Ruby never asked for the abilities that almost cost her her life. Now she must call upon them on a daily basis, leading dangerous missions to bring down a corrupt government and breaking into the minds of her enemies. Other kids in the Children’s League call Ruby “Leader”, but she knows what she really is: a monster.
When Ruby is entrusted with an explosive secret, she must embark on her most dangerous mission yet: leaving the Children’s League behind. Crucial information about the disease that killed most of America’s children—and turned Ruby and the others who lived into feared and hated outcasts—has survived every attempt to destroy it.
But the truth is only saved in one place: a flashdrive in the hands of Liam Stewart, the boy Ruby once believed was her future—and who now wouldn’t recognize her.
As Ruby sets out across a desperate, lawless country to find Liam—and answers about the catastrophe that has ripped both her life and America apart—she is torn between old friends and the promise she made to serve the League. Ruby will do anything to protect the people she loves. But what if winning the war means losing herself?
Sparks Rise (The Darkest Minds 2.5)
Sam didn’t think things could get worse at Thurmond rehabilitation camp. Then the Reds arrive. Everyone assumed the kids with firepower had been killed years ago. Instead, they were taken away, brainwashed, and returned as terrifyingly effective guards.
To her horror, Sam recognizes one of them: Lucas, the one spark of light in Sam’s dark childhood. Lucas has a deadly secret–he beat the brutal training that turned his fellow Reds into mindless drones.
When Sam defends herself against an attack by a vile PSF guard and faces a harrowing punishment, Lucas must risk his everything to save her.
In The Afterlight
Ruby can’t look back. Fractured by an unbearable loss, she and the kids who survived the government’s attack on Los Angeles travel north to regroup.
With them is a prisoner: Clancy Gray, son of the president, and one of the few people Ruby has encountered with abilities like hers. Only Ruby has any power over him, and just one slip could lead to Clancy wreaking havoc on their minds.
They are armed only with a volatile secret: proof of a government conspiracy to cover up the real cause of IAAN, the disease that has killed most of America’s children and left Ruby and others like her with powers the government will kill to keep contained.
But internal strife may destroy their only chance to free the “rehabilitation camps” housing thousands of other Psi kids.
Meanwhile, reunited with Liam, the boy she would—and did—sacrifice everything for to keep alive, Ruby must face the painful repercussions of having tampered with his memories of her.
She turns to Cole, his older brother, to provide the intense training she knows she will need to take down Gray and the government. But Cole has demons of his own, and one fatal mistake may be the spark that sets the world on fire.
Beyond the Night (The Darkest Minds 3.5)
The government-run ‘rehabilitation camps’ have been shut down, but kids with Psi powers are anything but free. Sam would rather be on her own than put in the care of a foster family and given the ‘cure’ – a dangerous procedure that unclaimed kids across the country are being forced to undergo.
But there’s more at stake than just her own safety. Sam once made someone a promise and the time has come to fulfill it. Now that she’s out of her camp, Mia only has one thought in her head: finding Lucas, her beloved older brother.
The Darkest Legacy
Five years after the destruction of the so-called rehabilitation camps that imprisoned her and countless other Psi kids, seventeen-year-old Suzume “Zu” Kimura has assumed the role of spokesperson for the interim government, fighting for the rights of Psi kids against a growing tide of misinformation and prejudice.
But when she is accused of committing a horrifying act, she is forced to go on the run once more in order to stay alive.
Determined to clear her name, Zu finds herself in an uncomfortable alliance with Roman and Priyanka, two mysterious Psi who could either help her prove her innocence or betray her before she gets the chance.
But as they travel in search of safety and answers, and Zu grows closer to the people she knows she shouldn’t trust, they uncover even darker things roiling beneath the veneer of the country’s recovery.
With her future-and the future of all Psi-on the line, Zu must use her powerful voice to fight back against forces that seek to drive the Psi into the shadows and save the friends who were once her protectors.