Elemental 2 Movie: Will It Ever Release?

By Klein Felt Posted:
Ember and Wade from Elemental, Disney logo

While not officially on the books, Elemental 2 seems like a no-brainer for release at Disney and Pixar

Despite getting off on the wrong foot at the box office, Elemental turned into one of Disney's biggest success stories of 2023. 

After a disappointing opening, the animated romp roared back with a vengeance, going on a long and fruitful run in theaters. However, since then, little has been said about a potential sequel. 

Could Elemental 2 Ever Release?

Wade and Ember in Elemental movie

As it currently stands, there has been no official announcement of any plans to release a sequel to 2023's Elemental

In recent months, Disney has announced several animated sequels (i.e. Toy Story 5, Zootopia 2, and Frozen 3), as the studio focuses on known quantities and 'guaranteed' box office success. 

Despite only being released in 2023, Elemental may now fall into that known IP category, making Elemental 2 a prime candidate for the studio to set its sights on. 

The first film eventually proved to be a financial success for Disney and Pixar. After opening to a meager $26 million domestic haul, the movie would go on to earn nearly $500 million worldwide (per Box Office Mojo). 

And that is not even taking into account the streaming success the film has seen. From its Disney+ debut on September 13, 2023, up to the end of the year, Elemental was streamed on the service for 8.6 billion minutes, making it the fourth most-streamed movie of 2023 across all services (via Bill Brasky). 

These kinds of numbers prompted Disney itself to call the film one of the "biggest streaming hits in [Disney's] history." So, surely, the House of Mouse has to be exploring a potential sequel to the fire-meets-water love story. 

According to industry insider Jeff Bock (in a September 2023 appearance on The Town with Matthew Belloni), Disney may already be hard at work on a sequel, 

At the time, Bock revealed he had heard that Disney is going to "turn [Elemental] into a [Disney+] series" and "there might even be an Elemental sequel" on the horizon:

"Disney has a way with this. Disney is also going to turn this into a [Disney+] series, I've already heard. And there might even be an 'Elemental' sequel."

He added that the studio "[goes] back to the safety net for [sequels]," the Hollywood giant took notice of Elemental's improbable run to profitability during the summer of 2023:

Belloni: "No, I don't think they're not going to do a sequel."

Bock: "They might! Listen, there is a Disney+ series on the way and 'Inside Out 2' is obviously coming next summer. You go back to the safety net for these sequels. Pixar's going to be fine. This is a great ramping up of their grosses, after that D+ grade that they got for their streaming content."

And those comments were made without the context of Elemental's streaming success. 

More recently, in a February 2024 interview with The Direct, actress Leah Lewis, who voiced Elemental's main character Ember, admitted that she was not aware of any discussions regarding a potential sequel:

"Oh, my goodness. If I had the details, I would probably not be allowed to [say]. But I would hope for that. But I do not have any details on that. I hope so, though."

Given Elemental's box office and streaming success as well as Disney's history for turning its hit animated originals into franchises, the odds of an Elemental 2 eventually being released feel decent but are nothing close to a guarantee.

What Would Happen in Elemental 2?

While the first Elemental film told the love story of Wade and Ember and how they broke down societal and generational barriers to come together in a beautiful union, it remains unclear where Elemental 2 could go with its story. 

The most logical next step would be to pick up with Leah Lewis's Ember and Mamoudou Athie's Wade a few years down the line as the pair navigate their inter-elemental relationship, their next steps as a couple, and perhaps the idea of starting a family. 

In an interview with The Direct from June 2023, Elemental writers John Hoberg and Kat Likkel revealed the first film was actually going to set up these specific plot points. 

According to Likkel, Elemental was initially supposed to end with a time jump, teasing the movie's central couple having - what she called - a "steam baby:"

"Oh, did we already talk about the steam baby? At one point, there was going to be a little addendum at the end. Instead of them [Wade and Ember] just leaving at the end, you were going to see that they had been gone and we’re coming back to visit, and they’ve had a baby, and the baby was steam. And so it’s like… that was something I kept fighting for that for a long time."

Hoberh added, hinting that they have thought about where a sequel would go, positing, "There's so much more to tell:"

"I think there was a feeling of like, ‘Well, you know what, let’s leave somewhere for them to go… If audiences really respond, that would be great.’ I mean, there’s so much more to tell because, in a marriage, this is the big romantic moment. And now they’ve got to figure their life out together. And I think all of us just love the thought of like, ’What are they up to now?'"

If the first Elemental was this animated metaphor for mix-culture relationships, Elemental 2 could do the same sort of thing with the idea of racing a child within that cultural amalgam from the parent's perspective. 

Elemental 2 is streaming now on Disney+. 

- About The Author: Klein Felt
Klein Felt is a Senior Editor at The Direct. Joining the website back in 2020, he helped jumpstart video game content on The Direct. Klein plays a vital role as a part of the site's content team, demonstrating expertise in all things PlayStation, Marvel, and the greater entertainment industry.