Ask any guy of a certain age what the best gambling movies are, and Rounders is sure to be near the top of the list. The 1998 poker drama that starred Matt Damon, Edward Norton, and a colorful John Malkovich was a dud at the time, but became a cult favorite that many have hoped would spawn a sequel. The film’s screenwriter, Brian Koppelman, has frequently tackled this question on his podcast and social media until it became too much and he stopped talking about it.
So what’s got people talking about Rounders now? Damon and Ben Affleck are out promoting their new Nike film, Air, which the duo are producing through their Artists Equity banner. While appearing on Bill Simmons’ The Ringer, they were asked about Rounders 2 and…well, they didn’t say “no”.
“‘Rounders,’ that actually reminds me… actually, I didn’t want to do this on the podcast,” Affleck said.
“We’ve been talking about it for years,” Damon said. “We’re investigating whether we can do it because it’s so…”
Simmons cut him off at that point, but Damon was likely about to refer to the complications of another Rounders movie. The original was released during the Weinstein era at Miramax and many of those films are tied up by rights issues.
Damon did say that Rounders eventually go “into the black”, meaning it became profitable, in 2007 nearly a decade after release, probably due to its popularity on home video and cable. So who knows? It’s possible we could see a rematch between Damon’s Mike and Malkovich’s Teddy “KGB”.