Imagine with us for a moment: You're a budding movie star. Your teen rom-com is the most re-watched Netflix film of 2018, and it accelerates your ascension into the Hollywood stratosphere practically overnight. You end up dating your unreasonably attractive co-star. Kudos to you! Here's the catch: The dream comes to an end, and you break up. And then you have to film the rest of the series with your ex as your romantic co-lead. Fun!!
Such is the reality for Joey King and Jacob Elordi, the stars of Netflix's shockingly successful The Kissing Booth franchise. But though acting with your ex in front of millions of viewers isn't a fate we'd wish on our worst enemy, we won't lie and say we aren't thrilled to see it happening. Netflix dropped the bomb on us that The Kissing Booth 2, which was released in mid-July, is not, in fact, the end of King and Elordi's on-screen love affair. In fact, those sneaky Netflix execs optioned and filmed a whole other movie in secret!!
Deadline reported that The Kissing Booth 3 has already finished shooting, and is prepared to drop in 2021 after wrapping up post-production. Here's everything we know about what's next for Noah, Elle and their crew:
There’s so much more material to draw on.
So, let’s break this down for a moment, because it gets a lil messy. It all started years ago, when author Beth Reekles first published The Kissing Booth at the tender age of 15, slapping the thing on Wattpad, a user-generated “social storytelling platform” where writers can publish their works without any of that agent-querying and manuscript-auctioning nonsense. Super-popular Wattpad books are often picked up for publishing deals or even turned into movies and television through Wattpad Studios.
Now, I need to give Reekles the respect she’s due. When I was 15, I was writing fanfiction and trying not to get cat-fished on message boards. Reekles, on the other hand, earned over 19 million readers and ~a publishing deal~ from her Wattpad fame. Thus, The Kissing Booth became publishing-house property, and eventually made its way to your Netflix screen in 2018.
She didn’t stop there. After the book’s success on the screen, she wrote The Kissing Booth 2: Going The Distance, upon which the film sequel is based. And—there’s more. She also published an e-book called The Beach House, which takes place during the original Kissing Booth. And then she published another novella, this one for World Book Day, called The Kissing Booth: Road Trip, which takes place during the sequel!
Because it’s practically impossible to figure out what order you’re supposed to read these books in, considering their intersecting timelines, Reekles put out a video explaining their chronology. Here’s her list:
- Book 1: The Kissing Booth
- Book 2: The Beach House
- Book 3: The Kissing Booth 2: Going The Distance
- Book 4: The Kissing Booth: Road Trip
All this is to say, there's a lot of ground laid for where The Kissing Booth 3 might go.
We already know some details about the plot of the next movie.
When Deadline shared the news of The Kissing Booth 3's existence, the publication also shared the basic plot set-up. Here's how it goes:
"The third installment picks up where the second one left off. It’s the summer before Elle heads to college, and she has a secret decision to make. She has been accepted into Harvard, where boyfriend Noah is matriculating, and also Berkeley, where her BFF Lee (Noah’s brother) is headed. Which path should she choose?"
Based purely on that description, it's tough to know if the third entry uses much material from the books. Maybe a spin-off is in order?
In the meantime, here's a teaser that gives a 'lil extra glimpse into what's next:
The Kissing Booth 3 will come out in 2021.
Although we don't know the exact release date, we can rest assured knowing the film will come out in 2021. (It's already filmed, so COVID-19 can't get in the way.) The entire original cast were involved in the project, but they're keeping their lips sealed about any further details. And if this hush-hush filming was any indicator, they're all pretty good at keeping secrets!
Elordi and King are apparently still on good terms.
Ahh, yes, remember those quaint, simple days when King and Elordi dated IRL? They did a lot of gushy stuff in public, posted cute photos on Instagram, and called each other pet names. It was adorable! But then they broke up.
When asked what it was like working with Elordi on The Kissing Booth 2, King’s response on the podcast MOOD with Lauren Elizabeth was, “It was fine. It was good.”
Ouch. Reassuringly, she added, “I’m a fan of how [The Kissing Booth] resonated with the world, it resonated with me, so going back and doing that and making the sacrifice of what, obviously, everyone is thinking about and what I’m not outwardly addressing, but what I’m kind of on the sly addressing, making those sacrifices was totally worth it.”
I’m gonna go ahead and assume that “sacrifice” she’s referring to is working with her ex. So, like, I guess they’re still friends? But maybe not really? It’s not a ringing endorsement of their work together, but considering how convincing they were as a couple in the sequel, there's no reason to expect we won't see the same chemistry in the third film.