The A.V. Club recently made the case for why Hollywood needs to get cracking on another National Treasure movie—namely, another installment in the deceptively idealistic series will save our cynical souls. A third film has been rumored to be in production for a while now, but although the team behind the franchise has had nearly ten years to sort out the story, it’s still no closer to giving us another two hours of Nicolas Cage desecrating artifacts to help keep America great. Now we know who the culprit is: boring old facts.
That comes from the tomb raider-portrayer himself, as Cage recently told Entertainment Weekly that there’s still no official word on a sequel, thanks in part to how difficult it can be to write scripts that merge history with anti-history in the form of treasure maps on our nation’s most sacred texts. Cage said the “scripts are very difficult to write, because there has to be some credibility in terms of the facts and fact-checking, because it was relying on historical events.”
Cage also notes that even with the facts in place, filmmakers encounter the difficulty of making the material “entertaining,” a conundrum faced by history teachers everywhere. The actor continued, “I know that it’s been a challenge to get the script where it needs to be. That’s as much as I’ve heard. But they’re still working on it.” And we all know what a stickler Cage is for the truth—he recently returned the sweet Tyrannosaurus bataar skull he outbid Leonardo DiCaprio for to its rightful owner once he learned it had been stolen. So until audiences can learn to suspend their disbelief or leave their U.S. history books at the door, the National Treasure trilogy will remain in limbo.