‘St. Elmo’s Fire’ Sequel In Works After Brat Pack Documentary


40 years later, a St. Elmo’s Fire sequel is very nearly in the works.

Few things better embody 1980s Hollywood than the iconic Brat Pack.

The recent Hulu Brat Pack documentary, Brats, has had many waxing nostalgic of that indelible era. That includes the film where the actors (in part) earned their collective label: St. Elmo’s Fire.

Now, one of the planet’s largest media companies is looking into what a St. Elmo’s Fire sequel will look like.

Emilio Estevez in September of 2019.Emilio Estevez in September of 2019.
Emilio Estevez speaks onstage during WE Day UN 2019 at Barclays Center on September 25, 2019. (Photo Credit: Ilya S. Savenok/Getty Images for WE Day)

‘St. Elmo’s Fire’ helped define a generation of young actors

Literal St. Elmo’s Fire refers to an atmospheric phenomenon involving plasma. Also known as witchfire, which is frankly a much cooler name, the remarkable visual effect served as both a warning and a positive omen to sailors.

The 1985 film of the same name follows a group of recent Georgetown graduates navigating early adulthood. Sexuality, relationships, responsibility, and more interweave among a friend group in the coming-of-age classic.

Ostensibly, St. Elmo’s Fire takes its name from a bar that features in the film, St. Elmo’s. However, the impending changes as this group of friends experience sudden changes have symbolic links to a visible flash of plasma during a thunderstorm that often heralds a lightning strike. It also resonated with countless young adult viewers.

Demi Moore in June of 2024.Demi Moore in June of 2024.
Demi Moore attends the Dior Homme Menswear Spring/Summer 2025 show as part of Paris Fashion Week on June 21, 2024. (Photo Credit: Francois Durand/Getty Images)

According to a June 2024 report by Deadline, Sony is exploring a potential St. Elmo’s Fire sequel.

However, there would be one critical element to make a sequel worth it after a four-decade wait: reuniting the original cast.

That would mean Andrew McCarthy, Emilio Estevez, Rob Lowe, Demi Moore, Judd Nelson, Ally Sheedy, and Mare Winningham would all need to sign on.

Rob Lowe in May of 2024.Rob Lowe in May of 2024.
Rob Lowe attends the 2024 Fox Upfront at The Ritz-Carlton Nomad on May 13, 2024. (Photo Credit: Roy Rochlin/Getty Images)

Does ‘St. Elmo’s Fire’ need a sequel?

Very few films “need” a sequel. But, to be blunt, historically few films have had enough living cast members to create a sequel 40 years later without recasts.

Sequels can take many forms. Some catch up with the original characters. Others focus upon a new generation. Many of the original characters — people who were in their twenties in 1895 — could easily now be grandparents.

That has a lot of potential appeal, especially for people who enjoyed the surprise summer hit in 1985 and related to the characters. That said, sometimes considering the weight of how much time has passed can hit people like a very depressing wrecking ball.

Judd Nelson in July of 2019.Judd Nelson in July of 2019.
Judd Nelson attends the Premiere Of Sony Pictures Classic’s “David Crosby: Remember My Name” at Linwood Dunn Theater on July 18, 2019. (Photo Credit: Jon Kopaloff/Getty Images)

However, as many — including Deadline — have pointed out, the sequel potential here is intriguing.

And it is certainly much more interesting than a remake. Remakes have their place — there are many classic films that underwent vicious censorship or simply lacked the budget or effects to live up to their potential. But … not everything needs a remake, just as not everything needs a sequel.

If a St. Elmo’s Fire sequel is really going to happen, they’ll need everyone on board. A film couldn’t get away with many absences without people wondering why they bothered.

Why the sudden interest in ’80s movies?

One could write essays on the (perhaps misplaced) fixation upon the 1980s. Each generation seems to fixate upon eras of the past — or, at least, upon their aesthetic and media from that time. Perhaps it’s part of human nature.

However, there’s little doubt that Andrew McCarthy’s Brats documentary on Hulu, which came out this past spring, has revived a lot of interest.

Still, whether the cast and potential viewers have interest or not, we shouldn’t get too excited. This is an unstable time for the entertainment industry. Plenty of exciting projects never see the light of day.



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