The third part of The Mummy received a lot of criticism, partly because of replacing the female lead. This is why the actress did not return to her iconic role.
Rachel Weisz does not return as Evelyn, the wife of protagonist Rick O’Connell, in The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor in 2008.
That fact surprised many fans, because her role as Evelyn in the first two The Mummy films made the actress a household name in Hollywood.
Mummy 3 director Rob Cohen gave an interview explaining why Rachel Weisz didn’t return for the third season.
Cohen stated that the actress turned down the role because she didn’t want to play a character with an adult son, which would make her character more mature:
“I received a very angry phone call from her agent, saying she would never play the mother of a 21-year-old girl. I said, ‘OK, good, good, goodbye.’”
Then there were rumors that Rachel left The Mummy 3 because of script issues. It is known that the actress did not want to return to the franchise because she initially considered the last film a failure.
By the way, in fact, it received low ratings and a lot of criticism from both viewers and critics.
However, Weisz later took it upon herself to explain her absence from the third film. The actress admitted that the reason for her absence from The Mummy 3 was due to schedule problems. Filming lasted 5 months in China and the actress could not spend much time on the project.
Universal has considered the possibility of creating a fourth sequel called The Mummy: Rise of the Aztec. Ultimately, the studio decided to cancel development of The Mummy 4 and reboot the franchise in an attempt to create a shared universe.
It was The Mummy, starring Tom Cruise, that is said to have laid the foundation for the universe. But when the film flopped, the franchise stalled.
While Rachel Weisz seems to have abandoned the character Evelyn, there is a common trend in Hollywood to revive old series decades later. Despite several injuries while filming The Mummy, Brendan Fraser has confirmed that he wants to return as Rick O’Connell.
So with the prospect of Brendan Fraser returning, it’s likely Universal decided to reboot the series with Rachel Weisz as Evelyn.