The Inside Scoop on "Pitch Perfect 2"

Photo Credit: Universal Pictures
April 26th, 2014

"Pitch Perfect" came out of nowhere to earn rave reviews and win a place in audience's hearts. In 2012, its combination of quirky charm, understated romance and music was, well, pitch perfect. It is no surprise that "Pitch Perfect 2" is on its way to theaters, scheduled to hit the big screen on May 15, 2015. But what can audiences expect from the sequel to this smash hit?

Anna and Rebel Are Coming Back

It is difficult to imagine a "Pitch Perfect" movie without the "aca-mazing" and ├╝ber-cool Anna Kendrick as Beca or Rebel Wilson in a reprise of her breakout performance as Fat Amy. Fortunately, audiences have nothing to worry about; Kendrick and Wilson are both on board for the sequel, as are Brittany Snow and many others from the original ensemble cast. In fact, Kendrick was so positive about the project, she signed a contract for the sequel before a script even existed. Director Elizabeth Banks promises to let Kendrick and Wilson carry the humor in the sequel.

From Effie Trinket to the Director's Chair

Elizabeth Banks, director of "Pitch Perfect 2," is probably best known to audiences as the effervescent Effie Trinket from "The Hunger Games" and "The Hunger Games: Catching Fire." It may seem a long way from the always upbeat, always overdressed Effie to the director's chair, but Banks has more than earned her way into the position. Not only has she directed several award-winning short films, but she was instrumental in getting the first "Pitch Perfect" made. As one of its producers, she originated the idea based on Mickey Rapkin's book, brought it to Universal Studios and was part of the production every step of the way. Banks will also return to her role of Gail, which she played in the first film.

Will Drake Make an Appearance?

Rumors are flying that rapper Drake will not only play a role in "Pitch Perfect 2," but that he will be Fat Amy's love interest. Drake is no stranger to films, having played a cameo in "Anchorman 2," as well as voicing the character of Ethan in "Ice Age: Continental Drift," but this would be his first significant film role. While there is no confirmation of his involvement in "Pitch Perfect 2," Rebel Wilson has dropped more than a few hints.

From Freshmen to Seniors

Rather than moving sequentially through their college careers, "Pitch Perfect 2" lets the Barden Bellas and the Treblemakers leap straight from their shaky beginnings as freshmen all the way to their senior year. This means the stars have other things on their minds besides their a cappella performances, since graduation is looming for them all.

Keeping the Music Under Wraps

While news has slipped out that the opening number for "Pitch Perfect 2" will be amazing, the production is keeping the actual names of the songs under tight wraps. The actors are getting several weeks to rehearse both singing and dancing before the actual shoot begins. While fans might be a bit nervous about all the secrecy, the fact that screenwriter Kay Cannon, who wrote the first movie, has been brought back for the sequel is more than reassuring.

Anna Kendrick Can't Stop Singing

Even if she does not yet know what songs she'll have to perform in "Pitch Perfect 2," star Anna Kendrick is keeping her singing voice in good form. She comes back to the Barden Bellas all warmed up from two other musicals to be released in 2014. First, she stars as Cathy Hyatt in "The Last Five Years," the film adaptation of Jason Robert Brown's eclectic off-Broadway musical about the problematic relationship between an actress and a musical. Then, on Christmas Day 2014, she opens in the huge filmed version of Stephen Sondheim's hit musical "Into the Woods," playing Cinderella in a cast that includes Johnny Depp, Meryl Streep, Chris Pine and Emily Blunt.

Back to Baton Rouge

"Pitch Perfect" was filmed at Louisiana State University, and the sequel is returning to Baton Rouge as well. When films come to town, it is always a big boost to the local economy, but "Pitch Perfect 2" may do a little more for the locals. Casting calls have gone out for college-age dancers in Baton Rouge, with an enormous response expected. In addition, casting calls have gone out for young female ventriloquists and look-alikes for Barack and Michelle Obama, providing a few hints as to what might be in store in terms of the sequel's story.

By the time "Pitch Perfect 2" comes out, its many fans are likely to be ready to line up for midnight shows. Just a few hints about what to expect in this sequel are enough to whet the audience's appetite. Fans are already marking May 15, 2015 on their calendars and saving the date for a reunion with their favorite a cappella singers.