Nothing generated as much laughter in the 2009 film Zombieland as did the cameo appearance of Bill Murray. Murray poked merciless fun at his own career in the film, most notably during his death scene, when a dying Murray, who played a fictionalized version of himself in the film, was asked if he had any regrets and mentioned the film Garfield.
Murray’s cameo appearance in Zombieland was so memorable that fans of Zombieland lamented that the death of Murray’s alter-ego would prevent him from appearing in a Zombieland sequel. But hopes of Murray’s return were raised when the Zombieland sequel, titled Zombieland: Double Tap, was announced in the fall of 2018, and Murray was rumored to be making an appearance in the sequel, along with Dan Aykroyd.
In fact, Aykroyd and Murray are still included among the list of the sequel’s cast members on the sequel’s IMDB and Wikipedia pages. According to Ruben Fleischer, the director of Zombieland and its sequel, this speculation is completely false. “Bill Murray does not appear in the sequel, and neither does Dan Aykroyd,” says Fleischer. “I don’t know how that story started. They’re not in this film.”
Zombieland: Double Tap arrives approximately ten years after the release of the first film, which Fleischer says was not his intention or that of Zombieland stars Jesse Eisenberg, Woody Harrelson, Emma Stone, and Abigail Breslin. “We all became great friends during the making of Zombieland, and we very much wanted to reunite for a sequel, immediately after the first film was released,” says Fleischer. “But we all went our separate ways, in terms of our different careers, after we made the first film. I worked with Jesse on the film 30 Minutes or Less, and Emma was in Gangster Squad, and Woody appeared in Venom. Four or five years ago, we all just said, ‘Why don’t we do this?’ Then a script came along that we all loved, and here we are.”
In terms of plotting the future of the Zombieland film series, Fleischer says that the ten-year delay may become the norm, at least if Stone has her way. “Emma suggested that we should make a new Zombieland film every ten years,” says Fleischer. “We would revisit the characters every ten years, like Richard Linklater did with Before Sunrise and its sequels, or maybe it would look like Boyhood with zombies. It’s an interesting idea.”