For those who saw Escape Room in 2019, the surprise smash hit ended with a deliberate tease that the story’s two survivors -- Zoey (Taylor Russell) and Ben (Logan Miller) -- were going to take the fight to The Puzzle Maker, and the organization behind their abuse. The cast probably didn’t know, at that point, if the horror movie was going to be successful enough to warrant a sequel, but now that Escape Room: Tournament of Champions is reaching theaters, Miller was able to tell CinemaBlend exactly how he wanted Ben to evolve from the first movie to the sequel. Press play on the video above to see a snippet of our conversation.
Escape Room shocked the film industry when it dropped in January of 2019. Capitalizing on the popularity of the escape room exercise, director Adam Robitel plunged a collection of strangers into a deadly puzzle game filled with elaborate traps that had to be solved. As the game progressed, an Agatha Christie-type scenario played out where only Zoey and Ben remained. Ben, at the end of the movie, wanted to appreciate that they have survived and try to move on. But Zoey couldn’t let it go, and continued to investigate the people who were in the Escape Room with them. Her findings set up the sequel that you now can see.
Ben’s actions in the first Escape Room were reactionary. Logan Miller knew that he wanted to bring something fresh and new to the role when given the chance to revive him in Escape Room: Tournament of Champions. So when we asked him about his preparation for the sequel, he opened up and told us:
When I got the news that we were making the second one, then that was the chance to see what was going to happen next. Of course, there was immense pre-production on trying to figure out how we were going to do it. But I always, in the back of my mind, wanted Ben to kind of evolve. At the beginning, he was this cigarette-smoking, cynical character that had given up on life. Now that he had survived through that, he has a second chance. And so, I think he wants to put his best foot forward and try to be a ring leader, and a driving force throughout the entire second film.
He will be matched with serious competition for survival. The interesting hook of Escape Room: Tournament of Champions is that Zoey and Ben meet up with strangers who have survived elaborate games from their own corners of the world. They all know HOW to survive an Escape Room. But who will be able to do it again, and emerge triumphant against The Puzzle Maker’s latest threats.