Sweet Home Alabama star Dakota Fanning lived up to her name by fanning the flames of sequel speculation alongside star Reese Witherspoon Thursday. Witherspoon, 45, marked Throwback Thursday by sharing stills from the popular 2002 romantic comedy. Fanning, who played the younger version of Witherspoon's character in the film, responded to the post quickly. While it could have just been two colleagues celebrating one of the most-loved films on their resumes, it also fueled speculation of a sequel.
Witherspoon's post included stills from the scene where her character, Melanie Carmichael, calls off her wedding to Andrew Hennings (Patrick Dempsey) because she realizes she still loves her childhood sweetheart, Jake Perry (Josh Lucas). "Do you remember what she said?" Witherspoon asked her followers.
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Fanning, 27, sure did! "The truth is I gave my heart away a long time ago, my whole heart, and I never really got it back," Fanning wrote, providing the correct answer. "Love you, little Melanie," Witherspoon responded.
Fans quickly started wondering if this interaction between the two stars meant that a sequel is possible. The movie's stars have talked about it in the past, but nothing solid is in the works. "We are not making a [Sweet Home Alabama] sequel that I know of," Witherspoon said on Instagram in 2016. "But if Disney wants to make a sequel, they can just call me: I would happily make Sweet Home Alabama 2."
In 2019, Josh Lucas made comments about a sequel twice, even suggesting there was a proposed idea! "The proposal — that the director had which was quite interesting, is that my character [Jake] is back in Alabama and Reese's character [Melanie] is back in New York with our kids and we're divorced, so their whole life is super complicated," Lucas told Good Morning America in April 2019. "And Patrick Dempsey's character is still in the picture... But that's just a proposal."
A few months later, Lucas told Entertainment Tonight he still hoped a Sweet Home Alabama 2 would happen. "I'm up for it. I know Reese's said she is as well," Lucas said in August 2019. "The director [Andy Tennant] is absolutely up for it. I spoke to him about it a couple of times recently. So look, I throw it out to you, Reese."
Sweet Home Alabama starred Witherspoon and Lucas as childhood friends in Alabama who hoped to get married when they grew up. However, Witherspoon's Melanie moved to New York and became a successful fashion designer. After getting engaged to Andrew (Dempsey), she goes back to her family in Alabama, complicating her future. The rest of the cast includes Candice Bergen, Mary Kay Place, Fed Ward, and Jean Smart. It was directed by Andy Tennant and co-produced by Disney's now-defunct Touchstone Pictures label. The film was a big hit, making over $130 million.