A few days after Adam McKay revealed on Twitter that plans for Anchorman 2 have been canceled by Paramount, Ben Stiller sent out another Tweet in which he placed Zoolander 2 in the same boat. Here's the exact message: "Ron Burgandy and Derek Zoolander looking to appear in sequels. Both men are destitute, without means or intellect to fund their own comebacks." Zoolander 2 was also being set up at Paramount, so it would appear the studio is either having a hard time justifying the worth of late follow-ups to some of the biggest cult comedies of the last decade or they just wanted to see what happens when two of the biggest egos in film are crushed simultaneously (I mean the characters, of course, not the stars).

Don't start writing your "eugoogoly" for the Zoolander franchise just yet, though. Stiller is admitting to funding problems, but that doesn't mean the thing is completely dead. If Paramount doesn't want it, though, maybe some other studio or production company can come around and see the value in the property. Unfortunately, as The Playlist points out, just as Anchorman 2 can't be taken to another studio because Paramount owns it, the same is somewhat true for this sequel. Paramount could sell the rights to someone else, but that might be too costly. As addressed by our own Zoolander-loving Monika (she discussed the original in a recent Cinematical Movie Club installment, by the way) back when Z2 was officially announced, the first film didn't do so well at the box office. And even if many of us have watched and watched and watched Zoolander on TV or the DVD we got at Target on sale for less than $10, cult comedies just don't seem lucrative.

Perhaps the thing for Stiller to do is team up with Will Ferrell for a joint sequel. A sort of Alien vs. Predator thing, only less violent (unless Brick and his triton are back for more kills). Each actor could play dual roles, Ferrell as Burgandy and Mugatu, Stiller as Zoolander and Arturo Mendes, the anchor of the Spanish-language news. Oh wait, there's the matter of the characters residing in different decades. Time travel! Just kidding, what I'd really like is for both actors to walk away from these dead sequels happy that they're not going to stretch their beloved characters thin a la Austin Powers and Clark Griswold. Surely they have other great characters up their sleeves.

Update: According to Deadline, neither Anchorman 2 nor Zoolander 2 are necessarily kaput, and Paramount is interested in continuing production on both if each costs no more than $40 million. Apparently A2 is looking at a budget closer to $70 million, possibly due to salary demands. The report also acknowledges a big issue for studios these days: neither of the originals did well overseas. Should everyone take pay cuts and give the fans more or move on to the next ideas?