"Clerks III" will be Kevin Smith's last writing/directing effort, the filmmaker tweeted on Friday morning:
"So with the 'HIT SOMEBODY' shift, the minute Jeff Anderson signs on, my last cinematic effort as a writer/director will be 'CLERKS III'"
Referring to the ice-hockey comedy he's writing that takes place over the course of 30 years, the "shift" means now it will be not a theatrical release but a television mini-series.
"Since 'HIT SOMEBODY' is now gonna be a mini-series," the 42-year-old wrote. "Yes -- that leaves room for a new final flick before I retire from directing feature films."
So pending the participation of Anderson, the actor who played Randal Graves in the first two "Clerks" films, Smith's fans will get the ultimate goodbye gift -- a complete trilogy for the convenient store comedy franchise.
The first installment was the director's mirco-budgeted breakthrough independent film, which launched characters Jay and Silent Bob into pop culture and led to four more spinoffs.
Minimum-wage earners Randal and Dante (Brian O'Halloran) were featured in a series of "Clerks" comics in the late '90s before becoming the focus of a short-lived animated television series in 2000 (and eventually making it back to the big screen for a quick cameo in 2001's "Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back"). Smith finally finished their story in 2006's "Clerks II."
Or so we thought. Apparently, he wants to end his film-directing career with the characters and actors that helped it begin. However, the tweet heard around the world of cinema suggests it may be somewhat of a challenge to persuade at least one half of the "Clerks" duo to come aboard.
Beyond "Hit Somebody" and "Clerks III," Smith will keep himself busy with "SModcast," a weekly podcast, and AMC's "Comic Book Men," which has been renewed for a second season.