Pitch Black (2000) began the live-action films in the Riddick franchise and was followed by its sequel, The Chronicles of Riddick (2004). When Pitch Black was released on February 18, 2000, few predicted it would become one of Vin Diesel’s most successful franchises. With a modest budget of $23 million, Pitch Black became a sleeper hit, eventually earning $53.2 million at the Box Office.
Although it received mixed reviews from critics, most audience reviews were positive. The commercial success of Pitch Black spurned the sequel, set five years after the events of the first movie. However, the time jump left a lot of questions to viewers on what happened within those five years. The Chronicles of Riddick begins with Riddick on Planet U.V. and then steals a ship and heads to New Mecca on planet Helion Prime. To help bring closure to the events that followed Pitch Black, a 35-minute adult animated short film, The Chronicles of Riddick: Dark Fury, was released on June 15, 2004, four days after The Chronicles of Riddick‘s release date. Here is a summary of everything that happened between The Chronicles of Riddick and Pitch Black.
Riddick, Imam, And Jack’s Escape From The Dark Planet In Pitch Black
Pitch Black ends with the survivors (Riddick, Imam, and Jack) leaving the planet on a dropship. Moments before their departure, Hunter-Gratzner‘s surviving docking pilot, Carolyn Fry, is killed in a selfless act to save Riddick. Just before leaving the planet, Riddick decides to incinerate as many of the planet’s creatures as possible by letting them get closer to the ship before engaging the engines.
Riddick, Imam, And Jack Are Captured By A Private Mercenary Vessel
Dark Fury immediately begins with the trio in the dropship in space, flying away from the dark planet. Although Riddick tells Jack in Pitch Black to tell anyone who asks that he died on the dark planet, they are soon intercepted by a mercenary vessel, Kublai Khan. When Riddick is asked to identify himself, he tries to impersonate William J. John, his former captor and bounty hunter.
Kublai Khan‘s Captain, Junner, quickly runs a voice print that immediately identifies Riddick. Riddick kills most of the mercs sent by Junner to capture him, Imam, and Jack. However, Riddick surrenders when Junner holds Jack at gunpoint. An explosive is later implanted in Riddick’s neck to keep him in check.
The Trio Is Introduced To Antonia Chillingsworth
Onboard Kublai Khan, Riddick and his new teammates are introduced to a notorious bounty hunter, Antonia Chillingsworth. Chillingsworth is known for her strange souvenir collection of criminals. Rather than kill the criminals she catches, she keeps them alive in suspended animation. The criminals, unable to move or talk, live the remainder of their lives in the suspended animation state. Chillingsworth informs Riddick of her plans to do the same with him.
Chillingsworth Forces Riddick To Fight In An Arena
For her entertainment and pleasure, Chillingsworth instructs Riddick to fight to protect Imam and Jack’s lives. She puts Jack and Imam in an arena with two jellyfish-like creatures, Shrills, and tells Riddick to save the duo. Riddick successfully overpowers and kills the Shrills.
With the knife in his hand, he quickly removes the explosive Junner placed on his neck. Although a little too late, Chillingsworth detonates the explosive after realizing Riddick’s intentions. The explosion creates an opportunity for Riddick and his teammates to escape the Arena.
Toombs Is Awaken To Hunt The Trio
Toombs appeared in The Chronicles of Riddick with little to no explanation of who he was. His character introduction as a mercenary hunting Riddick created a disconnect for viewers of Pitch Black. In Pitch Black, William J. John, Riddick’s captor and bounty hunter, is left to die when Riddick uses him as a distraction instead of Jack. With no mention of Toombs in Pitch Black, viewers would easily wonder if John survived and was recast as Toombs.
However, Dark Fury provides the origin story of Toombs and his dedication to capturing Riddick. After the explosion and escape of Riddick, Imam, and Jack, Chillingsworth angrily instructs Junner to wake up more mercenaries in cryostasis, including Toombs. Chillingsworth also sends a carnivorous alien to search for the escaped party. Using his blood as bait, Riddick tricks the carnivorous alien into killing all the mercs except for Toombs, who manages to hide away.
The Trio Subdue Junner And Chillingsworth
Junner gets ahead of Riddick and finds Imam and Jack. After knocking out Imam, he attempts to strangle Jack, who’s saved in time, before passing out. Riddick and Junner get into a fight, with both evenly matched. Riddick gets the upper hand when he finds one of the ship’s power cables and cuts it.
In the dark, with his surgically modified eyes, Riddick sees and stabs Junner in the eye. Angry that things have not gone according to plan, Chillingsworth moves in to kill Riddick. However, she’s shot in the head by Jack, who quickly locates Junner’s rifle.
Riddick Leaves Imam And Jack At New Mecca
Riddick, Imam, and Jack locate a dropship and use it to escape Kublai Khan. Imam raises concerns that Jack could become like Riddick they tag along. Riddick decides it’s best to leave Jack with Imam and set course for New Mecca on Planet Helium Prime. As a fugitive, Riddick goes into hiding from mercenaries and bounty hunters. The Chronicles of Riddick continues with Riddick still in hiding. Riddick heads to New Mecca and is reunited with Imam, who he dropped off in Dark Fury.
Toombs Is The New Commander Of The Mercenary Vessel
Toombs comes out of hiding to find Junner and Chillingsworth dead. Toombs assumes command of Kublai Khan over the surviving mercenaries on board. Toombs sets the ship’s course to pursue and capture Riddick for his bounty. Toombs’ appearance in Planet U.V. in search of Riddick is part of the opening scenes of The Chronicles of Riddick. Dark Fury sets a better stage for the opening events of The Chronicles of Riddick, making it an appropriate sequel for Pitch Black in the Riddick franchise.
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