9 Reasons Why ‘Winnie-the-Pooh: Blood and Honey 2’ Will be Better than the First Movie

After the success of Winnie-the-Pooh: Blood and Honey in 2023, the sequel, in terms of quality, has nowhere to go but up. Here are the best reasons why it is a guarantee that the sequel will be better than the first.

Winnie-the-Pooh: Blood and Honey 2 will surely be better on nearly every level.

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Winnie-the-Pooh: Blood and Honey (2023) was a financial success that ballooned to proportions that surprised everyone. While critics and lots of viewers weren’t always kind to it, Blood and Honey definitely earned its fair share of fans. But will those fans be rewarded with something bigger and better in the sequel? Will the new incarnation of Pooh and his killer friends earn new fans that may have walked away the first time around? The logical answer is yes, Winnie-the-Pooh: Blood and Honey 2 (2024) will absolutely be better than the movie that preceded it. This article details the best reasons why that statement is the safest and coldest take you’re likely to hear all year.

More Money and Time Spent on the Sequel

Pooh, seen from behind, standing in front of a large house in Winnie-the-Pooh: Blood and Honey 2.
The first Winnie-the-Pooh: Blood and Honey was basically part of an assembly-line process of making movie after movie for Jagged Edge Productions, at least until the buzz surrounding it led to some extra attention. The sequel, seen here in an image from the trailer, has significantly more money and time put into it.

Jagged Edge Productions, the company responsible for the Winnie-the-Pooh: Blood and Honey movies, established themselves with a business model of high quantity and varying quality. Their movies are usually fun for fans of micro-budget schlock, but the idea appears to be to get something made quickly, sell it, and move on to the next project. Jagged Edge Productions was founded in 2020 by Scott Jeffrey & Rhys Frake-Waterfield, and since then they boast having produced over fifty feature films. That’s a lot.

Making movies with lower expectations necessitates lower budgets. It’s sustainable because the risk can be relatively low, and they don’t need to make as much money back in order to be successful. The surprise success of Winnie-the-Pooh: Blood and Honey caused a deviation from the Jagged Edge model. With a built-in fan base, the sequel is being afforded more time and money. Speaking about the budget for Blood and Honey 2, director Rhys Frake-Waterfield says, “It’s magnitudes higher compared to what it was on the first film. It’s over 10 times what it was.”

As for the time spent on the sequel compared to the original, Scott Jeffrey says the first Blood and Honey was “just one on a conveyor belt,” with it being one of 45 films he produced in that year. For the sequel, Rhys Frake-Waterfield said in November of 2023, “I’ve not really worked on anything else this year.” So, Blood and Honey 2 has a greatly increased budget, and it already has a lot more time spent on its production. That can only mean good things.

There are More Animal Friends/Killers

Christopher Robin and Tigger face to face in Winnie-the-Pooh: Blood and Honey 2.
Tigger (seen here with Christopher Robin) became public domain as of 2024, so he wasn’t available when the first Blood and Honey was released.

Winnie-the-Pooh: Blood and Honey had Winnie-the-Pooh and Piglet in live action. That was fine, but anyone who has read the books knows that Christopher Robin has many animal friends. Blood and Honey 2 will double the number of feral animal fiends by adding Owl and Tigger to the returning Pooh and Piglet. Four killers means more bloodshed and more chaos. It also means that Christoper Robin has twice as many reasons to be both horrified and heartbroken as his former playmates give in to their bloodlust. For many low-budget horror movies, the more blood and violence, the better.

The Killer Animals Look Much Better

A close-up of one of the animal/human hybrids in Winnie-the-Pooh: Blood and Honey 2.
Zooming in this close to the killer animals in the first movie would just show flat latex, not the detailed skin and fur seen here.

It’s no secret that Winnie-the-Pooh: Blood and Honey was made with a very small budget. That, of course, affected how detailed the human-animal hybrids of Pooh and Piglet could be. “We were so limited on money. I literally just found two masks online,” says director Rhys Frake-Waterfield of the 2023 movie. Frankly, despite not having any fur, the Winnie-the-Pooh mask in the first movie actually works quite well. The sort-of-cuddly but also kind-of-creepy mask creates a nice juxtaposition for a movie about a formerly lovable creature who becomes a sadistic murderer. Piglet, on the other hand, did not bring to mind anything cute or cuddly. He just looked like a person wearing a generic boar mask.

Rhys Frake-Waterfield estimates that the original Pooh costume cost about $770, and it was put together from online shopping and objects that were lying around. The sequel will be quite different. As Frake-Waterfield says, “this time we have people doing the prosthetics — it’s a company that has worked on Harry Potter’s Voldemort and Star Wars.” Looking at the credits on IMDB, Shaune Harrison is one of the effects artists being referred to, and his resume is impressive. Not only does he have credits for multiple Harry Potter and Star Wars movies, but he has performed makeup effects work on Nightbreed (1990), The Fifth Element (1997), Sunshine (2007), World War Z (2013), Avengers: Age of Ultron (2015), and many more.

Tigger standing in a doorway in Winnie-the-Pooh: Blood and Honey 2.
Tigger’s tail even swishes.

Just looking at the trailer for Blood and Honey 2 shows a massive upgrade across the board for the animals. Pooh looks more like a demented, animal-human-hybrid version of a teddy bear as opposed to a dark parody of a cartoon bear, Piglet looks a lot more like what you might imagine the Piglet from E.H. Shepard’s drawings might have grown into over a long period of time, and Tigger looks like a tiger-human hybrid like you might find on the island of Dr. Moreau. The best look at Owl so far is in the movie’s poster, and there he does look a little like a twisted version of The Vulture from the Spider-Man comics, but that could still work really well. Overall, the animals look (and appear to act) way more animalistic, which is a gigantic improvement from the first movie where Pooh and Piglet moved like large men in animal masks (which is what they were).

It Has More Deaths

Christopher Robin looks at a floor full of bodies in Winnie-the-Pooh: Blood and Honey 2.
This shot from the trailer for Blood and Honey 2 appears to show nearly as many deaths as were seen in the entirety of the first movie

Aboard the same train of thought of “more killers means more fun,” more killers also means more kills. This assumption of a higher body count is confirmed by producer Scott Jeffrey who said in November of 2023, “we’ve got a little problem at the moment because there are too many deaths in it!” The trailer for Winnie-the-Pooh: Blood and Honey 2 shows Pooh and friends attacking people at a rave, and one might assume that a large number of the reported deaths in the movie happen in that scene.

After all, there are around 40 actors credited on IMDB simply as “Raver,” and the trailer even shows a brief clip of Christopher Robin standing in front of a floor full of (presumably) dead raver bodies. There were thirteen on-screen deaths in Winnie-the-Pooh: Blood and Honey. Though it shouldn’t be built up too much since we haven’t seen the movie yet and can’t say for sure, but the rave scene in Blood and Honey 2 might beat the first movie’s kill count on its own. And for anyone out there wondering, yes, more deaths does almost always mean good things in a low-budget slasher film where the biggest draw of the movie is watching the killers do murder.

It Has a Better Story

Scott Chambers as Christopher Robin in Winnie-the-Pooh: Blood and Honey 2.
The sequel will focus more on the story between Christopher Robin (this time played by producer Scott Jeffrey credited as Scott Chambers) and Winnie-the-Pooh, which the first movie barely touched on.

Winnie-the-Pooh: Blood and Honey was fun for what it was, but it never felt like it really took advantage of the source material. The main bulk of the movie was a generic slasher flick where a bunch of people just happen to be in the wrong place at the wrong time. Change out the killers (or, you know, just take off their masks), and the movie plays out nearly the exact same way with the exception of the beginning and ending. The idea of Pooh and his friends becoming feral and vengeful after feeling abandoned by Christopher Robin is good, but, other than a cursory motivation to kill, that has little to do with Pooh and Piglet attacking a group of women renting a cabin in the woods.

Winnie-the-Pooh: Blood and Honey 2 appears to put a much greater emphasis on Christopher Robin and his story. The trailer shows Christopher speaking with someone and flashing back to his childhood, possibly with Pooh and friends when they were young and cuddly. The trailer also shows Christopher seeing victims of violent attacks and connecting them to the “100 Acre Massacre.” Focusing more on Christopher Robin is an essential part of making a Winnie-the-Pooh story feel authentic and emotional, especially when Pooh and his friends barely speak.

Christopher Robin tries to stand up after being tortured by Pooh in Winnie-the-Pooh: Blood and Honey.
In the first movie, Christopher Robin (then played by Nikolai Leon) goes through a difficult time, but he is only really seen in the beginning and towards the end of the film.

So far, the story for Blood and Honey 2 is described as involving Pooh and his feral friends being revealed to the public. They then decide to leave the 100 Acre Wood so they can take out their years of suffering on the nearby town of Ashdown with a massive murder spree. Christopher Robin appears to be involved throughout, and that already makes the story better. Rhys Frake-Waterfield admits that his approach to the story of the first movie was conservative with regards to how it approached Winnie-the-Pooh and Christopher Robin because he wanted to steer clear of legal trouble. But with one movie down and no legal troubles reported, it appears that the sequel will dig deeper into the classic characters and their stories.

It Teases a Wider Universe

A drawing of Pooh Bear with dark eyes in Winnie-the-Pooh: Blood and Honey.
Much like how the opening of Winnie-the-Pooh: Blood and Honey begins with storybook-style drawings of Pooh (pictured here) and his friends, it has already been reported that drawings of two future additions to the growing children’s-story-horror universe will be seen in Winnie-the-Pooh: Blood and Honey 2.

Early in 2023 we reported that Rhys Frake-Waterfield wanted to begin a shared universe of horror movies starring messed-up adaptations of classic children’s story characters. A movie titled Peter Pan’s Neverland Nightmare was confirmed at that time. Since then it’s confirmed that Bambi: The Reckoning and Pinocchio: Unstrung are also in the works. A host of other children’s-story horror movies are also rumored or confirmed to be in development including horror versions of Sleeping Beauty, Goldilocks, Cinderella, and another Pinocchio movie, but only the specific titles mentioned above are currently known to be part of the the forthcoming Pooh Universe.

Though the producers of the Winnie-the-Pooh movies are coy about exactly how and when the characters will begin to meet each other, Scott Jeffrey confirmed the connections by saying this past November, “There’s going to be easter eggs in Winnie the Pooh 2 about two films that have not been announced yet.” Now, whether that means there will be sneaky surprises hidden within the story itself, or if Jeffrey was simply referring to the drawings that Bloody Disgusting announced will be part of Blood and Honey 2‘s credits is unknown. Regardless, if you want to join in at the beginning of the Pooh Universe, then you better start now.

Simon Callow is in It

Simon Callow in Winnie-the-Pooh: Blood and Honey 2.
Having a veteran actor like Simon Callow in the cast immediately makes it better.

Talented and established actors make movies better. That’s a simple rule that holds true most of the time, and horror movies, especially horror movies with lower budgets, have relied on that rule for decades. Just look at Donald Pleasence in Halloween (1978), Jamie Lee Curtis in Prom Night (1980), Brad Dourif in the Child’s Play (1998), and John Saxon in a bunch of horror films. Even modern micro-budget movies adhere to this philosophy. For example, if Tony Todd is in a movie, even if I have no idea what it is (and he’s been in a good number of those kinds of movies), I’m going to watch it. At the very least I’ll be entertained by Tony Todd. Heck, even House of the Dead (2003), which isn’t a good movie, is better because Ellie Cornell, Clint Howard, and Jürgen Prochnow are in it.

Simon Callow is a very good actor, and he’s in Winnie-the-Pooh: Blood and Honey 2. Therefore, the movie will be better than if he weren’t in it. No disrespect is meant to the cast of the first Blood and Honey, but Simon Callow has decades more acting experience than any of them. He began his stage career in the 1970s, and some of his film credits include Amadeus (1984), Howard’s End (1992), Four Weddings and a Funeral (1994), and Shakespeare in Love (1998) for which he won a shared Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Cast. But maybe even more importantly than his critically-acclaimed roles, Callow also knows how to play around in much sillier fare like Ace Ventura: When Nature Calls (1995) and Street Fighter (1994). Simon Callow makes a movie better regardless of the kind of movie he’s in.

Because it Has to Be Better

Piglet and Pooh approach a woman (Natasha Tosini) who is relaxing in a hot tub in Winnie-the-Pooh: Blood and Honey (2023).
When asked about recreating the success of the first movie when the curiosity factor might have been a significant part of Blood and Honey‘s success, producer Scott Jeffrey says, “yeah, there’s definitely extra stress and extra pressure. But it’s got a bit of a fan base now.” (pictured: a scene from the first Blood and Honey)

This reason might sound flippant or derogatory towards the first movie, but that’s not how it’s meant. What “it has to be better” means is that Winnie-the-Pooh: Blood and Honey (2023) had the massive benefit of its status as an oddity. People were curious about it because it’s a horror movie featuring characters inspired by A.A. Milne and E.H. Shepard’s timeless and extremely well-known children’s stories. And even though Blood and Honey is not based in any way on the version of the Winnie-the-Pooh characters popularized by Disney, there is no denying that the association with the world’s most powerful family-friendly film studio helped gain even more attention to this low-budget slasher movie.

Fast forward about a year, and a murderous version of Winnie-the-Pooh is no longer as much of an oddity as it once was. Blood and Honey made around $5 million worldwide in theaters (according to The Numbers and Box Office Mojo), but will as many people flock to theaters to see the sequel? Or, for some, has their curiosity been sated?

As a personal anecdote, when I went to see Blood and Honey in the theater, the three people sitting beside me clearly had no idea what they were getting themselves into. They audibly complained during the first few scenes, and they walked out about halfway through the film. People like that might have been curious, but they likely won’t be returning for part two. But how many of those people are out there, and how much of the box office total did they account for? It’s difficult to tell. One thing is certain though. If the filmmakers hope to even come close the success of the first film, Blood and Honey 2 must make up for its lack of an oddball status by making a higher-quality movie.

Because it Can Only be Better

Pooh smiles in Winnie-the-Pooh: Blood and Honey (2023).
To be completely forthcoming, I enjoyed the first Winnie-the-Pooh: Blood and Honey (seen here) well enough for what it is, but I was disappointed by what it is compared to what it could have been.

Okay, so, this reason is a little derogatory towards the first movie, but it’s not without precedent. An Indiewire article published in October of 2023 describes a screening of Blood and Honey in which the movie’s director of photography, Vince Knight, got on stage to “temper the crowd’s expectations.” As the article relates, Knight cautioned viewers not to expect too much from the movie, and that the cast and crew “spent a lot of time working on it but not a lot of time shooting it.”

Of course, you can be sure that other people on the crew and in the cast don’t necessarily feel the same way as Knight, but you can judge for yourself how good you think the final result is. Lots of people loved it, lots of people didn’t. But as a few of the above reasons point out, the first movie was little more than an opportunistic slasher film that barely even tried to take advantage of the full potential that the Winnie-the-Pooh source material provides.

A close-up of Pooh's snout in Winnie-the-Pooh: Blood and Honey 2.
A bigger budget doesn’t necessarily equal better results in every case within the film industry, but images like this that detail the much greater care put into this particular sequel should give fans (and non-fans) a good indication of the direction the Pooh Universe is headed in.

From a certain perspective, removing all the connections to Winnie-the-Pooh (the animal masks, the background lore, etc) from the first movie would have lowered expectations, and that would have made the movie “better” by having a lower bar of “goodness” to try to reach. No one expects much from an average micro-budget slasher flick about two large guys attacking people in a cabin. The fewer number of horror fans who would be determined enough seek something like that out would likely be more satisfied with the result overall. Plus, you wouldn’t have throngs of people who never watch micro-budget slashers expecting something they didn’t get. That seems to have happened a lot if the reviews, from critics and audiences, for Blood and Honey are to be believed.

By that logic, attempting to take advantage of the public domain status of Winnie-the-Pooh actually hurt the quality of the movie. But at the same time, it obviously helped the profitability of the movie by an enormous amount. So now, there is no reason for Winnie-the-Pooh: Blood and Honey 2 to be good, if not great. It actually can’t be worse because the filmmakers already have a foundation for what they want to do, they have more freedom to do it, they have already set proper expectations for the sequel, and they have more time and money to devote to making it all happen. For these reasons and more, it is safe to say that Winnie-the-Pooh: Blood and Honey 2 will be much better than the first movie. Guaranteed.

Winnie-the-Pooh: Blood and Honey 2 was originally looking at a release on February 14, 2024, but that appears to have shifted. There is no confirmed date at this time, though sometime in March has been suggested as a tentative release window.

Meet The Author

Chris has a degree in film studies at Temple University’s campus in Tokyo, Japan. He is a renowned expert on horror cinema.