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'Mamma Mia!' film sequel gets July 2018 release date

LOS ANGELES (AP) -- Mamma Mia, here we go again! A sequel to the ABBA-packed film musical "Mamma Mia!" will hit theaters on July 20, 2018.

Universal Pictures said Friday that "Mamma Mia: Here We Go Again!" will see the return of the film's original cast and feature a soundtrack of ABBA songs not included in the first.

The 2008 film starred Meryl Streep, Amanda Seyfried, Pierce Brosnan and Colin Firth and was a smash global hit, earning over $609 million worldwide. Talks of a sequel have circled for years.

Judy Craymer, who created and produced the popular stage musical that inspired the film, will produce with Gary Goetzman. "The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel" writer Ol Parker is set to write and direct. Phyllida Lloyd directed the first film.