Those looking forward to the return of Jay and Silent Bob in Kevin Smith’s anticipated Clerks III will have to wait a little while longer, because Smith has announced that, come April, he’ll be starting production on his second horror film, Comes the Krampus.

Taking to Reddit, the filmmaker revealed that, with Tusk nearing completion, the original plan was for him to gear up to shoot Clerks III. But now he’s had a change of heart. Clerks III will still happen, but it’s Comes the Krampus that has him hooked right now, so much so that he has to make it next. And fortunately for us, he’s making it very soon.

Smith co-wrote the holiday horror anthology with Andy McElfresh. McElfresh will direct the episode, The Krampus vs. The 3rd Grade; long-time collaborator Jason Mewes will helm period episode, Hitler’s Krampus; Smith will direct the Gothic horror piece, Mask Maker; Carol Banker will helm The Proposal; and Smith’s wife/collaborator Jennifer Schwalbach will helm The Bad Babysitter, the framing device that holds everything together.

Following Tusk, the film is his second that began life as a podcast. He says that they’ve got a 20-day shoot with an under-$3m. budget, and given the Christmas setting, it seems logical to expect its arrival at the end of the year.

Whilst he doesn’t go into detail on casting, he does reveal that a lot of people will be returning from Tusk, which is led by Haley Joel Osment, Justin Long, Genesis Rodriguez, Michael Parks, and Ralph Garman, along with his past collaborators. So essentially, this is definitely something to look forward to. And he promises that Clerks III will still happen; we’ve just got to be a little more patient.

CLERKS III is still coming. I love the script so much, I’ll make it happen, I promise. But the muse (and the Mewes) is pulling me away from something old for the moment and pulling me toward something new. And when the muse whispers, I listen. When the Mewes whispers, it’s just kinda creepy. And he spells s**t wrong – even though he’s just whispering and not writing.

Perhaps the best take-home from all of this is the genuinely inspired tone that Smith has on the AMA when talking about the future.

So now that TUSK is nearly done (we still have our Guy Lapointe scenes to shoot this month), the idea was to gear up for CLERKS III. But then I started thinking “Isn’t that stepping backwards? Like literally?” While I love it with all of my heart, CLERKS is my past. It’s how I got started. And I’m just getting started again, after taking 3 years off, certain I was done making movies. TUSK represents something bold and new. No matter how bold I make it, CLERKS III will always have a number in the title. It will never be new. It will rock, I assure you, and it will be a worthy final installment in my mini-mart magnum opus. But it’s predicated on something I did a long time ago. I wanna keep moving forward. SModcast Pictures is becoming exactly that: we’re starting to make movies based on podcasts. TUSK was the first, and now COMES THE KRAMPUS will be next.

It sounds like we’ve got a lot more to look forward to beyond Tusk and Comes the Krampus. Whether Clerks III will end up being his final hurrah remains to be seen. If it does, then I really hope that it keeps getting delayed, because as much as I’d love to see what Smith has in store for Dante and Randal, and everyone else in that world, I’d love to see more of what Smith has to offer on other fronts even more.