Collider has the following regarding the first attempt at a sequel that Devlin was paid to do:
"Many years ago, I was actually hired to write the sequel to Independence Day. And I wrote a sequel. And they paid me a boatload of money to go write this thing. And after I wrote it, I read it and I gave them back the money and I said, 'look, this is an okay movie I just wrote. But it's not worthy of the sequel to Independence Day.' And I literally gave back the money. And afterwards I said, 'You know what? I'm not even going to try anymore.' And it was only about a year-and-a-half ago that Roland called me up and said, 'We should try again.'"