PT Merantau Films and XYZ Films announced on Thursday [31] that shooting had begun on the sequel to the cult smash.

Writer-director Gareth Huw Evans reprises his role from the first film The Raid (aka The Raid: Redemption) on The Raid 2, or The Raid 2: Berandal as it is known in Indonesia.

Sony Pictures Worldwide Acquisitions (SPWA) holds rights in the US, Spain, Latin America and South Africa and SPC will release theatrically in the US as it did on the original.

Iko Uwais reprises his starring role [pictured] as the action picks up from where the first film ended. This time Rama goes undercover to infiltrate a Jakarta crime syndicate in order to protect his family and uncover corruption in the police force. 

Ario Sagantoro is producing for PT Merantau Films along with Nate Bolotin, Nick Spicer, Aram Tertzakian and Todd Brown for XYZ Films. Rangga Maya Barack-Evans and Irwan D Mussry serve as executive producers.

The international cast includes Tio Pakusadewo, Putra Arifin Scheunamann, Julie Estelle, Alex Abbad and Roy Marten. 

The Raid premiered in Toronto 2011 and won the Audience Award in the Midnight Madness section. It screened at Sundance and SXSW and grossed close to $15m worldwide.

XYZ and PT Merantau Films are also in post-production on Killers, which is co-directed by Timo Tjahjanto and Kimo Stamboel, with Evans and Maya Barack-Evans serving as executive producers.

Evans and Tjahjanto recently collaborated on Safe Haven, one of the segments in the horror anthology film S-VHS that premiered in Sundance. XYZ’s The Rambler also screened in Park City

“We’re incredibly excited to start the next chapter of The Raid story,” said XYZ Films. “Gareth introduced a rich and fertile world in the first film, and we’re eager to see him expand on that vision with Berandal.”

“To all our fans thank you so much for your support,” said Evans. “We can’t wait to come back and show you what we have been working on. We’ll be there in 2014 with a film bigger, better and bloodier. Wish us luck.”