Warner Bros. and Legendary Officially Announce Massive King Kong/Godzilla Trilogy
Prepare yourself ... for the EXTREMELY LARGE MONSTERS CINEMATIC UNIVERSE.
Via a press release, Warner Bros. and Legendary officially announced the first three movies in what could be a very large and ongoing series starring two of the most famous monsters of the silver screen: King Kong and Godzilla. Warners already released their first Godzilla in 2014; it’ll be joined by three films in three years starting in 2017. They are: Kong: Skull Island (2017), Godzilla 2 (in 2018), and Godzilla Vs. Kong (in 2020).
The release also suggests these three films are just the beginning of an even bigger group of interconnected franchises, noting that Legendary has the rights to additional Toho characters like “Rodan, Mothra, and King Ghidorah” that “may also join the Legendary pantheon of giant monster mayhem going forward.” There’s also a hint of the motivation that brings all these various critters into conflict:
Monarch, the human organization that uncovered Godzilla in the 2014 film, will expand their mission across multiple releases.
Kong: Skull Island, the first film in this new series, already has many of its main creative pieces in place. It’s going to be directed by Jordan Vogt-Roberts and will star Tom Hiddleston, Samuel L. Jackson, Brie Larson, and John Goodman. (The press release also credits four different writers for the film: Max Borenstein, John Gatins, Dan Gilroy, and Jurassic World’s Derek Connolly.) Godzilla director Gareth Edwards is expected to return for Godzilla 2 after he finishes his work on Rogue One: A Star Wars Story. The 2018 sequel will also be written by Max Borenstein; no cast has been announced on that one yet (beyond a very large, radioactive dinosaur). As for Godzilla Vs. Kong, the project remains an almost complete mystery beyond the basic premise and that 2020 release date.
Here’s Legendary’s Thomas Tull on the big announcement:
“Audiences really responded to Godzilla. Today, I’m excited to reveal that film was only the beginning of an epic new entertainment universe. As a lifelong fan of these characters, I’ve always wanted to see the ultimate showdown, and today we’re pleased to be announcing that and more.”
King Kong and Godzilla have met before (the image above is a still from 1962’s King Kong Vs. Godzilla), but that wasn’t exactly a classic confrontation. Legendary and Warners’ monster movies will up the budget and scope of their battle significantly. I’m not sure audiences want yet another incredibly dense and complicate cinematic universe to keep straight, but assuming the filmmakers can work out the size difference between Kong and ’Zilla (the former is typically portrayed as much smaller than the latter), this could be a pretty awesome kongfrontation.