Since its launch in theaters on March 31, “Godzilla vs. Kong” has topped $400 million at the box office, marking the highest grossing release of the pandemic era. The film debuted simultaneously on HBO Max, as part of Warner Bros.’ multi-platform release strategy for the studio’s 2021 slate.
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In 2014, Legendary kicked off their MonsterVerse plans, after partnering with Japan’s Toho Studios for 2014’s “Godzilla.” “Godzilla Vs. Kong” is the fourth movie in the franchise, after 2017’s “Kong Skull Island” (the franchise’s current box office leader with more than $566 million in worldwide ticket sales) and 2019’s “Godzilla: King of the Monsters.” Wingard would be the first director to return to fold for a second film. Gareth Edwards (“Godzilla”), Jordan Vogt-Roberts (“Kong Skull Island”) and Michael Dougherty (“Godzilla: King of the Monsters”) helmed the first three MonsterVerse projects.
There are no details regarding when the new movie would begin production, especially given that Wingard has a pretty full plate at the moment, with a live-action “Thundercats” feature in the works for Warner Bros. and a “Face/Off” sequel at Paramount upcoming.
Before joining the MonsterVerse, Wingard was best known for his lower-budget (yet award-winning) horror fare, including “Blair Witch,” “The Guest,” “V/H/S” and “You’re Next.” With “Godzilla vs. Kong,” the filmmaker was challenged to advance the legacies of both Godzilla and King Kong, while managing a big-budget production.
“You have to know that you’re not bigger than the franchise and you have to be able to tell the story you want to tell and put as much of yourself in it, but it has to work within the framework that you’ve been handed.” Wingard told Variety in an interview.
“When you’re doing low-budget indie films, you’re constantly saying, ‘We can’t afford to do this, so we can’t even think about doing it,'” he explained. “On a big-budget movie like this, it’s the opposite. For me, it was the first time as a filmmaker I was able to open myself up to unlimited imagination.”
The director is repped by CAA, Grandview, and Morris Yorn. THR first reported news of Legendary’s talks with Wingard about the new film.
Brent Lang contributed to this story.
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