Director JA Bayona is a man in demand, and unfortunately it looks like time pressures have cost the sequel to Brad Pitt’s zombie movie World War Z.
The Wrap reports that, due to finishing his hotly anticipated adaptation of Patrick Ness’ A Monster Calls, Bayona will no longer be able to call the shots on World War Z 2.
Paramount stated that “Bayona is no longer able to make World War Z 2 this year, and it is our ambition to do so. He is a wonderful director and we hope to work with him soon.”
World War Z came out in 2013, riding a tsunami of filmmaking horror stories, ranging from production problems on set in Malta to a completely junked final act set in Russia that made Matthew Fox’s character irrelevant, but did mean that Peter Capaldi got to play a character called WHO Doctor before he was even cast in Doctor Who, which was something, eh?
In spite of our anticipation of a trainwreck, the film was a pleasant surprise and made more than enough at the box office to justify a sequel. While it’s a shame that the studio is unwilling to wait for the director of The Orphanage and The Impossible, their desire to avoid going through anything resembling the previous production woes may have something to do with this brisk move forward.
There’s also that release date of 9 June 2017, which means that a new director will have to be found quickly. So far Pitt remains the only confirmed cast member, returning as scientist Gerry Lane.
The script for World War Z 2 has two very reputable names behind it: Locke and Peaky Blinders‘ Steven Knight and Utopia‘s Dennis Kelly. While we didn’t necessarily come out of World War Z clamouring for a sequel, we’re certainly interested in seeing what such talented writers have come up with. As for Bayona, Deadline suggests that he might become a frontrunner for the Jurassic World sequel, which is without a director and is still waiting on a script.
World War Z 2 will be released on 9 June 2017. Keep up with the latest genre news with the new issue of SciFiNow.