This is some “holy shit” news. Legendary Pictures is making a major move that foretells a massive monster showdown. Deadline reports that the studio is moving its in-development King Kong picture, Kong: Skull Island, from Universal to Warner Bros. — the studio that is home to the new Godzilla franchise — in order to get all their monstrous ducks in a row for a shared monster universe leading to a new King Kong vs Godzilla battle movie.
Legendary and Warner Bros. parted ways last year, when Legendary partnered up with Universal. Legendary developed the King Kong prequel picture Kong: Skull Island was over at Universal, but is teaming up with their former co-production studio with an eye toward getting all their mega monster players under one roof. The report states that Kong: Skull Island and Godzilla 2 will be followed by an epic show down picture between the giant ape and the radioactive lizard.
Kong: Skull Island is currently still casting. Tom Hiddleston, Brie Larson and Corey Hawkins are set to star, and last we heard Samuel L. Jackson, Tom Wilkinson and John C. Reilly were all in talks to fill major roles. Little is known about Godzilla 2 a this time, but the film is set for a June 8, 2018 release date. It’s also worth noting that Legendary and Warner Bros. are the studios that brought us Pacific Rim, and while Legendary frontman Thomas Tull has gone on record saying the Godzilla would never wander into the PacRim universe (and honestly doesn’t belong there given the drastically different tones), it’s fun to speculate now that they’re moving into realm of epic monster battles.
Godzilla 2 will supposedly feature some monster battles of its own, introducing Mothra, Rodan and King Ghidorah, but Kong and ‘Zilla are the kings of monster cinema, so you just can’t match the excitement of seeing those two go head-to-head. This also raises the interesting question of how King Kong will be depicted in the new films. If he’s going to square off against the Godzilla introduced in Gareth Edwards‘ 2014 movie, he’s going to have to be significantly sized up from previous incarnations, and he’ll need some serious strength too. The new Godzilla is an absolutely giant, nuclear-powered, fire-breathing fuckton of fury, and traditionally Kong is just a really big ape. Regardless of semantics, I’m genuinely excited by this prospect. While there are plenty of shared universes floating around in todays cinematic landscape, there’s a huge (and delightful) precedent for monster throw down movies, and it’s thrilling to think what a Kong vs Godzilla fight will look like with today’s technology.
What say you? Excited by the prospect of an shared monster universe? Ready to see these two battle it out? Curious how the hell Kong would stand a chance? Sound off in the comments below.