After landing a terrifically exciting lead in John Boyega, who will also produce, Pacific Rim 2 is continuing to bolster its cast. Per THR, Scott Eastwood (son of Clint) is in early talks to sign on for the sci-fi spectacle. Character details are unknown at this time, but the sequel has had an interesting development process, as Guillermo del Toro was all geared up and ready to begin production when the studio pumped the breaks. The follow-up subsequently gained traction once more, but this time with Spartacus and Daredevil Season 1 showrunner Steven S. DeKnight directing, although del Toro remains heavily involved as a producer.
But what’s been curious about the casting thus far is it’s starting to look like Pacific Rim 2 may follow the new trend of “rebootquels”, which is interesting considering the first film was released a mere 3 years ago. That picture starred Charlie Hunnam and Rinko Kikuchi as the human leads, along with Idris Elba as the tremendously named Stacker Pentecost, and while Stacker bit the bullet in Pacific Rim (spoiler alert), Hunnam and Kikuchi’s characters seemed primed to continue their story in the follow-up.
Boyega was the first piece of casting news for Pacific Rim 2, and he’ll be playing the son of Elba’s character. There’s been no word on Hunnam or Kikuchi’s involvement, nor Charlie Day whom del Toro had pegged to play a major role in the sequel. It’s possible that, with Boyega anchoring the picture, Pacific Rim 2 will take place a considerable time after the events of Pacific Rim, which could explain the absence of the majority of the characters from the first movie.
Box office-wise, Pacific Rim was right on the line between blockbuster success and modest performance. Its strength in China was what finally led to a greenlight for the sequel, but given the precious position it was in, Universal and Legendary may feel like they have more leeway to switch up the story this time around.
The good news is that del Toro has been enthusiastic about the sequel on Twitter, which means whatever story or character changes are in store are essentially approved by the Pacific Rim creator, even as Jurassic World co-writer Derek Connolly was brought in to perform rewrites.
As for Eastwood, his star has been on the rise since his starring turn in the Nicholas Sparks drama The Longest Ride, with roles in Suicide Squad, Fast 8, and Ben Affleck’s next directorial effort, Live by Night, upcoming.
Pacific Rim 2 is slated for release on February 23, 2018.