Godzilla vs. Kong (2021)
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One will fall
Godzilla vs. Kong is an upcoming 2021 American science fiction monster film produced by Legendary Pictures, and the fourth entry in the MonsterVerse. It will be released to American theaters on March 26, 2021, becoming available to stream via HBO Max the same day for a period of one month.
The second film to pit Godzilla and King Kong against each other, Godzilla vs. Kong will be the culmination of every entry in Legendary and Warner Bros.' MonsterVerse so far. When Godzilla and Kong engage in a battle for supremacy, Monarch embarks on a quest to discover the Titans' origins while a human conspiracy threatens to wipe out all of the ancient creatures.
In a time when monsters walk the Earth, humanity’s fight for its future sets Godzilla and Kong on a collision course that will see the two most powerful forces of nature on the planet collide in a spectacular battle for the ages. As Monarch embarks on a perilous mission into uncharted terrain and unearths clues to the Titans' origins, a human conspiracy threatens to wipe the creatures, both good and bad, from the face of the earth forever.
Rumors of a King Kong vs. Godzilla remake began as soon as Legendary Pictures announced Kong: Skull Island in 2014. On September 10, 2015, Deadline reported that the project's move from Universal Pictures to Godzilla distributor Warner Bros. was meant to facilitate a rematch between the two monsters. The Hollywood Reporter published its own article on the impending crossover six days later. On October 14, 2015, Legendary confirmed its intent to launch a cinematic universe featuring both Godzilla and King Kong, as well as other giant monsters including Mothra, Rodan, and King Ghidorah. Godzilla was the first entry in this cinematic universe, later officially dubbed the MonsterVerse, and it was to be followed by Kong: Skull Island and the Godzilla sequel Godzilla: King of the Monsters before finally culminating with Godzilla vs. Kong. Initially, the release date for Godzilla vs. Kong was simply given as 2020. On May 10, 2016, The Wrap reported that Godzilla: King of the Monsters and Godzilla vs. Kong had been given new release dates of March 22, 2019 and May 29, 2020, respectively.
On March 10, 2017, The Hollywood Reporter reported that Legendary would be assembling a writers room to come up with the story for the film, comprised of Terry Rossio (who previously worked on the original version of TriStar's Godzilla film), Patrick McKay, J.D. Payne, Lindsey Beer, Cat Vasko, T.S. Nowlin, and J. Michael Straczynski. On May 3, Warner Bros. announced that it had moved the release date for Godzilla vs. Kong up a week from May 29, 2020 to May 22. Adam Wingard finalized a deal to become the film's director on May 30. In an interview with ScreenCrush on August 18, he described Godzilla vs. Kong as a "massive monster brawl movie." He said the film would contain "lots of monsters going crazy on each other" but also stated "at the end of the day I want there to be an emotional drive to it."
On June 1, That Hashtag Show revealed that Deadpool 2 star Julian Dennison had been cast in the film in a supporting role, while Millie Bobby Brown and Kyle Chandler would both be reprising their roles from Godzilla: King of the Monsters. The article also reported that Legendary had offered Frances McDormand a starring role in the film. The following day, The Hollywood Reporter confirmed this report, save for the talks with McDormand, adding that Zhang Ziyi would be reprising her role from Godzilla: King of the Monsters as well, and that Van Marten would be joining the film's cast. After That Hashtag Show claimed McDormand had been cast in July, her representatives denied her involvement. That Hashtag Show later clarified in a retraction that McDormand was never in negotiations for a role and had passed on the film.
Further casting announcements followed as the film neared the start of production: Brian Tyree Henry on October 10, Demián Bichir on October 17, Alexander Skarsgård on October 25, Eiza González and Rebecca Hall on October 30, Jessica Henwick on November 8, Shun Oguri on November 11, and Lance Reddick on November 14. In a SiriusXM interview on November 5, Skarsgård described his character as "not an alpha, bad-ass hero, which I thought was quite interesting. He is thrown into this very dangerous situation and is definitely not equipped for it and that makes it a bit more interesting in my opinion than had he been a bad-ass dude. He’s just a tiny, tiny human trying to survive between these two behemoths."
On February 21, 2019, Warner Bros. moved up the release date of the film to March 13 to avoid competition with the ninth entry in the The Fast and the Furious franchise.
On May 30, the day before the international theatrical release of Godzilla: King of the Monsters, an advertisement for Godzilla vs. Kong was shown at Licensing Expo 2019, featuring artwork of the two titular monsters battling with the tagline "One will fall." While promoting Godzilla: King of the Monsters in China, Millie Bobby Brown discussed her role as Madison in Godzilla vs. Kong, explaining that as Godzilla and Kong come to blows with one another, she goes on a journey to decide which of them she will ultimately side with. On June 17, Warner Bros. presented footage from Godzilla vs. Kong along with its other major upcoming films to European exhibitors at CineEurope. Deadline reported that Godzilla vs. Kong was set to release internationally on March 11, 2020, two days before its American debut, despite earlier comments from WB Chairman Toby Emmerich suggesting the possibility that the film could be delayed.
On November 25, 2019, Variety reported that the release date for Godzilla vs. Kong had been pushed back eight months to November 20, 2020. A short clip from the film, showing Kong throwing a punch at Godzilla, played before the Warner Bros. presentation at Comic Con Experience in Brazil on December 8, 2019.
On January 7, 2020, photographs from a toy expo surfaced online showing figures for Godzilla vs. Kong. These included multiple figures of Godzilla and Kong, including a figure of Godzilla wearing what appeared to be battle armor labeled "Mega Godzilla" and Kong wielding an axe. Other figures included a Skullcrawler and a new Titan later identified as Warbat. Most noteworthy were several figures of what appeared to be a new incarnation of Mechagodzilla.
On January 17, Adam Wingard posted on his Instagram that Godzilla vs. Kong was in the closing stages of editorial and only a few months away from completion.
On May 20, Legendary Comics held a digital WonderCon panel discussing the upcoming graphic novel tie-ins for the film. The panel revealed the authors and illustrators behind the Kong- and Godzilla-centric graphic novels, as well as The Art of Godzilla vs. Kong and a Kong-centric Godzilla vs. Kong picture book. Images from the graphic novels were shown as well. On June 10, Film Music Reporter announced that Tom Holkenborg, better known by the stage name Junkie XL, would be scoring the film. On June 12, Deadline announced that Godzilla vs. Kong would be delayed to May 21, 2021.
On November 25, The Hollywood Reporter revealed that WarnerMedia and Warner Bros. were in talks to release Godzilla vs. Kong on HBO Max the same day it would open in theaters, echoing plans for Wonder Woman 1984, after the former blocked a $200 million-plus offer from Netflix. Warner made these plans official on December 3, unveiling a new Godzilla vs. Kong banner in its announcement video. The film will only be available on the service for one month after its theatrical premiere. Two shots of Godzilla and Kong were included in a Warner Bros. sizzle reel shown at Comic Con Experience on December 6. The following day, it was reported that Legendary may take legal action against Warner Bros. over its plans to place the film on HBO Max, as the studio was largely kept out of the loop of this plan and supplied a sizeable portion of its $160 million budget.
On January 15, 2021, Deadline reported that Godzilla vs. Kong's release date would be moving up almost two months to March 26.
Principal photography on Godzilla vs. Kong began on November 12, 2018 in Hawaii, under the title Apex. The production wrapped in Hawaii on December 20 and resumed at Village Roadshow Studios in Oxenford, Australia, in the third week of January. Outdoor shoots took place at various Gold Coast locations, wrapping in early April. Several days of reshoots were conducted afterwards.
Staff role on the left, staff member's name on the right.
- Directed by Adam Wingard
- Screenplay by Eric Pearson, Max Borenstein
- Story by Terry Rossio, Michael Dougherty, Zach Shields
- Produced by Mary Parent, Alex Garcia, Eric McLeod, Brian Rogers
- Executive producers Kenji Okuhira, Yoshimitsu Banno, Jon Jashni, Thomas Tull
- Music by Junkie XL
- Cinematography by Ben Seresin
- Edited by Josh Schaeffer
- Production design by Owen Patterson, Tom Hammock
- Assistant directors Ashley Douglass, Nick Satriano
- Visual effects supervisor John "DJ" DesJardin
- Sound design by Jason W. Jennings
Actor's name on the left, character played on the right.
- Kyle Chandler as Dr. Mark Russell
- Millie Bobby Brown as Madison Russell
- Ziyi Zhang as Dr. Ilene Chen, Monarch Senior Mythographer
- Alexander Skarsgård
- Eiza González
- Rebecca Hall
- Jessica Henwick
- Danai Gurira
- Demián Bichir
- Brian Tyree Henry
- Shun Oguri
- Julian Dennison
- Lance Reddick
- Van Marten
Weapons, vehicles, races, and organizations
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