Guillermo Del Toro Still Writing ‘Pacific Rim’ Sequel, Waiting on Greenlight

Published 2 years ago by

Kaiju Level 4 in Pacific Rim  Guillermo Del Toro Still Writing Pacific Rim Sequel, Waiting on Greenlight

This summer’s mecha vs. monsters action adventure Pacific Rim is out in Blu-ray and DVD today, in the wake of its modest $407 million worldwide box office gross, and many fans of the movie are very interested in getting an answer to the question of whether it will be the beginning of a new franchise, or will remain a one-hit wonder of destroyed buildings and giant monsters.

Without knowing exact details of Pacific Rim‘s marketing budget, it’s difficult to ascertain whether the movie made much money or simply broke even, though the fact that Legendary Pictures has yet to greenlight a sequel suggests that it didn’t draw in huge profits for the production company.

Nonetheless, when IGN asked director Guillermo Del Toro about Pacific Rim‘s box office performance in a recent interview, he said that he was proud of what the film achieved, considering it was one of the few summer blockbusters that wasn’t based on an existing IP:

“I’m very happy. Out of the top 10 titles of the summer, we were perhaps the one that was not dependent on a star name or a pre-established property, and I think that’s really, really good. The passion with people that saw the movie and raved about it was great.

“What was troubling was that we didn’t achieve — and the tracking was clear — we were not being exposed beyond the core. The core was reacting to the movie, but people on the street were not hearing about it in the right way. I cannot decipher that because that’s exactly what the numbers indicated. It’s sort of a head-scratcher, but when we opened we were in very low awareness, which means we were not being rejected or accepted. That was not the issue. The issue was we were not on the radar.”

This certainly seems to reflect what we’ve heard from readers when the subject of promotion for Pacific Rim has come up in the past. Fans of kaiju movies, science fiction and Del Toro’s previous work were aware of Pacific Rim from quite early on, but the excitement didn’t seem to reach casual moviegoers nearly as well.

Screenwriter Travis Beacham has already penned a graphic novel prequel to Pacific Rim titled “Tales from Year Zero,” but Del Toro says that he and Beacham aren’t quite done with the universe yet.

“We are writing the sequel. Travis Beacham and I are writing, so that is active. The decision to green light or not, that’s definitely above my pay rate.

“To me, what was beautiful and flattering was how people saw the movie not once or twice but three, four times or more. People that love it, love it with great passion. So I would love to continue telling stories about that world.”

Earlier this year we argued that the story of Pacific Rim was self-contained enough that it didn’t necessarily need a sequel, but that’s not to say that a sequel wouldn’t be entirely unwelcome. There’s a significant difference between a studio ordering another movie for the sake of squeezing more money from the franchise and the original filmmakers pushing for a sequel because they have more story to tell. To put it another way, we’re good at acting cool about a potential Pacific Rim sequel when it hasn’t been written yet, but now that there’s a script in progress it’s hard to resist the lure.

Charlie Hunnam and Charlie Day Pacific Rim Guillermo Del Toro Still Writing Pacific Rim Sequel, Waiting on Greenlight

The concept certainly isn’t lacking potential for further stories, as another Pacific Rim movie could either go back and explore the earlier years of the war against the Kaiju, or alternatively could show the humans going on the offensive and taking a trip through the rift to see more of what’s on the other side. Charlie Day has previously mentioned that Del Toro wanted to make his character, Newt, a villain in the sequel, which could be an interesting way to progress Newt’s fanboy obsession with the Kaiju.

Of course, all this will only be possible if a Pacific Rim sequel gets greenlit, and even then Legendary Pictures would need to find a way to generate interest in the franchise outside of its core of sci-fi and action movie fans. Tell us where you think the marketing went wrong the first time around – or if Pacific Rim‘s problems lay elsewhere – in the comments.


Pacific Rim is now available on DVD/Blu-ray.

Source: IGN

Follow H. Shaw-Williams on Twitter @HSW3K
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  1. I enjoyed this film for the spectacle it was. For me the bad acting/script and cliched story slightly grated on me but not enough for me not to enjoy the film and would watch a sequel, although the idea of a prequel would be welcome too.

    • We were laughing at it within 20 minutes of it starting.

      I’ve not seen such terrible acting in a while, and what the flip was all that scientist slapstick all about?

      I’d much rather he never make a blockbuster ever again, if that’s the quality of it.

      • You took the words right out of my mouth. The robot on monster combat was insane. Creative and original, but the male lead couldn’t carry a high school play from what I saw, and the writing was on par with a SYFY channel movie.
        I’d watch a sequel/prequel if they made one, but I have a feeling it would be a direct to Blu Ray/SYFY channel affair.

        • I don’t think it was that bad but I also don’t think it’s even remotely close to being a “movie of the year”. The imagery great but that’s about it. The overall storyline was average at best and it was filled with many plot holes. I thought the acting was okay but nothing great. If they do a sequel it needs make huge improvements and the first starts with Del Toro just focusing on directing. Let someone else more qualified do the writing/storytelling

        • You have apparently never watched Son’s of Anarchy. Hunnam’s acting ability is not an issue.

  2. I think Del Toro is right about there not being enough word about the movie. Barely anyone knew about this film so it’s no surprise it wasn’t a hit at the box office.

    I enjoyed Pacific Rim though it does have its problems. I wasn’t much of a fan of the human story and some of the acting. Charlie Hunnam, while I like the guy, his performance was average. I think he just needs a little bit of a push from Del Toro to show what he’s got. He’s in the upcoming Crimson Peak so maybe he’ll do fine there.

    I’d look forward to a sequel though I’m hoping if it does get the greenlight, they fix the issues the first film had.

    • Don’t think that is true. Here is how it is for me. See trailer for PR-> OMG what a steaming POS. Block out or avoid future references for the movie.

      • Nice to know.

      • well that’s just, like, your opinion man.

        • Don’t mess with the Jesus.

    • I don’t think that’s true. The word of mouth from fan boys were great but the word of mouth from the general public was horrid as I’ve found that the general public thought it was “okay” but it wasn’t something they couldn’t wait for the DVD. I kept hearing the same thing over and over with people in the “general public” saying it’s “too cartoony”.

  3. Hell Yes!!! I just bought an watched Pacific Rim again and yeah, of course it has problems but its a damn fun movie. And now they got the world and the mythos introduced it should be easier for them to jump into a sequel. Might as well, its not like WB has any other big DC movies after Bats vs Supes anyway.

  4. It was a cheeseball, almost 80s script and idea. To the extent where I thought a lot of it was purposefully so. Frankly, I had little problem with any of that at all. In terms of what it was promising to actual content delivering on that promise, it was one of the movies of the summer for me. Same can be said for ‘Furious Six’. Never a big fan of the franchise but the movie gave exactly what it promised.

    As for why it wasn’t on the radar? Well, bigger movies that needed bigger returns to actually post profit were around. Of course the studios are going to concentrate on pushing them more than a new IP. A shame, but we will get a sequel. A lot depends on Legendary finding new partners though. They will not shoulder the cost themselves and the deal with Warner Brothers has come to an end. So, when one happens, the other will follow.

    Well, I hope. Uncle Guillermo should just be given free reign over there.

  5. Im sure legendary are waiting for the dvd numbers to come and see how well Godzilla does next summer before deciding on a sequel or not. If it does well in both or at least in one hopefully we will be seeing a sequel in a few years.

  6. Remember that PR did not get proper publicity from the studio. As mentioned above WB and LP were in the end of their partnership. That and the bad publicity from TV programs comparing the film to Transformers without even seeing it. What can you expect when Grown Ups 2 got more money.

    Anyway, I hope there is another film. Mr. del Toro has the mind and the drive to tell a great story. By the way, you still haven’t considered the sales for the DVD’s and Blu ray.

  7. I’m all in if this gets the green light. Pacific Rim wasn’t the most intelligent film in the world, but damn, was it a spectacle on the big screen!

    • It was a spectacle on the small screen as well; I watched a copy on my laptop and enjoyed it more than many theatrical summer tentpole films seen in situ, e.g., Transformers, TDKR, Avengers…

      • Have yet to watch it on Blu-Ray. Plan on doing it this weekend!

  8. ALL I want is for the sequel to be Gypsy, with cannons,machine guns vs Godzilla

  9. I think it would be cool if for the end of Pacific Rim 2, they roll out a new Jaegar… MechaGodzilla! then have Pacific RIm 3 be Godzilla vs. the PR Kaiju and Jaegars and MechaG plus King Ghidorah or whatever DaiKaiju they introduce in the new Godzilla franchise.

    • A Godzilla cameo would be pretty cool. Good idea.

  10. Well if Warner Bro’s don’t start promoting Godzilla better soon then it will suffer the same fate as Pacific Rim.

    The promotion for ”Pacific Rim” blew, i wasn’t interested in it at all but when i saw it i was surprised i enjoyed it. It was nothing serious but extremely fun.

    Even though Sony’s Godzilla 98 blew chunks, The promotion for that movie was brilliant. Warner Bro’s better get on the hype train for Godzilla 2014.

    I think ”Godzilla 2014” will be the deciding factor on if to bring on more big budget monster movies or leave it. As i said Legendary an Warner better get on the program here an bring us some serious promotion soon.

    • Theres a rumor that the first trailer will be released at the beginning of November. which i think is a good time to start promotion, if a little late. But im satisfied rewatching the Concept trailer until then.

      • Makes sense since there are big movies coming out in November such as Thor, The Hunger Games sequel, etc.

      • Heard the rumor too, wouldn’t be surprised. I believe Amazing Spider-Man 2′s trailer is supposed to release alongside Thor and Hunger Games too.

      • I have the concept Trailer an i also have the early Official Trailer with snippets from the comic con 2013 trailer in it with Bryan, Olsen an other’s in it that was leaked.

        The Halo jump looked amazing, Very dark atmospheric movie that will be.

        I’m really excited for Godzilla, the Concept trailer was brilliant but still all these are ”Leaked” I heard the rumor of ”November 3rd” trailer being released an appearing with ”Thor 2” an also being released later November an to appear with ”The Hobbit: Part 2”

        Hopefully sooner rather then later.

    • I don’t think Godzilla needs too much promotion, as there’s already an established cultural awareness.

  11. For a fan of Robots and Monsters fighting you cant go wrong, yes it was not an Einstein kind of movie but it was a spectacle with some kick a$$ Kaiju!!

    there used to be Models when I was a kid that reminded me immensely of the Jaegers, I cant remember the name of them but they were damn cool…

  12. They should’ve had more back story showing how the Kaiju were getting bigger and stronger. It would’ve been nice to have more fight scenes showing them winning. From where the movie begins it seems like the giant robots are pretty useless. It made me wonder why they bothered at all given that one kaiju takes out two of them and goes on to wreck the city later on.

    • I personally thought they explained and portrayed it fine. Chuck Hansen (younger Strike Eureka pilot) said that they are starting to lose the war due to mediocre pilots, which he isn’t wrong, in my opinion. Then they have the problem of stronger and higher category Kaijus making appearances. They started to become more frequent too, which leads to one of the UN politician saying they’re losing Jaegers faster than they can build them. Also, the Jaeger tech was still in its infancy since there is only one Mark 4 and one Mark 5 ever built (Crimson Typhoon and Striker Eureka respectively).

    • Agreed. I felt like the Jaegers were always getting their asses kicked, and for that reason didn’t care much for the action scenes.

      Very few people had this problem with the movie though.

  13. I wasn’t a fan of the movie but good to know he’s enjoying writing the sequel

  14. I found the first movie to be pretty disappointing, but I also thought it had a lot of potential for expansion on the story. I would definitely watch a sequel.

  15. I liked PR and I usually don’t like monster movies. But i enjoyed it and would watch a sequel.

    • Not to sound like. Jerk but I don’t think people will go for that

  16. i think the second pacific rim will probably be a prequel, think about it, their just going to skip 6 years of Jeager and Kaiju fighting really, plus they barely gave Chernal Alpha and crimson Typhoon any fight time, and apparently they have a “reputation” so i think if their going to take chernal and typhoon out so fast at least show the, kicking some kaiju hiney in the second movie. plus i think they should take the story of the kaiju a little more, cuz i can’t go anywhere with out some evangline fan tossing different facts and whining that pacific rim is coping evangline it’s really annoying, so a little more intel about the kaiju would also be appreciated

  17. Problem is it’s not a Movie for the masses !
    Thats all ! People heard about it,saw the pictures and trailers and its not their things. Simple as that !

    Del Toro is not a director with mass appeal ,and thats not a bad thing !
    Love his Movies but sadly it’s too geek for too many !

    • Funny, I actually thought that same thing about Hellboy. I couldn’t really enjoy it, it was much too ‘geeky’ (sorry, I can’t think of any other term to use =/) for me. Though, Pacific Rim on the other hand, I thought was a little more built to not only entertain his fans but also the general audience.

  18. One of the problems with the movie were the Scientist, they were too stupid.

    • yes exactly. Thank you. both of them were super annoying especially the TDKR guy. rest of the movie was fantastic. The tokyo attack was just pure awesome :)

  19. I just saw Pacific Rim and did not find nearly as offensive as any of the Transformers movies that some of the people who criticize this movie seem to defend. It really doesn’t matter if they do a sequel, but people really seem to have an odd system of how they gauge movies.

    • A lot of people I know have told me it’s a fan boy thing (general publics view). We got into arguements about the differences with Transformers and PR. A lot of people (general public) said they relate more to Transformers because of it’s human connections than they could with PR. PR had a better script but to the eyes of the general public, the script for PR was basic and boring with nothing they can really relate to. I hear a lot of comparisons of PR to the Expendables. It’s just a movie for certain types of people and doesn’t really appeal to everyone whereas Transformers had the action that people (general public) wanted along with the human aspect that people (general public) can relate to with the robots that the fan boys can relate to.

      • That is what I find funny about the defense of the Transformers, the human characters for me were so obnoxious and got so much screen time it seemed to be a complete 180 from the original Transformers set-up. The robots who were supposed to be sentient beings were in most cases set pieces that might as well have been controlled by humans. And that is not to say Pacific Rim was great character study, but the argument can be made that Transformers was more successful because of a certain amount of hype and built in name recognition more than anything else.

  20. I think ultimately the title is the biggest marketing obstacle this movie faced. Sounds petty but a bad title can kill a blockbuster. See: John Carter

    • I don’t even think the title was bad or put anybody off, unless you’d rather they dumb it down to “Robots Vs Monsters” (because there are people out there who literally need to be spoonfed information)?

      Pacific Rim has just the right amount of mystique to make you want to find out more while also putting the most important part (the setting) right there in front of you, like Broadchurch or other TV shows/movies named after their setting.

      I can see what they did with John Carter in hoping he could be almost like a superhero but using the original “John Carter Of Mars” might’ve helped marketing for that movie. Wouldn’t have helped the horrendous script and acting though, or the overlong nature of the film itself.

  21. Frankly, the premise just did not sound very interesting, certainly not original. However, I went because, as the article states, I have faith in Del Toro and thought that it might be worth it (overall it was, in spite of some things). That demographic draw is a matter of mere niche appeal.

    Visually, PR is magnificent and immersive, and feels very different from almost any other film I’ve ever seen, which is a plus. On the minus side, Hunnam has very little charisma as a lead actor IMO, and as others have said, the writing of the human side of the story is not too impressive. Spend more time on the script, and a film like PR can be truly great, not just good with reservations.

    I would like a sequel. Flaws notwithstanding, PR is not nearly as boring as many big films, and I would like to see more.

    Sequel set in space – Outer Rim – that could be great! Just cast a new lead.

    • Hunnam has successfully and charismatically held the lead role in one of the most watched shows on television. I don’t get all the Charlie Hunnam bashing that goes on here. Does no one here watch SOA?

  22. Wow it takes alot to impress you guys huh? SMH
    I will be waiting patiently for a sequel, but a prequel would be awesome, to show all the fights that happened in the beginning.

    • I’d rather not see a prequel. Keep the legends talked about in the movie as legends, lets not see them in full and potentially ruin the myth.

      It could like Darth Vader Syndrome where you have something cool and intriguing and want to know more about its past but then when you get presented with the origins, it takes a little of that shine off it and almost ruins it in the process.

  23. I loved it, as I’m sure everyone here will be able to tell you.

    I went to the IMAX 3D screening on release day and the place was packed with people lined up out of the door to get in and see it (Man Of Steel never had that many people in the building wanting to see it by comparison just a month earlier) and when I went back days later to watch again (someone collapsed elsewhere in the building and the cinema went into shutdown while paramedics arrived, I chose to return on the Monday rather than wait for a later screening that day), the place was again completely packed full of people wanting to see it.

    I don’t like to think of it as a flop because of how well it did outside the US. The system Hollywood employs where a movie’s success is made or broken by American audiences is completely outdated and useless since movies aren’t exclusive to just one country and are a worldwide thing that everyone can get into, no matter what race or nationality they are.

    Pacific Rim is like Ray Donovan. Both wrapped up their core story just in case the subject wasn’t explored again in future but both were great enough in my opinion to warrant another peek into the lives of the characters a second time around with a brand new story to tell that will further flesh them out.

    PR is still my favourite movie of the year (lets see if that changes after Thor in 2 weeks and Gravity in 3 weeks).

  24. Great post.

  25. Legendary needs to shut this down NOW! Expensive CGI does NOT make a bad movie good. Del Toro used to understand that. The more money the studios give Del Toro the worse his movies get. Time to cut him off until he remembers how to tell an actual story.

  26. I thought the first movie was fun, but please don’t have all the classic cliches in the sequel if it’s made. By cliches I men the following (spoilers)

    -Oh, so I guess the scientist that warned everyone was right all along
    -The girl no one wanted to give a chance to proved herself in the end
    -The hero won the respect of his main adversary and they both realized they were on the same side all along (Top Gun anyone)?
    -The shy girl ends up falling for the hunky main guy
    -Oh no, the critical automated thing is jammed! I’ll have to get in and do it manually.
    -OMG, the final boss monster is the biggest we’ve ever seen!

    • Haha…this is how they work !
      You hit it !


    • True, the cliche’ factor was massive in this film (I loved it, in any case) and should be toned down for the prequel/sequel, BUT every modern genre film is going to have a cliche’ (or twenty) because those tropes have become impossible to completely avoid…at least, completely. Science fiction, fantasy, kaiju, horror, western, romance, children’s, military tropes (almost) MUST be in their respective films for the fans and expectant viewing public-at-large to accept those films.

      A sad truth with an increasingly slow-witted, impatient audience in our modern world…

      • Oops…too many “completely”s…sheesh.

      • Yeah I hear you. There’s always going to be a few, but they were on overdrive in this one. I wish he would have just toned it down a little.

  27. It made me smile throughout, I look forward to seeing another installment. I hope the 2nd time around the trailers are more representative of the movie. I think expectations were slightly confused by them, mine were especially and taking on its own merits forgetting the trailers the film was very entertaining indeed.

  28. He should write a hellboy sequel, not pacific rim