Guillermo del Toro’s foray into sci-fi monster films, 2013’s Pacific Rim, was a relative success, receiving middling-to-positive reviews and earning a total of $411 million at the global box office – but with the majority coming in from the foreign market. Still, Pacific Rim inspired a dedicated following that hoped to see a sequel made and although it took some time to get off the ground, a second film will release almost five years after the original. Del Toro returns as a producer on Pacific Rim: Uprising, but former Daredevil showrunner Steven S. DeKnight has taken on directing duties.
The first Pacific Rim followed Kaiju-battling Jaeger pilots Raleigh Becket (Charlie Hunnam) and Mako Mori (Rinko Kikuchi) as well as their commanding officer Stacker Pentecost (Idris Elba). While Hunnam and Elba won’t be back, Kikuchi is set to return for Pacific Rim: Uprising along with Charlie Day and Burn Gorman, who played Drs. Newt Geiszler and Hermann Gottlieb, respectively. They’re joined by new cast members: Star Wars‘ John Boyega as Stacker’s son Jake Pentecost, Suicide Squad‘s Scott Eastwood, Adria Arjona, Tian Jing, and Nick E. Tarabay. Now, Day offers his thoughts on the new cast and director brought in to continue the story of Pacific Rim.
In an interview with Collider promoting his upcoming film Fist Fight, Day was asked about what he could tease in regard to Pacific Rim: Uprising. Though the actor couldn’t offer much in the way of concrete details, he did – somewhat jokingly – promise, “Newt is back, and he’s got great new clothes.” Plus, Day said of DeKnight and his fellow castmates:
I can’t say too much, obviously, other than I think Steve DeKnight is taking it in his own direction, as he has to. … I think with [John] Boyega and the rest of that cast, that young cast that they filled out, it’s going to be interesting to follow this new, young group of people – and then Burn [Gorman] and I, who are obviously back sort of tethering it to the world of the first movie. I’m excited, and look, I think it’s going to be fun to see monsters and robots fight each other again.
Pacific Rim: Uprising started filming late in 2016 and, since then, details about the characters and story have largely arrived via officially and unofficially released set photos. Boyega and DeKnight have both posted photos from the set that tease the film’s re-entry into the world created by del Toro in Pacific Rim, but there’s still plenty we don’t know. Based on their costumes, both Boyega and Eastwood will be playing Jaeger pilots, though it’s unclear whether their characters are drift compatible/partners.
Unfortunately, Day’s careful comments don’t offer much more information, either. Certainly, the actor confirms his character – along with Gorman’s – will help to connect Uprising to the original Pacific Rim, but that’s a given based on his return alone. Considering Newt had studied the Kaiju when the first film began and managed to drift with one of the monsters by the end, he’ll be an especially unique resource for the new crop of Jaeger pilots. However, it’s still unclear how exactly he’ll factor into the story – though it’s unlikely he’ll be the villain as del Toro originally planned.
That said, as production on Pacific Rim: Uprising continues ahead of the film’s early 2018 release date, we may learn more about the sequel to del Toro’s sci-fi monster movie. For now, at least, fans of Pacific Rim can take heart in Day’s confidence about the direction of the sequel thanks to DeKnight, Boyega, Eastwood and the rest of the new cast.