It’s long been known that the King Kong reboot, Kong: Skull Island, would be a part of Warner Bros. and Legendary Studio's planned monsters shared universe, incorporating Skull Island into the same continuity as as Gareth Edwards’s 2014 Godzilla reboot. But as marketing for the film originally kicked in, there was little evidence of the planned crossover.
Granted the universe is young, and most crossovers will likely be saved for the inevitable Godzilla vs King Kong movie down the road, but up to this point, the only people aware that these movies exist in the same universe are fans that have been following the news from Legendary Studios. Given, Godzilla and King Kong don’t exactly need to share branding in order to sell tickets, their names are already etched in cinema history.
Now, through Kong: Skull Island’s newest marketing, we finally have evidence of this colossal crossover. The first clue is through some leaked toy packaging via Scified (h/t Comic Book) showing the “MonsterVerse” logo across the bottom. Since that title hasn’t appeared on any other Kong: Skull Island marketing so far, it’s not clear how hard Legendary intends to push the MonsterVerse brand.
Toy packaging isn’t the only hint, though. Thanks to the newly released TV spots for Skull Island, the first real crossover of this universe is revealed. In the “Kong Is King” spot, John Goodman’s character, Bill Randa, explains the history of the island and previous knowledge of Kong:
"This Island's notorious for the number of ships and planes that have gone missing. The 1954 nuclear tests weren't tests, they were trying to kill something."
To fans that saw Godzilla, this might sound familiar, as Ken Watanabe’s Dr. Ishiro Serizawa told a similar story about the 1954 nuclear tests of Bikini Atoll in the Marshall Islands, saying they had “awakened something” - that something being Godzilla - and that the nuclear tears were an attempt to kill it (strangely similar to Bill Randa's story). A closer look at the marketing in the above image confirms they are talking about the same event in both films.
The photo on the left is from the “Kong is King” TV spot, while the right is taken from the opening credits of Godzilla, both displaying the same logo for Directive 27. Now that we know both monsters were involved in the explosion, the question is which one was the target? If Godzilla was truly “awakened” by the explosion, then that would suggest Directive 27 was an effort to kill the king of Skull Island: Kong.
Regardless of which came first, the ape or the lizard, audiences will definitely be interested in keeping an eye out for references of this nature in further marketing for Kong: Skull Island, and especially once it hits theaters in March.
- Kong: Skull Island (2017) release date: Mar 10, 2017
- Godzilla: King of the Monsters (2019) release date: May 31, 2019