Maze Runner: The Death Cure star Kaya Scodelario addresses concerns that the delay in the movie's production will have somehow hurt the final film of the trilogy. The Maze Runner series managed to buck the trend of diminishing returns in YA franchises, with the two films so far building a strong fanbase and earning box offices totals over $300M worldwide each.
Disaster struck for the franchise when Dylan O'Brien was seriously injured on the set of final film, The Death Cure, in March 2016. This led to the film's production being put on hold until February 2017, when it was originally set to be released (it's now coming out in January 2018). Naturally, there's concern about what this extended delay mid-production means for the finished film, although, according to one star, it hasn't altered much.
Screen Rant recently talked with Kaya Scodelario for the home release of Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales and conversation moved to her other major franchise. Discussing the effect of O'Brien's injury, she said that due to how close the cast and crew were it had minimal effect on the production:
"I think we're so close, we're like best friends - I'm actually seeing the boys tomorrow - and because we have a WhatsApp, we have a group chat, [...] it wasn't like we hadn't seen each other for two years [and were saying] how are we going to get this atmosphere back, how are we going to feel those relationships on screen again? We didn't have that. We've gotten on, we are friends and that feels great. And also with Wes [Ball] is back to direct. That's the great thing about having a returning director. Sometimes you get on set and it takes about a couple of weeks to adjust to a director because it's such a fragile relationship [between actor and director], and you have to learn each other's kind of habits and how it all works. But we weren't dealing with that so we could just really go straight back into it. And we were determined to finish off the franchise because it's so personal. We love that people love it, but to be honest I think we'd have done it for us because we had such an incredible experience on the first, and it set off all our careers and things like that. It was important to do it and to do it right."
Thanks to the core cast and director - Wes Ball has directed all three films in the franchise - being consistent since The Maze Runner, it sounds like while the pause was obviously undesirable, it didn't have much of an impact on the day-to-day atmosphere on set. As Scodelario tells it, the group was able to pick up where they left off and presumably maintain the energy despite the eleven-month gap.
Of course, there is still the major release date shift, which will likely be the most noticeable alteration. And that's not without its pitfalls; the 2018 date is two-and-a-half years on from the previous installment, meaning momentum nevertheless has been lost. Further, in that time Divergent's third entry Allegiant struggled at the box office, signaling an end to the YA craze. That said, The Death Cure is a finale and not split in two, so it should avoid some of the problems of Shailene Woodley's franchise.
As for what The Death Cure involves, Scodelario premised "huge action sequences, the scene with the train is absolutely spectacular, but also a lot more quiet moments a lot of stuff to do with why we're doing what we're doing. Hopefully, it'll be a great way to kind of end this story." The train battle we've seen in the recent trailer and books readers will naturally know where Teresa's character is heading, but for everyone else, these comments definitely promise exciting things come 2018.
Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales is available on Digital in HD and 4K Ultra HD™ now, and on 4K Ultra HD™/Blu-ray™ Combo Pack, DVD and On-Demand on October 3.
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