Godzilla vs. Kong is the last confirmed film on Legendary's slate for the MonsterVerse, but that doesn't mean there isn't a future for the Titans. In early 2020, the King of the Monsters and the King of the Primates will finally come to blows as Monarch digs deeper into the origins of the Titans. Kong will emerge after a four-decade absence to battle Godzilla, who was recently accepted as the alpha of the Titans. Several Titans bowed down to Godzilla after King Ghidorah's death, but Kong is one Titan who may not be quick to regard Godzilla as his new leader. Godzilla vs. Kong marks the fourth installment in Legendary and Warner Bros.' MonsterVerse.
It all began with Godzilla in 2014. Directed by Gareth Edwards, the first American-made Godzilla movie since the disastrous 1998 movie pleasantly surprised both fans and critics who were understandably wary of another Godzilla remake from Hollywood. Edwards' take on Godzilla, however, was met with an abundance of praise as the film became a critical and commercial success. This led to the formation of the MonsterVerse, a shared cinematic universe in the vein of the MCU which would encompass several well-known giant monsters, including King Kong. In 2017, Kong: Skull Island brought King Kong to the MonsterVerse and established a connection to Godzilla in the post-credits scene, setting the stage for an eventual meeting.
The third installment was 2018's Godzilla: King of the Monsters, a movie which greatly expanded the MonsterVerse by revealing the existence of 17 Titans. The film introduced three classic Toho kaiju to the MonsterVerse: Rodan, King Ghidorah, and Mothra. All three played vital roles in a conflict that involved a group of eco-terrorists waking up the Titans in an effort to save the planet from humanity itself. The story culminated in a dramatic showdown between Godzilla and his three-headed adversary, which ended with Godzilla being crowned the new King of the Monsters. The credits of King of the Monsters provided multiple teases to the future and laid the groundwork for Godzilla's impending clash with Kong.
Godzilla vs. Kong Will End The MonsterVerse's First Chapter
Until Warner Bros. releases a trailer for Godzilla vs. Kong, it's hard to predict where the story will take the two titular Titans, but it has been said that Godzilla vs. Kong will have a definitive winner. In other words, Godzilla vs. Kong won't be a movie that shows the two main characters fight briefly and team up to take on a bigger threat. It's been confirmed that either Godzilla or Kong will come out on top, which could suggest that one of the two won't survive the events of the movie.
Regardless, Godzilla vs. Kong is poised to be the end of a chapter for the MonsterVerse. The MonsterVerse has been building up to this since 2017, and in 2020 it will pay off by wrapping up two of the MonsterVerse's most important hanging plot threads. Its two flagship Titans will finally meet, and Monarch will uncover the mystery surrounding the Titans' origins by exploring more of the Hollow Earth. Whether there's more to the story or not, Godzilla vs. Kong is the last officially confirmed MonsterVerse movie left on the schedule, and as of yet there are no known plans for a sequel or a spinoff.
The MonsterVerse Has Been Successful Enough To Continue
Godzilla: King of the Monsters was the MonsterVerse's biggest movie, and so far its only disappointment in terms of its box office gross. While Godzilla: King of the Monsters wasn't a box office bomb, it clearly didn't bring in the numbers Warner Bros. was expecting. On a budget of $200 million, the Godzilla sequel only made $385.9 million at the worldwide box office. It likely didn't help that critics raked King of the Monsters over the coals, even though fan reaction to the movie was decidedly different.
It's true that King of the Monsters wasn't the blockbuster hit of the summer, but the MonsterVerse has seen enough success from its other movies to give Legendary and Warner Bros. confidence in their franchise. Godzilla pulled in $524.9 million, followed by Kong: Skull Island's $566.6 million. Altogether, the MonsterVerse has accumulated a total of $1.48 billion at the box office. While that, of course, doesn't compare to what Marvel Studios has been able to accomplish, it's still enough to declare the MonsterVerse a successful franchise. King of the Monsters hasn't doomed it by any means - but Godzilla vs. Kong very well could if it doesn't perform well. Godzilla vs. Kong needs to prove that interest in giant monster movies hasn't died.
How The MonsterVerse Can Continue After Godzilla vs. Kong
What does the future look like after Godzilla vs. Kong? This answer could depend on the outcome. If both characters survive, each of them could get a sequel. A third Godzilla movie could give the alpha predator a complete trilogy and tie up loose ends left from his second movie. If Godzilla vs. Kong doesn't address the King of the Monsters post-credits scene with Jonah (Charles Dance) purchasing the severed head of King Ghidorah, Godzilla 3 can continue this story by unleashing a genetically-engineered Titan or another classic Toho villain, like Mecha-King Ghidorah or Destoroyah. The credits of King of the Monsters enriches the world of the MonsterVerse in such a way that there's so much lore and history for filmmakers to work with in the future. Later movies can dive into the complex history between humans and Titans, or explore some of the plotlines teased in the credits, like the possibility of mind-controlled kaiju or "mechanized" Titans.
Alternatively, the MonsterVerse doesn't have to focus on Godzilla or Kong at all. Like the MCU, the MonsterVerse doesn't have a specific protagonist. However, a movie without either name attached to it may not have the necessary box office draw. Even so, it's a risk that Toho has taken in the past. Toho was willing to give monsters like Rodan and Mothra their own movies. Legendary could try something similar by introducing audiences to one of the unseen Titans already confirmed to exist, or by revealing new, secret Titans who the MonsterVerse has thus far kept hidden. Considering this is the MonsterVerse, the studios have an abundance of content to play with, and they don't need to be tied down to Godzilla and Kong. Both characters were great in getting the franchise going, but it doesn't need to stop with them. All in all, there are simple ways to continue Godzilla and Kong's movie series, but if Warner Bros. and Legendary want to leave one or both of them behind, films focused solely on Mothra or Ghidorah, for instance, could also work.