A couple days back, Paramount bemused genre fans by completely removing two high-profile horror sequels from its upcoming release schedule. One of those was Platinum Dunes' reboot of Friday the 13th, which has suffered multiple delays as it journeyed through the unstable realm that is Hollywood development. Things got even worse for Jason fans yesterday, when Paramount opted to shut down pre-production on the film entirely. The other sequel to get booted off the schedule was World War Z 2, the follow-up to 2013's Brad Pitt-fronted zombie opus.
World War Z 2 has also suffered from a fairly troubled journey through the land of development, which began with Marc Forster - director of the original film - stating in no uncertain terms that he would not be coming back for round 2. This wasn't too surprising, as Forster reportedly clashed creatively with producer and star Pitt. Juan Antonio Bayona (A Monster Calls) was then brought on to direct, but eventually left the project in early 2016 due to other commitments.
Last summer, rumors swirled that Oscar-nominated director - and frequent Pitt collaborator - David Fincher was in talks to take over as helmer of WWZ2, but an official deal has never been announced. However, according to a new report by THR, Fincher is still very interested in directing the zombie sequel, and is basically waiting for Paramount executives to make things official so that work on the film can begin. Why the studio appears to be dragging its feet in doing so remains unclear.
All in all, it really wasn't too surprising that Paramount would decide to move back World War Z 2 from its previously announced June 9, 2017 released date. After all, the project hadn't even hired a director, much less shot a single scene of footage. Still, what struck many as odd was Paramount not providing a new date for such a big title, instead leaving things curiously up in the air. THR's sources say that the studio is now considering a possible 2018 or 2019 release date for WWZ2, but such a move is far from finalized.
While many have wondered why a director of Fincher's caliber would be up for helming the sequel to another director's zombie film, one of the deciding factors was apparently his high opinion of the most recent script for WWZ2, done by writer Dennis Kelly. If the story is good enough to impress Fincher, here's hoping audiences get to see it play out onscreen sooner rather than later.
We'll bring you more details on World War Z 2 as they become available.