by Ethan Anderton
After a first draft of the script for World War Z 2 was completed back in August by Locke writer and director Steven Knight, the sequel is continuing to move forward with a new writer taking a crack at the next draft.
Dennis Kelly, the creator of the British television series Utopia, will write the new draft of the follow-up to the Paramount Pictures adaptation of Max Brooks‘ novel that hit theaters in 2013. And while the project is staying on track to hit theaters in the summer of 2017, there was almost a hiccup with keeping the director on the project.
In the report about the new World War Z 2 writer, THR mentions some rumors that J.A. Bayona was being eyed to directJurassic World 2 over at Universal. However, it sounds like Bayona probably couldn’t have taken the project without having a bit of a battle with the studio because he already had a holding deal in place with Paramount for World War Z.
However, the buzz about Bayona being wanted for another blockbuster sequel did light a fire under Paramount’s rear to make the director happy enough to stick around, which included getting what they call a “fanboy-friendly writer” on the project.
Having only seen the first episode of the British series Utopia, which is strange and intriguing to say the least, I’m not super familiar with Kelly’s work. But since it was appealing enough to get David Fincher interested in adapting it for American audiences at HBO (even though the remake has since been canceled), he has obviously created something special. It also helps that the first draft comes from a strong writer like Knight, who currently has his drama Burnt starring Bradley Cooper in theaters.
But the question is where does the story go next? With no source material for the sequel to be based on, there’s no telling what direction a sequel will take audiences.
The original movie had Brooks’ book as a guide, and took plenty of liberties with the presentation of the story, basically only keeping the premise of the epidemic and the state of the world because of it intact. We followed Brad Pitt as he attempted to figure out how to stop the outbreak of a strange disease that turns people into fast-moving, almost insect-like hordes.
By the end of the first movie, Pitt’s character figured out how to keep humans from being targeted by the zombie-esque swarms, making it easier for them to actually fight back and keep safe. Will we pick up the story from there or jump ahead in time? Previously Knight mentioned starting with a clean slate, but we don’t know what that means. Once the script gets finalized and casting begins, we’ll hopefully get more story details, so stay tuned.
World War Z 2 is scheduled to hit theaters on June 9th, 2017.