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What’s the Problem With World War Z 2?

A follow-up was planned but never happened. May that still occur in the future?




Collider suggested some reasons on why we are at a halt with the sequel of World War Z. The zombie mania has reached a fever pitch in 2013. Going into its fourth season, The Walking Dead is still working its way to the top of the zombie genre. On the big screen, hits like Shaun of the Dead, 28 Days Later, Zombieland, and the Resident Evil franchise are cashing in on the undead craze and making substantial profits at the box office. Not to be outdone, the bosses at Paramount Studios took note and made the decision to dangle a toe in the subgenre’s cash-saturated waters. They intended to do this with the blockbuster World War Z zombie apocalypse movie starring Brad Pitt.

Because these executives are not naive, they snatched up one of Hollywood’s most bankable stars to play in a zombie movie at the height of the zombie apocalypse. It was expected to make a ton of money, and they were right. World War Z amassed a global box office haul of more than $530 million. The decision was made to produce a sequel but it never materialized and that’s why!

Brad Pitt and David Fincher Had Scheduling Difficulties
The sequel already had its director in place. It was associated with the talented David Fincher, and its first release date was set for 2017. Pitt and Fincher had already collaborated on iconic movies like Se7en, Fight Club, and The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, so on paper, it seemed like a match made in heaven. Regrettably, the release date of Once Upon a Time in Hollywood, which stars Leonardo DiCaprio and A-lister Brad Pitt, was moved up to June 2019. Pitt had a commitment to work on Ad Astra as well, therefore the sequel couldn’t be made until after both movies were finished.  By the time 2019 arrived, Fincher was producing excellent work on the second season of the popular Netflix television series Mindhunter and another delay resulted from the fact that he and his crew would be filming in Pittsburgh for the foreseeable future.

China’s Prohibition on Ghost and Zombie Films
China is the most important market to focus on if you want to increase your box office results. And that was also going to be an issue because, in accordance with strict Chinese laws on foreign films entering the country, the volatile politics of the Asian nation had prohibited the distribution of any films that featured any depictions of zombies or ghosts. Due to some murky Communist party censorship norms that forbid “promoting cults or superstition,” international films depicting zombies, vampires, werewolves, mummies, and ghosts” have consistently been removed from Chinese theaters by government censors. Only about 35 foreign movies are typically permitted to enter the nation each year. Previous victims of this stringent legislation include the 2016 films Ghostbusters and Train to Busan from South Korea.

Fears about the budget from Paramount
As if World War Z 2 didn’t already have enough working against it, the persistent problem of money and bookkeeping started to surface. The production of the movie worried Paramount because it would be excessively pricey. With plans to shoot in five other nations and a six-week tour in one of Georgia’s well-known American filming spots, it was anticipated that the movie would cost less than the $190 million budget for the previous one, but it seemed that it wasn’t low enough for the company. In February 2019, Paramount officials chose to sever ties with Fincher due to a budget disagreement. It turns out that Paramount was feeling a little apprehensive about covering the high $200 million budget given that the movie would have an “R” rating and might be forbidden in China due to their very stringent laws regarding zombie movies.

The movie may yet occur
The zombie apocalypse sequel hasn’t been entirely abandoned yet. It’s been said that the movie might still be approved and end up in theaters if Paramount can find another filmmaker who would be open to having a substantially lower shooting budget. The script has reportedly received Pitt and his team’s approval, which is a significant hurdle to overcome. The biggest challenge to finishing the film, though, could be persuading Pitt to collaborate with someone other than his buddy and frequent collaborator Fincher. Fincher is renowned for preferring to have everything planned out before a shoot, but it appears he is no longer a candidate to direct, leaving the project’s future in at best doubt.

When we know more you’ll know more so stay tuned!

Born in winter's coldest month, December, Francesco's inner passion for all things spooky begins with him. Horror aficionado since a young age, Francesco's thirst for horror brings him to consume many films and books, setting the basis for a film-making career in horror, thriller, and sci-fi. Francesco's idea to bring horror fans one step closer is finally a reality with GoreCulture, established on May 2022.

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