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|“||One will fall.||„|
Godzilla vs. Kong, also known by the working title of "Apex" is an upcoming American science fiction monster film produced by Legendary Pictures, and the fourth entry in the MonsterVerse, following 2019's Godzilla: King of the Monsters. It acts as a sequel to both King of the Monsters and Kong: Skull Island, and it will be released to American theaters on March 31, 2021.
Godzilla vs. Kong is being directed by Adam Wingard, produced by Mary Parent, Alex Garcia, Eric McLeod, and Brian Rogers with the screenplay written by Eric Pearson and Max Borenstein, from a story by Terry Rossio, Michael Dougherty and Zach Shields. Borenstein, Dougherty and Shields also wrote King of the Monsters. The film is slated to continue where King of the Monsters leaves off, and see Godzilla and Kong meeting and battling each other.
Legends collide in "Godzilla vs. Kong" as these mythic adversaries meet in a spectacular battle for the ages, with the fate of the world hanging in the balance. Kong and his protectors undertake a perilous journey to find his true home, and with them is Jia, a young orphaned girl with whom he has formed a unique and powerful bond. But they unexpectedly find themselves in the path of an enraged "Godzilla", cutting a swath of destruction across the world. The epic clash between the two titans, instigated by unseen forces, is only the beginning of the mystery that lies deep within the core of the Earth.
Actor's name on the left, character played on the right.
Staff role on the left, staff member's name on the right.
- Directed by Adam Wingard
- Written by Eric Pearson (screenplay), Max Borenstein (screenplay), Terry Rossio (story), Michael Dougherty (story), and Zach Shields (story)
- Produced by Mary Parent, Alex Garcia, Eric McLeod, and Brian Rogers
- Executive producing by Kenji Okuhira, Yoshimitsu Banno (posthumously), Jon Jashni, and Thomas Tull
- Edited by Josh Schaeffer
- Production design by Owen Patterson and Tom Hammock
- Director of Photography Ben Seresin
- Special Effects Supervisor John “DJ” DesJardin
- Costume Designer Ann Foley
- Art Department
- Motion Capture Consultants
On October 14, it was officially announced that Legendary Pictures will be remaking King Kong vs. Godzilla. The project had been rumored ever since Legendary acquired the rights to King Kong and announced Kong: Skull Island in 2014, and the rumors have become even more prominent after the project was moved from Universal Pictures to Warner Bros.
On September 10, Legendary announced its plans to create a shared cinematic universe featuring both Godzilla and King Kong, as well as other giant monsters including Mothra, Rodan, and King Ghidorah. Legendary's Godzilla was the first entry in this universe, followed by Kong: Skull Island in 2017 and the upcoming Godzilla: King of the Monsters in 2019, culminating in Godzilla vs. Kong in 2020.
On May 10, it was revealed that Godzilla: King of the Monsters and Godzilla vs. Kong had gotten new release dates of March 22, 2019, and May 29, 2020.
On March 10, it was revealed that the film's writer's room had been established, consisting of Patrick McKay, J.D. Payne, Lindsey Beer, Cat Vasko, T.S. Nowlin, Jack Paglen, and J. Michael Straczynski, under the direction of screenwriter Terry Rossio. The writers have been tasked with creating and thinking of the best basic ideas and beats for the script until a writer is hired to properly write it out.
During San Diego Comic-Con, an interview with IGN and Adam Wingard took place. The director spoke on how he felt Kong: Skull Island gave him an "easy way out" with explaining Kong's size change in the upcoming film, but acknowledged how they were aware of the issues involving the plot point. Also, upon being asked about how monster films tend to deal with figurative and tonal shades of gray, Adam brought up the idea of how easy it is to demonize Godzilla while going on to express how he has emotional attachments to both monsters. Godzilla vs. Kong was once again confirmed to still be on track for a 2020 release during the interview.
In August, another interview took place with Adam. Much of the subject matter remained the same as his SDCC interview, with Wingard reiterating that he wants there to be an emotional drive to the film while expressing how he wants "people to really be teary-eyed at the end of the movie". Adam also revealed that Godzilla and Kong won't be the only monsters in the film, calling it "a massive monster brawl movie".
Shortly following the prior interview in August, director Adam Wingard was then interviewed by Entertainment Weekly, and went on to speak about how the film will have a definitive winner, in light of the decades-long debates over King Kong vs. Godzilla's ending. Shortly afterward, during an interview with Slashfilm, Adam Wingard revealed that Godzilla vs. Kong will take place in the present-day and feature some characters from Godzilla: King of the Monsters. He also teased a "more rugged, a bit more aged" Kong in the film.
|“||Talking to Adam made me so happy because he, in particular, really understands the kind of anime, manga, mech sensibility that I was trying to bring to Kong. He gets that and that was something that I fought so hard for and was so difficult to sort of realize to life through concept to execution with ILM [Industrial Light and Magic.] That’s one of the things I’m most proud of with him. I think he truly gets that and he truly wants to lean into this version of Kong that kind of was born from my crazy and stupid video game brain.
Yeah. He’s got plenty of freedom to sort of play around with how he wants and to play around with … I always joke that my Kong was kind of like a character in a Shane Black movie in the sense that he just gets beat the fuck up by the end of the movie. He’s just battered and scarred, and so he’s got that kind of reluctant protagonist vibe to him. I think Adam’s willing to take that anime thing and do what he needs to do as he squares off with Godzilla.
— Jordan Vogt-Roberts
On August 9, it's reported that VFX supervisor Zack Fox had been brought onto the film.
On September 12, October 1st was set as the date marking the beginning of principal photography, and the filming locations revealed were Atlanta, Hawaii, and Australia. Five days later, on the 17th, it was confirmed that production would begin in Hawaii.
On October 1, it was revealed that film production would start on a later date.
On October 7, The Gold Coast Bulletin confirmed that pre-production for the film would begin later in the month. The following day on the 8th, Prime Minister Scott Morrison and Legendary executives announced Godzilla vs. Kong making landfall in Australia, with filming to begin in Queensland at the Village Roadshow Studios before the end of the year.
On October 29, it was announced that production on the film would begin in November after missing its initial October placeholder dates.
On November 3, it was announced that production would begin on Monday the 12th.
On November 5, Alexander Skarsgård revealed some information about his character, and dismissed the rumor about his character being the leader of a military unit.
|“||He’s not an alpha, bad-ass hero, which I thought was quite interesting. He is thrown into this very dangerous situation and is definitely not equipped for it and that makes it a bit more interesting in my opinion than had he been a bad-ass dude. He’s just a tiny, tiny human trying to survive between these two behemoths.||„|
— Alexander Skarsgård
On November 6, Wingard confirmed shooting would start that week via Instagram post and shared a small sneak peek of a storyboard from the film. Images of reported filming at Kalaeloa Airport surfaced online.
On November 8, it was announced that Game of Thrones and Iron Fist actress Jessica Henwick was added to the cast. Production was reportedly seen at the Hawaii State Capitol Building and Monarch Humvees were seen being set up for filming at the Iolani Palace.
On November 11, it was announced Shun Oguri would make his Hollywood debut in Godzilla vs. Kong. Prep for shooting was spotted at Lanai Lookout depicting a helicopter crash. The following day, Legendary officially announced the beginning of principal photography in Hawaii and Australia, and the first synopsis of the film was released.
On November 13, filming was spotted taking place at Manoa Falls.
On November 14, Jessica Henwick was reported to have arrived on set in Oahu, and filming began on the battleship USS Missouri. Lance Reddick was the latest actor added to the cast. It was also reported that the left lane of H-3 Freeway at the Harano Tunnel would be closed on the 19th and 20th for filming.
On November 15, Alexander Skarsgård and Eiza González were spotted filming in Hawaii at the crashed helicopter set at Lanai Lookout, apparently portraying Monarch agents. They were seen wearing copper and black jumpsuits bearing the Monarch symbol as Skarsgård was filming a fistfight scene with another actor and González seemed to play the team leader.
On November 20, production was spotted setting up tents in Sand Island State Park and filming in the H3 Freeway of the Harano Tunnels. The following day, filming took place at the Hawaii Convention Center.
On November 26, Lance Reddick arrived in Hawaii and there was reported filming in the Hawaiian Telcom building in Downtown Honolulu. The following day, filming took place in the Sand Island State Park and Recreation Area, with Monarch vehicles, soldiers, and military tents on set, and in a house on Aukai Street in Kahala.
On November 29, Millie Bobby Brown was photographed on set with director Wingard in Hunukai Park, with possible sightings of Julian Dennison, Alexander Skarsgård, and Kyle Chandler. Filming also took place at Kalaeloa Airport, where a set was built at the Naval Air Museum including cranes, large blue screens, and rain machines. Photos of a storm tracker van and police car at the Sand Island Park set appeared online with decals naming the location, suggesting that Hawaii might be standing in for Pensacola, Florida.
On December 1, it was reported that filming had taken place on the USS Missouri and preparations were being made at Battery Cooper at Kualoa Ranch. The following day, photos appeared online showing filming taking place on the USS Missouri.
On December 3, filming at Kalaeloa Airport and set-up at the Battery Cooper bunker continued. The following day, filming took place at Kualoa Ranch and a large green screen was seen at the Battery Cooper bunker.
On December 5, while filming occurred at Kualoa Ranch, the Battery Cooper set was reported to have been filled with Monarch gear. Elsewhere in Kahala, it was reported simulated gunfire would be heard in the neighborhood the following day on the 6th, and Apex signs were seen by Koloa Street.
On December 8, Wingard and Monarch soldiers were seen on the Battery Cooper set.
The next day, it was reported that Apex signs were seen leading to the Sand Island Wastewater Treatment Plant.
On December 11, it was reported that setup took place at Pier 10 of the Aloha Tower Marketplace and that the estimated last day of shooting in Hawaii would be either the 19th or 20th before moving on to Australia.
The following day on the 12th, there were reports of filming at the Sand Island Wastewater Treatment Facility with sets including an interior "scary corridor" and exterior sets depicting destruction. A casting call went out for extras for filming on December 14 and 17.
On December 13, photos of the set from the Wastewater Treatment Facility surfaced online, and a night shoot took place at Chinatown in the Oahu Market area. On the 14th, filming occurred at the Aloha Tower Marketplace. The next day on the 15th, a photo of a storm tracker van from the Thursday shoot in Chinatown appeared online, and Millie Bobby Brown was reported to have been on set.
On December 17, photos appeared online showing Millie Bobby Brown, Julian Dennison, and Adam Wingard on set at the Banzai Bowls on the North Shore on the 7th.
From December 19 to early morning on the 20th, filming in Hawaii was completed at the Aloha Tower Marketplace.
On January 15, it was reported by The Courier-Mail that filming in Australia would begin at Village Roadshow Studios in Queensland with photos of some of the cast appearing on social media, notably Eiza González and Alexander Skarsgård. It was also reported that principal photography was set to wrap the following month. The following day, a casting call from December 9 reportedly asking for 600 extras of Chinese and Pacific Islander descent in Australia was revealed. Additionally, it was revealed that, including pre-production that began last year and principal photography resuming there, the cast and crew would spend 26 weeks at the Gold Coast.
On February 22, it was announced that the release date had been moved up two months to March 13, 2020, after its former release date was taken by Fast and Furious 9.
On February 27, Eiza González announced via Instagram that she had completed filming.
On March 2, it was reported Millie Bobby Brown arrived in Brisbane.
On March 4, it was reported by 7 News Gold Coast that filming would take place at Miami State High School, which was transformed into Tallahassee Magnet High.
The next day, it was revealed in the March 2019 issue of Total Film magazine that King of the Monsters writer/director Michael Dougherty and co-writer Zach Shields did rewrites for Godzilla vs. Kong to make sure certain themes were carried across between the two films, and that some characters got fleshed out.
On March 7, The Courier-Mail reported the film crew set up base camp in the Newstead suburb, and that filming would take place in the Chinatown Mall in Fortitude Valley the following day. It was also revealed that Julian Dennison had recently arrived at the Gold Coast.
On March 13, photos of Alexander Skarsgård and Rebecca Hall on set appeared online. A week later on the 20th, it was reported that filming would soon occur at the Wickham Terrace Car Park heritage site during evenings with "smoke, simulated weapons, and armoured vehicles".
On March 30, The Brisbane Times reported that on the previous day a brief video appeared online depicting simulated gunfire from armored vehicles in Fortitude Valley on the 29th.
On April 9, Adam Wingard announced via Instagram post that filming in Australia ended. Behind the scenes photos from crew members appeared online the next day, signaling the start of work on the visual effects in post-production. Co-producer and visual effects producer Tamara Watts Kent also hinted at the possibility of Hong Kong being portrayed in the film.
On May 5, in the June issue of SFX Magazine, Michael Dougherty spoke briefly about writing for both Godzilla and Kong and how they are different.
|“||Because Kong is a little close to human - he's a primate, as we are - he's allowed to show a slightly larger range of emotions. We expect those very unique, and even warm, bonding moments between Kong and human beings. That goes back to the 1933 film, where he was never strictly a monster; there was always a very human side to him in the ways that he interacts with us. That was a joy to write. With Godzilla, that's not expected. That's not to say that you can't do it, but any kind of bond between Godzilla and humans has usually been more implied. So you rarely get to see Godzilla's softer side.||„|
— Michael Dougherty
|“||I like the idea of going back in time, and telling creature stories from different eras. Skull Island was set in the 70's, but personally I'd like to do GODZILLA-BC, go back to ancient times and really see the Ray Harryhausen-esque world where primitive humans had to try to survive with these creatures. Maybe we'd get to see the first time mankind truly encountered Godzilla, and get to see how that relationship was christened.||„|
— Michael Dougherty
On May 27, in an interview with Bloody-Disgusting, Dougherty gave his explanation of how and why Godzilla and Kong would come to blows. He calls it reminiscent of an underdog battle, comparing it to David vs. Goliath and the fight between Rocky and Ivan Drago in Rocky IV, where Kong is easily seen as the underdog but might have some surprises being an intelligent primate who can use tools and has his speed and agility. Dougherty added it's a primal part of the human species that enjoys watching animals fight each other as the gods depicted in mythology, and that Godzilla and Kong fighting each other is destined to happen as Kong is partially what originally inspired the creation of Godzilla.
|“||The hope is that their motivations for fighting each other are sound, and not contrived. But when you have two extremely hyper-aggressive masculine territorial animals who both believe that they’re the rightful rulers of an entire species, chances are they’re going to do more than have afternoon tea.||„|
— Michael Dougherty
On May 30, the first official promotional graphic for the film appeared online after being revealed at the Las Vegas Licensing Expo with the tagline "One will fall".
On October 18, in an interview for The New York Times, Alexander Skarsgård revealed that his character is a geologist who works closely with Kong.
On October 24 and the 30th in interviews, Skarsgård revealed some more details about his character and why he joined the film. Skarsgård cited the reasons as getting the chance to work with Adam Wingard, wanting to play a different type of character in a film with a different tone compared to many of his past roles, and since he finds the protagonists of "big, action films" fairly boring. He also revealed that Wingard and Legendary's creative team being open to rewriting his character to suit him with his own input is what sealed the deal, and during production, Skarsgård was free to explore the humanity of his unlikely hero character and make him appealing enough for audiences to become invested in.
|“||He’s a good guy and a likable guy, which I was quite ready to play after row of dark characters, but he’s also not boring... What I liked about it is that he’s a reluctant hero. He’s a geologist, who’s not tough, or brave, or an ex-Marine, or a cool, strong leader. He’s nervous and uncomfortable, and he’s thrown into this crazy world that he’s not equipped to deal with.||„|
— Alexanders Skarsgård
On October 31, in an interview with Collider, Eiza González revealed the first details about her character, stating that she plays a slightly comedic character in the form of "a very smart woman behind a company" the audience will encounter throughout the film.
On November 5, a video was uploaded by Gormaru Island featuring bits from brief interviews with some Godzilla vs. Kong cast members including Julian Dennison, Lance Reddick, Brian Tyree Henry, and Millie Bobby Brown while the film was in production. A new piece of information was revealed by Brown, stating that Madison Russell's journey in the film involves her deciding whether she will be "Team Kong," "Team Godzilla," or both of them.
On November 25th, it was announced Godzilla vs. Kong would be delayed eight months and be released on November 20, 2020.
On January 17, 2020, Adam Wingard revealed on Instagram that Godzilla vs. Kong was "on the home stretch of editorial", with a few months left until the film will be completed.
On February 19, a listing appeared on Amazon for The Art of Godzilla vs. Kong, revealing the artbook will be available on November 17th, three days before the film's release. The following day, Legendary Pictures and Toho revealed licensees that would handle the film's merchandise, including Playmates, Bioworld, Rubies, Funko, and The Virtual Reality Company (VRC), while Legendary Comics will head the publishing program. An image reportedly taken from the upcoming New York City Toy Fair also appeared online, depicting Godzilla with slightly redesigned dorsal fins. At the end of the month on the 28th, it was revealed that Warner Bros. had an unannounced test screening for the film the previous day, and the footage received very positive reception.
On March 16, Eiza González revealed the film only had brief reshoots that took place over a few days, dismissing previous rumors of extensive reshoots, and that the heart of film's human element centered on "two young girls."
On April 14th, during an interview with Rebecca Hall, she revealed Godzilla vs. Kong was the first film she did after having a baby, and that she brought her baby with her to Hawaii and Australia during filming and "imagining King Kong and Godzilla" in the jungles.
On May 10, a listing appeared on Amazon for a children's book based on the film, titled Godzilla vs. Kong: Sometimes Friends Fight (But They Always Make up After), scheduled for release on October 20th.
During the Wondercon@Home 2020 event on May 20, the Legendary Comics: MonsterVerse panel revealed the first details for the upcoming graphic novels, art book, and a picture book centered on Kong, featuring teaser images from the graphic novels. After it was revealed that Godzilla and Kong would get separate prequel novels, it was said the Godzilla novel would be told from Godzilla's point of view and explore his character, mainly Godzilla's protective heroic side. For the Kong graphic novel, Kong's adult design was revealed with a new look at Camazotz. The novel would not only feature the return of Houston Brooks but also focus on a new female fighter pilot character, who writer Maria Anello describes as "a woman who is struggling with a lot of baggage. A character who is both a very fierce pilot and someone who is also very vulnerable." After returning artist Zid talked about how he designed Camazotz, Anello revealed new details about Kong's new foe representing the element of darkness and being the embodiment of nightmares, similar to how Rodan and Ghidorah respectfully represent fire and electricity.
On June 3, the MPAA officially rated Godzilla vs. Kong PG-13 for "intense sequences of creature violence/destruction and brief language". Director Adam Wingard then tweeted in response to this, stating, "That's an understatement."
On June 12, Adam Wingard announced via Instagram that the film’s release date has been postponed to May 21, 2021, due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The film takes the date that was originally scheduled for Matrix 4, which in turn was moved to April 1, 2022.
On July 6, the titles of the prequel graphic comics were revealed online as GvK: Godzilla Dominion and GvK: Kingdom Kong. Their synopses were also revealed, with the summary for Kingdom Kong revealing Audrey as the name of the female pilot protagonist mentioned during Wondercon@Home event. Both comics have the release date of March 31, 2021.
On July 19, fans were given a sneak peek of Godzilla and Kong battling atop an aircraft carrier in a leaked image from Playmates Toys' figure packaging.
On September 28, an alternative logo for the film was revealed.
On November 25, 2020, it was reported that WarnerMedia had rejected a $200 million offer for the film from Netflix and that they were seeking a plan to bring the film concurrently to HBO Max and theaters.
On December 3, 2020, Warner Media announced that all of their films would be made available for streaming on HBO Max the same day as their theatrical release, including Godzilla vs. Kong.
On December 6, 2020, at Warner Bros. CCXP 2020, a two-second clip of Godzilla and Kong was shown as a first-look tease for the upcoming trailer.
On December 19, 2020, a brief synopsis for the film's official novelization was released with an announcement of May 25, 2021 publication date for the novel in paperback, four days after the release of the film itself. The synopsis for the novel reads as follows: "Humanity fights for its future as Godzilla and King Kong embark on a path of destruction that will see the two most powerful forces of nature on the planet collide in all-out war!"
On January 15, 2021, Deadline reported that Godzilla vs. Kong's release date would be moving up almost two months to March 26.
On January 21, Legendary released the film's first official poster and revealed the trailer would debut on the 24th. The Monarch Sciences website also updated for the first time since 2019 with a warning that Godzilla and Kong are on a collision course.
On January 24, the Godzilla vs. Kong trailer was released with a new synopsis on its official website:
|“||Legends collide in “Godzilla vs. Kong” as these mythic adversaries meet in a spectacular battle for the ages, with the fate of the world hanging in the balance. Kong and his protectors undertake a perilous journey to find his true home, and with them is Jia, a young orphaned girl with whom he has formed a unique and powerful bond. But they unexpectedly find themselves in the path of an enraged Godzilla, cutting a swath of destruction across the globe. The epic clash between the two titans—instigated by unseen forces—is only the beginning of the mystery that lies deep within the core of the Earth.||„|
Eleven days later on January 26, Variety reported that the film's North American release had been pushed back another week to March 31.
- Apex (Working title)
- United States - March 31, 2021 (will stream concurrently on HBO Max)
- United Kingdom - June 18, 2021
- This film will mark the first time in 59 years that Godzilla and King Kong will appear in a film together since 1962's King Kong vs. Godzilla.
- This film's title reverses the order of Godzilla and King Kong's names as they appear in King Kong vs. Godzilla.
- This film will be Terry Rossio's first Godzilla film after his unproduced screenplay for the unmade 1994 film.
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