Pacific Rim 2 Is a Go But Without Guillermo del Toro Directing

PacificRimYoungMako

THIS IS FOR REAL, MAKO!

2013 brought us Pacific Rim starring Charlie Hunnam, Idris Elba, Rinko Kikuchi, Charlie Day, Robert Kazinsky, and Ron Perlman and it felt like magic to me. Seeing the previews and knowing Guillermo del Toro’s past work, it was built up to a ridiculous degree before it was released in theaters. I thought, “There’s no way this film about giant robots fighting giant monsters can possibly live up to the hype.”

But it did!

Pacific Rim wasn’t Oscar material but it was a quality film that provided background for its universe, fully formed characters, and epic fight scenes. And if you’ve a frequent movie-goer, you know having all three is not always required these days. But perhaps the coolest part of Pacific Rim was what came after it. It afforded us the opportunity to find someone “Drift compatible” with us, gave us the Mako Mori test, and the single best track to work/work out to.

So who is directing the sequel if not for del Toro (who is constantly juggling at least 5 projects at a time)? According to Deadline, Steven S. DeKnight. Here’s what del Toro had to say about the news on Twitter:

Unless you’re a big Spartacus or Daredevil fan, the name may be unfamiliar to you. DeKnight created Spartacus for Starz and was executive producer and head writer of Marvel’s Daredevil on Netflix. He’s also has written and directed for Buffy The Vampire Slayer, the Angel spinoff, Dollhouse, and Smallville. This would be his feature directorial debut.

I have nothing against DeKnight but this scenario is an unfortunate replay of a bad trend we’re seeing (or at least now acknowledging) in Hollywood – men getting huge directorial jobs with little to no experience on their resumes. The same is almost never said for women.

You may recall last year Jurassic World director Colin Trevorrow spoke about this situation which worked to his advantage. Director Brad Bird recommended Trevorrow for Jurassic World because he thought “there is this guy that reminds me of me.” While Trevorrow thinks “There is a sincere desire correct this imbalance at the highest levels of our industry right now,” there is obviously still a lot of work to be done.

DeKnight does have more work in general under his belt than Trevorrow had but it’s still frustrating as an observer to see him handed such a high-profile project. The script for the Pacific Rim sequel (working title: Maelstrom) was written by Jon Spaihts and is based on everything created by del Toro and Travis Beacham for the first film. Presumably del Toro will be heavily involved regardless. What are your thoughts on the news?

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