David Fincher Gives 'World War Z' Sequel Update

Since the production of the original film, nothing has happened quickly or easily with the World War Z franchise, a tradition the sequel will seemingly honor. The sequel's director, David Fincher, recently confirmed that there is progress being made on the film, but that progress is happening slowly.

"World War Z? We’re trying. A lot of stones have been laid," Fincher told Little White Lies about how a big-budget blockbuster sequel compares to working with smaller studios. "We’re just deconstructing it right now against the mythology that exists to see where we can go."

Production on the original film, based on the Max Brooks novel of the same name, began in 2011 with a budget of $125 million. The film's finale was set to include a variety of firearms, which were confiscated by authorities in Budapest after the production failed to properly declare the props with the local government, delaying shooting until the following year.

In the spring of 2012, Damon Lindelof was tapped to re-write the film's third act, only to have to depart the project before writing an ending, which was then handled by Drew Goddard. The new ending utilized almost 40 minutes of new footage to make a more cohesive narrative.

Given that the climax took place in Russia, Paramount opted to go with a different ending as to avoid any political undertones. Additionally, a scene that implied the outbreak originated in China was altered in hopes of securing distribution rights there.

After all the re-shoots, the production budget ended up totaling closer to $200 million. The film had intended to hit theaters in December of 2012 and was eventually released in the summer of 2013.

Despite all these starts, stops and alterations, the film went on to earn $540 million worldwide, making it a success.

With their history of working together on films like Seven, Fight Club and The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, star Brad Pitt had talked with Fincher about the possibility of helming the sequel, despite Fincher often avoiding massive studio productions.

“We’re hoping to get a piece of material that’s a reason to make a movie not an excuse to make a movie,” Fincher told Collider earlier this year about the film.

Production on the sequel is tentatively scheduled to begin early next year.

[H/T Little White Lies]