It seems Legendary Pictures really liked the script Michael Dougherty reportedly created with partner Zach Shields … so much, they’ve offered the Krampus director a shot at directing Godzilla: King of Monsters.
Such a move had been rumored since both Dougherty and Shields joined the project in October with the contingency that Legendary executives were happy with the direction the two wanted to take the Godzilla franchise in the future.
Now, according to Variety, Legendary can really move forward with the next film, and what it hopes will become part of a larger monster franchise.
In October 2015, Legendary and Warner Bros. made a joint announcement that all future King Kong and Godzilla films would be developed by Legendary and distributed by Warner Bros., starting with Kong: Skull Island in March.
Legendary currently holds a distribution deal with Universal, but in order to re-team Godzilla with King Kong, Legendary decided to send the rights back over to Warner Bros. to be able to create this new “ecosystem” of giant super-species, both classic and new.
The 2014 Godzilla film from Rogue One director Gareth Edwards grossed $529.1 million worldwide, including $200.7 million in North America. It finished just within the top 15 films of the year in all the major box office categories – domestic, international and worldwide.
Dougherty is better known for his writing work, primarily on Bryan Singer’s failed superhero reboot Superman Returns in 2006, as well as last year’s X-Men: Apocalypse. Both films were no slouches at the box office, however. Superman Returns had a global take of $374.1 million – ranked 10th worldwide that year – while Apocalypse earned $542.7 million, ranking it No. 13 worldwide last year.
But Dougherty does have some directing experience under his belt. His biggest claim to fame is the holiday horror film Krampus which earned $61.8 million in 2015. He also was the writer and director behind Trick ‘r Treat, one of Legendary’s first productions.
Godzilla: King of Monsters is set to hit theaters March 22, 2019.
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