Pacific Rim 2 Needs More Story, Less VFX Says Charlie Hunnam
Sons of Anarchy never brought giant robots and sea faring monsters into the mix, so you can imagine that star Charlie Hunnam had a hard time acclimating himself to all the green screen used in the first Pacific Rim. Lost amongst the giant visual spectacle that director Guillermo del Toro brought to the screen in that movie, the actor had a hard time trying to find his place in the futuristic world. Pacific Rim 2 will begin shooting this November, and Hunnam has some ideas about how it can, and should be a lot better. His number one complaint about the first movie? It had too many visual effects.
Not only is Pacific Rim 2 gearing up for production, but there is also a planned comic book tie-in and an animated TV series on the way. All of these will work in showing more backstory about the giant Kaiju monsters, and it sounds like some of the human element may be abandoned for a grander spectacle. That's the exact opposite way Charlie Hunnam thinks it should go. He was hired once again by Del Toro for this Fall's Crimson Peak, which offers more of a personal story not hinged on giant creatures beating each other to death. And it seems the actor and director have a great on-set rapport. But that said, Charlie Hunnam is not yet confirmed for the Kaiju sequel.
He does have a lot of hope for the follow-up, even though he isn't in charge of making any creative decisions outside of his own character. Speaking with EW from the set of his King Arthur reboot Knights of the Round Table, he expressed his concerns about how Pacific Rim 2 could go down the wrong path if it concentrates too heavily on the technical aspects of the VFX. He had this to say.
"When [shooting] becomes very technical, those technical aspects create a rigidity to the process, then all of a sudden, you have to find where your little place to fit into that process is, as opposed to the whole thing being about you. I think world creation and monster creation and all of that stuff is exciting as a secondary element of storytelling. When it becomes more important than storytelling, I get very nervous, and you sort of lose me a little bit. Although we tried very hard on Pacific Rim to marry those two elements, I do feel like ultimately it got weighed heavier on the side of spectacle. Not to say I wasn't proud of the [first 'Pacific Rim']. I really liked it, and I felt like it delivered exactly what it was supposed to. But I do feel like we could have maybe plumbed the depths of the character and the storytelling a little bit more."
Charlie Hunnam feels that the drama between the various Jaeger pilots wasn't as strong as it could have been, partly because director Guillermo del Toro was so focused on the visual aspect of the screenplay. Though, it sounds like the actor is proud of the work he did. He just believes that there is a lot of room for improvement moving forward on the next installment.Pacific Rim managed to pull in $411 million worldwide, which guaranteed the sequel would move forward, even though it wasn't a giant hit in the states, pulling in just a little over $100 million domestically. It was generally liked by critics and moviegoers, but it wasn't the best reviewed movie of 2013 by a long shot.
Pacific Rim 2 will require extensive production and post-production work, with Guillermo del Toro preparing for the process all throughout this past year. The film is scheduled for late summer 2017, and it looks to be on target. It was originally slated to open in spring 2017, giving its director a little extra breathing room. Though the film is already gearing up, not much about its plot has leaked yet. Del Toro did say at Comic-Con that the movie will pick up a few years after the events of the first film.
Pacific Rim 2 is going to explore the mythology behind the giant Kajiu, with the monsters at the forefront of the action instead of the mechanical Jaegers and their pilots. Maelstrom was announced as the working title earlier this week, but it might not stay in place, especially since Guillermo del Toro is a fan of numbering his sequels. This will be the third time he's made the second chapter in a movie series, following Blade 2 and Hellboy II: The Golden Army. What do you think of Charlie Hunnam's remarks?