There were few expectations from the 2018 Jason Statham-starrer The Meg, about a 75-foot prehistoric Megalodon shark that escapes into the modern world. But the film surprised critics by grossing over half a billion dollars at the global box office. A sequel was pretty much guaranteed at that point, and British director Ben Wheatley was hired to helm The Meg 2. In an interview with ComicBook.com, Wheatley teased some epic action sequences for The Meg sequel.
"It's an opportunity to do action on such an insanely large scale, that it's just unbelievable. From doing Free Fire, which was, I thought, was all my Christmases came at once in terms of action, this is just unbelievable. And just doing the storyboards for it, just thinking and going, 'Oh,' it's just ... I feel a heavy responsibility for it, to make sure that it kind of delivers on all the, to all the big shark fans out there."
In many ways, The Meg was like a noisier version of Jaw, where the titular shark, despite being bigger than most planes, somehow keeps managing to sneak up on humans before destroying whatever water-based-craft they happened to be standing on. Statham's presence as the grim-faced protagonist also helped bring a certain legitimacy to the storyline, and the actor is expected to reprise his role for the sequel.
The biggest disappointment for fans of The Meg was that the movie failed to fulfill its gory potential with a giant killer shark in the mix by sticking to a PG-13 rating. For the sequel, the writer of the novel that The Meg is based on, Steve Alten, teased a darker tone and a potential R-rating last year. According to Ben Wheatley, he intends to honor what has come before instead of trying to take The Meg franchise in a new direction with the sequel.
"A lot of it is respecting The Meg, and trying to make sure it's a great Meg film. And as you can see from the movies I've made, they're not necessarily, it's not ... when you go and do Doctor Who, I don't completely change it because I wanted to do it. I didn't want to necessarily make it something completely different that nobody recognized, you know? So there's that element of back and forth."
In the past, Statham had expressed his hope of seeing The Meg one day become a billion-dollar franchise, right up there with the MCU and Fast & Furious series. In order for that to happen, the sequel to The Meg needs to hit it out of the park, to prove the success of the original was no fluke.
As far as its rating goes, if the studio is truly interested in making an attempt at a billion dollars box-office gross, The Meg 2 is unlikely to be R-rated, since that reduces the film's potential audience. Fingers crossed the studio tries to follow the example set by the Deadpool franchise in establishing a lucrative, R-rated franchise. ComicBook.com.