The fate of Paramount's World War Z 2 has been left up in the air for the past few months, after the studio pulled the zombie sequel from its release schedule and delayed the movie indefinitely. A lot has changed between now and then, with the studio getting a new CEO in Jim Gianopulos, with sources claiming that Paramount is closing in on a deal with director David Fincher to take the helm and direct. The studio hasn't issued an official green light for the sequel yet, but that is expected to happen in the weeks ahead.
Variety reports that Paramount is eyeing a production start in the first quarter of 2018, although the studio hasn't announced any release plans thus far. We first reported about David Fincher's potential involvement back in August, with producer/star Brad Pitt reportedly "zeroing in" on David Fincher as his top choice to direct the sequel. However, plans for this project were pushed back due to Brad Pitt's divorce with Angelina Jolie. After then-CEO Brad Grey indefinitely delayed the sequel, most had wondered if it would ever come to fruition, but that has changed now that Jim Gianapulos has taken over.
Back in February, a source revealed that David Fincher "really wants to direct" Brad Pitt in this movie, which would reunite the actor and director for a fourth time, following their work on Se7en, Fight Club and most recently The Curious Case of Benjamin Button. It would also mark a return to the big screen for the director, who hasn't made a film since 2014's Gone Girl, although he has been keeping busy on the small screen, producing and directing Netflix's House of Cards and Mindhunters, while developing a number of other TV projects such as Utopia. If a deal is finalized, this would also mark a rare sequel for the director.
After cutting his teeth directing a number of music videos, such as Madonna's Express Yourself, Aerosmith's Janey's Got a Gun and many more, David Fincher made his directorial debut with 20th Century Fox's Alien 3, the studio's much-maligned sci-fi horror sequel that was widely panned by critics. The filmmaker has reportedly been wary of sequels ever since then, but he has always been open to any ideas brought to him by Brad Pitt. The director and star almost worked together on a remake of 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, but it never materialized.
This project would also mark a reunion for David Fincher and Jim Gianopulos, who gave his last feature film Gone Girl the green light when he was the CEO at 20th Century Fox. The script for World War Z 2 has been worked on by Steven Knight (Eastern Promises), with Dennis Kelly (Black Sea) providing a rewrite, but it isn't known if another writer will be brought on board. The original World War Z, which starred Brad Pitt, Mireille Enos, James Badge Dale and Matthew Fox, earned $202.3 million domestically and $540 million worldwide, from a $190 million production budget.