Somewhere on the planet, a ginormous radioactive lizard is weeping. According to Deadline, Rogue One: A Star Wars Story director Gareth Edwards has opted to step away from Warner Bros.' sequel to 2014's Godzilla, which Edwards also directed. The calculated move is said to be an amicable parting, but it leaves Godzilla 2 without an A-List captain and a gaping hole in the studio's release schedule unless it's quickly filled.
Edwards' indie horror film Monsters aroused considerable attention back in 2010, and the young director was handed the keys to a monster-budgeted Godzilla project that netted a humongous $529 million worldwide box-office take. His solid filmmaking skills on Godzilla scored him the coveted job of helming a Star Wars spinoff, and, after recently completing principal photography, he and his crew are now back in the UK for a week of re-shoots for the Rogue One prequel.
Warners and Legendary have been attempting to craft a shared universe with Kong: Skull Island, set to launch in March 2017, followed by Godzilla 2 on March 22, 2019, then, Godzilla vs. King Kong slotted for a May 20, 2020 release. The scheduling jam would have required Edwards to leap straight into Godzilla 2 as soon as Rogue One wrapped and it appears the director wanted to bask in the afterglow of his Star Wars experience before jumpstarting a new project. With a clear mind and his eyes on the box office prize of delivering an effective, crowd-pleasing prequel, it seems Edwards has made the right decision in departing the Godzilla follow-up, though he will be missed.
Starring Felicity Jones, Mads Mikkelsen, Genevieve O’Reilly, Riz Ahmed and Diego Luna, Rogue One: A Star Wars Story storms theaters on December 16, 2016.
What do you think? Are you sad Edwards won't be directing Godzilla 2 and who would you place behind the camera instead?