Pacific Rim Uprising is the sequel to Guillermo del Toro's 2013 science-fiction film, Pacific Rim, directed by Steven S. DeKnight. Set in the year 2035, Uprising is set ten years after the events of Pacific Rim. Following the story of the son of Stacker Pentecost, Uprising focuses on the aftermath of the Breach's destruction, and the revival of the Pan Pacific Defense Corps and the Jaeger Program under the management of an older Mako Mori.
Announced in 2014, Uprising was originally scheduled for an April 2017 release before being pushed back by Universal Pictures to August 2017. Following financial troubles between Universal Pictures and Legendary Pictures, the film was pushed back a second time. January 2016, it was reported that the sequel was "officially shelved" by Universal Pictures It was later "revived" by Universal Pictures in February 2016 with Steven S. DeKnight as its director following the departure of del Toro.
Several scripts were originally written by Guillermo del Toro, Zak Penn and Travis Beacham, but later fell under the supervision Jon Spaihts and Derek Connolly. Steven S. DeKnight, Emily Carmichael, T.S. Nowlin and Kira Snyder were later credited as the film's central screenwriters. Pacific Rim: Uprising stars John Boyega, Rinko Kikuchi, Scott Eastwood, and Cailee Spaeny. It was originally slated for a February 23, 2018 release and later released March 23, 2018.
- "The globe-spanning conflict between otherworldly monsters of mass destruction and the human-piloted super-machines built to vanquish them was only a prelude to the all-out assault on humanity in Pacific Rim Uprising. John Boyega (Star Wars: The Force Awakens) stars as the rebellious Jake Pentecost, a once-promising Jaeger pilot whose legendary father gave his life to secure humanity’s victory against the monstrous “Kaiju.” Jake has since abandoned his training only to become caught up in a criminal underworld. But when an even more unstoppable threat is unleashed to tear through our cities and bring the world to its knees, he is given one last chance to live up to his father’s legacy by his estranged sister, Mako Mori (Rinko Kikuchi)—who is leading a brave new generation of pilots that have grown up in the shadow of war. As they seek justice for the fallen, their only hope is to unite together in a global uprising against the forces of extinction. Jake is joined by gifted rival pilot Lambert (The Fate of the Furious’ Scott Eastwood) and 15-year-old Jaeger hacker Amara (newcomer Cailee Spaeny), as the heroes of the PPDC become the only family he has left. Rising up to become the most powerful defense force to ever walk the earth, they will set course for a spectacular all-new adventure on a towering scale. Pacific Rim Uprising is directed by Steven S. DeKnight (Netflix’s Daredevil, STARZ’s Spartacus) and also stars Jing Tian, Burn Gorman, Adria Arjona and Charlie Day."
- —Official Description
Ten years after the Battle of the Breach, Jake Pentecost, son of Stacker Pentecost, has abandoned the Jaeger Program and makes a living by stealing and selling Jaeger parts on the black market. While trying to steal part of a disabled Jaeger's power core, he meets a young scavenger named Amara Namani, whose parents were killed in a kaiju attack in Santa Monica. Amara pilots a makeshift Jaeger named Scrapper, Jake sitting beside her, until they are found by November Ajax.
As the Jaeger chases Scrapper through the ruined city for being an unregistered Jaeger, they are apprehended and arrested by the Pan Pacific Defense Corps. Jake's adoptive sister and PPDC General Secretary Mako Mori gives Jake a choice between prison and returning to the PPDC as an instructor, with Amara joining the cadet force. Jake chooses to return as an instructor, taking Amara with him.
Upon arriving at the Moyulan Shatterdome, Jake starts training cadets with his former co-pilot, Nate Lambert. There, they are introduced to new Mark-6 Jaegers Gipsy Avenger, Saber Athena, Guardian Bravo, Titan Redeemer, Valor Omega, and the upgraded Mark-5 Jaeger Bracer Phoenix. Mako and Nate explain to him that the Jaeger Program is threatened by the Shao Corporation's drone program, which offers to mass produce remote controlled Jaegers developed by Liwen Shao and Dr. Newton Geiszler. Mako is due to deliver a final assessment to determine the authorization of the drones at a PPDC council meeting in Sydney, Australia.
Asked to attend the Sydney event as a flagship symbol, Jake steps in to pilot Gipsy Avenger with Nate, standing watch over the authorization meeting. Before long, a surprise rogue Jaeger emerges out of Sydney Harbour and begins to cause havoc. Gipsy Avenger quickly intervenes while Mako attempts to send information regarding the rogue Jaeger to the PPDC. After being shot at, Mako is killed by the rogue Jaeger Obsidian Fury before she can report, Gipsy Avenger failing to save her as Obsidian Fury submerges into the water, fleeing from additional PPDC forces.
Her death prompts the PPDC council to authorize the drone program and order their immediate deployment. In her last moments, Mako reveals the location of a defunct Jaeger production facility in Siberia, Russia, which she suspects Obsidian Fury is using as a base of operations. Before Jake and Nate can investigate the area in Gipsy Avenger, Obsidian Fury destroys the complex and engages them in battle. The two Jaegers eventually end up fighting on top a frozen lake, Gipsy Avenger ends the fight by punching through Obsidian Fury's chest, destroying it. Upon destroying its reactor, they find that Obsidian Fury was controlled by a Kaiju's secondary brain.
When the drones reach their respective locations, they are taken over by the cloned Kaiju brains and simultaneously attack Shatterdomes worldwide, inflicting heavy casualties on the PPDC forces and destroying Jaegers, including Titan Redeemer and Valor Omega. Hermann Gottlieb seeks out Geiszler for help, unaware that Geiszler is the mastermind behind the attack, as he has been corrupted by regularly drifting with a Kaiju's secondary brain. Seeking to destroy the world for the Precursors, the alien race who created the Kaiju, Geiszler has installed a backdoor in the drone program so that the Kaiju brains could take over the drones, destroy the PPDC and open dozens of new breaches all over the world. Although Shao is able to destroy the drones and close the breaches, the Category IV Kaiju Hakuja and Shrikethorn, and a Category V Raijin manage to fully emerge successfully, with all of them converging on the city of MegaTokyo.
The team realizes that the Precursors' goal is to activate the Pacific Ring of Fire by having the Kaiju fall into Mount Fuji, where their blood will react with the volcano's rare earth elements and activate all of the volcanoes around the Ring of Fire, wiping out all life on Earth and terraforming the planet for their colonization.
Mobilizing the recruits, the PPDC confronts the Kaiju with their four remaining Jaegers, which they launch to Mt. Fuji. Although the Jaegers initially repel the Kaiju, seemingly winning, Geiszler activates swarms of tiny drones of which he had been secretly constructing, and utilises them to merge the three Kaiju into a singular, colossal Mega-Kaiju. The beast quite easily overpowers the cadets and Gipsy Avenger, ripping apart Bracer Phoenix and rendering Guardian Bravo and Saber Athena unoperational. As the gigantic Kaiju begins to trudge towards Mount Fuji, the PPDC decide to use Gipsy Avenger, the last operational Jaeger, to destroy the Kaiju with the help of one of the rockets in a last ditch attempt.
Scrapper, piloted by Shao, is deployed, and helps weld the rocket to Gipsy Avenger. Badly injured, Nate ejects himself as Amara joins Jake to help co-pilot the Jaeger. Gipsy Avenger rockets into the sky, with Scrapper stuck to its back, before flying straight into Mega-Kaiju, destroying the Jaeger and killing the beast, while Jake and Amara escape in Scrapper. In the aftermath, Geiszler realizes his plan has been foiled, until he is taken into custody by Nate. Newt threatens that his masters will attack the world over and over again, until they win. Jake replies that next time, humanity will be the ones attacking the Precursors.
Jaeger and Kaiju
|Rinko Kikuchi||Mako Mori|
|Charlie Day||Newton Geiszler|
|Burn Gorman||Hermann Gottlieb|
As Untitled Sequel
May 20, 2013, Entertainment Weekly announced that Pacific Rim was set for a sequel prior to the film's release on July 12, 2013. Legendary Pictures announced that the studio hired Travis Beacham to write the script for the sequel. Former CEO of Legendary Entertainment, Thomas Tull asked Guillermo del Toro to start working on a screenplay based on ideas omitted from the original film.[note 2]
del Toro would help Beacham write the sequel, but it was undetermined if he would direct it. Travis Beacham stated that he was given the go-head to write a sequel "a while ago" but had received no word that the production would be greenlit. In an interview with ShockTillYouDrop.com, Thomas Tull confirmed that del Toro and Legendary Pictures were still open to the idea of developing a sequel for Pacific Rim.
During the promotion of The Strain at the Austin Television Festival, del Toro announced that screenwriter Zak Penn was working with him to develop the script for the sequel. At the time of the announcement, Travis Beacham was involved with the FOX television series, Hieroglyph, which was later cancelled before its premiere in the fall of 2014.
June 26, 2014, Guillermo del Toro announced on Legendary's YouTube channel that, "Pacific Rim 2" was planned for a April 2017 release. In conjunction with writing the script with Zak Penn, he added that Travis Beacham would return as a writer. To promote the pending film, an animated series and additional comic book similar to that of Pacific Rim: Tales From Year Zero were also greenlit for production.[note 3]
In an official statement with BuzzFeed.com, del Toro stated, "The characters I love will return. Raleigh, Mako, Newt, Gottlieb and who knows, maybe even Hannibal Chau – but we are taking them into a fresh territory that will display amazing sights and battles. The first film set the stage and now we’re ready to have a blast."
Following his announcement on YouTube, Legendary Pictures announced the film's release date on their official twitter and tumblr pages for both their company and Pacific Rim. Actor Burn Gorman followed suit, retweeting the news from the Hollywood Reporter with the response, "by Jove".
In an interview with the Wall Street Journal, when asked about when production would officially begin for the sequel, del Toro stated that design production for the film would start in August of 2014.[note 4] Scouting for locations for the film were expected to take place July 2015 and principal photography November of the same year. del Toro expected to begin advertising the sequel in early 2017.
April 23, 2015, following the announcement of the eighth Fast & Furious sequel and the upcoming sequels to Fifty Shades of Grey, Universal Pictures released a list of films whose original release dates were changed to accommodate the other franchises. Pacific Rim 2 was officially moved from a April to an August 2017 release.[note 5]
During the 2015 Comic-Con, del Toro reconfirmed that principal photography would begin in November and pre-production was in the third month of the film's design process at the time of the interview. When discussing the Jeagers, del Toro stated that four Jaegers had been established during the design process. The Jaegers would hail from China, Russia and Korea, the latter of which was said to have "two robots". del Toro went on to reconfirm that the Mexican Jaeger mentioned at the 2015 International Film Festival in Guadalajara, "Black Maria", was among the Jaegers mentioned in the design process. October 2015, IGN.com reported that del Toro had submitted "a tentative budget and script" to Legendary pictures.
As Pacific Rim: Uprising
Following the January announcement that the Pacific Rim sequel had been officially shelved by Universal, Guillermo del Toro alluded to an announcement regarding the fate of the film on Twitter. February 23, 2016, he announced that Steven S. DeKnight would be the film's director and that more news regarding the film's production would arrive soon.[note 6]
Deadline.com and /Film.com reported that production of the sequel would resume under with del Toro acting as the film's producer. When asked about stepping down from the position of director, del Toro explained he was overburdened with other projects. The production of the sequel was postponed for nine months during Legendary's merger with China's Wanda Group. Not wanting to wait nine months to go into production, del Toro stepped down and went on to direct The Shape of Water and DeKnight was chosen to direct the film.[note 7] June 30, 2016, it was officially announced that the sequel would be released February 23, 2018.
August 13, 2016, DeKnight announced that major casting was wrapping up on the film and that the set production would begin following the moving to Sydney, Australia. That same day, DeKnight made reference to in-progress storyboards for the sequel. Another report, regarding the film's production from an un-sourced social media account via a Facebook named "Planet Kaiju", announced that sets for the Pacific Rim sequel were being built.
September 13, 2016, John Boyega announced the completion of his work for the film, Detroit, directed by Kathryn Bigelow, and that he would be heading for Sydney to work on “Pacific Rim 2”. September 22, 2016, it was officially confirmed that production would begin in Australia in November. Principal photography was also officially confirmed to occur in China. Earlier, it was believed filming in China would occur in October. October 27, 2016, Scott Eastwood arrived in Australia to begin filming.
Filming for Pacific Rim: Uprising officially began in November 9th, 2016. During filming, John Boyega posted an image of the script on his official Instagram account and the official title of the film was believed to be the then-rumored working title, Pacific Rim: Maelstrom. Later that month, unofficial photography of John Boyega filming in Cronulla, south of Sydney, Australia, began to circulate online.
Late December 2016, an official press release for upcoming Godzilla film and Pacific Rim sequel revealed that the names of the films had been changed. Pacific Rim: Maelstrom was changed to Pacific Rim: Uprising, the Godzilla sequel was renamed Godzilla: King of the Monsters. January 18, 2016, Daredevil composer John Paesano was announced as the official composer of Pacific Rim: Uprising, replacing Pacific Rim composers Ramin Djawadi, and Tom Morello. Paesano recorded his score at the Synchron Stage in Vienna last fall.
January 2017, John Boyega posted an image of Gipsy Danger from the original film, and media outlets assumed the post was teasing the possible return of Gipsy Danger. Unofficial photos of the redesigned armor worn by John Boyega surfaced initially on Instagram and later circulated across major media outlets. Similar on-set photography of Scott Eastwood in an identical costume were shared in February 2017.
Officially sanctioned behind the scenes photography of John Boyega and Scott Eastwood in Pacific Rim: Uprising were uploaded by the actors on their respective Twitter and Instagram accounts February 1st, and 7th, 2017. February 9, 2016, two version of the first teaser poster for Uprising were released by Legendary.
Pacific Rim: Uprising reportedly cost an estimated AUD $257 Million to produce. New South Wales Deputy Premiere and Arts Minister Troy Grant stated Uprising was the one of the latest major productions secured by the NSW Government's new $20 Million "Made In NSW Fund" and that the production would inject and estimated $54 Million into the NSW economy, employing roughly 400 local crew.
March 28, 2017, John Boyega announced that principal photography for Pacific Rim: Uprising was completed. At the time, three days of filming were presumably left for production. Filming for Uprising officially wrapped March 31, 2017.[note 8] July 19, 2017, DeKnight announced that a trailer for Uprising was being worked on. June 27, 2017, John Boyega returned to the set to film pick-up shots.
August 2017, the release date of Pacific Rim: Uprising was moved from February 23, 2018 to March 23, 2018. October 4, 2017, the official synopsis of the film was released, detailing Mako Mori's role in the film, followed by exclusive stills released to Entertainment Weekly. November 2017, DeKnight announced that the runtime of Pacific Rim: Uprising was approximately two hours. December 2017, the official Pacific Rim tumblr blog revealed the Japanese poster for Uprising featuring Gipsy Avenger. Late December 2017, EMPIRE magazine released new details regarding the new Kaiju featured in Uprising.
January 18, 2018, Total Film magazine released new official stills for the film in a multi-page article. January 19, the third trailer for Uprising was rated PG by the Alberta government ratings system.
January 20, John Boyega announced that the next trailer would arrive "soon". January 22, 2018, one of the first TV Spots began broadcasting on television. January 23, the theatrical poster for the film was released, followed by the news that the theatrical trailer would debut online January 24, at 8:00AM Pacific Time. That same day, Music Film Reporter announced that John Paesano had been replaced by Scottish composer, Lorne Balfe, who recently completed his score for the film.
Under del Toro
July 2013, in an interview with The Hollywood Reporter, del Toro stated that the sequel would be unlike the first and would avoid repeating any elements from the first film. “We have plans that are pretty bold and pretty crazy,” he said. “We would not be repeating anything from the first one. We would go to completely fresh territory.” del Toro revealed in a Long Beach, California Q&A that he was interested in bringing focus to the idea of humans “drifting” with Kaiju. "We're writing... and the main idea that we're bouncing off is the fact that Newt drifted with a Kaiju brain and all Kaiju brains were connected".
Another idea posited by del Toro was the focus on the Precursors and the Anteverse and how they could use the information provided by Newton Geiszler against mankind. “They have a hive mentality, meaning that if you ‘drift’ with a Kaiju brain, you are drifting with every Kaiju alive. Depending on the duration of the drift the information might be complete or incomplete, but the Kaiju know everything the human drifts with them knows. That’s as much as I can tell you without spoiling the sequel.”
The sequel would also see the possible return of Gipsy Danger and a Kaiju/Jaeger hybrid; "We will have Gipsy 2.0 for sure. Second thing is you're gonna see a merging of Kaiju and Jaeger. And that is quite special." Actress Rinko Kikuchi hinted at the idea of Idris Elba's return to the sequel during a press event in San Francisco.
Prior to the June 26 announcement, del Toro announced that the script was in the process of being written by himself and Zak Penn, but had not been bought for production by Legendary Pictures. “I don’t have the money, but I’m proceeding like it is happening,” he said. del Toro also stated that characters Raleigh Becket and Mako Mori would return and that the story would follow the events after Pacific Rim. He made clear that he was not interested directing a prequel centralized on the "first wave of the invasion", and was focused on introducing "very crazy ideas for the second one".
During the 2014 San Diego Comic-Con, when asked whether or not he would be filming in Toronto, del Toro stated that he would be writing the sequel's story to be told on a global scale. "[...]it’s all over the world this time. I want it to be different enough to the first one that you don’t feel you’re seeing the same movie." The film's action sequences would be orchestrated differently from the original film, and take place during both day and night battles.
The journey of Raleigh Becket would be "completely different", as he came full circle with the loss his brother, Yancy Becket, after rescuing his new co-pilot, Mako, at the end of Pacific Rim. del Toro reconfirmed that the sequel would expand on the mythology of the Precursors and the Anteverse and the creation of a "Gipsy Danger 2.0". He also added that the sequel would introduce new characters as well. In another interview with Collider.com, del Toro revealed that the setting of the movie would be set "a few years after the first one" and would see the film dealing with a Kaiju free world and the fate of the remaining Jaeger technology.[note 9] When promoting Guy Ritchie's King Arthur: Legend of the Sword, Charlie Hunnam expressed an interest in seeing a larger focus on character and less attention on special effects.
In an interview with Collider.com, covering the production of The Shape of Water, Paul Austerberry revealed that the original script for del Toro's Pacific Rim sequel lead the story to Shanghai, and involved a river and desert location for major action sequences. The film would have ended in San Francisco where a major battle between the Kaiju and the Jaeger was meant to take place.[note 10]
According to a Deadline report, Uprising was being written by Jon Spaihts, better known for his work on Doctor Strange, and The Mummy remake. May 2016, the script writing responsibilities were given to Jurassic World co-writer, Derek Connolly. The original Hollywood Reporter article cited no details on whether or not the script for the sequel would be rewritten or use developing ideas already established by prior screenwriters.
Later, director and screenwriter, Emily Carmichael, was announced as screenwriter for the film. Carmichael stated she was brought on to the project by current director Steven S. DeKnight, "to help provide banter, warmth and cleverness”. She readily provided the production with ideas about the next generation of Jaegers. Kira Snyder, a writer for The CW series, The 100 was also hired to write for the sequel. November 2016, T.S. Nowlin was reported as an additional screenwriter for Uprising after Snyder and Carmichael. Since the announcement of DeKnight as director in 2016, Uprising has had a total of six screenwriters, with T.S. Nowlin credited as the writer of the film's story.
In an interview with Collider.com, producer Cale Boyte stated that DeKnight took elements from earlier versions of scripts written by Guilermo del Toro and "cherry picked" what he believed were the best parts of each script. Little of del Toro's original scripts remain in Uprising as a result.
Both John Boyega and Steven S. DeKnight state that Uprising explores the story of the estranged Jake Pentecost and his lackluster relationship with Mako Mori, the "golden child" and "favored child" of Stacker Pentecost, and Jake's struggle to find acceptance within the Jaeger Program following his return. The reorganized Pan Pacific Defense Corps. would operate on a more "global" basis and was no longer represented by any single country and placed more emphasis on the cooperation of everyone around the world.
Boyega described the plot of Uprising as a whodunit, driven by the mystery of a "rogue Jaeger" (Obsidian Fury) and reemergence of the Kaiju. In order to maintain some element of mystery around the story, more character-driven trailers were discarded in favor of being vague. Uprising was designed so that it could be viewed as a stand-alone film" and would not require watching the original Pacific Rim to understand.
2014-2015 (del Toro)
Since its official announcement in 2014, del Toro indirectly stated that the surviving cast of Pacific Rim would return for the sequel by way of reference to the characters and the continuation of the story. Burn Gorman and Charlie Day were among the first of the original cast officially confirmed to return, with the possibility of larger roles.
During the promotion of Kumiko, the Treasure Hunter, Rinko Kikuchi stated in an interview Superhero Hype that she was uncertain that she would be asked to return for the sequel despite del Toro's discussion of narrative. During his appearance at the Television Critics Association, del Toro corrected the media-wide error that Gorman and Day would take over as the sequel's protagonists, and reiterated that he believed most of the cast from the original film would return for the sequel, Charlie Hunnam included.[note 11] During the film's delay, del Toro considered casting Maisie Williams of Game of Thrones for the sequel.
June 6, 2016, Deadline.com reported that John Boyega was cast in the sequel as "Stacker Pentecost's son". In addition, he would act as the co-producer for the film with his company, UpperRoom Productions with partner Femi Oguns.
In an interview with Hollywood Reporter, del Toro stated that he could not make confirmative statements about the returning cast members because of his status as producer of the film, but remained certain they would return nonetheless. Later, during Comic Con 2016, in an interview with Yahoo Movies, Charlie Hunnam confirmed that he would not return for the sequel because of scheduling conflicts with the film Papillon.
September 15, 2016, American actress Cailee Spaeny was cast as the sequel's new female lead. At the time of the announcement there was no official word on whether or not Rinko Kikuchi would reprise her role as Mako Mori in the sequel.
Since as early as July 2016, news outlets reported that Scott Eastwod was "in talks" with the production of the sequel for a "key role" in the film. The film later appeared on Eastwood's Internet Movie Database profile under the then unconfirmed title, Pacific Rim: Maelstrom. DeKnight later confirmed his casting as official, September 26, 2016.
September 13, 2016, DeKnight teased that he included a cast member from Greg McLean's film, The Belko Experiment. September 26, 2016, actress Adria Arjona was cast in the sequel. September 21, 2016, Variety.com reported that Chinese actress Jing Tian was cast in the sequel. September 22, 2016, Variety.com announced actor Levi Meaden had been cast in the sequel as "Ilya", "an irreverent and offbeat cadet".
October 11, 2016, Ukrainian actress Ivanna Sakhno was cast in the film, followed by Karan Brar, October 18, 2016,. October 26, 2016, South Korean singer and actor Kim Jeong-hoon was cast in an unspecified role and would reportedly begin filming in November.
The same day, Japanese actor, Mackenyu was cast as "Ryoichi". November 11, 2016, Variety.com reported that Lebanese-American actor Nick Tarabay joined the cast. Chinese actor, Zhang Jin's casting was announced late November 2016. Executive of Beijing Wanda Cultural Industry Group expressed gratitude, saying, "We are very excited that we have such amazing Chinese talent joining us on Pacific Rim our new story has a strong connection to China and this great Chinese cast will help us bring it to life.”
January 9, 2017, /Film.com reported that Pacific Rim stars Rinko Kikuchi, Charlie Day and Burn Gorman were to reprise their roles from the original film. It was initially reported that New Zealand actor Karl Urban had also been cast, based on a photograph of a call sheet posted on cinematographer Dan Mindel's Instagram (that has since been deleted from the account). However, Urban officially denied involvement with the film.
March 6, 2017, it was reported that Australian actor Dustin Clare was cast. May 25, 2017, During an panel at Motor City Comic Con, Ron Perlman confirmed that he would not reprise his role as Hannibal Chau. In an interview with Steven S. DeKnight, the director stated Perlman was unable to return because of "scheduling conflicts". However, Perlman tweeted that scheduling was not the issue, but that he was not interested in making a cameo appearance.[note 12]
September 15, 2015, the Latino Review reported that the production of Uprising was delayed until 2016 according to "multiple sources" and would impact the August 2017 release of the film planned at its announcement. Forbes.com speculated the reported delay was Universal Pictures' attempt to avoid clashing with director Christopher Nolan's 2017 feature, Dunkirk, produced by Warner Brothers.
Subsequent media outlets began spreading the report, similarly stating that they were unable to get an official comment with Legendary or Universal Pictures. September 16, 2015, The Hollywood Reporter detailed financial troubles and internal strife between Legendary Pictures, Thomas Tull and Universal Pictures. Universal and Legendary Pictures' grievances were presumably over the fact that Tull was taking credit for the success of The Dark Knight and Jurassic World, but ignoring the financial failures of films such as Blackhat.
A source close to Legendary relayed to the Hollywood Reporter that the sequel "has been halted indefinitely and will be pushed back". Forbes.com writer Scott Mendelson speculated the sequel was postponed by Universal for reasons that the Tron Legacy sequel was canceled: The studio was overburdened with too many upcoming franchises.
Guillermo del Toro addressed the postponement rumors in an Entertainment Weekly interview, stating that while the film had been pushed back, the delay was "only temporary". “We are still turning in a screenplay and a budget in three weeks,” del Toro told Entertainment Weekly. “As far as I’m concerned, it’s not gone. We’re still on it.” Additionally he expressed an interest in doing another film before the production of the sequel would go forward.
January 7, 2016, reports from Universal that the sequel had been officially shelved began to circulate. According to Screencrush.com and the Hollywood Reporter del Toro had been in talks with Universal in an attempt to get the film's production off the ground.
However, the director was unable to come to an agreement with the studio and the sequel was officially “off the table”. The reports followed the announcement that del Toro was in the running to direct a remake of the 1966 science fiction film, Fantastic Voyage. Following the report, del Toro responded to the news on twitter, "Pac Rim 2 cancelled? Don't believe everything you read. It's still going and I'll remain w it in one way or another!"
May 25, 2017, License Global announced a major merchandising deal with several companies to coincide with the release of Uprising in February 2018. According to the press release, the licensing deal for a variety of products, includes clothing, novelizations, board games, detective items and action figures. The first products are set to ship in February 2018.
Insight Editions was hired to produce a production artbook covering the making of the film and a junior novelization, and Titan Books were hired to publish the Official Jaeger Handbook. October 2017, Legendary Comics announced that a six-issue miniseries would be released January 2018. Additionally, Legendary Comics partnered with webtoons.com (a webcomic site) to release Pacific Rim: Amara, a ten-issue series which ran from March 9, 2018 to April 20, 2018.
February 16, 2017, NECA stated that they would not be producing action figures for Pacific Rim: Uprising. February 17, 2017, Tamashii Nations announced on their official twitter account that they would be responsible for the production of action figures for the sequel.
According to Licence Global, Bandai was contracted to release "highly articulated figures, die-cast and resin robot action figure sets, die-cast figurines and plastic model kits, all of which will represent characters from the Pacific Rim universe, including various Mechs and Kaiju." Diamond Select Toys and Tri-Force would additionally produce figures and scale replicas among other specialty items.
April 30, 2017, blueprints for the Gipsy Avenger action figure was showcased at the Tamashii Nations event in New York City, alongside a new Gipsy Danger action figure, Soul of Chogokin Gipsy Danger. The official unveiling of the Gipsy Avenger action figure was later off, June 7, 2017, at 10th Anniversary Expo in Shanghai, China. Adam Newman of Tamashii Nations stated that die-cast, gunpla, and chogokin type figures would be released for the Uprising figure line. The Tamashii Nations World Tour, where the Gipsy Avenger action figure is being displayed toured across ten cities in early July 2017. During the 2017 Japan Expo, blueprints for the Jaegers Saber Athena and Bracer Phoenix were revealed.
June 24, 2017, DeKnight stated that he was uncertain that Pacific Rim: Uprising would be promoted at the 2017 Comic-Con convention in San Diego. July 10, 2017, DeKnight later stated that there would be no footage shown at Comic-Con.
July 19, 2017, DeKnight reported that he would be present at Comic-Con at the Tamashii Nations booth to promote the upcoming action figure line for Uprising. July 20, 2017, the previously unveiled Gipsy Avenger, Bracer Phoenix and Saber Athena action figures were showcased alongside Guardian Bravo, and Titan Redeemer. That same day, an official display for the film's redesigned Drivesuits was set up at Comic-Con 2017 for public viewing.
The viral marketing campaign for Uprising was unveiled July 20, 2017 at the San Diego Comic-Con. gojaeger.com was promoted with a teaser trailer narrated by Ellen McLain (who was used in the promotion of the original Pacific Rim and the subsequent film), and featured music from Crackdown 3, composed by Chris Classic, with an appearance by John Boyega as Jake Pentecost. gojaeger.com features a brief timeline of events regarding events that took place during Pacific Rim, blueprints for all five Jaegers revealed thus far, and the ability to "sign up" for the Pan Pacific Defense Corps.
November 2017, Legendary announced the "Jaeger Academy" contest, wherein fans of Pacific Rim: Uprising could win the chance to appear briefly in the film as a member of the Jaeger Academy. Participants were required to sign up using their Facebook accounts, which would allow them to create a fake profile akin to the ones created to promote the panpacificdefense.com website for the original Pacific Rim.
New York Comic-Con 2017
September 26, 2017, John Boyega uploaded a teaser poster featuring Jake Pentecost and Gipsy Avenger to promote the upcoming convention event. Several variant posters, also featuring Scott Eastwood as Nate Lambert, were later uploaded to poster website impawards.com.
The international official trailer for Uprising debuted October 6, 2017 at noon with a discussion panel featuring the cast and crew of the film. In addition to the discussion panel, toy manufacture, Tamashii Nations showcased their "Robot Spirits" and "Soul of Chogokin" figure series alongside a plastic model set. Diamond Select Toys also showcased their toyline for the film alongside a unpainted Kaiju model pending approval.
- Main article: Pacific Rim: Breach Wars
Kung Fu Factory's Pacific Rim: Breach Wars was released March 23, 2018 for Apple iTunes and Google Play. Advertised as an action-puzzle Game, Pacific Rim: Breach Wars features a heavy "pay-to-win" gameplay system that requires the player to purchase their way to victory.
- Main article: Pacific Rim: Uprising (DVD)
The home video and digital media release of Pacific Rim: Uprising was announced May 2018. The film was later released digitally on June 5, and on 4K Ultra HD, 3D Blu-ray, Blu-ray, and DVD on June 19, 2018 by Universal Home Video.
During the 2017 New York Comic-Con, director Steven S. DeKnight expressed an interest in building a "cinematic universe" following the release of Pacific Rim: Uprising, if the film was successful. April 2018, following the film's late March debut, the Wanda Group expressed that there were no current plans to greenlight a third Pacific Rim film.[note 13]
Pacific Rim: Uprising was met with mixed to average reviews following its release, standing at a 45 (based on 45 critical reviews) and 43% (203 reviews, with a average rating of 5/10) approval rating on review aggregate websites such as Metacritic and Rotten Tomatoes. Other aggregates such as CinemaScore graded Uprising with a "B" rating, a rating down from the "A-" the original Pacific Rim received, and PostTrak reported a 76% rating from filmgoers.
Pacific Rim: Uprising grossed a combined $59.2 million in North America, and would go on to make $230.9 million in foreign territories. It's worldwide gross was $290.1 million. Produced on a reported $150-155 million budget, at least $140 million was spent on promotion and advertisement. Pacific Rim: Uprising According to Deadline.com, Pacific Rim: Uprising needed to make $350 million to break even.
In North America, Uprising was released in late March and competed against films such as Sherlock Gnomes, Paul, Apostle of Christ, Midnight Sun, and Unsane. The projected opening weekend gross of the film was between $22-29 million across in 3,703 theaters. Thursday night previews garnered the film $2.35 million, less than Pacific Rim’s $3.5 million and $10.4 million gross on its opening day and previews. Uprising went on to become the first film to "dethrone" Black Panther in the sixth week of its theatrical run, earning $28 million for its debut. Uprising later dropped by 67%, earning $9.2 million in its second week and finished fifth.
Uprising ranked first on its opening weekend on March 22, 2018 in Korea, with 82,486 admissions, while the film's opening in China ranked number one with a gross of $21.36 million on its first day and $25.84 million on its second, for a two-day gross of $48.59 million. It went on to have a debut of $65 million in the country, as well as $6.9 million in Korea, $6.8 million in Russia and $4.9 million in Mexico, for an international opening weekend of $122.5 million.
- Much of the marketing for Pacific Rim: Uprising featured "War Ready" by artist Vince Staples, which sampled audio from the Swizz Beatz Remix of Tupac Shakur's "Untouchable".
- Pacific Rim: Uprising cost a reported $150 million to produce according to The New York Times.
- Double Negative Studios takes up the responsibilities of FX in place of Industrial Light and Magic, who worked on the original Pacific Rim.
- According to John Boyega, Uprising uses very little practical effects in comparison to Pacific Rim.
- Speculation regarding solo-piloted Jaegers in Uprising circulated following the gojaeger.com trailer. However, DeKnight stated that the two-pilot system would still be used.
- The working title for the sequel was rumored to be "Pacific Rim: Maelstrom".[note 14] The title was later confirmed on John Boyega's Instagram account in November 2016, and changed in December 2016 to Pacific Rim: Uprising.
- When asked whether or not he would return for the Pacific Rim sequel during a AMA on Reddit, Idris Elba was doubtful considering "[his] character died in the first one".
- During an interview promoting Jorge Gutierrez's The Book of Life, Guillermo del Toro (who was the director at the time) suggested that the end of the second film could lead to a third film.[note 15]
- During an appearance at the 2015 International Film Festival in Guadalajara, Guillermo del Toro stated that he would make an effort to put more Mexican elements in his films. With regard to the Pacific Rim sequel, he stated he would add a Jaeger named "Black Maria".[note 16]
- On his official tumblr page, when asked, Travis Beacham stated he was "not busy with Pacific Rim 2", but would return to work on the production if asked.[note 17]
- Official Website
- Pacific Rim: Uprising - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
- Pacific Rim: Uprising - Internet Movie Database.com
- Pacific Rim: Uprising (2018) | The Numbers