godzilla vs kong

Godzilla vs. Kong will be the monster movie fight of the century. And director Adam Wingard promises that it will be different from last century’s fight between the two beasts.

The culmination of the Warner Bros. shared MonsterVerse that began with 2014’s Godzilla, as well as more than 50 years of the two classic movie monsters’ pop culture iconography, Godzilla vs. Kong is a modern-day take on a showdown that was already told in 1962’s Japanese kaiju film King Kong vs. Godzilla. But Wingard is eager to set the new Godzilla vs. Kong apart from its campy predecessor.

Just as Godzilla gave the titular monster a backstory and Kong: Skull Island gave King Kong a tragic past, Adam Wingard hopes to give their inevitable clash a soul. Hot off finishing his Netflix movie Death Note, which he told /Film gave him a much-needed crash course on working with VFX, Wingard is also taking his experience in subversive horror to the 2020 monster mash.

Wingard hopes to give both iconic movie monsters an emotional arc that will match the human characters scrambling around their battle. He told Comic Book Movie:

“I really want you to take those characters seriously. I want you to be emotionally invested, not just in the human characters, but actually in the monsters. If I had my way, I want people to really be teary-eyed at the end of the movie, and be that invested in to what’s going on.

“It’s a massive monster brawl movie. There’s lots of monsters going crazy on each other, but at the end of the day I want there to be an emotional drive to it. I want you to be emotionally invested in them. I think that’s what’s going to make it cool.”

Wingard told Coming Soon that while some of the original Godzilla and King Kong movies have been brushed off as campy B-movies, his emotional take on the Godzilla and Kong brawl draws from the grim roots of the original films that introduced the two monsters into the pop culture lexicon:

“It’s a cool tradition to jump into, but it’s also one of those things where at a certain point you have to take it very seriously. Even though these are big, wild monster movies the origin of that is really from World War II and Hiroshima. If you watch that first film it’s really a sad movie. It’s a really depressing exploration of that, so you always have to remember at the end of the day the reason you’re here is because a major catastrophe took place. There’s this underlying darkness under it all, but at the end of the day it is for kids as well. Its evolved into this whole other thing that means so many things to different people.”

But just because Wingard’s goal for Godzilla vs. Kong is a form of emotional and philosophical catharsis, that doesn’t mean the two of them aren’t fighting to win. He told Entertainment Weekly that the film will end with a definite winner, which will perhaps finally bring the endless Reddit discussions to a close:

“I do want there to be a winner. The original film was very fun, but you feel a little let down that the movie doesn’t take a definitive stance. People are still debating now who won in that original movie, you know. So, I do want people to walk away from this film feeling like, Okay, there is a winner.”

Godzilla vs. Kong is scheduled to hit theaters May 22, 2020.

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