It took Paramount years to get the zombie apocalypse thriller World War Z off the ground, but now that the production is actually up and running, it seems the studio is very eager to keep moving forward with the property. The studio and director Marc Forster reportedly have their fingers crossed that the upcoming film will become the first in a trilogy, all with star Brad Pitt at this center.

Considering how sequel-crazy studios are nowadays, and how hot zombies are at the moment, this isn’t much of a shocker. What’s a little more surprising is that if this plan works out, it’ll be Pitt’s first time leading a major franchise of his own. Yup, Pitt’s somehow managed to build up a two-decade, A-list career without a single Mission: Impossible or Marvel superhero series under his belt. More details on the possible film series after the jump.

The LA Times (via The Playlist) writes that the studio sees World War Z “as a trilogy that would have the grounded, gun-metal realism of, say, [Matt] Damon’s Jason Bourne series tethered to the unsettling end-times vibe of AMC’s The Walking Dead.” There are worse goals to shoot for, and if the production actually manages to achieve the Bourne-meets-Walking Dead combo, World War Z should be a pretty spectacular sci-fi thriller indeed.

Forster’s movie follows a UN fact-finder named Gerry Lane (Pitt) as he races around the world to stop the spread of the zombie pandemic. Although Max Brooks‘ original novel, on which the film is based, was a standalone work, its segmented structure could lend itself well to a film series. Matthew Michael Carnahan and J. Michael Straczynski‘s screenplay differs from the source material in that it follows the catastrophe as it unfolds, rather than relating anecdotes after the fact as Brooks does, but I’d imagine at least some of the book’s vignette construction would remain intact.

With the first movie’s December 21 release date still a long while away, however, all we know for certain at this point is that whatever happens, it won’t happen for some time. As stills, clips, and trailers begin to trickle out in the coming months we’ll have a much better sense of whether a World War Z 2 might be a realistic possibility — or whether we even want it to be.

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