Sean: All of this sounds amazingly cool, but let me ask you -- and it might be tough to answer until we see Edwards' Godzilla -- but where would it fit. It's not a spoiler to reveal that the bulk of Rim takes place in 2020 and beyond. I believe the new Godzilla is set in present day. Would a Godzilla-Pacific Rim merger take place after Godzilla but before Rim? In the early stages of what Del Toro calls The Kaiju War? I think that could work ...
Adam: Totally. There are 28 Godzilla films, not including Roland Emmerich's 1998 film. In most of those films, Godzilla survives and retreats to the sea, only to return to fight monsters once more. In 2004's Godzilla: Final Wars, Godzilla is frozen in Arctic Ice where he's later awakened by the Earth Defense Force to fight an entire roster of monsters. Maybe Godzilla is awakened by our heroes from Pacific Rim, or a new inter-dimensional breach...
So Godzilla's origins could be set in motion during the early stages of the Kaiju War (maybe he's initially confused as a Kaiju, and only later his real origins are understood?). Early rumors indicate that there will be other monsters in Gareth Edwards' Godzilla movie, so both films seem to exist in a universe where big monsters are rampaging cities.
Another element that constantly pops in the Godzilla films are extraterrestrials who have created giant monsters like King Ghidorah (Godzilla's three-headed nemesis) and Gigan as Weapons of Mass Destruction to decimate the Earth's population. Sound familiar?
It would be great to see Ghidorah and Gigan emerge from the sea as new Kaiju threats, sent through the inter-dimensional portal by their extraterrestrial overlords... forcing MechaGodzilla and Godzilla to team-up to fight them! [head explodes]
Sean: Would you want anyone but Del Toro directing this mash up? Because after seeing Rim, I'd only want him at the helm of such a potentially massive feature.
Adam: I think we might be looking at a TinTin scenario, with del Toro and Edwards working together, possibly co-directing or taking turns on potential sequels and crossovers. Of course, this all relies heavily upon the box office success of Pacific Rim and Godzilla.
Sean: And there's the rub. The potential of this franchise merger exists, and when you step back to see the world Del Toro has constructed in Rim, he clearly has been influenced by the Godzilla legacy. Hell, he dedicates his film to Godzilla director Ishirō Honda. But if these films don't make money, the studios will have no interest in pursuing this merger any further. We'll see if the support is there for Rim by Monday. And we'll track Godzilla into next summer. But if audiences don't bite, then we'll be forced to chat about Grown Ups 3 ... coming to a theater near you in Summer 2015!
Adam: Hahaha. Kill yourself. Well, what if these movies are big overseas? Edwards' Godzilla is going to be released in Japan under the Toho banner, and it will be the first Godzilla movie to be released in 10 years... which is a pretty big gap for the franchise. If both movies are huge in Japan and other overseas markets, maybe there's hope!