Although the main appeal of the MonsterVerse movies is seeing two or more Titans colliding in battles that shake the Earth, you can also count on some humans causing trouble on the side. In 2021’s Godzilla vs. Kong (which can be streamed now with an HBO Max subscription), one of those people was Eiza González’s Maia Simmons, the daughter of Apex Cybernetics founder and CEO Walter Simmons, played by Demián Bichir. While González had a fair amount to do during Godzilla vs. Kong, it turns out her role in the fourth MonsterVerse movie was drastically changed.
Maia Simmons tagged along with Alexander Skarsgård’s Nathan Lind and Rebecca Hall’s Ilene Andrews during the events Godzilla vs. Kong, meaning she witnessed the two title beasts’ first rumble out in the ocean, and later ventured into Hollow Earth. As it turns out though, not only did a significant portion of Maia’s story ended up on the chopping block during postproduction, but a specific character being removed from the movie altogether produced a domino effect that affected Godzilla vs. Kong’s other stories. Eiza González explained:
Eiza González opened up about her time on Godzilla vs. Kong while speaking with THR about a variety of subjects, including her role in the new Michael Bay-directed movie Ambulance, which cost a lot less to make than his last Transformers movie. Evidently Maia Simmons’ narrative arc was significantly different compared to what was shown in the final product, though she didn’t reveal any details about any specific divergences. Furthermore Jessica Henwick, who was cast in Godzilla vs. Kong in late 2018, was evidently a crucial character during an earlier version of Godzilla vs. Kong, but once director Adam Wingard and his editing team decided to trim her out completely, that changed the movie’s entire trajectory.
Changing certain characters’ stories is simply part of the moviemaking game, whether it happens in the scriptwriting phases or in the editing process after principal photography is completed. For her part, Eiza González is just glad she was able to participate in Godzilla vs. Kong, having been sold on the movie’s diversity early on. Alas, don’t expect to see Maia Simmons in the MonsterVerse again. After sending the signature of Hollow Earth’s power source back to Walter Simmons, Maia and some Apex goons tried to flee the collapsing underground throne room that contained the axe Kong would late use against Godzilla in battle. They made the mistake of shooting the gorilla to try and get him out of the way, and he responded in kind by grabbing their ship and crushing it.
Going back to Jessica Henwick (who recently starred in The Matrix Resurrections with Keanu Reeves), we’re still in the dark on how she fit into the Godzilla vs. Kong picture. Since none of the footage featuring her was included in Godzilla vs. Kong’s deleted scenes attached to the home media release, someone will need to inquire with someone like Adam Wingard or writers Eric Pearson and Max Borenstein to learn diver what had been planned for her. Still, she wasn’t the only major character cut from Godzilla vs. Kong; we also didn’t see Zhang Ziyi back as twins Dr. Ilene Chen and Dr. Lin in a scene that had originally been planned for Godzilla: King of the Monsters.
Following Godzilla vs. Kong’s impressive box office run, it was reported that another MonsterVerse movie entered development with Adam Wingard back at the helm. It remains to be seen if this project will be a new take on Son of Kong or tell a different kind of story, but the Godzilla vs. Kong sequel is expected to begin shooting on the Gold Coast later this year.
Connoisseur of Marvel, DC, Star Wars, John Wick, MonsterVerse and Doctor Who lore. He's aware he looks like Harry Potter and Clark Kent.
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