While Pacific Rim is a property that feels like it always had franchise potential, the reality is that the first movie didn't exactly leave any clear path to a sequel. The heroes of the Guillermo del Toro-directed blockbuster successfully defeated the Kaiju with a good amount of sacrifice, but didn't really leave audiences with a big, dangling cliffhanger. This may have fans wondering exactly how it is that the upcoming Pacific Rim Uprising will be able to continue the story, but director Steven DeKnight laid out how it could all happen when we spoke to him on the set of the film:
I actually always approached it that they didn't blow up the entire alien world; it was just the opening of what looked like their monster warehouse. So you also have to assume that creatures who have mastered interdimensional travel have many worlds and have conquered many worlds, and I think that's referenced in the first one. My thing was, they plugged up one hole, of course they're still out there and probably pissed off. So that was a very easy natural thing, but we did want the time period to go by a lot longer where it's the question of, 'Are they ever coming back?'
Back in January, I was part of a very small group of reporters -- four in all -- who were given the incredible opportunity to fly out to Sydney, Australia and visit the set of Pacific Rim Uprising while it was still in the middle of production. In addition to observing filming (and standing inside the Conn-Pod of the redesigned Gipsy Avenger), we also had the pleasure of talking to the cast and filmmakers -- and it was while interviewing Steven DeKnight that we learned how the sequel picks up from the events featured at the end of its 2013-released predecessor.
Pacific Rim Uprising is set 10 years after the events of the first movie, and as the director pointed out, the timing has led to a tense atmosphere around the globe. While Raleigh Becket (Charlie Hunnam) and Mako Mori (Rinko Kikuchi) were certainly successful in closing the inter-dimensional breach that led to the original alien invasion, people know that the other dimension is still out there, and there remains the looming question of whether or not another invasion will begin again. It's this fear that keeps the Jaeger program alive and funded -- and it's a good thing, because as the upcoming film will show, the Kaiju are definitely making their way back for vengeance.
And, of course, you can get a taste of that vengeance watching the action-packed trailer that was released in the last few weeks:
Pacific Rim Uprising, which stars John Boyega, Cailee Spaeny, Charlie Day, Burn Gorman, and Rinko Kikuchi, is still a few months away from hitting theaters -- set to arrive on March 23, 2018 -- but don't you fret. We'll have plenty more coverage from our visit to the set here for you in the coming days, so stay tuned!