Next year, the world's most famous giant lizard returns for Godzilla: King of the Monsters. Godzilla will have many challengers to the throne in the sequel, but we all know that a showdown with King Kong looms on the horizon in 2020. The two monsters have yet to square off in the modern era, and Godzilla and Kong: Skull Island take place years apart from each other. So the question becomes, will Godzilla: King of the Monsters set up King Kong and the conditions for his eventual clash with Godzilla? Director Michael Dougherty confirmed there will be some hints, saying:

It's not like we're bending over backwards to introduce Kong, but there's definitely some bread crumbs.

So those looking for hints of King Kong will be likely to find them, but the movie isn't going to hammer you over the head with the giant ape by the sound of it. I imagine that we may hear mentions of Skull Island or the lost expedition of 1973. The Monarch organization will play a big role in King of Monsters, and Brie Larson and Tom Hiddleston's characters from Kong: Skull Island were recruited by the organization in that film's end-credits scene, so maybe their pictures are still laying around. Just small seeds being planted for what else is out there. There isn't another Kong film between this one and Godzilla Vs. Kong to do any of that heavy lifting, so it makes sense that there will be some stuff in King of Monsters to lay the foundation for the two halves of Legendary's MonsterVerse to finally unite.

It is encouraging to hear that, as Michael Dougherty told Entertainment Weekly, King of Monsters isn't bending over backwards to introduce Kong. Franchise films can often suffer when they focus too much on setting up future movies and forget to tell the present story. At this point, everyone knows who King Kong is, and the giant ape just had a movie of his own. We'll all be excited to see Godzilla Vs. Kong, but we want to enjoy King of Monsters first. A few breadcrumbs and maybe a fun post-credits scene will suffice to set the stage for the epic clash.

Godzilla's dance card in King of the Monsters will already be fairly jam-packed as is. The giant lizard will be facing off with Mothra, Rodan and King Ghidorah. You don't want to overlook these foes, King Ghidorah especially. The three-headed, winged monster is Godzilla's archenemy and a serious threat to the heroic protector. So this is no tune-up fight; Godzilla's got his work cut out for him. After that, King Kong should be light work, especially with Godzilla's atomic breath, although I imagine the ape has a few tricks up his sleeves.

Godzilla: King of the Monsters hits theaters on May 31, 2019, with Godzilla Vs. Kong to follow on May 22, 2020. For movies hitting theaters a bit sooner to keep you entertained while you await the giant monster mayhem, check out our release schedule.

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