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MonsterVerse

This article is about the MonsterVerse, a movie franchise consisting of 4 movies, Godzilla, Kong: Skull Island, Godzilla: King Of The Monsters and Godzilla vs. Kong.

Top 10 MonsterVerse related articles

MonsterVerse
Official logo featured on merchandise
Original workGodzilla (2014)
Owned byLegendary Entertainment
Warner Bros. Pictures
Years2014–present
Print publications
Book(s)List of books
ComicsList of comics
Films and television
Film(s)List of films
Television seriesList of television
Games
Video game(s)List of video games
Audio
Soundtrack(s)List of soundtracks
Miscellaneous
Based on

The MonsterVerse[1] is an American multimedia franchise and shared fictional universe that is centered on a series of monster films featuring Godzilla and King Kong, produced by Legendary Entertainment and co-produced and distributed by Warner Bros. Pictures. The first installment was Godzilla (2014), a reboot[2] of the Godzilla franchise, which was followed by Kong: Skull Island (2017), a reboot[3] of the King Kong franchise, Godzilla: King of the Monsters (2019), and Godzilla vs. Kong (2021).

MonsterVerse Intro articles: 5

Development

Writer Max Borenstein stated that the MonsterVerse did not begin as a franchise but as an American reboot of Godzilla. Borenstein credits Legendary Entertainment's founder and then CEO Thomas Tull as the one responsible for the MonsterVerse, having acquired the rights to Godzilla and negotiate the complicated rights to King Kong. Tull had offered Borenstein the opportunity to write the first draft for Kong: Skull Island, with the goal to establish Kong in the same universe as Legendary's Godzilla film. Tull's vision was for the films to one day lead to Godzilla vs. Kong.[4]

Legendary confirmed at the July 2014 San Diego Comic-Con International that it had acquired the licensing rights to Mothra, Rodan, and King Ghidorah from Toho and revealed concept footage with the closing title cards reading "Conflict: inevitable. Let them fight".[5] In September 2015, Legendary announced that the film Kong: Skull Island would not be developed with Universal Studios. Instead, it would be developed with Warner Bros., which sparked media speculation that Godzilla and Kong would appear in a film together.[6][7]

In October 2015, Legendary announced plans to unite Godzilla and Kong in a film titled Godzilla vs. Kong, set for a 2020 release date. Legendary plans to create a shared cinematic franchise "centered around Monarch" (the secret government agency which debuted in 2014's Godzilla) and that "brings together Godzilla and Legendary’s King Kong in an ecosystem of other giant super-species, both classic and new".[8] Later in October, it was announced that Kong: Skull Island would have references to Monarch.[9]

In May 2016, Warner Bros. announced that Godzilla vs. Kong would be released on May 29, 2020, later pushed back to May 21, 2021, and that Godzilla: King of the Monsters would be pushed back from its original June 8, 2018 release date to March 22, 2019,[10] however, the film was later pushed back again to May 31, 2019. In October 2016, Legendary announced that Godzilla: King of the Monsters would be filmed at its parent company Wanda's Oriental Movie Metropolis facility in Qingdao, China, along with Pacific Rim: Uprising.[11] That same month, it was revealed that Legendary was planning a writers room to create their Godzilla–Kong cinematic universe, with Alex Garcia overseeing the project for Legendary.[12]

In early January 2017, Thomas Tull, founder of Legendary, resigned from the company but would remain as producer for the Godzilla–Kong series, which was revealed as the MonsterVerse.[13] In March 2017, Legendary assembled a writers room led by Terry Rossio to develop the story for Godzilla vs. Kong.[14]

MonsterVerse Development articles: 12

Films

Film Release date Director(s) Story by Screenwriter(s) Producer(s)
Godzilla May 16, 2014 (2014-05-16) Gareth Edwards David Callaham Max Borenstein Thomas Tull, Jon Jashni, Mary Parent and Brian Rogers
Kong: Skull Island March 10, 2017 (2017-03-10) Jordan Vogt-Roberts John Gatins Dan Gilroy, Max Borenstein and Derek Connolly Thomas Tull, Jon Jashni, Mary Parent and Alex Garcia
Godzilla: King of the Monsters May 31, 2019 Michael Dougherty Max Borenstein, Michael Dougherty and Zach Shields Michael Dougherty and Zach Shields Thomas Tull, Jon Jashni, Mary Parent, Alex Garcia and Brian Rogers
Godzilla vs. Kong March 31, 2021 Adam Wingard Terry Rossio, Michael Dougherty and Zach Shields Eric Pearson and Max Borenstein Thomas Tull, Jon Jashni, Brian Rogers, Mary Parent, Alex Garcia, and Eric McLeod

Godzilla

The film reimagines Godzilla's origins in contemporary times and is set 15 years after a nuclear meltdown in Japan which was caused by giant parasitic creatures, known as "MUTOs". As two MUTOs ravage the countryside in order to reproduce, they awaken a larger ancient alpha predator, known as "Godzilla", whose existence has been kept secret by the U.S. government since 1954. The film introduces Godzilla, the MUTOs, and the Monarch organization to the MonsterVerse.

In 2004, director Yoshimitsu Banno acquired permission from Toho to produce a short IMAX Godzilla film which was in development for several years until the project was eventually turned over to Legendary Pictures.[15][16] In March 2010, Legendary announced to have acquired the rights to Godzilla for a feature film reboot.[17] In January 2011, Gareth Edwards was announced as the director for the film.[18] The film was co-produced with Warner Bros. Pictures with filming completed in 2013 in Canada and the United States for release in 2014.[19] Godzilla was released on May 16, 2014 to positive reviews,[20][21] and was a box office success, grossing $529 million worldwide against a budget of $160 million.[22]

Kong: Skull Island

In the film, set in 1973, a team of scientists and Vietnam War soldiers travel to an uncharted island in the Pacific and encounter terrifying creatures and the mighty Kong. The film introduces Kong, Mother Longlegs,[23] Sker Buffalo,[23] Mire Squid,[23] Leafwing,[23] Psychovulture,[23] Spore Mantis,[23] Skull Devil,[24] and the Skullcrawlers to the MonsterVerse and a post-credits scene introduces Rodan, Mothra, and King Ghidorah to the MonsterVerse.[25] Skull Devil was originally trademarked as "Ramarak the Skullcrawler" until it was abandoned in September 2017.[26]

In July 2014 at the San Diego Comic-Con, Legendary announced a King Kong origin story, initially titled Skull Island, with a release date of November 4, 2016, and Universal Pictures distributing.[27] In September 2014, Jordan Vogt-Roberts was announced as the film's director.[28] In September 2015, Legendary moved development of the film from Universal Pictures to Warner Bros. to create an expanded cinematic universe.[29] Principal photography began on October 19, 2015, in Hawaii and Vietnam. Kong: Skull Island was released on March 10, 2017 to positive reviews,[30][31] and was a box office success, grossing $566 million worldwide against a budget of $185 million.[32] The film received a nomination for Best Visual Effects at the 90th Academy Awards.[33]

Godzilla: King of the Monsters

In the film, humanity must rely on Godzilla and Mothra to defeat King Ghidorah and Rodan, the former having awakened other Titans to destroy the world. The film changes the monsters' designation from "MUTOs" to "Titans".[34] The film introduces Scylla, Methuselah, Behemoth, and the Queen MUTO to the MonsterVerse.[35][36] Off-screen, the film introduces Baphomet, Typhon, Mokele-Mbembe, Sargon, Tiamat, Abaddon, Leviathan, and Bunyip to the MonsterVerse.[35][37]

Prior to announcing a shared cinematic universe between Godzilla and Kong, Legendary originally intended to produce a Godzilla trilogy, with Gareth Edwards attached to direct all films.[38] However, Edwards left the sequel in May 2016 to work on smaller scale projects.[39] In January 2017, Michael Dougherty was announced as the director and co-writer for the film.[40] Principal photography began in June 2017, in Atlanta, Georgia and wrapped in September 2017.[41] The film was released on May 31, 2019. It received negative to mixed reviews,[42][43] and was a box office disappointment,[44][45][46] grossing $386 million worldwide against a budget between $170–200 million.[47][48]

Godzilla vs. Kong

In an age when monsters reclaim the planet, humanity's fight for survival triggers the inevitable battle between Godzilla and Kong, while Monarch unravels the origins of the Titans and a human conspiracy that threatens to destroy all of the monsters.[49] The film introduces Mechagodzilla,[50] Warbat,[51] and Hell Hawk to the MonsterVerse.[52]

The project was announced in October 2015 when Legendary announced plans for a shared cinematic universe between Godzilla and King Kong. The film's writers room was assembled in March 2017 and Adam Wingard was announced as the director in May 2017. Principal photography began in November 2018 in Hawaii and Australia and concluded in April 2019. After being delayed from a November 2020 release date due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the film was theatrically released internationally on March 24, 2021,[53][54] and is scheduled to be released in the United States on March 31, 2021, where it will be released simultaneously in theaters and on HBO Max.[55]

MonsterVerse Films articles: 19

Television

SeriesSeasonEpisodesOriginally releasedNetworkShowrunner(s)Status
Skull Island1TBATBANetflixBrian Duffield & Jacob RobinsonIn development

Skull Island

In January 2021, an anime-styled animated series set within the MonsterVerse titled Skull Island was announced to be in development. The series will center around the adventures of shipwrecked characters, trying to escape from the titular island which is home to various prehistoric monsters. The project will be written by Brian Duffield, who will also serve as co-executive producer with Jacob Robinson. The series will be a joint-venture production between Legendary Television, Tractor Pants Productions, Powerhouse Animation Studios, and Netflix Animation. The show will be released as a streaming exclusive on Netflix.[56]

MonsterVerse Television articles: 5

Cast and characters

List indicator(s)

This section shows characters who will appear or have appeared in the billing block of at least one film in the series.

  • An empty, dark grey cell indicates the character was not in the film, or that the character's official presence has not yet been confirmed.
  •  S indicates an appearance through use of special effects.
  •  Y indicates a younger version of the character.
Character Films
Godzilla Kong:
Skull Island
Godzilla:
King of the Monsters
Godzilla vs. Kong
Monsters
Godzilla T.J. StormS Pictured with archive audio T.J. StormS TBA
MUTO Matt CrossS
Lee RossS
CGI Archive footage
King Kong Terry NotaryS
Toby KebbellS
Archive footage TBA
King Ghidorah Pictured Jason LilesS
Alan MaxsonS
Richard DortonS
Archive footage
Rodan Pictured Jason LilesS Archive footage
Mothra Pictured CGI Archive footage
Humans
Ishiro Serizawa Ken Watanabe Ken Watanabe
Vivienne Graham Sally Hawkins Sally Hawkins
William Stentz David Strathairn David Strathairn
Houston Brooks Corey Hawkins Joe Morton
Sam Coleman Thomas Middleditch*
Mark Russell Kyle Chandler
Madison Russell Millie Bobby Brown
Alexandra RabeY
Millie Bobby Brown
Emma Russell Vera Farmiga Pictured
Ford Brody Aaron Taylor-Johnson
CJ AdamsY
Elle Brody Elizabeth Olsen
Joe Brody Bryan Cranston
Sandra Brody Juliette Binoche
James Conrad Tom Hiddleston
Hank Marlow John C. Reilly
Will BrittainY
Mason Weaver Brie Larson
Preston Packard Samuel L. Jackson
William Randa John Goodman
San Lin Jing Tian
Rick Stanton Bradley Whitford
Alan Jonah Charles Dance
Diane Foster Aisha Hinds
Jackson Barnes O'Shea Jackson Jr.
Lauren Griffin Elizabeth Ludlow
Anthony Martinez Anthony Ramos
Nathan Lind Alexander Skarsgård
Ilene Andrews Rebecca Hall
Bernie Hayes Brian Tyree Henry
Walter Simmons Demián Bichir
Josh Valentine Julian Dennison
Maya Simmons Eiza González
Ren Serizawa Shun Oguri
Jia Kaylee Hottle

* Thomas Middleditch, who went on to play Sam Coleman in Godzilla: King of the Monsters, had a minor unrelated voice-only role as Mason Weaver's contact 'Jerry' in Kong: Skull Island

MonsterVerse Cast and characters articles: 37

Reception

Box office performance

Film Release Date Box Office Grosses Budget References
Domestic International Worldwide
Godzilla May 16, 2014 $200,676,069 $328,400,000 $529,076,069 $160 million [22]
Kong: Skull Island March 10, 2017 $168,052,812 $398,600,000 $566,652,812 $185 million [57]
Godzilla: King of the Monsters May 31, 2019 $110,500,138 $276,100,000 $386,600,138 $170–200 million [58][48]
Godzilla vs. Kong March 31, 2021 $160–200 million [59][60][61]
Total $479,229,019 $1,003,100,000 $1,482,329,019 $675–745 million

Critical and public response

Film Rotten Tomatoes Metacritic CinemaScore
Godzilla 76% (326 reviews)[62] 62 (48 reviews)[63] B+[64]
Kong: Skull Island 75% (387 reviews)[65] 62 (49 reviews)[66] B+[67]
Godzilla: King of the Monsters 43% (345 reviews)[68] 48 (46 reviews)[69] B+[70]
Godzilla vs. Kong 100% (9 reviews)[71]

Tie-in material

Soundtracks

Title U.S. release date Length Composer(s) Label
Godzilla: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack May 13, 2014 60:27 Alexandre Desplat WaterTower Music
Kong: Skull Island (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack) March 3, 2017 56:56 Henry Jackman
Godzilla: King of the Monsters (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack) May 24, 2019 01:38:00 Bear McCreary
Godzilla vs. Kong: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack March 26, 2021 TBA Tom Holkenborg

Books

Title Release date Writer(s) Note
Godzilla: The Art of Destruction May 13, 2014 Mark Cotta The making of Godzilla
Godzilla – The Official Movie Novelization May 20, 2014 Greg Cox Novelization of Godzilla
Kong: Skull Island – The Official Movie Novelization March 14, 2017 Tim Lebbon Novelization of Kong: Skull Island
The Art and Making of Kong: Skull Island March 21, 2017 Simon Ward The making of Kong: Skull Island
Godzilla: King of the Monsters – The Official Movie Novelization May 31, 2019 Gregory Keyes Novelization of Godzilla: King of the Monsters
The Art of Godzilla: King of the Monsters June 4, 2019 Abbie Bernstein The making of Godzilla: King of the Monsters
Godzilla vs. Kong: The Official Movie Novelization April 6, 2021 Gregory Keyes Novelization of Godzilla vs. Kong
Godzilla vs. Kong: The Art of the Ultimate Battle Royale May 21, 2021 Daniel Wallace The making of Godzilla vs. Kong

Comics

Title Release date Writer(s) Illustrator(s) Cover Artist(s) Note
Godzilla: Awakening May 7, 2014 (2014-05-07) Max Borenstein and Greg Borenstein Eric Battle, Yvel Guichet, Alan Quah, and Lee Loughridge Arthur Adams Tie-in prequel graphic novel to Godzilla
Skull Island: The Birth of Kong April 12, 2017 Arvid Nelson Zid Zid, Drew Johnson (issue #4) Tie-in prequel/sequel comic to Kong: Skull Island
Godzilla: Aftershock May 21, 2019 Arvid Nelson Drew Edward Johnson Christopher Shy, Arthur Adams Tie-in prequel graphic novel to Godzilla: King of the Monsters

Kingdom Kong

March 30, 2021 Marie Anello Zid   Tie-in prequel graphic novel to Godzilla vs. Kong

Godzilla Dominion

March 30, 2021 Greg Keyes Drew Johnson   Tie-in prequel graphic novel to Godzilla vs. Kong

Video games

A 2014 app titled Godzilla Encounter would help you detect traces of Godzilla. Legendary's Godzilla was featured as a playable character in Bandai Namco's 2014 video game Godzilla as "Hollywood Godzilla".[72][73] In 2017, a short virtual reality experience titled Kong VR: Destination Skull Island was made available at 1500 Samsung retail demo locations, in 15 AMC theater locations, and Samsung VR stores.[74]

Title Release date Developer Publisher Note
Godzilla: Crisis Defense[75] May 7, 2014 Legendary Legendary Tie-in web game to Godzilla
Godzilla: Strike Zone[76] May 15, 2014 Warner Bros. Entertainment Warner Bros. International Enterprises Tie-in mobile game to Godzilla
Godzilla: Smash 3[76] May 16, 2014 Rogue Play Pipeworks Tie-in mobile game to Godzilla

MonsterVerse Reception articles: 2

Future

In October 2017, Steven S. DeKnight (director and co-writer of Pacific Rim: Uprising) noted that there have been discussion about a cross-over between the MonsterVerse and Pacific Rim franchise, however, he iterated it was all theoretical possibilities.[77] Guillermo Del Toro (director and co-writer of Pacific Rim) had also expressed interest of Pacific Rim crossing over with the Monsterverse.[78] In March 2019, when asked about the future of the MonsterVerse, producer Alex Garcia stated:

"It's one brick at a time, each piece has to be as good as it can be, so right now it's all focused on this [Godzilla: King of the Monsters and Godzilla vs. Kong]. But could there be? Yeah, that's the hope if the movies turn out really well."[79]

In February 2021, Adam Wingard (director of Godzilla vs. Kong) stated, "I know where we could go potentially with future films", however, he noted that the MonsterVerse was created "to a certain degree" to lead towards Godzilla vs. Kong.[80] Wingard added that the MonsterVerse is at a "crossroads", stating, "It’s really at the point where audiences have to kind of step forward and vote for more of these things. If this movie is a success obviously they will continue forward."[81]

MonsterVerse Future articles: 3

See also

References

Citations

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Sources