David Fincher Close to Deal to Direct ‘World War Z 2’ (EXCLUSIVE)

David Fincher World War Z
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After previously taking the film off its calendar, Paramount Pictures and Skydance Productions look to be moving forward with a “World War Z” sequel, with David Fincher directing and Brad Pitt back to star, thanks to the studio’s new chairman and CEO Jim Gianopulos, according to knowledgeable sources.

While Gianopulos has not officially official greenlit the movie yet, he is expected to do so in coming weeks. This will likely be among the studio chief’s first greenlit movies. Sources say that production would probably begin in the first quarter of 2018.

A spokesperson for the studio has not yet responded to a request for comment.

Variety first reported last summer that Pitt had been courting Fincher to direct the pic and that the director was intrigued by the idea. The plans had to be put on hold while Pitt dealt with his divorce from Angelina Jolie, and were put into question once the studio, then headed by Brad Grey, took the film off the calendar to consider whether or not to move forward with the tentpole.

Gianopulos has since taken over the studio reins and over the past month, has been weighing which projects to pursue and let go from the previous regime’s slate.

If the deal is finalized as expected, it would mark a big milestone in the long development process that started last summer. Pitt met with a handful of directors but nothing materialized until he decided to reach out to Fincher to try and woo him for another collaboration.

Gianopulos has a long standing relationship with the director, going back to Fincher’s most recent film, 2014’s “Gone Girl,” which Gianopolus gave the go-ahead to when he was chairman at 20th Century Fox. Fincher and Pitt made their 1999 feature “Fight Club” at Fox.

Fincher hasn’t directed a film since “Gone Girl.” The filmmaker has been turning his attention to television as of late. He recently shot the Netflix pilot “Mind Hunters.”

Sources say that Fincher, who is weary of sequels, having aired his displeasure during his time on “Alien 3,” has always been open to listening to Pitt when the actor reaches out. The duo nearly collaborated on a reboot of “20,000 Leagues Under the Sea” for Disney a few years ago, but that project never move forward.

A Fincher-Pitt reunion on “World War Z” would mark their fourth film together, having previously worked on “Se7en,” “Fight Club,” and “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button.”

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  1. Lmfao,this movie was not a flop. It made over 500 million world-wide. Try again. @Dias A sequel will be made dont like it. Don’t support it simple as that. Goes for all the haters in this comment section.

  2. Bill B. says:

    Kind of surprising to me. I would hope with him at the helm it will be a much better picture than the first one. It wasn’t bad. Just mindless entertainment. I’ve seen it I think three times and I still remember little of it.

    • Jacen says:

      I saw it once but remember most of it. I think it helps to think of Pitt’s character as a Christ-figure; then the story becomes more spiritual/metaphorical and memorable. (Note: I’m not a religious person.)

  3. LOL says:

    Will Fincher, despite allegedly seeking a lower budget for this project compared to its expensive predecessor, be willing to reduce his $10 million standard directing fee?

  4. Rudy Mario says:

    Disappointed.

    I have liked almost all of his movies and wished he gave us something instead of the besten to deat Zombie crap.

  5. AllWiledUp says:

    World War Z was total crap, the most boring zombie movie ever (and give me a break, enough with the zombie movies – the only decent ones were Zombieland and Shaun of the Dead). Can’t Fincher find anything more interesting to do?

    • Mark says:

      I Totally agree with you. Zombies and super heroes have oversaturated the movie market. It is a pity such a great director would consider something as empty as this. Brad Pitt is a really good actor and shouldn’t waste his talents as well. Let’s wait and see how good his new Netflix project is.

  6. loco73 says:

    Godamn! Colour me interested as hell! I want this!!! Variety…please don’t toy with my emotions!

  7. stevenkovacs says:

    This is genius and guarantees a realistic budget for what is sure to be a ‘tentpole’ release.
    Brad gets a director he knows very well to collaborate with which likely eliminates issues he had with Marc Forster on ‘WWZ’.
    I’d order 4K 3D tickets now for this if I could!

  8. Dias says:

    Brad’s PR team putting this news in the media, to try to persuade Fincher to directing this bomb.

    Paramount will cancel this movie by the end of this year.

    • Jacen says:

      Based on a survey of Box Office Mojo, I conclude the following….
      Domestic gross of 203 mil, giving the studio a net of 101 mil.
      International gross of another 337 mil, giving the studio a net of 135 mil.
      Total studio net would be 101 + 135 for a total of 236 against 190, for a profit of 46 mil to put against the marketing budget, which was probably 60. Ancillary revenue (home video etc) would wipe out any red easily.
      Of course, this is Paramount we are talking about. Paramount maintains that Forrest Gump (55 mil budget, 35 mil marketing, 668 worldwide gross before similarly big ancillary revenue) has never turned a profit. They make such statements whenever they don’t want to pay a writer. See also their fiasco over Coming to America, another big hit that “bombed” so they wouldn’t have to pay up. If they want to say that WWZ was a hit or a flop, they will. Whatever serves their interests.
      So with that in mind, does a given movie make enough to justify its existence? In the case of Gump and Z, the answer is yes.

    • Dan says:

      “Regardless, the film was a commercial success, grossing over $540 million against a production budget of $190 million, becoming the highest-grossing zombie film of all time”

      What are you talking about??

      • Dias says:

        The first film cost 200 million + advertising, it was not a success, it did not even have 50 million profits.

    • MSJ says:

      This movie is happening due to how big a success the first one was.

      • Truth says:

        To Dias,

        World War Z was a major blockbuster. It made over $540 mil worldwide.

      • Dias says:

        The first film cost 200 million + advertising, it was not a success, it did not even have 50 million profits.

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