Director Guillermo del Toro Updates Pacific Rim; Won't Give Up on At the Mountains of Madness
06.28.11 by Ryan
In March, director Guillermo del Toro moved on to his upcoming monster movie Pacific Rim after Universal Studios canceled his adaptation of H.P. Lovecraft's At the Mountains of Madness, despite the participation of James Cameron as producer and Tom Cruise in the lead role.
Written by Travis Beacham, Pacific Rim follows humanity fighting against an invasion of Godzilla-like monsters. Charlie Hunnam, Idris Elba and, possibly, Charlie Day ("I'm not officially signed on," Day recently revealed) will play the human collective defending the planet. In an interview with Collider, del Toro recently discussed the movie's progress.
Fantastic. I mean so far, knock on wood, it's the greatest experience of my life. I'm having a blast, designing like crazy. I'm now hiring actors, which is always a good sign, always a great sign when you’re casting. We're announcing a release date today or tomorrow, which makes it real also. The other thing that we're heading towards is an impeding start date the first week in November, so we have 20 weeks to start shooting the biggest giant monster movie ever made.
That release date, Box Office Mojo revealed, is July 12, 2013, which gives del Toro over a year and a half to make the movie. Once he's finished with Pacific Rim, del Toro told The LA Times he would still like to get back to At the Mountains of Madness.
I'm not giving up, Mountains of Madness has been with me for 13, 14 years and I really don't want to give up on it. Look, the movies I do, I stick with them when I think, well, if I don't do it, nobody will. Hellboy, if I hadn't done it, I don't think anyone would have. Pan's Labyrinth, same thing. Mountains of Madness, the way I plan to do it is a very peculiar take, and I think if I don't stick with it the version I would like to see would never get made.
Mountains of Madness came close to production, but Universal inevitably balked at the budget and R-rating of the movie. Del Toro says he working on ways to lower the $150 million budget, but isn't going to change the rating, a lesson he learned while producing the upcoming horror movie, Don't Be Afraid of the Dark.
I'd rather address the budget than the rating. The movie can perfectly someday be PG-13, but contractually I need to protect it. There's nothing in the movie that is profanity or sexual situations or any of that. But what we learned with Don't Be Afraid of the Dark is that sometimes intensity, the intensity of the situations, garners you the R. Don't Be Afraid of the Dark, in my mind, should be a PG-13. It's several intense moments [that] got us the R — I think some of the situations at the end, I don't want to spoil it, but there are a couple of moments at the end that they deemed were too intense and I didn't want to water down the movie.
Though there was talk of Mountains of Madness moving to another studio, del Toro says Universal might yet produce the movie.
I'm going to keep pursuing it. Universal is still really interested in doing it. Coming out of Pacific Rim, I intend to see if we can do it immediately.
So, with Pacific Rim's release date in mind, that means Mountains of Madness might reach theaters in 2015, best-case scenario? "I knew Mountains was a long shot," del Toro admitted, but then he's used to long shots.