There”s no denying the box office draw of “World War Z.” The film generated over $200 million in domestic gross. This, despite a troubled production and a third act that felt akin to a writer backed into a corner saying “Disease vials are basically modern day magic potions, right?”
In today”s Hollywood landscape, that meant a sequel was inevitable. Yesterday Paramount Pictures revealed their plan. “World War Z 2” – hopefully just the working title – is set to be released on June 9, 2017. If that date seems familiar, it”s because it”s already been tagged by Fox for their Fantastic Four sequel.
While a box office rumble between genre titans makes for good headlines, the more interesting bit of “WWZ2” news is that “Locke” writer Steven Knight has been tapped for the blockbuster sequel.
As it”s still early stages, no whisper of the plot for “WWZ2” has been mentioned. The film diverged from the source material on nearly every imaginable level, so the possibilities are endless. Audiences have already proven they”ll show up for mass hordes of the undead tumbling over each other at breakneck speed. But what the heck? Should Paramount choose to pander a little to the millions of book fans, a few suggestions.
• Introduce the Lobo. In a world where bullet production has taken a backseat to “OH MY GOD ZOMBIES. RUN!” it”s time for a melee weapon specifically designed to destroy the undead.
Yonkers. The United States catastrophic failure to contain Zack is a pivotal moment in the series. Without the massacre there, you don”t get the West Coast safe zone. You don”t get the role reversal of what skills are useful in this new world order. You certainly don”t get the independent “Blue Zones” that popped up all over the country and survived undead attack for years.
• Utilize the Redeker Plan. Zombie survival means hard choices. Hard choices means world governments cutting their losses to protect the majority. Not everybody gets to live.
• False vaccines. Combine the gullibility of a terrified populace with the insatiable greed of an entrepreneur. Boom! Instant villain.
• Give us a space shot. One of the most iconic images from WWZ is the vast hordes of the undead – tens of millions strong – moving across the Great Plains like the buffalo used to.
• Slow it way down. Maybe the zombies are tired. Maybe their tendons and ligaments are deteriorating. Maybe they”re weighed down by all the blood and organs and gas in their bodies slowly draining into their feet. Maybe the virus mutated. Whatever it is, the insect-like mobs of speed racers have got to go. The slow inexhaustible march of a 100 million undead is more terrifying – but ultimately survivable – than a jumble of CGI with rotting faces in it.
Or, you know, do what you want. I”m a fangirl, not a cop.