Just in case you forgot all about World War Z, the 2013 film adaptation of Max Brooks’ classic novel starring Brad Pitt and plagued by production troubles, never fear for the gestating sequel is still in the works. Not only does the second movie have an official release date and a new “clean slate” script by Steven Knight, but it also just gained a new writer and confirmed its director.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, the creator of the hit British television series Utopia, Dennis Kelly has been brought in to fine-tune the script turned in by Knight. It’s all a part of the usual script-vetting process, of course, but THR’s sources indicate that Kelly’s hiring was a part of Paramount’s efforts to retain director J.A. Bayona, who was apparently up for the Jurassic World 2 directing gig over at Universal. Bayona’s contract kept him at the studio, but the rival organization’s interest surely helped him get a better deal in the end.
Kelly’s show Utopia, which is about a group of people who discover the manuscript sequel of a graphic novel that famously predicted several disasters, is very popular in the U.K. and has earned the writer a great deal of fanboy acclaim. It was even optioned for a David Fincher-led American adaptation at HBO, though that project ultimately fell through.
If all goes according to plan, World War Z 2 will hit theaters on June 9, 2017.