Please let this happen.
Dear Movie Gods,
I understand that you giveth and you taketh away. I have accepted it and I live with it. It is why I try not to get my hopes up too much when I hear talk of an exciting potential new collaborations, projects, or casting rumors. But, please, let the talk of David Fincher directing a World War Z sequel be true. Please, grant us this. It has been far too long since he has directed something, we have sat patiently as two of his television shows fell apart, and directing this sequel would be a perfect fit for him.
The last time we had new work from Fincher was back in 2014 with his adaptation of Gillian Flynn’s Gone Girl: the film that launched a thousand think pieces debating if it was a feminist marvel or a misogynistic nightmare. Of course, Fincher’s name is still attached to House of Cards as an executive producer, but he only directed the first two episodes of the show all the way back in 2013. Gone Girl marked Fincher moving away from feature films and into the world of television beyond House of Cards at Netflix, except this time he was getting into bed with HBO.
In 2014, it was announced that he had two shows being developed on the premium cable network. One was a remake of the British conspiracy show, Utopia, and the other was a 1980s music-video comedy show entitled Videosyncrazy. Utopia was coming together quite nicely with Gillian Flynn attached to write the script, Fincher set to direct the entire first season, and Rooney Mara to star. But, in 2015, after the cast had already been rehearsing together for a month, HBO nixed it. Deadline reported that the network and the notoriously picky director could not come to an agreement about the size of the budget (apparently, he wanted north of $100 million for the first season). But, whatever, we still had Videosyncrazy to look forward to, right? Wrong. HBO killed that project too and blew their relationship with Fincher. Production for Videosyncrazy had already reached the fourth or fifth episode and Fincher was directing multiple episodes. HBO halted production though for additional script work and then let all the actors out of their contracts. Just what happened with these shows, though? What did we do to deserve this, movie gods? And HBO, I know that $100 million is expensive, but seriously. Season six of Game of Thrones cost over that with each episode costing around $10 million to make. We know you have the money to spare. Why did you do this to us?
Which leads me back to David Fincher possibly directing a sequel to World War Z and the fact that he would be perfect for it. So what if he usually stays as far away from big tentpole features and sequels (especially since Alien 3 was such a nightmare for him)? David Fincher is a master at creating tension in his films and television shows so a zombie/horror movie is right up his alley. Also, Brad Pitt, is one of his rare frequent actor collaborators and, arguably, does his best work with Fincher directing him. Fight Club, Se7en, and The Curious Case of Benjamin Button are all the proof of that. Finally, directing a sequel that is just based on the previous movie in the series, no book or anything else, gives Fincher so much room for originality. His three most recent directorial works all show that Fincher has become a woman’s director. He is not afraid to show the male audience the value of a powerful woman.
Please movie gods, let this one project come to fruition. On paper, David Fincher directing a sequel to a huge tentpole blockbuster, like World War Z, seems totally out of left field. But, really think about it. He does not have much on his plate right now and there is so much room for creativity with this. He is a director notorious for being picky with his work and in production so we know it will end up being a meticulously crafted thriller that will actually terrify viewers. If it does not work out, Fincher fans will be waiting until Netflix premieres Mindhunter sometime next year, as the pilot will be directed by him. Movie gods, don’t let this one end up like the other million lost and unmade films of David Fincher. Take a chance and let World War Z 2 be Fincher’s return to sequel fare. It might surprise you.
Erica Bahrenburg (and probably millions of other people)