Universal's 'Skull Island' Delayed to 2017, Gets a Slight Title Change
by Ethan Anderton
December 12, 2014
After Legendary Pictures surprised Comic-Con audiences with the announcement of a new King Kong prequel called Skull Island, the studio hired Kings of Summer director Jordan Vogt-Roberts to get behind the camera and Thor and The Avengers villain Tom Hiddleston to lead the film. The project was announced with a November 4th, 2016 release date, but now Legendary has just revealed that the film has been pushed back to March 10th, 2017. Written by John Gatins (Flight) and Max Borenstein (Godzilla), the film is now called Kong: Skull Island and focuses on the mysterious and dangerous home of the king of the apes as a team of explorers ventures deep inside the treacherous, primordial island.
Could Legendary have been afraid of the release of Doctor Strange, slated for that first weekend in November? It's possible, but a five month delay likely just means that they want more time to make sure the film is ready for release and not rushed. And the title change shows that Universal and Legendary want the brand recognition of King Kong to help fuel the film for those who aren't familiar with the ape's mythology. Of course, fans are just really anxious to see if King Kong will ever get a chance to clash with Godzilla, since the King of Monsters fighting the King of Apes would be quite the spectacle with today's visual effects.
In addition, Legendary has announced that the developing action adventure once known as The Great Wall (the film is still officially untitled) will take a November 23rd, 2016 spot on the release calendar. Zhang Yimou (Hero, House of Flying Daggers) will make his English-language debut on the film about an elite force making a last stand for humanity on the world’s most iconic structure. Production begins in the spring and Universal will release the film in 3D. Matt Damon was once circling the lead role, but he's since fallen away due to the rise of a new Jason Bourne movie with Paul Greengrass. Stay tuned.