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The Meg 2 Starts Filming In January 2022 Confirms Jason Statham

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Action legend Jason Statham confirmed that he will be returning to the water to begin filming his creature feature sequel The Meg 2 in January 2022. In the 2018 predecessor, Statham starred as Jonas Taylor, a rescue diver recruited to help a group of scientists dealing with a megalodon shark emerged from the deepest section of the Mariana Trench. Alongside Statham, the ensemble cast for the original film included Li Bingbing, Rainn Wilson, Ruby Rose, Winston Chao, Page Kennedy and Jessica McNamee.

After spending over a decade in development at Disney's Hollywood Pictures, Steve Alten's horror novel Meg: A Novel of Deep Terror continued to languish in development hell at New Line Cinema before finally landing at Warner Bros. in 2015. Directed by National Treasure helmer Jon Turteltaub, the film saw mixed reviews from critics and audiences but proved to be a smash hit upon its Summer 2018 release, grossing over $530 million on its estimated $178 million budget. Months after its release, executive producer Catherine Xujun Ying confirmed The Meg 2 was in the works and it was officially announced in 2019, while Alten revealed its title in September 2020 as Meg 2: The Trench with Ben Wheatley signing on to direct the following month.

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RELATED: Everything We Know So Far About The Meg 2

While chatting with Collider to discuss his latest reunion with Guy Ritchie on the action-thriller Wrath of Man, Statham opened up a bit on the shark-centric sequel. In addition to confirming the production start date for the film, in which he noted the search for the right script caused the long delay, Statham discussed working with Wheatley and the positivity he already has partnering with the In the Earth writer/director.

I'm thrilled to get going, it's been a while. We've been waiting around for the right scripts to come in and the right director to turn up, and we've got all those things and they're all stacked up now. [Wheatley's] great. We have a great shorthand already. We've got similar taste. I like his movies, I think he's a brilliant director. I think we've got a good shot at making something good.

Given the first film's elongated development cycle, a four-year turnaround for the sequel actually proves quite promising for the project. With original co-writing duo Jon and Erich Hoeber back as primary screenwriters on the film, working on a draft from original co-writer Dean Georgaris, those who truly connected to the original outing should certainly be ready for more out-of-the-box underwater terror. Plus, with Wheatley teasing the possibility of two megalodons and Alten teasing a darker tone and potential R-rating, it certainly seems like fans can expect bigger and bolder things from the sequel.

One of the biggest complaints both critics and audiences had with the original was that, though there was plenty of fun to be had from the film, it was neither quite good enough to be memorable for viewers nor was it bad enough for fans to recommend to others. The decision to move towards a potential more graphic tone tone would certainly go long towards fixing some of these mistakes to create a more effectively thrilling outing in The Meg 2. In the meantime, audiences can look forward to seeing Statham back to kick some butt in Ritchie's Wrath of Man when it hits theaters next week.

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