The zombie movie that everyone thought would be dead on arrival is getting the sequel treatment. Brad Pitt’s World War Z, the epic zombie action flick that everyone thought would tank but ended up making more than $500 million in ticket sales, has gotten the greenlight for another movie, according to Variety.
Paramount has already hired Juan Antonio Bayona to direct the sequel. That’s the director behind the 2007 dramatic mystery The Orphanage and the Thailand tsunami thriller The Impossible starring Ewan McGregor and Naomi Watts. He actually sounds like a smart choice for a movie about a global disaster, even if the tsunami in this movie is made out of a wall of ravenous zombies instead of devastating ocean water.
It’s also a testament to just how bad the so-called “word of mouth” factor can be when it comes to a major motion picture. Some weird buzz started to surface that Pitt’s World War Z wasn’t all that great after being plagued (no pun intended) by tons of production problems and delays. It also didn’t help that fans of the original book written by Zombie Survival Guide author Max Brooks were incensed that it completely ignored the source material and produced an undead epic with zombies that ran like Olympic sprinters instead of shuffling along slowly in massive, groaning numbers. Not only did it overcome that to earn a healthy profit but now there’s a sequel in the works. That just makes the sequel feel like the ultimate way to stick it to all the haters who crowed about its downfall because legally, the studios can’t fly out to everyone who did so and literally force-feed them dead crow.