Sources close to the project for years, tell us that Paramount Pictures pulled the plug last night and director David Fincher‘s film is dead.
Budget, as is usually the case, was definitely an issue, but only to a degree. Fincher and his team were proposing something less than the budget of the original ($190 million according to Box Office Mojo, before the costly reshoots). However, Paramount’s known about this figure since at least last year and had hemmed and hawed about the project for months.
Perhaps a lack of movement is slightly disingenuous. “World War Z 2” had been staffing up for a lengthy shoot this year, five different countries and a six-month shoot in Atlanta, which is why various tracking companies like Production Weekly had been listing it lately (last year, erroneous reports surfaced that the film was shooting in the fall), but the film simply never received its green light, and none of these hires were officially made. Brad Pitt is apparently not a happy camper with the studio right now.
Budget is apparently to blame, but while The Playlist says Fincher’s figure was below the first movie’s $190 million budget, sources close to the production tell Collider that Fincher’s budget was actually over that number. The same sources tell us that Fincher’s refusal to budge led to Paramount halting pre-production, and Fincher is now off the project. It’s conceivable that World War Z 2 could still happen with a different director at a lower budget as we’re told Pitt and Co. were happy with the script, but Paramount became uneasy with Fincher’s figure given that this is not only an R-rated sequel to a movie that came out six years ago, but a China release for the film is out of the question given the country’s ban on zombie-related content.