Maybe they should’ve gone for the R-rating after all. THR reports that Jon Turteltaub‘s big-budget sci-fi creature feature “The Meg” is on track for a soft $20-22 million domestic opening.
For a film that cost a whopping $130 million officially ($150 million unofficially), that’s not good but the hope is the Chinese market will save the day in this battle of Jason Statham versus a giant prehistoric shark. The Chinese producer also supplied much of the film’s funding so Warners won’t be too hurt by this.
“The Meg” has been in development hell for twenty years, but got picked up when Warners nabbed the rights in 2015 and hired Eli Roth onboard to direct. He then left with “National Treasure” helmer Turteltaub taking over and the joint U.S. Chinese production kicked off late 2016.
The other day Turteltaub revealed that while he always wanted a ‘fun’ tone for the film, he had to make edits to cut it down to a PG-13 including cutting out almost all the blood from the movie including some completed digital effects shots.
In a new interview with Collider, the film’s star Jason Statham revealed that the film’s tone and rating had changed from what he signed up for:
“Scripts totally different. There was so many different … sometimes you just go, ‘How did it happen? How did it go from this to this to this to that?… I’m just saying it was radically different… Jon’s interpretation of this is a fun end of summer [movie]. It’s full of humor.
It’s a little bit more directed to a different taste of what my own is in terms of I like more gory adult stuff. I’m a lot older but I can’t speak for what this film could possibly speak to a younger audience.”
When told it was still alot of fun, Statham replied: “Yeah but you go, ‘Where’s the f–king blood?’ It’s like, ‘There’s a shark’.” Reviews have also started coming in for the film which sits at 47% on Rotten Tomatoes. It opens in cinemas everywhere starting this Friday.