Godzilla vs Kong Trailer – Clash of the Titans

Titans collide in the first trailer for Godzilla vs. Kong, and it looks like the biggest entry in the MonsterVerse.

The first trailer for Godzilla vs. Kong has dropped and teases an epic showdown between the two legendary movie titans.  The fourth installment of Legendary Pictures MonsterVerse is the film fans have been waiting for, pitting Godzilla, the king of the monsters, against Kong, the eighth wonder of the world, in an epic showdown. In a world where titans walk the Earth, only one can be king in a film that promises one will fall.

 

Adam Wingard (You’re Next) is at the helm of the film in an all-star cast that includes Godzilla: King of the Monsters stars Millie Bobbie Brown, Kyle Chandler, and Zhang Ziyi returning alongside new entries to the franchise Alexander Skarsgård (True Blood), Rebecca Hall (Professor Marston and the Wonder Women), Jessica Henwick (Iron Fist), Eiza González (Baby Driver), Brian Tyree Henry (Atlanta), Julian Dennison (Hunt for the Wilder People), and Japanese star Shun Oguri in his Hollywood debut.

The film has undergone a number of release date changes. Originally scheduled to be released on May 22, 2020, it was moved to May 29, 2020 (which would have been a year after Godzilla: King of the Monsters). The film was then moved up to March 13, 2020 (which would be the date that the United States shut down for the first time due to the COVID-19 pandemic) in the same weekend slot that Kong: Skull Island opened up in 2017. Yet after the low box-office returns of Godzilla: King of the Monsters it was decided to delay the film back to November 20, 2020, to afford the film some extra reshoots and maybe benefit from the extended holiday weekend.

Yet as it appeared no theaters would be opened in time, Warner Bros. pushed the film back again to May 21, 2021. Then in an unprecedented move, Warner Media made the announcement that they would be releasing their entire 2021 release schedule day-in-date with theaters and on their streaming service HBO Max. Legendary Pictures, one of the co-financers of Godzilla VS Kong took legal action against Warner Bros’ parent company, AT&T, about releasing Godzilla VS Kong and the upcoming Dune on the app alongside theaters, since they put up most of the production budget and would lose their investment if it was split between theaters and at home. AT&T and Legendary made a deal for Godzilla VS Kong, yet no word on Dune. Godzilla VS Kong will arrive on both platforms and has had the release date bumped up again to March 25, 2021.

The trailer indicates an epic battle between Godzilla and Kong and offers some interesting hints at the story’s plot. It draws heavily from the imagery and mythology in each franchise’s past while twisting it in a new way. Kong: Skull Island established that Kong was still growing, and since that film was set in the 1970s, in the fifty years since Kong has now grown to the size of Godzilla. That film also established Kong used tools in combat, and hinted how he would take on a foe as powerful as Godzilla. The trailer sees him wielding a giant ax that can absorb Godzilla’s atomic breath, with the weapon appearing to have one of Godzilla’s tail spikes on it, able to absorb the atomic energy and piece the monster’s skin. The biggest twist is Kong in chains on a boat. This imagery is taken from the original 1933 film. Yet unlike that film, where he was brought for the entertainment of others, here he is brought as a weapon to defend mankind against Godzilla.

On the Godzilla front, the trailer positions him as the antagonistic force. While the past two films have played him as the hero, fighting on humanity’s side, this film returns him to the force of destruction seen in his original film. Yet there appears to be more going on that may indicate why Godzilla is now turning on humanity. While fans will certainly be seeing Kong and Godzilla fighting, audiences will also want to see the two fight side by side against a bigger threat. Indeed, the trailer hints that this film will introduce MechaGodzilla. The schematics of a monster-type weapon are seen in the background of one shot, while another shows a monster from above that appears to be metal with a red circle, indicating a machine. This might indicate why Godzilla has turned on humans in the first place; when they created MechaGodzilla they upset the balance of nature, and Godzilla now seeks to fix that.

Another shot of the trailer seems to show Kong in the hollow Earth that was introduced as a theory in Kong: Skull Island and later explored in Godzilla: King of the Monsters. But what also appears to be seen in a mechanical flying ship in the background, possibly hinting at an outside alien presence in the film. While the Kong films have never shown aliens, they are a staple of the Godzilla franchise. Even King Ghidorah himself is from another world. Aliens may be instigating the threat between the two, possibly even controlling Godzilla.

The film is promising that one of these characters will fall by the end of the film, a clear distinction from past title fights like Freddy VS Jason or Alien VS Predator where there was no one winner. While I doubt one of these monsters will die by the other’s hand, I do think they will die in a heroic manner against the rumored MechaGodzilla. There are two possibilities.

Kong Wins: Kong is the winner, hence he gets the title of King of the Monsters from Godzilla and officially becomes King Kong. With the reshoot taking place shortly after Godzilla: King of the Monsters underperformed at the box-office, there is a chance that Legendary Pictures no longer sees the need for Godzilla films and will instead focus on putting Kong as the title character moving forward. It is not quite clear for how long Legendary has the rights to Godzilla, and if Toho wants to do something different with the character.

Godzilla Wins: Kong dying is part of the DNA of his franchise; the character always meets a tragic end and he could die protecting humanity. Kong has a limited background and mythology to draw from, while Godzilla has more than twenty films to draw from and even more foes he can battle in future films if Legendary Pictures plans to do so.

Both endings are also a possibility given the decrease in box-office numbers between each MonsterVerse installment, and this one is certainly set to have the lowest gross theatrically given that it will open on HBO Max and theaters simultaneously (and not every state has theaters open, and the ones that are open will not be at full capacity). There is a chance this epic showdown might be the end of the road for this once-promising franchise. If it is the end, then let them fight.