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‘Kong: Skull Island’ Will Change King Kong’s Time Period

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Stacy Dohm
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« on: May 02, 2015, 09:41:53 pm »

‘Kong: Skull Island’ Will Change King Kong’s Time Period

Posted on Friday, January 16th, 2015 by Germain Lussier

jk simmons skull island story - whiplash

When we heard Jordan Vogt-Roberts‘ Kong: Skull Island was going to be a prequel to the already known King Kong stories, everyone assumed it would be set in the (possibly) distant past. Maybe even a Land of the Lost type thing. It would have to be, right? If Kong hasn’t yet become the King, and we know he gets taken to New York City in the 1930s, you’d assume the story would have to be how he became the ruler of Skull Island. And that would’ve happened a long time ago.

Well, we now have our first clue that Kong: Skull Island isn’t going to be what we thought. At all. In a new interview, one of the film’s co-stars, Oscar frontrunner J.K Simmons, said part of the movie will take place in 1970s Detroit. Could that be the basis for a flashback? Is the whole Kong myth being revamped? Who knows, but we’ll explore the Skull Island movie news below.

Simmons, who’ll co-star with Tom Hiddleston, made the surprising revelation to MTV. Here’s the video (with a cameo from the film’s co-star Michael Keaton as well).
J.K. Simmons Talks Kong: Skull Island Movie

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And here’s the quote:

    When it first came to my attention, ‘There’s interest in you for a new King Kong,’ I thought, ‘Okay, why? I met with Jordan Vogt-Roberts who’s going to be directing it, and John Gatins who’s gonna be writing, and Tom [Hiddleston]—Jordan was just so passionate and so smart and there’s such an interesting new take on it, and it’s set in Detroit in 1971 which is where I grew up, and we’re gonna shoot in Detroit during baseball season and I’ll be able to go to Tigers games, so there’s a lot to like about this movie.

So, how the heck is that going to work? The initial thought would be 1971 Detroit is just a framing device. Maybe Simmons’ character tells his kids or something about 50-60 years before when he visited Skull Island. But he specifically says “it’s set in Detroit in 1971.” That certainly makes it sound like more than just a few scenes. And if you are going to be shooting in Detroit for an extended period of time, you only do that if you really want to capture the essence of the city. If the city is an important character. Otherwise, shoot some exteriors and do the rest on a soundstage. That doesn’t sound like what Vogt-Roberts is going to do here.

The fact of the matter is, we don’t know what this tells us about the Skull Island movie except that it’s not the movie many of us may have thought of. And that’s a good thing.

But wait! Shouldn’t we have already expected this? Below is the official plot description of the film released in December. Notice the bold sentence.

    In the spirit of its worldwide blockbuster Godzilla, Legendary Pictures presents a bold new take on the mythos of another iconic beast with KONG: SKULL ISLAND, which stars Tom Hiddleston (The Avengers and Thor series).  Directed by Jordan Vogt-Roberts (The Kings of Summer) and written by John Gatins (Flight) and Max Borenstein (Godzilla), KONG: SKULL ISLAND will fully immerse audiences in the mysterious and dangerous home of the king of the apes as a team of explorers ventures deep inside the treacherous, primordial island.  Legendary’s story honors the foundations of existing King Kong lore, but places it in an entirely new, distinct timeline.  Thomas Tull (Godzilla, The Dark Knight, Pacific Rim) and Jon Jashni (Godzilla, upcoming Warcraft) will produce and Alex Garcia (Godzilla) will executive produce.  The film will be released in 3D and IMAX 3D by Universal Pictures.


Thanks, J.K., for stating the obvious.

Kong: Skull Island opens March 10, 2017.
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Stacy Dohm
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« Reply #1 on: May 02, 2015, 09:44:21 pm »

Upcoming King Kong film gets a new release date and title

by C. Molly Smith • @cmollysmith

Posted January 18 2015 — 3:37 AM EST

Image Credit: Ethan Miller/Getty Images

Bad news for King Kong fans.

Originally titled Skull Island, Legendary’s upcoming King Kong flick was slated to hit theaters on Friday Nov. 4, 2016. Now titled Kong: Skull Island, the film’s release has been pushed back by Universal about four months to Friday March 10, 2017, according to The Hollywood Reporter. Then, it will be released in 3-D and IMAX 3-D.

The move pins director Jordan Vogt-Roberts’ original film—written by John Gatins and Max Borenstein and starring Tom Hiddleston in the story of a group of adventurers exploring Kong’s island—against Fox’s untitled Bollywood musical. Before, it was up against Marvels’ Doctor Strange and Fox’s Trolls.

In other release date news, Universal also set Zhang Yimou’s untitled Great Wall film for a Nov. 23, 2016 release, with production beginning this spring. The film, which marks Yimou’s English-language directorial debut, tells the story of a group of people protesting on the famous landmark. Disney’s Moana is currently the only other film set for that Thanksgiving weekend.


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Stacy Dohm
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« Reply #2 on: May 02, 2015, 09:46:00 pm »

King Kong 'Skull Island' film in Detroit with Michael Keaton is news to Michigan Film Office
Michael Keaton is reportedly on board for a King Kong film that will be shot in Detroit later this year. (Associated Press)
Eric Lacy | By Eric Lacy |
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on January 15, 2015 at 1:38 PM, updated January 15, 2015 at 2:32 PM
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DETROIT, MI -- If someone in Hollywood has a plan to shoot a King Kong move in Detroit with Golden Globe winners Michael Keaton and J.K. Simmons this summer, it's news to the Michigan Film Office, a spokesperson told

"We have not received an application or heard from the project at this time about a MIchigan shoot," wrote the film office's Michelle Grinnell, in an e-mail sent Thursday afternoon.

Grinnell's response came about six hours after MTV News reported on its website that a movie with the legendary ape and cast of stars will be filmed in the Motor City and set in 1971 Detroit.

The MTV News story cites an interview with Simmons, a Detroit native, during the Golden Globes' red carpet event.

He confirmed with MTV News that Keaton and Tom Hiddleston ("The Avengers") will also be in the film and mentioned the words "King Kong" and "Skull Island" will likely be included in the title.

"It’s where I grew up," Simmons said of the film's location. "and we’re going to shoot in Detroit during baseball season, so I’ll get to go to Tigers games. There’s a lot to like about (making) this movie."

Grinnell told in an e-mail there is no deadline this year for a movie production company to apply with the Michigan Film Office for state-backed incentives and use approved credits toward a 2015 project.

MTV News' Josh Wigler reports that "Kong: Skull Island" is slated for a March 2017 release.

The 60-year-old Simmons, according to The Detroit News, grew up on the east side in the 8 Mile and Mack area and didn't want to follow in his father's footsteps career-wise.

His father, according to the News, was a general music teacher at Parcells Junior High in Grosse Pointe.

"But once I got off to college I realized I really liked music — singing in choirs, writing music, conducting — so I ended up getting my degree in music performance. Thought I might be Leonard Bernstein when I grew up," Simmons told the News. "Took a couple of left turns and here we are."

More insight from Simmons about the film can be found in his interview with MTV News below.
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