The Pacific Rim: Uprising theatrical release has been moved once again, this time from February 23rd 2018 to March 23rd!

The sequel, whose working title was Pacific Rim: Maelstrom, was originally planned for its release in April 17th 2017, then August 4th, then December 31st 2018. It was then moved forward to February 23rd, just one week after Marvel’s Black Panther (February 16th) and around the same time as Ava DuVernay’s Wrinkle in Time for Disney.

Filming should have begun in November 2015, since writer director of the first instalment Guillermo del Toro had presented the studio with a script and a budget the month before, in October. Production stopped, however, after conflicts arose between Legendary and their new financing and distribution partner Universal. The sequel’s future became uncertain and Universal  delayed the film indefinitely. China’s Dalian Wanda Group bought Legendary in January 2016, and soon enough, the film was green lit to go ahead with Steven S. DeKnight (Marvel’s Daredevil, Netflix) replacing del Toro in what will be his feature directorial debut, and a new script written by Jon Spaihts (Prometheus, 2012, Doctor Strange, 2016, The Mummy, 2017). By May 12th 2016, Derek Connolly (Jurassic World, 2015, Kong: Skull Island, 2017, the upcoming Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom and Star Wars: Episode IX) was brought in to do another re-write.

Come November 2016, John Boyega had been announced to play Jake Pentecost, son of Idris Elba’s tragically heroic Stacker Pentecost from in the original 2013 film, which grossed $411 million worldwide ($300 million was from overseas). It also stars Scott Eastwood, Jing Tian, Cailee Spaeny, Rinko Kikuchi, Burn Gorman, Adria Arjona and Charlie Day. So, it looks like Boyega will be reprising Elba’s solo cast-member-of-African-descent role too.

Del Toro has said that he had ideas for the sequel way back in 2012, prior to the first movie’s release, and a minimal synopsis has been released:

It’s been ten years since The Battle of the Breach and the oceans are still, but restless. Vindicated by the victory at the Breach, the Jaeger program has evolved into the most powerful global defense force in human history. The PPDC now calls upon the best and brightest to rise up and become the next generation of heroes when the Kaiju threat returns.

Five new Jaegers were announced last month: Gipsy Avenger honors the heroic legacy of her namesake as the flagship leader of the Mark VI fleet. More than just a Jaeger, she is a symbol of hope to millions; Bracer Phoenix – A Mark V brute that can still run with the VI’s, Bracer Phoenix shoots from the chest, with a centrifugal vortex cannon that is as spectacular as it is deadly; Saber Athena – The sleekest and most elegant Jaeger ever created, Saber Athena is the fastest in the fleet, wielding twin blades in hyper-acrobatic combat; Titan Redeemer – Built for brute force and armed with a seismic morningstar, Titan Redeemer is the walking wrecking ball of the new fleet; and Guardian Bravo – Designed for combat at range, Guardian Bravo wields the Elec-16 Arc Whip: a proto-metallic successor to the chain sword, and brings a new sophistication to the chain sword’s whiplash move.

Guillermo del Toro returns to produce, alongside Thomas Tull, Jon Jashni, Mary Parent and welcoming Boyega and his manager Femi Oguns as co-producers via their Upper Rooms Productions company.

Pacific Rim: Uprising is set for worldwide distribution by Universal Pictures (except in China), in 2D, 3D and Imax.