Pacific Rim 2 lays out a story that leads directly into a planned third movie

guillermo del toro says pacific rim sequel will lead 3

Earlier this year, Guillermo del Toro confirmed that he’s hard at work on a sequel to his epic robots-versus-monsters adventure Pacific Rim, and apparently things are going well enough for him to consider even grander plans for the universe he created in the 2013 film. In a recent interview, del Toro indicated that the sequel to Pacific Rim will likely lead right into a third film.

“The direction we’re going in [for the Pacific Rim sequel] is very different from the first,” del Toro told Collider. “All I can say is some of your favorite characters come back, some others don’t because we have decided that we’re going to shoot ambitiously and say, ‘Let’s hope we have three movies,’ — so some characters come in at the end of the second, hoping that it will ramp up on the third one.”

“I hope people like it but you’re gonna get a very different experience from the first one,” he reiterated.

With the events of the first film seemingly ending humanity’s drawn-out war with the monstrous kaiju, there’s no telling where the sequel will take Jaeger co-pilots Raleigh Becket (Charlie Hunnam) and Mako Mori (Rinko Kikuchi) — but del Toro says the first draft of the script from Pacific Rim screenwriter Zak Penn is being worked on now. And del Toro seems to be making the project a priority despite his busy schedule with projects like The Strain television series, the upcoming Crimson Peak movie, and the mysterious black-and-white project he mentioned back in July.

“We got the first draft of the movie now, and we are going to spend another 4-5 months on the screenplay before we start pre-production,” he said. “We start pre-production next year in August-September and start shooting November-December next year.”

The sequel to Pacific Rim is currently scheduled to hit theaters April 7, 2017.

Pacific Rim on Blu-ray available at Amazon