Originally, “World War Z 2” was going to be directed by J.A. Bayona, who directed “Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom.” When Bayona departed the project in 2017, Fincher was signed on to take over. Unfortunately, Fincher departed the project in 2019 over budgetary concerns, and he moved on to make “Mank,” instead.
In a 2019 interview with Movieweb, writer Matthew Michael Carnahan said he did a rewrite of the script for the “World War Z” sequel. His idea involved “the part in the book where they’re taking back the United States,” with a proposed third film properly adapting the “central spine of the book where this man is interviewing people about what happened.”
In Max Brooks’ “World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War” book, the United States starts out dismissing the zombie outbreak. By the time the government starts taking it seriously, their overconfidence in their technology and military proves to be their downfall. A high-profile battle in Yonkers, New York ends with the military getting annihilated by the zombie hordes, and the government escaping and relocating to Honolulu, Hawaii.
A sequel that looked at this tragedy actually sounds rather cool and unique. The problem is that Fincher’s comments indicate that his film would have been closer to the parts of the first “World War Z” movie that didn’t work, the combination of a larger worldwide story with a personal, and bland, story of survival. Worse yet, the comparison to “The Last of Us” shows both a misunderstanding of what made the “World War Z” novel special, and what makes “The Last of Us” so beloved.