Ben Wheatley to direct 'The Meg 2'

The Meg (Credit: Warner Bros)
The Meg (Credit: Warner Bros)

In a jump-scare few were expecting, cult director Ben Wheatley is lining up to direct Meg 2: The Trench, according to reports.

The Hollywood Reporter says that Wheatley will helm the sequel to the lucrative giant shark sci-fi b-movie, which emerged from the depths in 2018.

It found Jason Statham as rescue diver Jonas Taylor, who is tasked with rescuing the crew of a nuclear sub when he encounters a giant creature which torpedoes the mission.

Statham in The Meg (Credit: Warner Bros)
Statham in The Meg (Credit: Warner Bros)

Years later, he's drawn into the creature's orbit again as the megalodon, thought to be extinct, attacks an underwater research facility.

Starring Statham alongside Li Bingbing, Rainn Wilson and Ruby Rose, the movie grossed an impressive $530 million - around £406 million.

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On the prospects of a sequel, Statham told Entertainment Weekly on the movie's release: “I think it's like anything in this day and age—if it makes money, there's obviously an appetite to make more money. And if it doesn't do well, they'll soon sweep it under the carpet. But that's the way Hollywood works.”

Thankfully, it seems $530 million was enough.

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A sequel was confirmed in late 2018, but the appointment of Wheatley feels like both a curveball and a potentially inspired move.

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Ben Wheatley (Credit: PA)

After rising to prominence with dark movies like Kill List, A Field In England and High-Rise, he's most recently remade Daphne du Maurier's gothic thriller Rebecca, with Armie Hammer and Lily James.

But despite heavyweight indie movie credentials, he's also signed on for the reboot of Tomb Raider, with Alicia Vikander.

He told the Empire podcast last year: “As a film fan, to make a Hollywood film is a big deal. I always said that – it's never been the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow, going forward making movie after movie to get to that, but I think to do it, to experience it, will be really interesting.”

He added that his movie will be faithful to the original video game.