SAN DIEGO — Despite being one of the most-beloved geeky directors in Hollywood, Guillermo del Toro has had somewhat of a difficult time bringing his recent projects (such as “At the Mountains of Madness”) to the big screen. That changed with “Pacific Rim,” his kaiju monsters-meet-giant robots blockbuster action film that is getting its big Comic-Con debut Saturday (July 14).
MTV News had the chance to catch up with del Toro while he was making the media rounds at Comic-Con, and we asked him what made “Pacific Rim” different from his previous projects. The concept seems like it might be a gamble for Warner Bros. and Legendary Pictures to take on, yet del Toro said they were big supporters of his idea for the movie from the beginning.
“With Warner, I had the relationship with having prepped ‘The Hobbit.’ With Thomas [Tull] and Jon [Jashni at Legendary], I found an absolute dream. It was like clash of the geeks. It was fantastic,” del Toro said. “Discussing with them kaiju and robot battle sequences in an office full of toys and collectibles and posters and original art is like a game changer for me.
“It is the best experience I have ever had professionally, and I really loved creatively and in every way every second of it, so it was truly, truly a respite for the fan-man.”
Kaiju films are traditionally Japanese, but del Toro has long said he is influenced by that style of filmmaking. Still, he was very careful to make sure that there was no one movie in particular that inspired the world of “Pacific Rim” more than others, because he wants his project to stand on its own.
“We didn’t reference works, and I made it a point not to. Everybody that I hired was a kaiju robot geek — all of them. So, we would reference other movies that were not in the genre,” del Toro explained. “We would talk about ‘Blade Runner’ in terms of the detail of signage on the streets and on the products and designing packages, beer. We designed a whole world, so we talked about those things.
“But I made it a point — I said, ‘Look, in the case of an emergency, reference another kaiju or another giant robot movie because I want us to stay in this world. Let’s make this world real for us and not come from a cinematic point of view.’ ”
“Pacific Rim” is due in theaters July 12, 2013.
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