While The Meg is getting pretty solid word of mouth from early screenings - which it should, as the movie's a ton of fun (full review dropping tomorrow, y'all!) - many have already noted that, for a movie about a giant prehistoric killer shark, it's missing one key ingredient: gore galore.
Well, it seems like Jason Statham and director John Turteltaub (National Treasure) are on the same page with these early critiques. In an interview with Bloody-Disgusting, Turtletaub relayed disappointment with his picture's lack of vicious chomp:
"...I am so disappointed the film wasn’t more bloody or disgusting. My wife is glad about it and I’m glad my kids can see the movie, but the number of really horrifying, disgusting and bloody deaths we had lined up that we didn’t get to do is tragic. There was some really good shit that didn’t survive to the final cut.”
Ugh. That's a bummer for Fangoria lovers the world over. The filmmaker continued:
“We shot or even did a lot of visual effects for [gory scenes]. We just realized there’s no way we’re keeping this PG-13 if we show this. It’s too fun a movie to not let people who don’t like blood and people who are under, say, 14 years old into the theater. I was very hesitant to cut out a lot of blood and gore. I wouldn’t have if I thought it was wrecking the story but it wasn’t. It still looked okay. I’ll sit down privately with your audience and take them through some really nasty shit.”
Meanwhile - speaking with Collider - Statham echoed his director's somewhat downer attitude about The Meg's violence. When asked what was altered from the original script he read:
“A lot. Script's totally different. There was so many different…sometimes you just go, ‘How did it happen? How did it go from this to this to this to that?’ I’m just saying it was radically different. I guess in some ways your imagination and your own perception of what it’s going to be is its worst enemy.”
Even when the interviewer tried to tell Statham that he had a good time with the film, the bald badass interjected (note: please read the following in Extreme Chev Chelios Voice):
“Yeah but you go, ‘Where’s the fucking blood?’ It’s like, ‘There’s a shark.’”
To be fair, The Meg definitely was cut to have the broadest appeal possible (especially when it comes to Chinese markets), so this all makes sense having seen the movie already. We'll just have to see if - once the dust settles and the movie's out on Blu-ray - we ever get to witness the nastier version of this killer shark movie that these two are talking about.
In the meantime, do know that the PG-13 cut of The Meg is still a blast, and you should totally check it out (albeit with a few beers in you) when the movie opens this weekend.