When Jaume Collet-Serra’s The Shallows was released in theaters back in Summer 2016, it was the first shark attack horror movie to take a bite out of the big screen in a handful of years. With a production budget of $17 million, the Blake Lively-starring The Shallows pulled in over $100 million worldwide, proving that audiences still have a hunger for the particular breed of horror that Steven Spielberg introduced with Jaws over 40 years ago. After all, we love to be scared at the movies, and what’s scarier than a big ass shark?
Subsequently, Johannes Roberts’ 47 Meters Down went from a direct to video title to a widespread theatrical release the following Summer, pulling in $44 million worldwide on a $5.5 million production budget. With two big time shark attack horror movies arriving on the big screen in a span of a single year, it seemed the sub-genre was back in a big way.
That momentum hasn’t slowed in the past year, which has seen this year’s release of Deep Blue Sea 2, a direct to video sequel to 1999’s Renny Harlin-directed film, as well as last year’s Open Water 3: Cage Dive, the latest installment in the franchise that began in 2003. The good news? Much more shark attack horror is coming soon!
Here’s what we’ve got swimming our way as we speak…
THE MEG – August 10, 2018
A feature film adaptation of Steve Alten’s Meg: A Novel of Deep Terror has been in development for many years now, with various filmmakers attached at different times. At one point, Jan de Bont (Twister) was seated in the director’s chair, while Eli Roth was more recently set to direct. What’s taking a bite out of the big screen this Summer is, instead, a film directed by Jon Turteltaub (National Treasure) and being released by Warner Bros. Jason Statham leads an international crew into the deep, Megalodon-dominated waters in The Meg, which looks to be putting F-U-N ahead of terror. With a unique cast including Rainn Wilson, Ruby Rose, Bingbi Li and Cliff Curtis (who appeared in Deep Rising!), The Meg looks to essentially be Deep Blue Sea for a new generation, and I write that with nothing but excitement in my soul. This one promises to be a wild spectacle and one hell of a good time.
THE LAST SHARKNADO: IT’S ABOUT TIME – AUGUST 19, 2018
Borrowing a sub-title from the Amityville Horror franchise, director Anthony C. Ferrante’s The Last Sharknado: It’s About Time indeed promises to be the final installment in the franchise, capping off Syfy’s fifth annual “Sharknado Week” this year. Mind you, many horror franchises have promised final installments and then continued beyond them, but it’s probably safe to say this is one franchise that’s been milked for all its worth and is probably on its last legs. Ian Ziering again stars as Fin, with the sixth installment in Syfy’s intentionally idiotic series centered on the character’s quest to travel back in time to stop the Sharknado that started it all. Get it? It’s about time… literally.
6-HEADED SHARK ATTACK – AUGUST 28, 2018
With The Meg arriving on the big screen this summer, sure to be a big success at the box office, it should come as no surprise that The Asylum has cooked up a couple of well-timed “mockbusters” of their own. Releasing late August, in the direct wake of The Meg, is their 6-Headed Shark Attack, the latest installment in an increasingly absurd franchise that previously gave us 2-Headed Shark Attack, 3-Headed Shark Attack and 5-Headed Shark Attack; yes, they totally skipped 4-Headed Shark Attack. In Mark Atkins’ 6-Headed Shark Attack, a marriage boot camp on a remote island turns into the ultimate test for survival when a shark… with six heads… starts attacking the beach.
And that’s not all The Asylum has up their sleeve this Summer…
MEGALODON – AUGUST 31, 2018
The Asylum more directly brings us their “mockbuster” version of The Meg with August’s Megalodon, directed by James Thomas and starring Michael Madsen; hey, low budgets don’t allow for bigger stars like Jason Statham, and Madsen is always an enjoyable lead for these sorts of movies. Not surprisingly, Megalodon has much the same plot as The Meg, finding a military vessel on the search for an unidentified submersible that comes face to face with the massive shark known as, well, Megalodon.
48 METERS DOWN – JUNE 28, 2019
As we learned last year, a sequel to the aforementioned 47 Meters Down is in the works, and it’s increasing the depth of the horror by one meter. Last we heard, 48 Meters Down is set for release via Entertainment Studios Motion Pictures next Summer, and Johannes Roberts will again be directing. This time around, there are no diving cages, with the plot focused on five young women exploring a hidden underwater ruin in Brazil. Naturally, the caves are inhabited by the deadliest shark species in the ocean. Roberts described the film in an exclusive chat with us last year as “The Descent underwater,” which sounds like music to our ears. It’s real nice to know that *next* Summer will be as shark-infested as this Summer.
GREAT WHITE – ?
We don’t yet have a release date or much of anything for this last one, but we reported back in March that Altitude Film Sales had boarded international sales rights to Great White, an Australian shark attack film from the producers of another deeply terrifying Aussie flick, The Reef. Martin Wilson is directing Great White, wherein a blissful tourist trip quickly turns into a nightmare when five passengers on a seaplane become stranded miles from shore. The official plot description continues, “In a desperate bid for survival the group try to make it to land before they either run out of supplies or are taken by the man-eating sharks lurking just beneath the surface.” More Aussie shark horror? Yes please!
And on the gaming front, YOU get to be the shark in the upcoming Maneater!