Written by Vanessa Agius
Pacific Rim Uprising stars John Boyega (Star Wars: The Force Awakens/ The Last Jedi) and Scott Eastwood (The Fast And The Furious) and director Steven S. DeKnight (Spartacus, Daredevil) took part in an exclusive Australian fan event this week, hosted by Jill and Supanova’s own Quinny.
The live Q&A, made possible by Universal Pictures, took place in Sydney on Wednesday night and was live streamed to cinemas in Brisbane and Melbourne, with fans also treated to sneak peeks at footage from the film. Here’s what went down.
Both actors shared their similarities to their onscreen counterparts, with Boyega saying that his character, Jake Pentecost, son of Idris Elba’s character Stacker Pentecost from Pacific Rim, is an optimistic person who loves to have a good time. He went on to discuss how Pentecost’s journey from rebel jaeger part scavenger to jaeger pilot is an intense one, challenging his character with countless twists and turns.
Eastwood continued this discussion of character development by stating his counterpart, Nate Lambert, is the complete opposite; someone who is committed to the Pan Pacific Defense Corps and is driven by the potential of the young cadets he trains. Eastwood was able to connect with his character as a pilot himself, which made it easier to delve into the character’s personality and internal motives.
DeKnight discussed the pressures and challenges of creating a sequel, particularly following the great talent of Guillermo del Toro in Pacific Rim. He emphasised the two most important concepts from the initial Pacific Rim he wanted to maintain was that of the drift between pilots and how a world crisis gave way to a community joining together to save the human race.
He discussed the excitement in the writers’ room where the creation of new Jaeger names took two days! Some cast favourites include Saber Athena, Bracer Phoenix and Gipsy Avenger, as well as some rejected names like Murder Witch.
Location, location, location
DeKnight delved into the production of the film, specifically relating to on-location shooting around the world. The city of Sydney was host to the cast and crew for many months. With shots in prominent areas of Sydney like the Sydney Opera House, Sydney Harbour Bridge and the new International Convention Centre, Australian fans are treated to seeing their city in a major blockbuster. Due to Sydney’s weather and geographical location within the Pacific, writers had pre-written the city as the Pan Pacific Headquarters before location plans were even finalised.
Fans we treated to three exclusive clips, too, which gave an insight into how Pacific Rim Uprising has developed as a sequel. One of the clips took fans home to see Pentecost and Lambert piloting Gypsy Avenger in an intense battle with a rogue Jaeger on the shores of Sydney Harbour. With a futuristic take on the city skyline, it is clear to see how director De Knight and his team have improved upon the battle sequences and overall fluidity of shots.
Boyega, who is also a producer on the film, discussed that some of the points of focus for the film included showcasing new technology within the environment, improving and utilising the swiftness in a Jaeger and exploiting the overall ability of the pilots.
Another clip bore witness to a climactic battle taking place in Tokyo between three Kaijus and four Jaegers. Battle sequences are much more fluid in motion with Jaegers sporting less of a bulky build. In saying that, the production team did not shortchange the action-packed drama, providing audiences with a wealth of epic battle moves and tense conflict. Get excited!
Pacific Rim: Uprising will hit cinemas March 22.