Variety is reporting that Gareth Edwards, director of the 2014 Godzilla film and the upcoming Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, has stepped away from the planned sequel to his city-smashing opus. According to the report, sources close to Edwards say he’s interested in working on smaller projects for a while, after carrying the weight of two massive film franchises back to back.
To be fair to Edwards, it sounds like the wider world of Godzilla (or the Mothra Cinematic Universe, as nobody’s calling it yet), is about to get pretty complicated. Godzilla 2—slated for a March 22, 2019 release date after recently getting pushed back from summer 2018—is expected to feature appearances from any number of classic Toho kaiju, including Mothra, Rodan and Ghidorah. Meanwhile, Warner Bros. has partnered with Legendary Pictures to bring its upcoming Kong: Skull Island into the wider giant monster community, as part of the setup for a 2020 throwdown between the two titans of cinematic CGI.
Edwards, meanwhile, has been working pretty much non-stop for the last few years, ever since his 2010 indie hit Monsters put him on the shortlist of people to reboot the American Godzilla franchise from its Matthew Broderick-inflicted shame. Presumably, he’ll now take some time for himself, smashing giant computer monsters together for fun, for once, and tormenting Bryans Cranston from the comfort of his own backyard.