'Pacific Rim 2' coming in 2017

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Surprise! "Pacific Rim 2" is on the way, and Rinko Kikuchi (pictured) could return to star
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Surprise! "Pacific Rim 2" is on the way, and Rinko Kikuchi (pictured) could return to star

Guillermo del Toro confirms that a second "Pacific Rim" film is indeed on the way, along with an animated TV series and continuation of the hit's comic book spin-off.

As for casting, del Toro told Buzzfeed that the characters of Raleigh, Mako, Newt, Gottlieb and "maybe even Hannibal Chau" would return for the second film, while promising "a fresh territory that will display amazing sights and battles."

The 2013 original had giant monsters emerge from the Pacific Ocean; humanity's response was to construct huge mechanoid battleframes and engage the beasts in toe-to-toe combat. The film made over $410m on a budget of $190m.

Legendary Pictures' announcement has Zak Penn of "X-Men: The Last Stand," "The Avengers" and "The Incredible Hulk" co-writing the script with del Toro, promising a 3D and IMAX 3D release on April 7, 2017.

"From now until April 2017 we are going to develop a new animated series for 'Pacific Rim,' continue the comic book series that we started with 'Year Zero,' and most importantly creating a sequel for the film," del Toro said in a 30 second video posted to Legendary's YouTube account.

"We are all very happy to be bringing you more Kaijus, more Jaegers, kicking each other's butt," he said, naming "Pacific Rim" screenwriter Travis Beacham as part of the creative team.

Video - Guillermo del Toro - Special Messsage about Pacific Rim: youtu.be/HndBiSyOrK4

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