Steven Spielberg’s game changing masterpiece Jaws set forth an interest in sharks in the film industry that still has a place today with The Meg. Shark films did not see a lot of traction at some point but now its starting to make a comeback with films like The Shallows, 47 Meters Down and the “complex masterpiece” that is Sharknado (pfft). The Meg on the other hand, could serve as the film that could really bring the ‘shark genre’ back in full force and also see if audiences are still buying it especially with a big scale piece like this.
With a budget of $150 million, it’s safe to say that it’s not going to be an Oscar contender nor will it be explored in years to come for its thematic complexity. However, it can be another fun summer romp for teenagers to pass the time much like any other mediocre PG-13 blockbuster today. It seems that star Jason Statham wished the film could have been different, particularly he wished it would have been more violent.
Speaking to Collider, Statham who stars in the film discussed director John Turteltaub’s vision for the film and provided his two cents on what he would have preferred. He said:
“John’s interpretation of this is a fun end of summer [movie]. It’s full of humor. It’s a little bit more directed to a different taste of what my own is in terms of I like more gory adult stuff. I’m a lot older but I can’t speak for what this film could possibly speak to a younger audience.”
More gore would make the film far more cooler but it is understandable why the studio decided to go the PG-13 route- money. Most big budget studios don’t really have the balls to attempt big-budget Rated-R films. Films like Blade Runner 2049, despite being fantastic didn’t really earn a lot of cash at the box-office. Granted, films like Deadpool and Logan did but they are a part of a well established modern franchise.
Statham does get why studios do this but he perfectly encapsulates the problem with big budget PG-13 action and horror films by saying:
“Yeah but you go, “Where’s the fucking blood?” It’s like, “There’s a shark.”
Turteltaub spoke to Bloody Digusting and revealed that they have Rated-R footage and that it sadly couldn’t make it in the cut. It would have been awesome to see it and it would have really ballsy for the film to release a Rated-R Meg. Even Jaws was pretty violent I might add but yeah, studios are cautious about this and it seems like it’ll still take some time for big budget Rated-R films to make a splash.