With 2018’s The Meg grossing over $530m worldwide a sequel was assured with Jason Statham kicking giant shark ass once more and here’s a few Meg 2 facts as well as some about the legendary shark itself……
The film was shot on location in Thailand and on soundstages at Warner Bros. Studios Leavesden. but for the film’s Fun Island, production primarily utilized the party/beach venue Paradise Beach on Phuket, which boasted a picturesque beach with a jungle backdrop. The design team constructed such key elements as a pier and restaurant to create their luxurious holiday resort destination.
Production created their very own studio backlot in a parking lot, which functioned not only as a base for costumes and props, but also a shooting location for intricate action sequences in the cabana (with water later added by VFX), among others. The advantages of shooting such sequences on land included maintaining continuity of the sunny weather/environment and the reliability of not filming on water.
For the filming of all of the sequences on the water, which required around 40 boats and upwards of 200 crew members, production utilized a hotel near Paradise Beach that boasted its own pier— crew and vessels were able to launch from the pier in a safe and timely fashion. To film the actors during their practical underwater work, production shot on Stage D at Leavesden, which features a tank six meters deep and 20 meters wide.
- The largest shark ever—and one of the largest fish ever to exist—was the Megalodon (meaning “big tooth”), weighing up to 50 tons and more than 60 feet in length, making them about three times larger than today’s great white. They lived between 23 to 3.6 millions years ago.
- Megs were first described in 1835 by Louis Agassiz, the American naturalist, who named the species. • The size estimation of the Megalodon is based on the discovery of its fossilized teeth—a complete Meg “skeleton” has never been found. Its estimated jaw would span 2.7 by 3.4 meters wide… that means it could swallow two adult people side-by-side.
- Fossilized Meg teeth have been found along the coastlines of every continent (except Antarctica). These teeth are similar to those of the great white—triangular with serrated edges. o Sharks—this included the Megs—produce teeth throughout their lives; they lose a set every one to two weeks, and can produce up to 40,000 teeth in a lifetime. The teeth are in rows, like conveyor belts, and when a tooth is lost, a replacement is pushed forward. With all those teeth falling to the ocean floor, that makes for a high probability some will become fossils.
- Fossilized Meg vertebrae—about the size of a large dinner plate—have also been discovered. 3 • It is estimated that the force of the Megalodon’s bite was three times stronger than that of T. Rex., and it could easily crush a car.
- Scientists attribute the extinction of the Megalodons to a phase of global cooling, by the end of the Pliocene (2.6 million years ago). As the planet cooled, animals at the base of the food chain died off, leading to the demise of their predators. Also, the tropical waters dropped in temperature, which meant a loss of habitat. o Female Megs were believed to have given birth close to the shore, with the shallows providing protection from predators in the open water. As the ice formed at the poles and sea levels dropped, these Meg nurseries would have been destroyed.
- There is no likelihood that Megs survive to this day. Supporting evidence would include bite marks on other large marine life and an ongoing collection of thousands of teeth piling up on the ocean floor. The belief that some may still exist in the greatest depths of the ocean is not supported by science—the cold temperatures at those depths would not support the warm-water species. They do, however, live on in the movies!
- The cradle of civilization for all of the fantastic creatures in “Meg 2: The Trench” lies at the bottom of a trench in the Pacific, over 25,000 feet deep and warmed by thermal vents. It supports a complex ecosystem sealed off from the world above for millions of years by the thermocline, which resembles the even, sandy bottom of the ocean, but is actually an illusion created by a cloud of hydrogen sulfide that seals off the secret world below.
- This time around, filmmakers were determined to out-Meg “The Meg” by creating their Apex Meg—a grizzled veteran covered in scars; the unrelenting machine of death is larger than anything conceived for the original film. Director Ben Wheatley says, “He’s a guy who’s had loads of bar fights.”
- Filmmakers also embraced their prehistoric side by creating their own version of predators from eons long past that emerge from beneath the thermocline: o Snappers: Inspired by a dinosaur called Koreanosaurus—an herbivore that walked on all fours and sported a beak—filmmakers created Snappers, a mighty carnivore with a low, muscular body, sharp teeth and insatiable appetite. Wheatley supplies, “It’s a Goldilocks thing—they’re not too big and they’re not too small, otherwise the audience might feel sorry for them.”
- Mega-Octopus: Classed as “only slightly less terrifying than the Meg,” the mountainous version of the familiar sea creature wreaks havoc in the trench and later, when it ventures to the shallows of the ocean. “I gotta say, from a Ray Harryhausen point of view, I’m massively into giant tentacles,” says Wheatley.
related feature: The story behind the shot – Jaws
And to top it all here’s three Megalodon swimming up the Thames!