Jason Statham - Shark Puncher. That's the sort of four-word pitch that gets studios to say yes to something. The Meg was something of a sleeper hit when it came out, grossing a staggering $530 million worldwide off a budget estimated between $130-150 million, and it garnered a cult following.
Based on the 1997 Steve Alten novel Meg: A Novel of Deep Terror, Statham played rescue diver Jonas Taylor who comes face to face with a megalodon, a prehistoric gigantic shark.
To be blunt, the film was preposterous nonsense, and that's a good thing. Statham's natural charisma carried it a long way, but a criticism of the film was that it wasn't quite as fun as it should be - that's something producer Lorenzo Di Bonaventura was keen to rectify when it came to Meg 2: The Trench, the somewhat-delayed sequel which sees Statham return for round 2.
Based on the box office return of the first film, and the hopes for the second, you could forgive Di Bonaventura and Warner Bros., its distributing studio, for thinking they had a franchise on which they could bank. Not so, according to the producer. Diplomatically admitting there "could be" more fun stories to tell, he admitted they would need to find a fresh way of telling the story, lest they ruin the audience's goodwill and outstay their welcome.