"The universe is made of stories, not of atoms."
—Muriel Rukeyser

Meg 2: The Trench Makes Global Debut in Beijing, Showcasing Chinese Culture on the World Stage!

Meg 2: The Trench is China's first deep-sea monster blockbuster that highlights the spirit of exploration and the unknown. It features rich details of Chinese culture and provides a platform for global filmmakers to learn from each other. The film is set to be released globally on August 4th, with Jason Stanson and Wu Jing leading the audience on a journey to the mysterious prehistoric underwater world that has been isolated for millions of years.

Unfortunately, the premiere of the movie in London, UK, has been canceled due to a strike by the American Actors Guild. However, China has become the only venue for the film's premiere. Chinese Film President Ying Xujun said that the audience attending the Chinese premiere
 would be the first in the world to watch the movie. Meg 2: The Trench promises to be a grand audio-visual feast for global audiences. Wu Jing hopes that through global cooperation and screenings, more people will come to understand Chinese culture. Fu Ruoqing, Chairman of the Board of Directors of China Film Group Corporation, believes that the Meg series will have a better impact on the world, filling the gap of marine culture for Chinese films.

The Meg series is copyrighted by CMC Pictures, a leading Chinese film company that invests in project development and production. They are committed to providing high-quality local and national films that meet the needs of the Chinese mainland and global markets, with the support of the Chinese Culture Group. The company has created a number of independent IPs such as Meg and has become one of the most influential Chinese film companies in the world.

‘I like human risk’: ‘Meg 2’ director embraces vulnerability, diversity

Risk means more to the vulnerable.

For seasoned director Ben Wheatley, this is what makes directing the sequel to the 2018 hit “The Meg” more appealing.

“There’s something about the superhero genre where, much as I enjoy it, as it gets bigger and bigger and bigger, there’s problems with the way they’re just invulnerable,” he said. “That lessens the tension. I like human risk. That side of it is interesting to me.”

Wheatley is best known for “quiet horrors” like “Kill List” (2011) and “Rebecca” (2020) rather than action-filled thrillers like “Meg 2: The Trench.”

The “realism” of diversity is part of what made Wheatley gravitate toward the film. 

“Our cast is based around the realism found in the world of science,” the filmmaker said.

“Usually, an oceanic research group would be pulling the best people from all over the globe, with a mix of people from everywhere,” he added.

According to its synopsis, “Meg 2” is about a research team on an exploratory dive into the depths of the ocean. Their voyage spirals into chaos when a malevolent mining operation threatens their mission and forces them into a high-stakes battle for survival. Pitted against colossal, prehistoric sharks and relentless environmental plunderers, they must outrun, outsmart and outswim their merciless predators.

The film stars Jason Statham and Wu Jing, together with an ensemble cast including Sophia Cai, Page Kennedy, Sergio Peris-Mencheta, Skyler Samuels and Cliff Curtis.

“Meg 2: The Trench” will arrive in Philippine cinemas on August 2. It will be distributed by Warner Bros. Pictures, a Warner Bros. Discovery company.

via https://interaksyon.philstar.com/

Meg 2: The Trench Director Ben Wheatley Wanted Every Dollar Of The Budget On Screen

Can we all just take a step back and appreciate how truly bonkers it is that Ben Wheatley made a sequel to "The Meg?" 

Ben "Kill List" Wheatley? Ben "High-Rise" Wheatley? It's one of the most fascinating leaps from the realm of weird indie movies to studio filmmaking we've seen in recent memory. I like a good bit of escapism as much as the next guy, but I still did a double take when the dude who was known for making pitch-black movies seemingly built to avoid being traditional crowd-pleasers signed on to make the next Jason-Statham-Punching-Prehistoric-Sharks movie.

So, while it was a surprise to me that this was the big-budget franchise he jumped to, what I'm not surprised about is the word that not only is Wheatley embracing the absurdity of this franchise, he's doing so by taking the filmmaking part of it very seriously. In the recent issue of Total Film, Wheatley reveals that he was very eager to avoid a common big-budget pitfall by spending the downtime forced upon him by Covid to plan his sequel to the Nth degree. 

Indecision is a problem in the big-budget realm and the core reason why we keep seeing these big franchises waffle so much film to film. Wheatley saying that he storyboarded every inch of "Meg 2: The Trench" is actually refreshing to hear. He wanted to make sure he had all the kinks worked out in advance and felt like he could put every penny of the film's substantial budget (the first film was a surprise hit, pulling in over half a billion dollars at the box office against a declared budget of $130 million) on the screen.

Read more: Slash Film 

‘Meg 2: The Trench’ – Beautiful Chinese Poster Brings a Whole Different Vibe to Shark Attack Cinema


The Meg was a big hit internationally back in 2018, swimming its way to $384 million at the international box office. In comparison, the film’s domestic total was just $145 million.

Upcoming sequel Meg 2: The Trench is looking to have the same success internationally, and today a gorgeous new poster has been unleashed for the big screen follow-up.

This one promotes the release of the film in China, where The Meg performed particularly well back in 2018. And it’s unlike any movie poster you’ll ever see here in the States.

Check out the New Chinese poster and see The Meg 2 in theaters on August 4, 2023.

Rea more at Bloody Disgusting

NEW From Story Merchant Books The Invisible Hand: A Pareto Sisters Mystery by P.E. Klein

In a neighborhood plagued by unseen terror, two sisters hold the key to outwitting a dark adversary before their lives unravel.

Ever heard of Fenton Pareto? He's only the coolest private investigator around. But when the Bay Area turns into a nightmare of disappearing jewels, tormented pets, and mysteriously glitching cellphones, even he needs some backup. Enter Charlie and Clarke Pareto, his super-smart daughters, ready to take on the mystery that's stumping their dad.

Think you've got what it takes to crack the code? Then strap in for a rollercoaster ride with the Pareto sisters, as they match wits with a remote enemy who's controlling the chaos like a puppet master. And just when you think it couldn't get crazier, the sisters get framed for a crime they didn't commit!

But, how are the sisters supposed to clear their names while dodging booby traps, weaponized music, and dangerous QR codes? With a hefty dose of courage, a dash of stubbornness, and a custom-made secret weapon - their razor-sharp minds.

The Invisible Hand is the first heart-stopping book in an epic trilogy, where the Pareto sisters dive headfirst into a world of secrets, danger, and shocking discoveries. Inspired by the author's own experiences in Menlo Park, California, this story will have you flipping pages like there's no tomorrow.

So buckle up, detective, and remember: in this game, nothing is as it seems.

FREE JULY 24 - JULY 28! Stressed in the U.S. by Dr. Meg Van Deusen

It seems like the American public is more “stressed out” than at any time in recent memory. But why? Is this seemingly sudden increase in stress due to current events in our world? Is technology to blame? Perhaps financial strain or increased pressures at work? Or is it all simply a coincidence?

Dr Meg Van Deusen has gleaned a wealth of knowledge during her twenty-seven years as a clinical psychologist. She has worked with a multitude of people from varying backgrounds. and is passionate about attachment theory, its relationship to stress, and how we can use it to feel less harried and improve our lives.⁠

Fresh Horrors Lurk Beneath the Surface in New 'The Meg 2: The Trench' Poster

Jason Statham is back as Jonas Taylor, the man who can't stop fighting against prehistoric sea creatures.

The ocean is ready to deliver new threats to the surface, as Warner Bros. has released a new poster for The Meg 2: The Trench. Jason Statham has returned for the sequel, starring as the former rescue diver who now spends his time fighting against evil monsters from the bottom of the ocean. The new poster does a good job of illustrating just how bad the situation will be for the characters this time around, with a couple of new mysteries surrounding the appearance of the prehistoric sharks. Multiple megalodons weren't bad enough, so The Trench will ensure viewers have fun at the expense of what could happen to the humans of the movie.

Set some time after the catastrophic events of the first movie, Jonas Taylor (Statham) is leading an exploration team at the bottom of the ocean. A mining operation with questionable purposes complicates things for the team, leaving them in a situation where they have to look for survival against giant sea creatures.

While the first installment placed the team in a fight against a couple of giant sharks, the sequel will establish that more megalodons than previously thought are actually roaming around in waters near the coast, setting the stage for an epic confrontation between scientists and sharks that are bigger than a train.

The trailer and posters that have been released as a part of the sequel's marketing campaign have pointed to the fact that Megalodons might not be the only enemy Jonas has to face in his comeback. Giant tentacles have been spotted in the promotional material for The Meg 2: The Trench. After the small role giant squids had in the previous installment, could they be back in a more aggressive form this time? Audiences are only a couple of weeks away from figuring it out, as the release date for the movie swims towards the shore.

You can check out the new poster for The Meg 2: The Trench below, before the move splashes into theaters on August 4:
Image via Warner Bros.

Ben Wheatley is really hoping he'll get to make a Meg 3

Two megalodons from The Meg 2: The Trench
(Image credit: Warner Bros. Pictures)

Meg 2: The Trench hasn't been released yet, but that hasn't stopped director Ben Wheatley from imagining what a third installment in the shark-centered series would look like. That said, though, he's keen not to jinx the second chapter before it's had a chance to make a splash in cinemas...

"You don't want to talk about it until Meg 2 is out," Wheatley jokes in the new issue of Total Film magazine, which is out on newsstands on Thursday, July 20, when asked about the possibility of The Meg 3. "But I hope so. There's a lot more to explore in that world. It's very rich. The international-ness of it is very interesting. 

"What's so smart about the first film is that it's not Rush Hour. It's not East-meets-West, 'Oh, we're all confused about each other,'" Wheatley, who took over directing duties from the original's helmer Jon Turteltaub, continued. "It's just people working together, and being in an everyday adventure, and the people just happen to come from places all over the world. I think that's good for audiences, and it's a good message as well."

Taking inspiration from Steve Alten's 1999 novel, Meg 2: The Trench sees Jason Statham's Jonas Taylor put together a team for an exploratory dive into the deepest depths of the ocean, and investigate some strange goings-on down there. During the mission, they discover that a bunch of prehistoric megalodons, even bigger than the ones seen in the previous movie, is lurking well beneath the surface... and judging by the official trailer, some other huge creatures, too.

It will be released on August 4. Cliff Curtis, Wu Jing, Sophia Cai, Page Kennedy, Sergio Peris-Mencheta, Sienna Guillory, and Skyler Samuels round out the supporting cast.

This is just a snippet of our interview in the new issue of Total Film magazine. Subscribe for more. 

Join Ken Atchity Tuesday July 18th at 4:00 pm (PST) For The My Obit: My Southern Belle Zoom Book Launch!

 Register here for Zoom Link and Password: bit.ly/3wlut2v

In this eagerly anticipated sequel (it landed on my desk yesterday), Ken delves deep into his personal narrative, sharing the triumphs, challenges, and pivotal moments that have shaped his extraordinary life and career. From his humble beginnings to his current ventures, Ken's storytelling abilities shine brightly as he takes us on a captivating journey through the pages of his life.

An Interview With Ken Atchity, The Founder & CEO Of Story Merchant

Ken Atchity CEO of Story Merchant:

Q: Could you provide our readers with a brief introduction to Story Merchant?

A: Story Merchant is a literary full-service set of companies that serves the every need of writers worldwide–from ghostwriting and editing, to coaching and tutorial, to marketing to publishers and the entertainment industry, and to producing their stories.

Q: What is your backstory?

A: In my first career, I was a tenured professor of comparative literature (Yale PhD), Fulbright professor of American Studies, senior reviewer for The Los Angeles Times Book Review, and distinguished instructor at the UCLA Writers Program. I’m the author of over 20 books (fiction and nonfiction) of my own, have sold over 200 books to publishers, made over 200 film-TV deals for clients, and through our Story Merchant Books imprint have direct-published nearly 300 books for writers whose profiles weren’t high enough to take to traditional publishers (as well as literary states).

Q: How did your company come into being?

A: It came into being as an extension of my teaching career, where I coached writers toward publishing and film careers; and as a response to hundreds of inquiries generated by my books on writing, starting with A WRITER’S TIME: GUIDE TO THE CRETIVE PROCESS FROM VISION THROUGH REVISION; WRITING TREATMENTS THAT SELL; HOW TO PUBLISH YOUR NOVEL; YOUR VIP AUTOBIOGRAPHY, and QUIT YOUR DAY JOB AND LIVE THE LIFE OF YOUR DREAMS.

Q: What’s the best thing about Story Merchant that people might not know about?

A: We were the development producers on THE MEG (starring Jason Statham) that grossed nearly $600million worldwide. THE MEG 2: THE TRENCH hitting theatres August 4th!
We are responsible for nearly 20 New York Times Bestsellers, including Governor Jesse Ventura’s I AIN’T GOT TIME TO BLEED, Clint Hill and Lisa McCubbin’s MRS. KENNEDY AND ME, Jerry Blaine’s THE KENNEDY DETAIL (which we then produced as an Emmy-nominated documentary for Discovery), and DRACULA: THE UN-DEAD.

Q: What are your plans for the future?

A: Doing bigger and bigger movies, and also distinguished smaller films in line with my lifelong literary interests. And finding a marketing partner for Story Merchant Books.

Writers Lifeline: Book to Film Do It Yourself

In the past couple of years, I’ve been involved in turning writers into filmmakers. As an author, one of the hardest things about trying to get a film made based on your work is that you really are going to producers hat-in-hand. You’re carrying around what’s called a “naked property”—a naked script, a naked book. If you’ve published an e-book, then it’s even worse than naked. Hollywood knows that an e-book is not the same thing as a traditional book, and they don’t want anything to do with it, at least not unless you’ve sold thousands and thousands of copies.

The obvious solution is to clothe your book—make it not be naked. How do you do that? Get a major director interested. To most people, it seems like that would take a miracle. But if you have a few connections, it might be easier than you think. Or you could get a major star or an investor interested. Any of those three will make your book jump to the front of the line.

We have an amazing situation in the United States. We have probably more talented writers than any country in the world with the possible exception of India. As a result, it is thousands of times harder to become a known writer here than it is in Canada or Mexico or Italy or many other countries in the world simply because there’s so much competition. Our market is the most jungle-like market imaginable, and the only thing that breaks through the crowd is success. And it’s usually success measured in sales. That’s what writers are up against, so you have to do whatever you can to make your book stand out. If you manage to get a book on The Today show, everybody knows that could be all the breakthrough you need. But it’s not an easy task, and it’s exactly why I spend a lot of my time doing strategic coaching for writers, trying to help them figure out how to bring attention to their work.

Meg 2: The Trench – Everything know about the giant shark and its return to the silver screen


Megalodonsdinosaurs and giant octopuses, oh my! The sequel to 2018’s surprise hit The Meg emerges from the oceanic depths this summer, and it’s coming with a handful of surprises, including not one, not two, but three ginormous megalodons wreaking havoc! In order to get you prepared for this exciting deep dive immersion, we’ve put together this article on everything we know about Meg 2: The Trench so far.

Much like its predecessor, Meg 2: The Trench is loosely based on Steven Alten’s Meg novels, the first of which released in 1997 under the title Meg: A Novel of Deep Terror. The new movie borrows its subtitle from The Trench: Meg 2 (1999), but some elements from that book were already used in the first instalment, so it’ll be interesting to see how many bits and pieces from the second novel have been kept around.

Before we go for a swim, you might be interested in checking out our selection of the best giant monster movies you can watch right now. Of course, with summer almost here and giant shark fins on the horizon, with Shark Week 2023 coming in mid-July. There’s also never been a better time to rewatch all the Jaws movies; our Jaws streaming guide has you covered there.

Some international territories, such as Belgium and Germany, are getting it a bit earlier, but the summary is that you’ll want to go to the nearest cinema during the first week of August.

We've not had any word about where Meg 2: The Trench will be available to stream once it's theatrical run finishes, but we'll update this page as soon as we do hear something.


As mentioned above, Meg 2: The Trench borrows some elements (and the subtitle) from the second of Steve Alten’s novels, but it appears the overall plot goes in a different direction. For example, there’s no megalodon offspring held in captivity for crowds from all over the world to see. That idea could be recovered for a third movie though.

The actual synopsis has Jonas Taylor (Jason Statham) leading “a daring research team on an exploratory dive into the deepest depths of the ocean.” Things seemingly go fine until “a malevolent mining operation threatens their mission.” Of course, it all leads to colossal Megs and other creatures from the Trench making it to the surface and eating lots of people.

The titular trench is likely made up, but there are super deep sea trenches in real life, the most famous and deepest of which is the Mariana trench in the Pacific Ocean.


Jason Statham (Fast X) and Wu Jing (The Wandering Earth) headline an ensemble cast that includes The Meg veterans Sophia Cai, Page Kennedy, and Cliff Curtis, alongside Sergio Peris-Mencheta (Rambo: Last Blood), Skyler Samuels (The Gifted), and Sienna Guillory (High-Rise). 

Meg 2: The Trench is directed by Ben Wheatley (In the Earth, Free Fire), from a screenplay by Jon Hoeber & Erich Hoeber (The Meg, Transformers: Rise of the Beasts) and Dean Georgaris (The Meg, Lara Croft: Tomb Raider – The Cradle of Life). The story they adapted is loosely based on the novel The Trench: Meg 2 by Steve Alten.

The director of photography is Haris Zambarloukous (Belfast, Murder on the Orient Express). Production design was led by Chris Lowe (The Gray Man, No Time to Die). Jonathan Amos (Baby Driver, Paddington 2) is handling the editing. The original soundtrack comes from Harry Gregson-Williams once again.


Not a whole lot, actually. Despite some well-preserved sets of teeth and vertebrae, nobody has a clue about Otodus megalodon’s proportions and body shape. Based on its fearsome teeth, we can easily infer it was one of the largest and most powerful predators to have ever lived.

The Megalodon lived approximately 23 to 3.6 million years ago, though some experts claim the species had a “shorter” presence on the planet. Its temporal range spans from the Early Miocene to the Pliocene epochs. Originally, it was considered a member of the Lamnidae family, making it a close relative of the great white shark. Now, it’s classified into the extinct Otodontidae family, which diverged from the great white’s ancestors during the Early Cretaceous.

While scientists differ on its appearance and maximum size, recent estimates fall around 65 feet (20 meters) of max. length. Looking at the vertebral centra, and using the great white’s dimensions as reference, a megalodon of about 52 feet (16 m) long could weigh up to 53 tons (48 metric tons). Still, all this data is up for debate due to the fragmentary nature of the species’ remains.

The fossil record indicates the megalodon had a cosmopolitan distribution. It probably targeted large prey such as whales and sea turtles, but it still faced competition from whale-eating cetaceans like the Livyatan. The species’ decline and eventual extinction coincides with the oceanic cooling related to the ice ages and a gigantism trend in baleen whales.


No, the megalodon did not coexist with dinosaurs. Its earliest presence would’ve been around the Early Miocene, 23 million years ago. Dinosaurs had been extinct for more than 40 million years before that point. This doesn’t make a Meg chomping on a Tyrannosaurus in Meg 2: The Trench’s first trailer any less cool though.

We know, however, of many giant shark species that were present in the Cretaceous period, such as those of the Ptychodus and Leptostyrax genera. Those sharks were larger on average than the modern great white shark, and the former probably were a major threat to unsuspecting dinosaurs and flying reptiles.


Yes, the Otodus megalodon went extinct around 3.6 million years ago. While the idea of gigantic sharks surviving in the blackest depths, maybe thanks to warm water heated up by underwater volcanic eruptions, might not sound too far-fetched, it actually is.

The megalodon and other giant aquatic predators needed to hunt whales and large prey only present near the surface, so humans would’ve noticed them already. For this very same reason, even deep sea predators like giant squids haven’t been able to hide forever.  

Via Live Science