Brad Pitt’s World War Z sequel loses its director

Juan Antonio Bayona will no longer be working with Pitt on the zombie follow-up flick, because of "pre-existing film commitments"

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Brad Pitt’s zombie film World War Z 2 has lost its director just months before filming was set to start.

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Juan Antonio Bayona, who is best known for tsunami film The Impossible, has quit as director of the sequel to World War Z. The follow-up flick, from Paramount and Plan B, is set to start filming this summer, with Brad Pitt reprising his role as the man who fights the zombie apocalypse.

Bayona’s exit comes down to timing, according to reports, with Paramount stating the decision is based on “pre-existing film commitments.”

“Because of pre-existing film commitments, Bayona is no longer able to make World War Z 2 this year, and it is our ambition to do so,” they announced, adding: “He is a wonderful director and we hope to work with him soon.”

This is not the first time the franchise has faced adversity. World War Z was originally intended to be a trilogy, based on Max Brooks’ novel, but mounting production costs and problems with the script halted plans. The film was then such a success commercially that a sequel became viable.

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The original movie followed former UN employee Gerry Lane (Pitt) and his family. When the world becomes overrun with zombies, former Gerry sets off across the world to determine the cause of the outbreak and investigate a potential cure.