Yesterday, Guillermo del Toro surprised Pacific Rim fans by telling Colliderhttp://collider.com/pacific-rim-2-story-details/ ) that Charlie Day and Burn Gorman’s scientist characters, New and Gottlieb, would be the focus of the sequel. Fortuitously, I had an interview today with screenwriter Zak Penn for his documentary Atari: Game Over, the full interview of which will run at Nuke the Fridge. While he wouldn’t confirm the first film’s main characters Raleigh and Mako, played by Charlie Hunnam and Rinko Kikuchi, would return, he hinted that del Toro’s comments were more about a focus shift than casting changes.

“Guillermo is the arbiter of what gets released,” Penn said. “I think he’s probably referring to their enlarged roles more than he’s making a comment about who’s not in the movie. That’s my guess.”

Penn also said that he was able to suggest some new Kaiju to del Toro, some of which struck his fancy. “As a writer, it’s your responsibility to try to invent stuff. You just know with Guillermo, look, if you could hire someone to design the creatures on your film, if I was writing an original film and I could hire someone to design the creatures, I’d hire Guillermo. To a certain extent it’s a little bit intimidating. Whatever you come up with, you know he’s going to have a really clear point of view and probably something better. But that said, you throw stuff out, it’s heartening when I would pitch stuff or write stuff and he’d say, ‘This is great. I’m totally going to use it.’”

Check Nuke the Fridge for the full interview with Penn on Atari: Game Over, a documentary about the E.T. video game landfill, this weekend. Atari: Game Over is now available on Xbox Live.

Story by Fred Topel

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