In an interview with /Film’s Jacob Hall, Wheatley namechecked some old-school classics: “Godzilla: King of the Monsters,” “Jason and the Argonauts,” and, of course, “Jaws,” which he called one of “the greatest films ever made.” As he told Hall, “[It’s] a film I revisit a lot and re-watch, it’s a film that is a film school in itself. And to see that he did it when [Steven Spielberg] was 26 or whatever disgustingly young age he made that movie at, which is basically inventing it and so much stuff. I definitely looked at that.”
Wheatley also drew on James Cameron’s “Aliens” and just about any B-horror flick that he watched as a kid. He understood the assignment and sought to craft a giant monster movie where the audience doesn’t question the tone or purpose of the material. Basically, if you bought your ticket to see a shark gobble up folks fool enough to drift about in open water, Wheatley’s going to give you the intellectually honest version of that.
And, per his interview with Hall, he’s also going to be referencing one of the most underrated kaiju movies ever made.