The Meg director Jon Turteltaub has explained that the flick "leans into" monster movie cliches.

Based on the 1997 sci-fi book Meg: A Novel of Deep Terror by Steve Alten, the flick follows a group of scientists, led by Jason Statham's character Jonas Taylor, who must stop a 75-foot Megalodon shark from terrorising a beach. Speaking about the film, Turteltaub has shared that it honours the themes of classic shark tales such as Jaws and Deep Blue Sea.

"It is first and foremost a big, scary monster movie," he told Total Film magazine. "But I kept saying, 'Instead of running from the cliches, let's lean into them.' That helps the humour. These characters will have seen Jaws. They're real people so they've seen movies. But that's not the same as making a movie campy or satirical. It's not a joke on monster movies by any means."

Statham has described the feature as being like, "Jurassic Park meets Jaws". And Turteltaub couldn't agree more, noting their themes are much more serious than in movies such as Mega Piranha and Sharknado.

"This is a much more legit, Hollywood, holy-c**p-that's-a-big- shark movie. It’s based on really good science and really good filmmaking. We're not making fun of shark movies, we're celebrating them," the filmmaker commented.

The Meg was shot in studios and oceans in Auckland, New Zealand. And actress Ruby Rose, who plays Jaxx Herd, admitted that the pretend shark they worked with was frighteningly realistic.

"We had an animatronic head of a shark. And a fin. The shark's head was actually terrifying. I've never been scared of sharks but this has made me think I should be more careful when I swim," she sighed.

The Meg is now showing in cinemas.