Forget the Super Bowl, great as it was, the biggest shock of the night came when Netflix dropped that trailer for The Cloverfield Paradox and announced it was debuting right after the game. That instantly set Film Twitter aflame with posts about the news, and gave Netflix the free marketing they needed, because they damn sure spent a pretty penny on the third Cloverfield movie. According to Heat Vision, Netflix spent a whopping $50M to acquire the sci-fi movie from Paramount and J.J. Abrams’s Bad Robot, who were probably laughing all the way to the bank.
Formerly known as God Particle, the film was the third in Abrams’ franchise of low-budget thrillers spawned from his 2008 movie. However, this one saw its budget skyrocket to $40M, and after repeated delays and reshoots to retrofit it into the Cloverfield theme, Paramount decided to cut its losses and actually came out ahead in the deal. Not only that, but they retain the Chinese and home entertainment rights so they can still drop it in the biggest market in the world and on Blu-Ray/DVD where it’s likely to perform really well.
The surprise move has had some wondering if streaming is the future of the Cloverfield franchise. Well, not so much. The planned fourth movie, currently titled Overlord, is still set for a theatrical release. The WWII-set film is directed by Julius Avery with a script by Billy Ray and Mark L. Smith that follows Allied soldiers who face supernatural forces after they are shot behind enemy lines. Wyatt Russell, Pilou Asbæk and Bokeem Woodbine are currently attached to star.
The Cloverfield Paradox is getting hammered by critics, currently sitting at 20% on Rotten Tomatoes. Our reviewer Zack Walsh loved it, though. He and I will just have to agree to disagree on that one!