This weekend Michael Bay’s latest opus 13 Hours hits theaters and it’s about Benghazi so right-wing conspiracy theorists are frothing at the mouth to see sweaty, tan and buffed men running around with guns. Hope they bring a lot of Kleenex to the movie, it’s a wet dream come true. However some regular movie people also went to see early screenings last night and among those were journalists and regular movie geeks who almost had their head explode when a very cool and slick (and sneaked in) trailer for a movie called 10 Cloverfield Lane appeared out of nowhere preshow. I say “out of nowhere” because literally no one has heard of this film and it’s set to open in early March.
There’s long been rumors of a sequel to Cloverfield, the terrific found footage monster apocalypse movie that also snuck into theaters back in 2008, but yet nothing official has ever come down the pike. So when a trailer with the eventually revealed 10 Cloverfield Lane title appeared, people freaked out. Just to clarify, when I say “appeared” it means no press outlets knew anything about the film or trailer and no one knew it would be attached to 13 Hours. Further, it’s a J.J. Abrams/Bad Robot produced film and he is fully embracing the long lost art of making people, you know, see the movie without knowing much about it, press campaigns. For example the little Star Wars: The Force Awakens trailers revealed verrrry little about the film.
So. What the hell is 10 Cloverfield Lane? I was trolling Twitter last night when news of this film broke and people were rightly excited. But Drew McWeeny (who is much, much better at this stuff than me) sussed out what’s really going on with the film and wrote about it here. Apparently the film is a twisty, low-budget post-apocalypse film previously titled Valencia which was written and directed by Danny Trachtenberg. McWeeny (and, Twitter) helped get to the bottom of this by noting John Goodman, Mary Elizabeth Winstead and John Gallagher Jr. are all in Valencia and they’re also in the trailer for 10 Cloverfield Lane. There were also some twitter people who said they had seen a preview screening of Valencia and that the (then) description of the trailer matched what they saw. So, cool detective work by McWeeny and the hive mind.
Alas, that’s all kind of moot today as I look at IMDB and see Valencia is already re-titled 10 Cloverfield Lane. But…none of this news really tells us if the film’s a sequel to Cloverfield or what. Many are guessing the “Cloverfield” title may refer to a kind of Bad Robot anthology of films, ala The Twilight Zone, that take place in a supernatural place or the same world as Cloverfield. Which is cool and from here on out there might be like, Cloverfield and the Kid, Close Encounters of the Cloverfield Kind or Cloverfield’s List or what have you. In any case, that’s a nice trailer and I’m definitely interested in seeing whatever it is. I also bow to J.J. Abrams for not giving hit whoring film blogs the ammo needed to overkill pre-movie advertising for everyone.