Rian Johnson wants to explore post-Netflix release cinema screenings

Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery
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Glass Onion director Rian Johnson is keen to trial another model of theatrical distribution with his Knives Out sequel. 

Rian Johnson has been talking about his murder mystery sequel, Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery and his hopes that it will find its way back into cinemas, despite Netflix already giving the film the widest theatrical release in the company’s history.

“Any theatres we can get it into at any point I’m pushing for. I want more people to have the opportunity to be able to watch it,” said Johnson, in comments that indirectly challenge those of Netflix CEO Reed Hastings who just the other day reiterated that he sees the Glass Onion distribution experiment as a 'promotional tactic.’

“Once it’s on the service, it will be available to theatres and we’re exploring what form that can take. I’ll take as much as I can possibly get. But a lot of that has to do with what the theatres are willing to do, what makes sense”. He added that “I guess for me, because I really want to show that this can happen and this can be a huge success.”

It’s interesting times in the streaming era, and if the numbers work for Netflix, perhaps its significant U-turn could prompt cinemas to do the same and consider screening films that are already available on the small screen. According to Johnson, the two entities should ‘complement each other’. Johnson though is very much pushing for as much theatrical exposure for his film as he can get.

He’s also laid a marker for top-tier talent that follow him to Netflix, blazing a trail that others can follow and develop. We continue to find ourselves in a continual state of transition when it comes to exhibition and distribution and as long as that continues to be the case, nothing is ever truly off the table and things will continue to evolve.


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