J.J. Abrams loves the concept of keeping a secret from his audience for as long as possible. Yet his greatest secret is his latest effort as a producer, which looks to be a sequel to one of his most successful movies in that capacity. Prepare yourself for a harrowing visit to 10 Cloverfield Lane.
Paramount stealthily dropped this trailer this morning, in anticipation for its presumed release in front of 13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi. The project formerly known as Valencia has now officially been named 10 Cloverfield Lane, inexorably linking the film to the 2008 breakout hit produced by Abrams and directed by Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes helmer, Matt Reeves. Directed by Dan Tractenberg, the story looks to be focused on a woman (Mary Elizabeth Winstead) held captive in a bunker of some sort by a rather paranoid man (John Goodman,) after a supposed chemical attack has taken place.
Of course, the trailer doesn't look so scary at first, as Goodman's character starts up the jukebox and rocks out to a montage set to Tommy James And The Shondells' "I Think We're Alone Now." But what starts out as puzzles and making peanut butter fluff sandwiches turns into fire, wooden stakes, and Mary Elizabeth Winstead plotting her escape from said bunker. By the end of the tension filled first look, she sees something outside the window that gives her pause. Something we, naturally, do not see – and probably will not see until the film's March 11th release date.
While no one's come out and said that this is 100% a sequel to Cloverfield, the marketing and press coverage so far have heavily hinted towards the possibility. For starters, take a look at the first poster for 10 Cloverfield Lane:
Everything, from the font to the coloring, even the tagline stating "Monsters come in many forms," wants you to think back to Cloverfield. For comparison, here's the poster to the 2008 original:
Also, if you really want to dive in deep with the fan theories here, the title 10 Cloverfield Lane could be a sly reference to the near decade it's taken for this film to be made. People love round numbers, and the timing lines up, so this could be off-base, but not by too much. Also, the film is scheduled for an IMAX release that will be unfurled simultaneously with its theatrical release. J.J. Abrams doesn't seem like the type to line up a large format release for a film that only features people talking in a bunker. Whatever it is he wants us to see, it's going to be huge and supposedly worth a couple extra dollars to see. It may or may not also be a lion, but we're going to hold off on speculation until we get a little more information.
Perhaps the greatest piece of evidence linking 10 Cloverfield Lane to its supposed predecessor is a recent quote that J.J. Abrams gave in reference to the film's pedigree. When asked, Abrams stated the following:
We wanted to make it a blood relative of ‘Cloverfield’. The idea was developed over time. We wanted to hold back the title for as long as possible.
There you have it. The promise of another film in the Cloverfield universe looks to be as fulfilled as ever. Whether this is a complete follow-up, or merely a spiritual successor, will be revealed when 10 Cloverfield Lane visits a theater near you on March 11th.