Netflix doubled Lionsgate’s offer for ‘Knives Out’ sequels
(Credit: Lionsgate)

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Netflix doubled Lionsgate’s offer for ‘Knives Out’ sequels

Netflix’s 2022 line-up trailer promised Knives Out 2 to release on the streaming service this year. The trailer gives a 38-second glimpse at the star-studded ensemble who are seen boarding a yacht, donning expensive clothing.

Following his Star Wars stint with The Last Jedi, filmmaker Rian Johnson ventured into the murder mystery genre with an oeuvre imitating Agatha Christie’s whodunnit novels, titled Knives Out. With detective Benoit Blanc in the centre, the first film was a huge success, grossing over $300 million at the box office. 

Knives Out also won Johnson a Best Original Screenplay nomination at the Oscars. However, like a smart businessman, Johnson held on to the sequel rights, denying the studio, Lionsgate the opportunity to immediately dive into making the sequels. 

When Johnson was finally ready to add two more films to the trilogy, Netflix waltzed in with a lot of money and took over Lionsgate. 

Still miffed with the whole ordeal, Lionsgate CEO Jon Feltheimer opened up at the SeriesFest in Denver about how Netflix basically snatched away the project from Lionsgate and refused collaboration offers. Feltheimer said that the streaming service paid “at least twice” Lionsgate’s budget for the second and third films. He later added that when he reached out to Netflix to offer an exchange, they flatly refused. 

He apparently told Netflix, “We’re going to make a lot of money; we’ll distribute it, we’ll take a distribution fee, send it back to you.” Although it was an “interesting organic idea” for Netflix according to Feltheimer, they refused. 

He then spent his panel time talking about how Netflix has spent copious amounts of money to acquire rights before anyone else and the ghosts of their past are now finally catching up to them, alluding to Netflix’s recent financial losses, and loss of subscribers and falling stock prices. 

Talking about Netflix’s “slash and burn” method to “get to more subs than anyone”, Feltheimer talked about how they have spent too much. He then said, “But they got to a point where they started slowing down, and we had the pandemic. And I think that maybe they didn’t pivot quite quickly enough. But they’re going to pivot. They still have a tremendous business.”

While the title for Knives Out 2 has not yet been confirmed, the film will star Daniel Craig as Benoit Blanc yet again. He will be joined by a massive ensemble cast, namely Ethan Hawke, Edward Norton, Kate Hudson, Dave Bautista, Janelle Monae, Leslie Odom Jr., Kathryn Hahn, Jessica Henwick and Madelyn Cline.