‘Glass Onion’ Director Rian Johnson Says He’s “Pissed Off” to Have ‘Knives Out’ in the Title
Hollywood continues to be in an IP-driven moment, with an emphasis on reboots, sequels and branded product, but Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery director Rian Johnson wishes that he could have trimmed a few words from that title.
During an interview with The Atlantic that published online Monday, Johnson said that he strived to make both the current Netflix film and Lionsgate’s original 2019 hit Knives Out feel like complete stories that can exist on their own. Daniel Craig, who plays tenacious detective Benoit Blanc, is the only returning castmember for the sequel, which is simply titled as Glass Onion onscreen.
“I’ve tried hard to make them self-contained,” Johnson said. “Honestly, I’m pissed off that we have A Knives Out Mystery in the title. You know? I want it to just be called Glass Onion.”
The filmmaker continued, “I get it, and I want everyone who liked the first movie to know this is next in the series, but also, the whole appeal to me is it’s a new novel off the shelf every time. But there’s a gravity of a thousand suns toward serialized storytelling.”
Another topic of debate surrounding the film has been Netflix’s decision to only give it a one-week theatrical release, which is a strategy that CEO Reed Hastings has admitted left plenty of money on the table. Johnson told the publication that he appreciates Netflix giving it the theatrical presence that it did, although he would have preferred a longer run.
“I’d love it to be [in theaters] longer; I’d love it to be in more theaters,” he said. “But also, I appreciate that Netflix has done this, because this was a huge effort on their part, and the theater chains, to reach across the aisle and make this happen. I’m hoping it does really well so we can demonstrate that they can complement each other.”
Glass Onion’s ensemble cast also includes Edward Norton, Janelle Monáe, Kathryn Hahn, Leslie Odom Jr., Jessica Henwick, Madelyn Cline, Kate Hudson and Dave Bautista.