The Delightful Surprise of 10 Cloverfield Lane

cloverfieldIt’s really hard to surprise audiences these days.

In any sector of the entertainment industry, almost everything is public information. When an author you like signs a new book deal, you hear about it on Facebook. When a musician is working on a new album, you read tweets about it. When an athlete signs with a new team, ESPN blasts it on their front page.

Perhaps more than any other, when a new movie is in pre-production–even if it’s years before the release date–if you follow the director, actors, writer, etc, you know it’s coming. You can avoid trailers, script reviews, and reports from the set, but you still know about the movie well before it’s released.

This is fine. It’s fine to get excited about movies, and excitement builds over time. But I think we miss out on the elation of being completely caught of guard by something. It’s so incredibly rare.

Thank goodness for J.J. Abrams.

A few days ago, a trailer for a movie called 10 Cloverfield Lane was released to the world with an audacious release date of March 11, 2016. As in, 2 months from now. What?

Apparently, Abrams put together the movie in secret after wrapping Star Wars, working with a few writers, director Dan Trachtenberg, and a very small cast. The trailer was the first time the general public was aware of it at all.

I don’t even like surprises in real life, but this kind of stuff absolutely delights me. I love that it was filmed in secret, and I love that I only have to wait 2 months to watch the movie. I’m not even sure if I’d normally watch a movie like this on the big screen, but by crafting the surprise, Abrams has created a unique experience around the film. I can’t wait to be a part of it on March 11.