It was last year in February when the CEO of Lionsgate Jon Feltheimer had announced that they will be moving ahead with the sequel of Knives Out. The box office collection had been a pleasant surprise and the cast Daniel Craig, Chris Evans had acted like a cherry on top. The film had been written and directed by Rian Johnson.
On March 31, it was informed that while there will be a sequel, it will be made by Netflix and not Lionsgate. The deal had been made with a whopping sum of $469 million. The pact had given Rian Johnson creative control. He didn't need to take notes from the streamer. Their only demand had been that Daniel Craig must be present in all the sequels.
A report on The Hollywood Reporter stated that Rian Johnson, Daniel Craig will be bagging home $100 million each. The report further mentioned that Lionsgate had considered a deal in which the company had the rights to negotiate along with a safety net with which the companies normally shield themselves from losing projects. But these decisions were all made before the deadly pandemic that took place worldwide in 2020, which eventually led to the shutting down of theatres.
OTT to the rescue
The production for the sequels was halted and Johnson and Bergman began to question the near term viability. Their agencies started dealing with OTT platforms and Netflix had readily agreed. Despite the high price tag, Netflix readily agreed with the offer. This was at a time when most contents are released directly on OTT platforms, hence this deal with a star cast of Daniel Craig made sense.
"Yes, it's overpaying, but Netflix is playing chess while everyone else is playing checkers. It takes a proven theatrical commodity off the board and puts it in their pocket. And it's another way they re-educate audiences to think of streaming and their company above a studio," the report quoted a knowledgeable source who is familiar with the deals which happen on streaming sites.