What would the world be like if the recently released A Quiet Place was an additional installment to the Cloververse mega-franchise? That was one question the film’s writers did not want to know the answer to, and for shockingly appropriate reasons.
Hot off the high of outstanding box office numbers, A Quiet Place is already being eagerly accepted by fans and critics alike. John Krasinski (The Office, 13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi), one of the writers and director, stars beside his wife Emily Blunt (The Girl on the Train, The Wolfman) in this incredibly original story about a family living in a post-apocalyptic world where even the slightest sound draws the attention of sinister beings. When the trailer hit the horror circuit earlier last year, around the same time that news on a ‘Cloverfield 3’ was anticipated, speculation about it being the next installment spread like an infectious disease. It certainly was my favorite Cloververse rumor, and I went deep into that fandom for a while.
Of course, we received our real third Cloverfield via Netflix, The Cloverfield Paradox, during this year’s Super Bowl. And, A Quiet Place was theatrically released this past weekend, respectively. No connections between the two films or universes were made. Once it was obvious that we wouldn’t get a last scene revealing something insanely related to the Cloververse in the end of A Quiet Place, I briefly pondered on how cool it would have been if that was the case and then moved on. Everyone with that little speculative thought in the back of their mind did the same and it was easy to do so because A Quiet Place was undoubtedly an impressive film. In many ways, it would have redeemed the Cloververse and the controversial pitfall of The Cloverfield Paradox. But, A Quiet Place gave audiences more than enough to talk about and none of that talk is related to Cloverfield.
Being perfectly ironic in its own way, A Quiet Place, a film revolving around absolute silence is creating electrifying noise. The horror genre is truly a beautiful thing.
Now, those closest to the film, the other two writers, Scott Beck and Bryan Woods (Spread, Nightlight), are talking and that talk is, oddly enough, revolving around the Cloververse rumors. The two revealed to /Film that A Quiet Place at one point considered joining the Cloververse. Sometimes, the rumors are true (or at least halfway true). Beck commented,
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That was one of those things that, I guess it crossed our mind and we had spoken to our representatives about that possibility. It was weird timing, though, because when we were writing the script, 10 Cloverfield Lane was at Paramount. We were actually talking to an executive there about this film and it felt from pitch form that there might be a crossover; but when we finally took the final script in to Paramount, they saw it was a totally different movie. What was really incredible about the process that we feel very grateful for is the studio embraced this weird movie with no dialogue and open arms.
I thought to myself, that is all well and good, but why wasn’t it part of the Cloververse? It would have been a perfect surprise even with the early speculation! But then Beck’s one sentence put so much meaning into this quick bit of horror film news – “They never thought about branding it a Cloverfield film, I think in part because conceptually it was able to stand on its own.”
It made so much sense.
Woods explained further, stating “one of our biggest fears was this getting swept up into some kin of franchise or repurposed for something like that…as filmgoers, we crave new and original ideas. And we feel like so much of what’s out there is IP. Its comic books, its sequels. We show up to all of them, we enjoy those movies too, but our dream was always to drop something different into the marketplace, so we feel grateful that Paramount embrace the movie as its own thing.”
It made even more sense.
Most times fans know exactly what they want from a film or franchise. What these creators did by not selling out to the wild success of the Cloverfield conglomerate and standing behind their idea with the utmost brilliance is downright inspiring. They did exactly what Woods said they set out to do. They gave us a well-made, unique, original, and entertaining film that was completely all its own. They knew what they had was special, something different, and that it was strong enough stand alone. And it’s standing tall. There is power in that, especially when it comes to this particular genre. Few are successful, but the ones who are prove to be completely worthy of our artistic praise.
A Quiet Place was not meant to be part of the Cloververse for more than one or two good reasons and despite a little fandom letdown. Sure it was exciting to speculate and dig into details trying to tie any connection possible between Krasinski’s piece to what Bad Robot has produced as far as Cloverfield goes, but if we had gotten what we wished for – we wouldn’t have received the true gift A Quiet Place has to give. Aside from the millions of dollars it’s collecting at the box office just this opening weekend, it is rewarding us as horror fans with something that is truly priceless: it’s something new.
Integrity is real. Originality is real. Appreciation is real. Creativity is real. All of these quality reside within the frightening world Krasinski, Beck, and Woods have put on the screen. Too much of a good thing is more than likely a bad thing, especially when it comes to horror. Sometimes, us fans don’t really know exactly what we want or need when it comes to a particular film or series.
All of this just goes to show that we need to trust the professionals and, sometimes, just stay quiet.