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What Cloverfield 2 Means For Paradox & 10 Cloverfield Lane


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The sequel Cloverfield 2 is officially in the works, leading fans of the franchise to wonder what this means for the other movies in the franchise, 10 Cloverfield Lane and The Cloverfield Paradox. It's been over 10 years and three movies since 2008's found footage stalwart Cloverfield first entranced audiences with its harrowing take on the disaster film, but how will this direct sequel reconcile all that's transpired in the time since its originator debuted? The franchise has famously been marked by mysterious marketing campaigns, tenuous connections between movies, and until the third installment, positive critical reception. Now the question becomes: with two sequels already released, how will going back to the events and characters of the first film affect their place in the Cloververse?

The original Cloverfield's writing and execution earned widespread acclaim, telling the story of a mysterious alien attack on New York City through the lens of a camcorder wielded by T.J. Miller in his film debut. Its cinéma vérité style distinguished it from its genre contemporaries, and its infamous marketing campaign, like the film's approach to the monster, explored the power of withholding information for dramatic effect. Years later, a sequel set in Louisiana during an attack from a similar monster established an anthology flavor to the franchise, abandoning the found footage format and following a different group of characters in a cabin-fever story whose third act reveals its alien connection to the 2008 movie.

While these two films earned critical acclaim in their own right, the anthology approach had worn thin by the time The Cloverfield Paradox arrived, panned upon its Netflix release. Although this appeared to be a step backward for the franchise, the film did important narrative work to expand the scope of the Cloververse, establishing a multiverse theory explanation to the monsters in previous and perhaps future films. So how will this new installment take advantage of the groundwork laid by its predecessors, and what will a Cloverfield sequel originally developed as such do to bolster the Cloververse?

 

Neither 10 Cloverfield Lane nor The Cloverfield Paradox was conceived as Cloververse entries from the start. The trend of bringing tangential material into the fold became so codified after the third film that speculation ran rampant that Cloververse producer J.J. Abrams' 2018 film Overlord was next in line to be canonized. With a "dedicated" and "true" sequel gestating in the Cloververse from the very start, this presents an opportunity for the creative team to play directly with the world at hand, offering ample chance to tie up loose ends or expand the franchise's connective tissue without being beholden to any original standalone material. And with this chance comes the potential for crossovers between films. As Paradox introduced the notion that multiple dimensions exist in the Cloververse, perhaps these characters could travel between them just the same as do the gargantuan creatures that wreak havoc on humanity, unleashed by having opened portals to these dimensions. As the new film will be built in the Cloververse from the ground up, there's no telling which direction Abrams and company will go with their beloved disaster film franchise.

In the Cloververse tradition of oblique marketing campaigns, there's every chance audiences will know nothing of any potential crossovers until the movie debuts. Whether the new sequel follows in the franchise's tradition of innovative disaster movie storytelling or takes a more conservative approach following up its lightning-in-a-bottle originator, Cloverfield 2 has the hopes of a fanbase riding on its success.

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