The Oscar-nominated Rian Johnson murder mystery Knives Out will be getting a sequel. The announcement that Knives Out 2 is happening came from Lionsgate (makers of the first film) CEO Jon Feltheimer in a February 2020 studio quarterly call where he officially gave it the green light.
This is everything we know about Knives Out 2, so far.
KNIVES OUT 2 IS A NETFLIX EXCLUSIVE
In what could end up being the biggest streaming deal ever made, Netflix has revealed that Knives Out 2 and its follow-up have been purchased by the streaming giant. The sequels will bring back writer/director Rian Johnson and star Daniel Craig and the first one is set to start shooting this June. The deal is reported to be for upwards of $400 million for both movies which is the largest acquisition ever for a streaming service. It is clear that Netflix sees real value in Knives Out 2 & 3 and is willing to snatch them up from the theatrical market after the first film made over $310 million worldwide. What an enormous get for Netflix.
KNIVES OUT 2 IS “A BLANK PAGE”
Knives Out 2 is unlikely to be called that since writer/director Rian Johnson plans for the follow-up film to just be a new mystery with Benoit Blanc (Daniel Craig) as the only returning character. And it sounds like Johnson does not have a sequel in mind. In an interview, Johnson said, “I sat on the idea for the first one for 10 years. And with this one, I’m starting with a blank page. It’s not really a Knives Out sequel. I need to come up with a title for it so I can stop calling it The Knives Out Sequel because it’s just Daniel Craig as the same detective with a totally new cast.”
Knowing that there isn’t a set plan or mystery for Knives Out 2 (or whatever it ends up being called), it is going to be interesting to see if Johnson can capture that same magic he did for the first film.
ANTICIPATION IS HIGH
Knives Out 2 began trending on Twitter when a poll asking what people’s most anticipated sequel started making the rounds. Up against movies like Aquaman 2, Spider-Man 3, and Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness; Knives Out 2 came out as the clear winner and it wasn’t even close.
For a movie which started out as a simple whodunnit to have that level of anticipation attached to its sequel is a pretty big deal. People are desperate to see more Knives Out and luckily, Knives Out 2 is on the way.
THE FIRST KNIVES OUT
Knives Out 2 is happening because the first film was a surprise hit. Writer/director Johnson had just come from ripping apart the Star Wars world with the critical hit Star Wars: Episode VIII – The Last Jedi, which fandom loathed. So, when word of his new movie came to be, non-Johnson fans had their “knives out.” Raking Johnson over the coals as they did, his new film was not expected to garner much attention. Surprisingly, it did.
The movie starred Daniel Craig (James Bond franchise), Jamie Lee Curtis (Halloween franchise), Ana de Armas, Chris Evans (Avengers franchise), Christopher Plummer, Toni Collette (The Sixth Sense), Lakeith Stanfield, and Michael Shannon. Quite a cast. It told the story of the Thrombey Family, who are dealing with the “suicide” of the family patriarch, played by Christopher Plummer. Craig’s Benoit Blanc, a southern-accented, seemingly slow detective is brought in to ask a few questions and poke around a bit. While at first, his presence seems more of an annoyance, he eventually gets to the point. The movie is a cleverly constructed mystery with a wonderful hint of comedy, satisfying to the very end.
Did the original movie’s ending set things up for Knives Out 2? No. Is it happening? Yes, sorta.
THE TEAM MAKING KNIVES OUT 2
While not a fan of sequels (funny since he was involved with Star Wars), Rian Johnson eventually decided to create another mystery, based on the critical and box office success of the first, and because the first time around was a wonderful experience. So, his return as both writer and director is a lock.
According to Johnson, “I’ll tell you, the truth is I had such a great time working with Daniel Craig and I had so much fun doing this on every level, from writing it to making it. I’ve never really been interested in doing sequels, but this, the idea of doing more of these with Daniel as his character, is not sequels. It’s just what Agatha Christie did. It’s just coming up with a whole new mystery, a whole new location, all-new cast, whole new mechanics of the appeal of a mystery, and everything. It’d be a blast.”
While Knives Out 2 is in the works, it doesn’t appear to be a sequel but more of a continuation with Craig’s character.
THE CAST OF KNIVES OUT 2
Daniel Craig confirmed that he will be returning in the role of Detective Benoit Blanc for Knives Out 2, but it would come as a surprise if any of the remaining Thrombey crew tags along.
At this point, Daniel Craig is the only one returning from Knives Out for Knives Out 2. Johnson has not hinted at the plot nor characters for the potential second movie, other than Craig.
Obviously, there is no plot for Knives Out 2 at the moment. We are not even sure if Johnson has finished the script.
What seems apparent is that for Knives Out 2 Blanc will be in a new setting with a new mystery to solve. It also seems that Johnson may follow Agatha Christie’s model and have a couple more movies that include Craig’s Blanc. A franchise of this ilk would be a welcome departure.
Johnson spoke about his approach to the further adventures of Benoit Blanc in an interview with Jess Cagle on SiriusXM. Here it is.
THE TITLE OF KNIVES OUT 2
It seems unlikely that Knives Out 2 will actually end up being called Knives Out 2. The name “Knives Out” was mostly a reference to the specific mystery Benoit Blanc was involved in solving during the course of the first movie. Given that this is a totally new chapter in the story of Benoit Blanc and that he’ll be solving a totally different mystery, the movie may have an entirely different name on the poster once it’s finally finished.
Or maybe they’ll just stick with Knives Out 2 for the audience name recognition. We’ll let you know as soon as it’s official.
With Knives Out 2 currently in pre-production, it is still not known if the script has been completed. Don’t expect the sequel to go before the cameras until at least mid-2021, which would mean a 2022 release date.