We loved director Rian Johnson’s delightful 2019 hit film Knives Out as much as anyone. So we’ve been eager to learn more about the upcoming sequels commissioned by Netflix. Fortunately, the streaming platform just dropped the first teaser for Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery—and per Johnson, it’s less of a sequel and more of a new standalone mystery featuring Daniel Craig’s philosophically minded Kentucky sleuth Benoit Blanc. Based on the teaser, it looks fabulous, and we can’t wait for the film’s release later this fall.
Knives Out premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival and was an instant hit, and word of mouth spread quickly. The film ended up grossing $311 million worldwide—the top-grossing film in 2019 not based on existing IP. In my review, I praised Johnson’s deft ability to mix dark subject matter with a lighter touch in his old-school classic whodunnit: “Think Clue meets Murder on the Orient Express—or any number of adaptations of novels by the grande dame of murder mysteries, Agatha Christie—both of which the director cited as influences via a 2019 Twitter thread of movie posters.”
So naturally there was going to be a sequel… or two. Lionsgate originally took on the project, but in 2021 Netflix won a bidding war for the rights to the film plus a second sequel, beating out both Amazon and Apple with a whopping $469 million bid. Johnson wrote the script for Glass Onion during the pandemic, inspired particularly by the Christie-based “tropical getaway” whodunnit Evil Under the Sun (1982), as well as a 1973 film called The Last of Sheila.
Craig had forgotten his distinctive Southern drawl since shooting the first film, and rather than try to wing it, he worked with an accent coach for a few months to “make it as grounded and anchored in reality as possible.” Johnson has said that Glass Onion will showcase Blanc’s perspective a bit more than its predecessor; we will meet the new characters through his eyes. Per the official premise:
If Knives Out was about the murderous ties of flesh and blood, Glass Onion makes a good case for being just as wary of one’s closest friends. When tech billionaire Miles Bron (Edward Norton) invites some of his nearest and dearest for a getaway on his private Greek island, it soon becomes clear that all is not perfect in paradise. And when someone turns up dead, well, who better than [Benoit] Blanc to peel back the layers of intrigue?
In addition to Craig and Norton, the cast includes Janelle Monae as a tech entrepreneur named Cassandra “Andi” Brand; Kathryn Hahn as an ambitious governor of Connecticut keen to run for the US Senate; Leslie Odom Jr. as one of Bron’s scientists, Lionel Toussaint; Kate Hudson as a fashion designer named Birdie Jay; Jessica Henwick as Birdie’s assistant, Peg; Dave Bautista as a YouTube star named Duke Cody; and Madelyn Cline as Duke’s assistant (and girlfriend) Whiskey. Ethan Hawke will also appear in an as-yet-undisclosed role.
Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery will make its world debut at the Toronto International Film Festival on September 10. It will be released in select theaters in November before hitting Netflix on December 23.
Listing image by Netflix