Paramount is building out their Cloverfield universe and will do so this year by turning God Particle into Cloverfield 3. This franchise has been one of the more surprising developments to happen over the last few years as Paramount, J.J. Abrams, and his studio Bad Robot develop an atypical “franchise.” In reality, the Cloverfield name is more so a brand than an indication that these movies are all connected to a larger story, but there are plans for a Cloverfield Universe. Paramount pulled a fast one last year with the reveal of 10 Cloverfield Lane, and this year aim to work their magic again by giving God Particle the Cloverfield bump.
For the third Cloverfield film, Julius Onah is following the footsteps of fellow directors Matt Reeves and Dan Trachtenberg, by bringing an original sci-fi concept into this universe. While this could result in massive changes to the film’s original design, the screenwriter behind God Particle has revealed how this evolution of the project came to be.
Oren Uziel crafted the story behind Cloverfield 3, back when it was simply called God Particle, and while promoting his upcoming directorial debut Shimmer Lake, Collider asked him about this process. As Uziel explains, Paramount helped save his script, but it also demanded changes to be made once it became part of a larger universe:
It was written before 10 Cloverfield Lane and the expanded Cloverfield universe even existed as a thing. It was a spec that I wrote probably a year or so after Shimmer Lake, so it definitely existed as its own science-fiction. And then after years of, you know how scripts kind of hang around—people like them but for whatever reason they decided to make it and then suddenly everything fell into place with J.J. [Abrams], Bad Robot, and Paramount. I don’t know exactly when it became a Cloverfield movie, but I suspect in this current market where it’s just harder and harder to market an original movie of any kind, a science-fiction movie in particular, but I think everyone just knew if it fits—and it does—into that Cloverfield world, it should, and it can only help.
Turning the film into a Cloverfield installment may sound like a simple premise, but it actually required a series of rewrites during production. However, Uziel doesn’t believe there is a specific thread that defines this film as a Cloverfield movie:
We rewrote during production, but I’m not sure what it means to be part of the expanded Cloverfield universe, other than knowing what kind of quality and feel you’re gonna get from something that’s coming out of Bad Robot and J.J. It just sort of helps to give an understanding of like, ‘Okay I understand what type of movie this is gonna be.’ As far as specifics, I don’t think there is one specific thread that makes it a Cloverfield movie, I guess.
Much like the previous Cloverfield movies, there has yet to be any marketing for this latest installment. While Onah and Uziel are the masterminds behind the camera, audiences will be treated to an incredibly talented cast along with a space adventure. The film is set to star David Oyelowo, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Elizbaeth Debicki, Daniel Brühl, Chris O’Dowd, Ziyi Zhang, John Ortiz, and Aksel Hennie. They will form a team of astronauts that are forced to fight for their survival against an unknown threat.
The threat to the astronauts is surely where the Cloverfield brand will come into play, but it remains to be seen how heavy-handed these connections will be in the film. It has yet to receive a trailer or even an official title, and the October release date should allow for Paramount to hold this film out of the public eye, until the summer season has come to pass. Until more information becomes available, this will continue to be one of the most mysterious movies of the year.