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Final Cloverfield Update and New Details!

by
January 4, 2008
Source: Variety

Cloverfield

January 18th is only 14 days away and after months of waiting, J.J. Abrams' Cloverfield monster will finally be revealed. Some extra juicy details have arrived courtesy of Anne Thompson on Variety and they are all quite intriguing to read. The new details come from the film's director, Matt Reeves, where he talks about everything from the equipment they used to shoot to the theme and feel they were going for, including having to convince Paramount to let them do it, and to the crème de la crème - confirmation on contact with the monster.

For the sake of getting right to the good stuff, we'll just dive right in. To kick off the story of Cloverfield, Matt Reeves and J.J. Abrams "first met as 13-year-olds screening their early shorts at an 8mm film fest in Los Angeles." "They've been creative confidantes ever since." The script for Cloverfield first arrived as a 60-page treatment written by Drew Goddard. Reeves' first response was, "This is enormous. There was so much in it."

Reeves continues on with the details about convincing Paramount about the concept. "The filmmakers coaxed Paramount into letting them use no-name actors who could improvise, low-key natural night light, herky-jerky HandyCams (as opposed to SteadiCams, which can be artificially jerked around later; 'People would smell that in a second,' says Reeves), and no musical score at all -- just source music and well-orchestrated ambient sound."

As opposed to using larger 3 lb. cameras for filming all of the scenes, Reeves used the small and lightweight minicam to shoot "intimate scenes among the actors." The scenes are so intimate the Reeves kept tweaking them, shooting upwards of 60 takes. "You see the reflections of the actor holding the camera."

We've already seen it in the trailers and footage, but the visual effects are a key part to the experience. Reeves and his team seamlessly combined all of the shots and worked with multiple visual effects studios, including a stop-motion effects artist, to create "massive effects" including "one five-minute shot incorporates 20 VFX elements."

And as for contact with the monster? Reeves promises "by the end you have intimate contact." Reeves emphasizes the importance of showing the monster, saying, "I didn't want to have all that anticipation and not reveal him. The fun thing is you do see everything over the course of the movie in several different ways, but it's filmed heavily from one point-of-view."

Do you need to be convinced any more? I'll see you in theaters on January 18th wearing my Slusho shirt and with my excitement at the extremes!

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  • Well, I am completely unexcited to see this film. I think it looks like a gimmick. They used viral marketing in the beginning to get everyone excited, but if JJ Abrams name wasn't attached, would anyone really thinks this looks so good? The CG looks pretty bad so far and the concept of most everything being filmed as if it was real is a good one but nothing new. I just don't see why everyone is so hyped up about this film. Nothing about it makes me excited except for knowing that the new Star Trek trailer will be tagged onto the front of it.
  • I certainly hope you're wrong Marty! The one thing that comes to mind is Diary of the Dead. Same "hand-held" camera gimmick and the movie was pretty bad. I liked it at first but then it turned out being nothing much... And thinking about that gets me worried about Cloverfield, too. But I'm trying to stay solid and go in with high hopes and still like it. I don't want another Smokin' Aces...
  • I don't particularly think this will be great or bad. It depends. The only think that has meworried is why they are releasing this in January? No film does too good in Jan., why not wait til March? I think that the studio doesn't have 100% confidence in this. Anyway I'll probably be there opening night :)
  • kevin
    i feel like I will be disappointed once I see whatever the monster is are you the Marty from the lot? the movies on your site are from the show..so it would make sense
  • CSpuppydog
    Yes well I am pretty sure this movie is going to be a religious experience. Or at least it better be... I have wasted the last 6 months of my life on it. Damn you Alex for not being here for the premiere... you better bring me back something cool from Sundance... 😀
  • Spider
    To me it's just a wait and see approach! Last movie I was hyped for was AVP-R and although it was just ho-hum I felt let down. It turned out to be a pointless, boring fiasco. The first 5 minutes I had seen of AVP-R on yahoo were awesome in that the original 'Predator' movie theme was used-further hyping the flick. The end result: well.. "Buzzkill". As for "Cloverfield", my expectations are not too high, as I see it as a "Godzilla" re-make! High marks for the marketing team! Duran Duran could use this marketing for their new album, which is great, by the way!!
  • coolkid
    hmm. is this the monster? spoiler? http://dougbot.com/forum/slushoRar.jpg
  • Stephen Seagull
    Could Cloverfield be Frank Schatzing's "The Swarm"? The film should be coming out this year and alot of things seem to match, the "Bloop" sound, destruction of NY, swarm-like monster and even the viral marketing website for deep sea drilling company... I haven't seen anyone make this connection but it could be.
  • Jude
    Marty Martin - IMAGEN Films on said "The CG looks pretty bad so far" You have got to be kidding me. From everything we have seen so far from the trailers to the tv spots to the 5 minute clip the CGI looks top notch.
  • Israelidude
    At least you get to see it on the 18th, which means you won't know anything until it hits the screens. in Israel it comes out 3 weeks after, so I have to stay of movie sites for the duration...not to mention not talking to anyone about this film....
  • avoidz
    coolkid's monster pic looks like a man in a giant mutant whale suit :)
  • Mikey
    feck the hype,,, i cant wait to see it,,!! it is not something commonly created !!
  • Nathan
    I too was caught in the viral marketing hype, but I have found myself less and less interested over the past months. The Dark Knight and Indy 4 are my top priorities for '08, but I'll be there January 17th (I'm Australian) to see what its all about.
  • ERnesto navarro
    this movie has been driving me crazy i already brought 10 tickets for midnight showing for one and one reason only this movie has and will change my life im going to be thier this movie will change my life ive never been more excited or dessprate to see a movie i wrote cloverfield all over my wall this movie has droven me innsanie and im going to keep watching it till it comes out on dvd
  • David
    Responding to number eight. I've seen that picture several times before, and all I have to say is, that's not the Cloverfield monster!! It's SIN from Final Fantasy X !!! Doesn't anyone see that?
  • jackie
    This looks like another Blair Witch. If it is, I will be totally disappointed! I don't like movies where you are watching from someones handheld video camera.
  • Timothy
    You have to see this movie at the theatre with a top notch sound system. Sure, it's your basic monster movie but from a completely different point of view and approach along the lines of "28 Days Later" but much more real looking. It is an experience much less a movie with an intriquing plot but I think everyone's already figured that one out by now. I was exhausted from battle fatigue after watching this flick. Now I know what it must feel like to be next to a road side bomb when it goes off except this movie is unrelenting and will probably win an Acadamy Award for Best Sound. It's a very smartly done movie and I liked it very much, but without a good sound system and big screen to bolster you through it, it's appeal may not be sustainable when seen on DVD.

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