It seems like every week, Netflix is churning out yet another binge-worthy television series filled with A-list casts and showrunners. This summer alone has seen the release of Gypsy with Naomi Watts, GLOW with Alison Brie, and Santa Clarita Diet with Drew Barrymore in addition to the return of series like Baz Lurhmann’s The Get Down, Jenji Kohan’s Orange Is the New Black, and Aziz Ansari’s Master of None. This weekend, Ozark debuts with Jason Bateman, Laura Linney, and Julia Garner in the lead roles, continuing a strong summer for the streaming service.
But, as evidenced on the festival circuit this year, Netflix is also making a strong entry into feature films: Okja, the new film by Snowpiercer director Bong Joon Ho, debuted (to some controversy) at Cannes, while Netflix scooped up To the Bone with Lily Collins shortly after its Sundance debut. In May, Netflix also released War Machine, a satire about the war in Afghanistan starring Brad Pitt. And on Wednesday, it was announced that Sandra Bullock has signed onto Netflix’s latest project, a post-apocalyptic thriller entitled Bird Box, directed by Susanne Bier of The Night Manager and based on Josh Malerman’s 2014 novel of the same title.
In the film, Bullock contends with both supernatural creatures and maybe even the end of the world: She will play a woman named Malorie who becomes pregnant just as rumors begin to spread of monsters who drive all who see them to insanity—and suicide. The “creatures,” as they become known, drive the remaining humans to seek refuge; after Bullock’s character gives birth, she blindfolds her children—so they won’t see the monsters, and, by extension, be driven mad—and guides them, The Road-style, on a pilgrimage towards safety.
Bird Box’s screenplay was written by Eric Heisserer; his script earned the top spot on the 2014 Blood List—essentially horror’s analogue to the Black List, the famed ranking of Hollywood’s best unproduced scripts. Now that the film has a distributor and a star, production is expected to begin this fall. It’s one of just a handful of projects with which Bullock has become involved lately—which also includes the can’t-miss Ocean’s Eleven spinoff Ocean’s Eight, co-starring the likes of Rihanna, Cate Blanchett, Dakota Fanning, Katie Holmes, Sarah Paulson, and more. But as the hero of a world drawing ever closer to anarchy, Bullock is coming back in a big way with Bird Box. And thus, Netflix continues its plans for world—screen—domination.
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