It's late. I may have missed the what-for on paper-street. But for what it's worth.
Hmmm... Nevermind. Whois says it was created on July 10, so just a hanger-on. Still, wierd in a good way.
External Tags: 1-18-08, Cloverfield, JJ Abrams, Abrams Project
Friday, July 27, 2007
Thursday, July 26, 2007
“Do you think we’d call it ‘Monstrous’?” J.J. Abrams teased the Comic-Con crowd Thursday. “No.”External Tags: 1-18-08, Cloverfield, JJ Abrams, Abrams Project
Abrams wouldn’t cough up the real title of his mysterious January flick, but he did give his own explanation of the movie, remembering a recent trip to Japan. “We need our own Godzilla.”
Constantly referring to the project as “This movie”, Abrams showed the now-famous teaser, promised that a title would be forthcoming, and unveiled a new poster with a headless Statue of Liberty to the Con masses.
J.J. Abrams spoke to an enthusiastic crowd at the San Diego Comic-Con this afternoon about 1-18-08. His stay on stage was brief, but here's what Abrams says...- He's not revealing the title just yet. We've still got to wait...patiently.- "I want a monster movie," says Abrams. He said he's wanted to do one for a long time and was inspired by a recent trip to Japan with his son. He wants something "insane" and it's almost done shooting.- He thinks America should have their own monster and the dailies are looking great.External Tags: 1-18-08, Cloverfield, JJ Abrams, Abrams Project
Cloverfield / 1-18-08:External Tags: 1-18-08, Cloverfield, JJ Abrams, Abrams Project
2:22 - The original trailer in front of Transformers for Cloverfield / 1-18-08 debuts. JJ Abrams heads to the stage. His very quick statement on the film (as he'll be back for Star Trek XI):
“I want a monster movie, I've wanted one for so long. I was in Japan with my son and all he wanted to do is go to toy stores. And we saw all these Godzilla toys, and I thought, we need our own monster, and not King Kong, King Kong's adorable. I wanted something that was just insane and intense. It's almost done shooting and I watch dailies and I'm more excited for them than the trailer, which has had an overwhelming response. We have 6 months before this comes out. We're going to have a whole bunch of things, a whole bunch more." He said a full trailer, more clips, full posters, and much more will be coming out over the next 6 monts, including the name, which he will NOT reveal today.
“You think we'd call it Monstrous? No…"
So, the film is NOT a Godzilla movie, it is an original monster movie, and it is NOT called Monstrous!
We have been speculating like mad about J.J. Abrams’ upcoming monster flick, loosely called “Cloverfield” or “1-18-08″. Now — at least for now — Paramount has provided us with the first look at the official teaser poster. They have also released, as part of the Comic-Con festivities, the poster for “Star Trek” as well. Take a look below:[Click to Enlarge]
External Tags: 1-18-08, Cloverfield, JJ Abrams, Abrams Project
Wednesday, July 25, 2007
We at the Project like to let you decide. We post it, you decide, everyone's happy. But the Project is bothered by the fact that 2 whole people now have had the presence of mind to snap a shot of this poster, but neither of them had the wherewithal to cough up $15, take the damn thing off the wall, take the plastic off of it and get a really good picture as well as a nice little (and potentially valuable) souvenir. Why not buy the thing? Why drive to the place, bring your camera, snap a shot, run home, upload it to the web, register with a forum and post it, but not bring $15 and fit in buying the thing, and take better photo(s), dust if for fingerprints, hold it up to the light, let Kinkos have their way with it...?
We can think of a few reasons why someone would want the poster to remain distorted and in the Frank and Sons fine establishment. We can even concede that it's possible two totally random strangers also happen to both be utter and complete morons. But those former reasons strike us as way more likely. In fact, if it weren't for Paramount owning themonstrousmovie.com domain, we'd call it-[coubllsht]-a hoax.
Regardless, we don't want to give the wrong impression. Assuming Abrams and Co. can keep a lid on 1-18-08 for another 6 months (cross your fingers), we expect many of the highlights of this little adventure will invariably involve the exploits of people trying to fill in the gaps with their own creative juices.
External Tags: 1-18-08, Cloverfield, JJ Abrams, Abrams Project
1424 East 9th Street
New York, NY 10003
Domain name: 1-18-08.COM
1424 East 9th Street
New York, NY 10003
101 Callahan Drive
Alexandria, VA 22301
[Domain Name] SLUSHO.JP
[Registrant] Satoshi Kagashima
[Postal code] 118-8336
[Postal Address] 18 Palace Plaza
In Hoc Signo Vinces
101 Callahan Drive
Alexandria, VA 22301
Domain name: CLOVERFIELDMOVIE.COM
101 Callahan Drive
Alexandria, VA 22301
Paramount Pictures Corporation
Domain name: THEMONSTROUSMOVIE.COM
Paramount Pictures Corporation
Domain name: THECLOVERFIELDMOVIE.COM
Domain Name: SLUSHOZOOM.COMExternal Tags: 1-18-08, Cloverfield, JJ Abrams, Abrams Project
Monday, July 23, 2007
http://whois.domaintools.com/themonstrousmovie.com Owned by Paramount. Created on June 7.Watch this space. Credit: M.D.S.
External Tags: 1-18-08, Cloverfield, JJ Abrams, Abrams Project
Saturday, July 21, 2007
Friday, July 20, 2007
I love the concept of an alternative reality game (ARG), but I find myself rarely following through. Maybe it’s a lack of time, or perhaps just a waning interest in that they just tend to lose steam, or never even pick it up for my own particular tastes.External Tags: 1-18-08, Cloverfield, JJ Abrams, Abrams Project
A word of warning: This could turn into a long, nonsensical post with lots of links. If that sounds extremely dull, move along. Otherwise… Continue Reading...
There is a lot of speculation going on about this film elsewhere, so I've decided to create a place where people can read all the facts and confirmed info without having to filter through speculation and rumors (especially those already confirmed false). This post will remain stuck at the top of the page as it serves as a summary of the info known about the film. I'll continue to update it as more info comes in. More detailed updates will appear below this post.External Tags: 1-18-08, Cloverfield, JJ Abrams, Abrams Project
VIEW THE TEASER HERE.
WHAT WE KNOW:
It will be released on January 18, 2008. 
Produced by J.J. Abrams and Bryan Burk. 
Executive produced by Guy Riedel and Sherryl Clark. 
Written by Drew Goddard. 
Directed by Matt Reeves. 
Produced by J.J.'s production company Bad Robot and distributed by Paramount Pictures. 
It takes place (at least partially) in New York City. 
It is about a monster (or monsters) attacking the city. 
Most or all of the film will be shot using home video cameras, from the perspective of the characters. 
The teaser debuted before the Transformers movie. 
It is currently untitled, but has been given the working title "Cloverfield." 
The only official site for the film that has been confirmed is 1-18-08.com. 
It is listed among films and television programs currently in production in New York City according to the Mayor's Office of Film, Theatre & Broadcasting.
One of the characters in the teaser is seen wearing a Slusho! t-shirt that matches the images found on slusho.jp.
NY1's Roma Torre has a cameo in the teaser, delivering a report on the "thunderous, roaring sound" that interrupts the party. 
WHAT WE MIGHT KNOW (still awaiting confirmation):
Starring Michael Stahl-David, Odette Yustman, Mike Vogel, and Lizzy Kaplan. 
Those working on the film have been referring to the monster as "the parasite." 
IMDb is erroneously reporting Mike Vogel to be starring as Rob. It looks like Rob is in fact played by Michael Stahl-David.
Several sources have reported a movie going by the name of "Slusho" being filmed in LA that sounds very close to what we do know about Cloverfield. "Slusho" is a fictional slurpee-like beverage offered to Jennifer Garner's character in the second episode of J.J. Abram's show ALIAS, so this is a very promising lead. If you have any more information about Slusho, please send it my way. 
It's probably safe to assume that slusho.jp is also an official site marketing the film, though we don't have official confirmation yet.
There is speculation as to who the monster is, including Cthulhu or Godzilla, or that it is a tie-in to J.J.'s TV show LOST. Most likely, it will be completely original, though this has yet to be confirmed.
Currently, IMDb is also listing Blake Lively as a member of the cast, but I haven't been able to find ANY information supporting this. I've also been told Kelvin Yu is in the cast, but don't have anything confirming this. Please let me know if you find an article supporting either of these claims.
J.J. Abrams has denied any connection between the film and any of the Ethan Haas websites currently circulating the web. 
ParasiteMovie.com is a fake. It is not an official site and any information found there can be ignored. Viewing the source code shows it to be a fansite hosted on sledriding.com.
Many people have been reporting hearing a man screaming "IT'S A LION! IT'S HUGE!" in the teaser. If you view the better quality teaser here, you can clearly hear the man says "IT'S ALIVE!" rather than "IT'S A LION!"
It's not Voltron. Info about the upcoming Voltron movie produced by Mark Costa and Mark Gordon can be found here.
It's not The Host. Universal owns the rights to that. 
It's not Gears of War. New Line owns the rights to that. 
It's not Jurassic Park. Info on Jurassic Park IV can be found here.
It's not Ghostbusters. Columbia owns the rights to that. 
If you have more info confirming or debunking any of these rumors, please comment (and link to your sources).
1. The teaser
2. Ain't It Cool News
3. Ain't It Cool News
4. Ain't It Cool News
5. Box Office Prophets
6. The Hollywood Reporter
8. Alias Episode 102: So It Begins
Thursday, July 19, 2007
I apologize in advance for the length of this post, but I think it may have some crucial info:External Tags: 1-18-08, Cloverfield, JJ Abrams, Abrams Project
Ok, here is a lead I found that no one seems interested in looking into but it seems like pretty critical stuff so...hear me out. This is in regards to the 1-18-08 movie, not the Haas stuff...I know, sue me
Here it goes,
I found this on a website the other day, I admit I have not looked into this element myself so if anyone else could substantiate this first part I would really appreciate it.
"One odd little factor is that the movie seems to have some kind of connection with Freemasonry. The “Cloverfield” website, 1-18-08.com’s Technical Contact is Albert Pike and the address is 101 Callahan Drive Alexandria, VA 22301 which is at The George Washington Masonic National Memorial. What exactly this has to do with the plot of the movie is yet unknown."
Now I looked into this Albert Pike fellow and found this
"In contrast to Catholic allegations of rationalism and naturalism, Protestant objections are more likely to be based on allegations of mysticism, occultism, and even devil worship. Albert Pike is often cited by Protestant anti-masons as an authority for the position of Masonry on these issues. However, Pike, although undoubtedly learned, was not a spokesman for Freemasonry and was controversial among freemasons in general, representing his personal opinion only, and furthermore an opinion grounded in the attitudes and understandings of late 19th-century Southern Freemasonry of the USA alone. Indeed his book carries in the preface a form of disclaimer from his own Grand Lodge. No one voice has ever spoken for the whole of Freemasonry."
So this guy that is Tech Support for the website is apparently a deceased Freemason that was an expert in Black Magic, the occult and even Devil Worship. This sounded sort of like Cthulhu's realm, so I did some poking around on that as well and found out that when the Esoteric Order of Dagon (For those not to keen on Lovecraft's work, Dagon was and old one much like Cthulhu, though he was seen as more of an intermediary between the God's than a God himself)was first being formed, they posed as a Masonic sect to avoid detection.
Now I know some of this seems kind of far fetched but it is apparently derived from the only site we know is 100% Official, we also know that there is a lot of circumstantial evidence to link Cthulhu (or any of Lovecraft's work) to this film and if this is true I would say it is pretty damn important. Help me spread the word on this theory or at least help me look into it. Thanks for your time all, as always, keep me posted
I would have loved to put Cloverfield up against Transformers, but after some experimentation it became clear that movie or no, the term "Transformers" was getting blogged about anyway. So I opted instead for Ratatouille, both because it is a unique term and because it benefited from what I imagine is a pretty standard advertising blitz for grade "A" Hollywood production.
IceRocket: Cloverfield vs. 1-18-08 vs. Ratatouille:
BlogScope: Ratatouille vs. Cloverfield:
IceRocket: Cloverfield vs. Slusho vs. 1-18-08:
Virally marketing Cloverfield, you can guess at what I'd be using to help me decide when it's time for a new clue.
External Tags: 1-18-08, Cloverfield, JJ Abrams, Abrams Project
The Apocalypse - While we'd love to see the end of the world, we believe it would be an exceedingly lame Apocalypse if the final chapter involved cleanup crews. Perhaps a Left Behind fan can illuminate the days after the end days for us.
Blair Witch meets Godzilla - Maybe, and while the Blair Witch gave many a headache, Cloverfield's 30 million dollar budget(?) should go a long way toward avoiding that particular objection.
30 Million Dollars? - That's a low budget (by Hollywood standards, you know), but given the buzz the movie has generated in just the past weeks easily surpasses 30 million in advertising dollars, we'd be surprised if Cloverfield's budget is anything but a blank check.
Multiple Monsters - We're not convinced.
Who Wrote the Screenplay for Clues? - Good question. Answer: Drew Goddard. Given Drew's other work, the Project is leaning toward the supernatural. Oh, and supposedly Drew is unspeakably talented. This bodes well.
Alien Monster - We like this idea too. So much in fact that we're disabusing ourselves of it to avoid disappointment.
The Roar - While the Trailer is clearly a masterpiece, we'd like to remind everyone that the Roar is the key ingredient. To our ear, it evokes colossal malevolent intelligence. And if we were a giant Satan, that's what we would sound like.
Slusho - It's worth noting that slusho.jp was on the radar when JJ Abrams said "For what it's worth, the only site of ours that people have even FOUND is the 1-18-08.com…" Maybe JJ was a bit behind the buzz when he wrote that. Maybe not.
Puzzles? - Well, we think the idea that there are readymade puzzles waiting to be solved springs more from the Haas fiasco than it does anything JJ Abrams said, "But, obviously, if the movie doesn't kick some massive ASS, who gives a rat's about what's online?" We think that translates as: While we'd love to take full advantage of the online buzz, we're still working on the movie so don't expect much.
External Tags: 1-18-08, Cloverfield, JJ Abrams, Abrams Project
Wednesday, July 18, 2007
Article: So What Is 01-18-08 And Why Does It Hate The Statue Of Liberty?
Over at trailer.apple.com and at their own website 1-18-08.com we have a new J.J. Abrams movie being previewed/promoted.External Tags: 1-18-08, Cloverfield, JJ Abrams, Abrams Project
I am a big fan of the Alias franchise, not so much for LOST, so I am very curious about this movie. A side note that J.J. Abrams is to helm the new Star Trek movie coming soon.
But what about this movie? I have seen speculation that the critter is everything from Godzilla to Cthulhu. I believe a clue to the storyline is found at a website slusho.jp and clicking on the History button.
Here we get the story of the “drink” slusho and its inventor. The story goes that a world wide quest for the most unique drink ever made ended in the disappearance of Norinko and the family business left in the hands of her only son Ganu.
Ganu, not wanting anything to do with the family drink business, Ganu becames an undersea scientist. On one of his many scientific journeys he stumbles upon the very same unique ingredient his mother lost her life to find. In a dream (where he drinks the ingredient and grows to fantastic size) he gets the inspiration to add the ingredient to his mothers soft drink empire, now run by his cousin, to make the most unique drink in the world.
Does this mystical ingredient actually turn out to be the germ of Cthulhu, waiting to be loosed on the surface world? Is this just another run of the mill monster movie akin to The Beast From 20,000 Fathoms? It looks interesting, even though the mandatory “destroy the Statue of Liberty” scene is the first glimpse of this super secret movie.
Here is an update: zimm41 has this to sayRomans 1:18 “For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness”Maybe there is a Rampage video game tie in somewhere?
So what in biblical mythology has connections to the slew of references in the trailer? The three great monsters.
In Jewish belief, Behemoth is the primal unconquerable monster of the land, as Leviathan is the primal monster of the waters of the sea and Ziz the primordial monster of the sky.
1) The first monster roar is accompanied by an earthquake (Behemoth)
2) The second monster roar is accompanied by a huge fireball (Leviathan, for it can breathe fire)
3) The third monster roar is accompanied by the flying Statue of Liberty head (Ziz).
The guy who says “maybe we can get a better view from the roof” has the Slusho logo on his shirt. Slusho is a classic J.J. Abrams icon, and it has appeared in both Alias and Lost, which are his shows.
Slusho.jp has, by now, been confirmed as a part of the viral marketing campaign revolving around 1-18-08. Japan. Strangely enough, the character Rob, who is present in the trailer, was gonna fly to Japan a day after that party and the monster events.
Let’s have a look around on that site. Not all pages are accessible. But there is an odd feature about the pages that are available. The main page background is on land, the Downloads page background is on air, and the History page background is on sea.
Furthermore, the six buttons on the main page cause popups of various animals, namely a Horse, a Whale and a Bird. Behemoth, Leviathan, Ziz.
Reader b!X writes:
It's ironic that in a post where Moriarity gets pissed off at people stealing and/or not citing AICN for its reporting, he then goes on to do the same.--Received Jul 17, 2007
The idea that the Ethan Haas mythos might (and the emphasis is on "might", not "is") be PR for Mind Storm Labs' Alpha Omega game did not spring virgin and unborn from the mind of Moriarty or anyone else at AICN.
Rather, many of us out here following EHWR have been pulling together the evidence for such a link for more than a week now, and reporting said evidence. AICN has done exactly no actual reporting on the potential link between EHWR and Mind Storm.
All AICN has done is make a single statement based upon the work of mayb at the most a dozen people (probably less) who are unaffiliated with AICN, without ever mentioning that's where AICN heard the idea in the first place.
Just, you know, FYI, since you've republished the AICN item. Heh.
External Tags: 1-18-08, Cloverfield, JJ Abrams, Abrams Project
Tuesday, July 17, 2007
"Hope this hasnt been posted already. Ok so i was checking out the slusho.jp site and i was trying to figure out there backdoors and whatnot. so i typed in. http://slusho.jp/swf/home.swf and that came up with a part of the flash. then i went and tried out http://slusho.jp/swf/main.swf and it showed me another part of the flash. then for the hell of it i tried of http://slusjo.jp/swf/slushozoom.swf and a quick flash video came up that just kept flashing http://www.1-18-08.com/images/ so i went there and under the category tree list was one image file called slushozoom.jpg and ladies and gentlemen here it is! i saved the file. and now when you go to http://www.1-18-08.com/images/ all you get is Forbiden. but i personly will keep checking back. Other then that bird creature thingy, whats with the smoke on the building. and the Slusho Sign! at least i think thats what it is. and the camera crew. is this filming? so confused. oh well. have fun.
One thing I am sure is these film producers and their assistants have a lot of time on their hands or we are going crazy. There are connections within connections that seem to spring up out of our collective imaginations without reason. Is it our dark deep desire to find the links and an answer to this game or is there something more? Are there actual puzzle pieces waiting on the net just for us to discover as J.J. Abrams hinted? I have never been a part of or experienced viral marketing (as it is called) on this level so I am pretty new with this…but its a wild ride.
The Noriko Yoshida mentioned on the Slusho.jp site (could this be a common name in Japan?) is in reality a screenwriter as stated in IMDB. According to the site she is either missing or dead and her surviving son Ganu Yoshida took over the operation. I am assuming that she is missing based on this statement on the site.“But tragedy struck for the Smallest Whale! Noriko set off on a sea adventure to find the greatest, most tastiest ingredient to the world, and was never heard from again!”
We all know this though, but what a few intrepid investigators may not know is that a site called Scramble Network reports that a few days ago a Matisse painting was posted on what some believe is Noriko Yoshida’s web page at Kobe University.
The title of the painting can be translated as “The Beasts of the Sea.” Now add that to what we already know about the Slusho site and we get some very interesting connections here. The Slusho.jp often talks of deep sea creatures, discoveries underwater and well more water stuff…so there is a connection…a small one but a connection that we can see. Do we have anymore information then before? A little. Keep digging.
Some set photos from the film have just appeared online within the last two days at least. No one is really sure if they are real or they come from a source inside the project. One thing is for sure, Paramount is pissed, the supposed poster of the pictures is pissed and many bloggers are pissed cause they have to take them down.
The photos supposedly originated from frightstuff.com and are the property of Ken Tarallo, who is reported to be the special effects supervisor for the “Cloverfield Project.” It is also is being reported that he was fired for releasing the photos. So in my eyes that legitimizes the photos but with all this going on who knows…who knows.
We have the photos in our server and we were contemplating putting them up because…well who would tell on us…we only have about 5 readers. We might decide to put them up when things die down a bit and we get more information on the photos as a whole. The one that really interested me was a picture of a woman in a cast mold and the final product of the mold….covered in green slime. (Green Slime?) …all I have to say is this…”The Old Ones were, the Old Ones are, and the Old Ones shall be. Not in the spaces we know, but between them, They walk serene and primal, undimensioned and to us unseen.”
Monday, July 16, 2007
Everyone continues to talk about the movie currently code-named Cloverfield (the top secret JJ Abrams produced monster flick). We’re not the only ones getting tired of referring to the movie by a codename. According to FX Specialist Ken Tarallo, the title of the movie will be announced during the Paramount panel at San Diego Comic Con. AICN has revealed yet another little tidbit about the film - it begins at the end.The film starts with a rescue crew cleaning up after the entire incident, and one of them finds a camera. They rewind the tape, press play… and the playback is the movie that unfolds.I’m not sure how much I like that beginning because right from the get go you know there are survivors and the life moves on. But yes, again, the whole movie will be from the perspective of video cameras. We’ve reported in the past that it would be shot using a handicam. Apparently that is not true. They are “using the state of the art DVD Panavision camera” and according to Tarallo, not shooting in New York. So it looks like the reports of Slusho Los Angeles film sets were correct after all, and The Hollywood Reporter was misinformed.
Someone has sent us some photos that were reportedly taken on the set of Cloverfield. I have no idea if this claim is true, but the first one to the upper right looks legit.
We’ve also previously mentioned that Slusho’s origins reach much deeper than Cloverfield. The slush drink was used in the JJ Abrams television series Alias. After the jump, check out the first mention of the drink from the second episode which aired in October 2001. One will notice that the old logo looks more like the ICEE logo than the the image that appears on the Slucho.jp website and t-shirt within the trailer.
July 16, 2007 -- IT'S alive. It's huge. And it's top secret.
That's about all we know about pro ducer J.J. Abrams' latest pet project.
"Transformers" theatergoers have been scratching their heads in frustra tion at a grainy, "Blair Witch"-style advertisement for a movie that doesn't even have a name.
Working titles include "The Cloverfield Experiment," "Slusho!" and "1-18-08" (the day the movie will be released).
Last week, the trailer went up on YouTube, and Paramount Pictures was quick to take it down - only to launch its own Web site, 1-18-08.com, which features three overlapping pictures that can be turned upside-down or sideways.
Weird clues such as an imp or a demon can be seen between the faces of two girls. The No. 9 is weirdly placed on a woman's chest in one of the party pictures. Another features people walking through a white cloud of smoke with their noses and mouths covered.
In the trailer, seemingly shot on a shaky, handheld camcorder, Manhattan friends are at a going-away party for a guy named Rob, who is leaving for Japan.
The band Wolfmother blasts in the background, and in a flash the lights go out and a painful background howling is heard. On the TV screen, NY1 reporter Roma Torre reports a "thunderous, roaring sound."
Partygoers head to the roof, where fireballs attack. On the street, the Statue of Liberty's head is thrown to the pavement.
The Hollywood Reporter describes the scene as " 'Armageddon' meets 'The Blair Witch Project'." But there also might be an amusement park twist reminiscent of "Final Destination 2."
A few weeks ago, the movie was shot in Coney Island on the blocks contained by West Eighth Street, West 17th Street, Surf Avenue and the Boardwalk.
A small crew, including Abrams (co-creator of "Lost") and director Matt Reeves ("Felicity"), along with up-and-coming actors Blake Lively and Mike Vogel (both from "The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants") came into the park with hand-held video cameras.
They shot several scenes at Deno's Wonder Wheel, a scary swinging Ferris Wheel in which patrons ride in cages as they look out over Brooklyn. They also went on the Scooter bumper cars, played some ticket-stub games in the arcade, and rolled some skee ball.
A member of the Vourderis family, owners of Deno's Wonder Wheel Park, gave authorization to the film crew to shoot there.
"It's about an alien that wipes out all of New York City," says one of the owners, who wants to remain anonymous. "The footage is taken the day before everyone dies. A bunch of kids come to Coney Island with a video camera. The movie is a flashback to that day."
It is reported that they have only a $30 million budget, not a heck of a lot for a monster movie.
They also filmed a few scenes in front of the now-defunct and chained-up B&B Carousell.
The crew steered clear of Astroland and The Cyclone, but shot some scenes on the Boardwalk by Nathan's and the booths selling hot buttered corn.
"They told me I could be in the movie," said Eric Gonzalez, an 18-year-old kid who plays the freak in the paintball game "Shoot the Freak."
"I wanted to be in it so bad and I gave them my number, and they never called. I got new shoes, a hat and a whole new outfit."
NY1 reporter Torre, on the other hand, was lucky to get plucked to star in the flick, and shot "a lot" more scenes than the one you see in the trailer.
"This whole thing was cloaked in mystery," Torre told The Post. "We weren't given any names. They made me sign a nondisclosure agreement, and I'm not supposed to talk about it."
"It was so mysterious that I had no idea that this was going to be a big-budget film or an independent type movie. So I was shocked to hear about the trailer and the buzz it's getting. I'm hearing from friends across the country. It's fun."
Many theories are floating around the 'Net about what the movie could really be: Godzilla, Cthulhu, the Parasite or a movie version of "Lost." Fans have also linked it to puzzle-based Web sites such as EthanHaaswasright.com. But Abrams was quick to correct that.
"The only site of ours that people have even found is the 1-18-08.com site," he told writer Harry Knowles of Web site Ain't It Cool News. "The others . . . have nothing to do with us."
He continues: "Thank you for your support of our little movie. I can't wait to talk to you more about it - of course, knowing you, by the time we talk you'll know more than I will.
"Regarding the online stuff you posted: Yeah, we're doing some fun stuff on the Web. But, obviously, if the movie doesn't kick some massive ASS, who gives a rat's about what's online? So as you can imagine, we're focusing mostly on THAT."
Sunday, July 15, 2007
More evidence continues to backup claims that the JJ Abram’s movie is a new Gamera film, originally from the Daiei Motion Picture Company who was bought by Kadokawa Herald Pictures. I am completely convinced that whether or not the movie is Gamera, it is definitely a movie from within the Daiei Motion Picture Company stable of films. Lets break this down:The Project thinks The Gossip Rag is missing the mark. But seriously...
We have all watched the 1-18-08 Trailer.
We have a picture of a dude wearing a Slusho T-shirt in the trailer.
The Slusho website history page mentions Noriko Yoshida and family, including Ryouta Yoshida and Ganu.
Tetsuro Yoshida (his last name might just happen to be Yoshida, but I doubt it) is the writer of Daimajin, also a Daiei Motion Pictures franchise.
The movie could be Daimajin, which apparently is also slated for a 2008 release, but it is being produced by takashi miike.Daimajin is a huge stone statue that comes to life. He has a frightening angry expression on his face, green skin, Red eyeballs with yellow pupils and wears Samurai armor.But here are the reasons why I believe its Gamera:
The monster apparently comes from undersea, with “the smallest whale” and the Noriko Yoshida painting clues.
The Daiei Motion Picture Company released many of its films during World War II so they have underlying nuclear weapon themes.
Sci-Fi writes the following about Gamera.Gamera, like the Godzilla of a decade earlier, is a metaphorical response to the nuclear devastation Japan suffered in World War II and its aftermath. Gamera is also the turtle-of-the-cosmos and owes something to mythologies that state that the whole world rests upon the back of a huge tortoise. He is the legacy of nuclear folly, an unstoppable monster birthed from humanity’s tinkerings with the atom.Other 1-18-08 clues allude to the apocalypse and the end of the world. See the anti-christ website. Some people are already calling this JJ Abram’s film the end of the world movie.
Then there is The Bloop. We previously stated that the article on CNN was possibly fake. The bloop is in fact, very very real. The US Navy setup sensors during the Cold War to track the movement of Soviet Submarines. Since then the sensors have been used for different purposes such as tracking earthquakes. However, in 1997 the senors detected a mysterious bloop which some scientists think are from a huge undersea animal.
The Bloop + The Cold War = nuclear weapons + giant sea creature = Gamera and JJ Abram’s 1-18-08 Cloverfield project.
Convince me otherwise. I’ll still leave the JJ Abram’s original motion
picture idea open … but, if you still believe its a giant monster flick, its
Last week at the Project we were looking at the source code for 1-18-08.com and adding bits of what we found there to the /url. One addition did result in a new webpage. It wasn't anything remarkable, so while a curiosity, we didn't make but a mental note of it. The new page was exactly the same as the home page--dark background with the two (at the time) images floating on top of it. There was one difference though, the images were smaller.
The addition of a third image to 1-18-08.com got the project to wondering about that other /url. Specifically, what happens if the pattern of adding images to 1-18-08.com repeats again and again over the coming months? You eventually end up with dozens upon dozens of images. Take it one step further and reduce the size of those images and before you know it you have the makings of what is a very specific type of puzzle: A Photographic mosaic (or Photomosaic). For example:
So one possible concept for 1-18-08.com is to eventually host dozens (or even a hundred or more) images, reduced in size, that if put together just right will give us a glimpse of the mystery monster. And if that's not the plan, maybe it should be.
So anyway, we went back to find the /url. It's here: http://www.1-18-08.com/photos.swf
Hmm. Looks more like a byproduct of the site's code.
Lab: Determine the interval in days new images are added and divide that into the remaining days till 1-18-08 to roughly estimate how many images we may eventually be dealing with.
Hey, everyone. ”Moriarty” here.
If we’re going to talk rumors about INDY 4 this morning, we’ve definitely got to spend a little time talking about CLOVERFIELD.
Now, before you say, “well, how do we know you know anything?!”, let’s take a look back at the first mention of the film here on the site. On June 21st, before the first screening of TRANSFORMERS with the trailer attached, before anyone outside of Paramount had mentioned word one about the film anywhere, we broke the entire story here on the site. Check it out for yourself.
That story was also used to challenge the veracity of a blog that claimed to be about the production of THE DARK TOWER. I’ve since learned that the guy who ran that blog may well have been hired to be on an Abrams film... just not the one he thought he was working on. That may have been the first leak on CLOVERFIELD, but he didn’t know enough to make it worthwhile. I followed up this piece with more details on June 25th, and together, those two stories became the basis of almost everything you’ve read since.
When I wrote that story, I didn’t realize that Abrams was going to be pursuing a sort of veil of complete secrecy around the film, and I didn’t know he’d be creating a game leading up to the release. I actually feel bad that we sort of spelled it out as completely as we did. The one thing that he should be happy about is that no one really knew what the hell CLOVERFIELD was, so they didn’t read the article when I ran it. It certainly didn’t set the world on fire until people saw the trailer themselves, at which point we got flooded with e-mails asking, “What is that trailer? Why don’t you know anything about it yet?”
Well, 90% of everything that’s out there now came from one source, guys. Me. I broke the following facts about CLOVERFIELD exclusively: The title being a cover. It being a giant monster movie shot as if from a hand-held video camera. The low budget on the movie. The fact that Drew Goddard is writing it, and that Matt Reeves is directing it. The fact that the creature is nicknamed “the Parasite” by those working on the film. I described the trailer beat-for-beat before anyone outside the studio had seen it.
And yet nobody is citing us as the source of that information. Check out this asshole. And, yes, I just called you an asshole, Kirk Montgomery, because you’ve passed off other people’s work of the last two weeks as some sort of exclusive on your part. You didn’t learn anything “exclusively,” since everything in your article is regurgitated from other sources. You’re not the first person to simply re-run the information we broke about the movie in the past ten days, but you make it sound in your article like no one else anywhere has already written about the viral marketing sites or the way it’s being shot or the budget. There’s not a single piece of new reportage in your piece, and the way you try to make it sound like you somehow broke this wide open makes you... well... an asshole.
I don’t blame him, though. I’m sure he was told to write a story about this by his editor, and that’s because this has become a huge deal very quickly. Already, we’re starting to see some backlash in the talkbacks, as people talk about the film being overhyped. Fandom moves so fast these days that they’re starting to reject movies that are still shooting based solely on things like release dates or their own illogical expectations. Case in point: the way people started to get really attached to their pet theories about what this film is. “It’s VOLTRON!” “No, it’s a LOST tie-in!” “It’s not a movie at all! It’s just a LOST season four promo!” “No, it’s GODZILLA!” “No, it’s C’thulu!”
And when it turns out to be none of those things, fans are going to hold it against the movie, as if they were promised something. But they weren’t. They’ve been projecting, and they’ve gotten invested in their own ideas, and now they’re going to be mad when the film isn’t what they decided it should be.
Relax. Seriously. In a way, I don’t think JJ Abrams had any idea how much his teaser would set people off, but in another way, I think he got exactly what he wanted.
I have a theory about Abrams. I think he was a biiiiiig fan of Disneyland growing up. One of the great things about going to Disney (I lived near Orlando as a kid, so I always think about the Magic Kingdom when I think of the parks) is the way they don’t just have rides. The rides actually begin the moment you step into the park. Everything on the property is about setting a mood, getting you ready for the rides. When you’re standing in line, you get gradually immersed in these environments that drop you into the world you’re about to visit. Like the grave stones outside the Haunted Mansion or the docks on the Jungle Cruise or the ramps up into Space Mountain. You start the ride before you start the ride, and I think that sums up the attitude JJ Abrams and Bad Robot have towards entertainment now. Don’t scream at Abrams that he owes you all the answers right now. He doesn’t. Not yet. He’s got six months to go before this film comes out, so all he’s trying to do is get you intrigued. Hooked a bit. I’d say he more than accomplished that task. Now let him give you the bread crumbs as a game, and enjoy it. You’ll get onto the ride soon enough, and then it’ll be over, and why rush that? Why not enjoy the build-up?
When you get overexcited, you get an Ethan Haas situation, and people spend a lot of energy that they shouldn’t spend in the wrong direction. To be clear, all the Ethan Haas sites are interesting and well-coordinated, but none of them have anything to do with CLOVERFIELD. Instead, they are marketing for an upcoming game called ALPHA OMEGA by Mindstorm Labs. Cool stuff, but it’s not connected to the film at all.
I think the one thing that’s undisputable about the trailer is that it worked. It got people talking. Not putting a title on the teaser was a genius idea, and someone deserves a promotion for that one touch. I think that, more than anything, got people buzzing. People seem intrigued at the idea of a whole film being shot like that, and that’s pretty much what you’ll get. The film starts with a rescue crew cleaning up after the entire incident, and one of them finds a camera. They rewind the tape, press play... and the playback is the movie that unfolds.
I promise... we’ll keep you updated as more things break on this one, but for now, I think people are actually overanalyzing and they’re starting to invent things, create sites to support their crazy theories, and it’s all turning into such an overwhelming sound that it’s going to start to turn some people off.
Me? I’m excited and intrigued, and I look forward to learning more about the film as it develops.
Saturday, July 14, 2007
It started off as a mysterious handheld camera trailer for a giant monster movie before a film called Transformers. Now it's become a full-on viral phenomenon, complete with frame-by-frame break down of the trailer, digital engineering deconstructions of the creature's roar and hints to be found in the three grainy photos on the official homepage. One thing I've personally noticed is if you look in the hair between the two women in the photo above, you can clearly see the Devil. Maybe it's just me. I see the Devil everywhere.
As with any Web phenomenon, scandals have already started to break. Two sites rumored to be clues were called out as fakes by Abrams himself. "For what it's worth, the only site of ours that people have even FOUND is the 1-18-08.com site," he told Aint It Cool News. Abrams adds, "But, obviously, if the movie doesn't kick some massive ASS, who gives a rat's about what's online?". I do, you insensitive bastard. I hate you!
Ethan Haas related sites were found to be set up only to sell some ugly T-shirts by some very quick ass-merchants. Crazy coincidence of the day (or is it?): "Ethan Haas" was a character on CBS's "The Class", which also starred Lizzy Caplan, one of the stars of what iMdb has lovingly dubbed "Untitled JJ Abrams Project."
Seeing as Sony own the licence to Godzilla until 2012, that pretty much rules the big lizard out. The main theory on... the grapevine... is that the main monster is this handsome devil called Cthulu. It's a cool idea but I don't know how it would work with a $30m budget. Unless they resort to my idea of seeing only what the party crowd sees and what kind of hilarious shenanigans they get up to (as I described in the last post). Someone wierdo called Gerald Webber posted on iMdb and aicn.com with his own story (not theory) that everything has already happened and this footage was later found and released as a documentary much like the Blair Witch theory I'm now fully taking credit for.
Another thing I figured out is that "Cloverfield" is an anagram which points to The Great One, which is an entire mythos written 70 years ago. It's both clever and old. Coincidence, I think not. There's one blatantly obvious suggestion I haven't seen anywhere yet, so it must be true... (cue awesome reveal)... The city-destroying monster is a giant dramatic prarie dog!
As someone who studied marketing in college, this is a masterclass and I can't believe it hadn't been done before. It's easily the most exciting film of 2008 for me. This, The Dark Knight and Haunted High School Musical. I'm super excited for those. Okay I love you, bye-bye.
LONDON, England -- Scientists have revealed a mysterious recording that they say could be the sound of a giant beast lurking in the depths of the ocean.
Researchers have nicknamed the strange unidentified sound picked up by undersea microphones "Bloop."[AUDIO]While it bears the varying frequency hallmark of marine animals, it is far more powerful than the calls made by any creature known on Earth, Britain's New Scientist reported on Thursday.
It is too big for a whale and one theory is that it is a deep sea monster, possibly a many-tentacled giant squid.
The frequency of the sound meant it had to be much louder than any recognised animal noise, including that produced by the largest whales.
So is it a huge octopus? Although dead giant squid have been washed up on beaches, and tell-tale sucker marks have been seen on whales, there has never been a confirmed sighting of one of the elusive cephalopods in the wild.
The largest dead squid on record measured about 60ft including the length of its tentacles, but no one knows how big the creatures might grow.
For years sailors have told tales of monsters of the deep including the huge, many-tentacled kraken that could reach as high as a ship's mainmast and sink the biggest ships.
However Phil Lobel, a marine biologist at Boston University, Massachusetts, doubts that giant squid are the source of Bloop.
"Cephalopods have no gas-filled sac, so they have no way to make that type of noise," he said. "Though you can never rule anything out completely, I doubt it."
Nevertheless he agrees that the sound is most likely to be biological in origin.
The system picking up Bloop and other strange noises from the deep is a military relic of the Cold War.
In the 1960s the U.S. Navy set up an array of underwater microphones, or hydrophones, around the globe to track Soviet submarines. The network was known as SOSUS, short for Sound Surveillance System.
The listening stations lie hundreds of yards below the ocean surface, at a depth where sound waves become trapped in a layer of water known as the "deep sound channel".
Here temperature and pressure cause sound waves to keep travelling without being scattered by the ocean surface or bottom.
Most of the sounds detected obviously emanate from whales, ships or earthquakes, but some very low frequency noises have proved baffling.
Scientist Christopher Fox of the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's Acoustic Monitoring Project at Portland, Oregon, has given the signals names such as Train, Whistle, Slowdown, Upsweep and even Gregorian Chant.
He told New Scientist that most can be explained by ocean currents, volcanic activity -- Upsweep was tracked to an undersea South Pacific mountain that had not been identified as "live."
"The sound waves are almost like voice prints. You're able to look at the characteristics of the sound and say: 'There's a blue whale, there's a fin whale, there's a boat, there's a humpback whale and here comes and earchquake," he says.
But some sounds remain a mystery he says. Like Bloop -- monster of the deep?
In 1997, Bloop was detected by U.S. Navy "spy" sensors 3,000 miles apart that had been put there to detect the movement of Soviet submarines, the magazine reports.
It's one of the most anticipated movies of 2008...but what the hell is it?
Man, I don't know about you, but I can't wait for Paramount's Cloverfield! It's gonna be great, it's gonna be spectacular, it's gonna be huge!
Never mind that I have no idea what it is.Because after all, at the moment not many people do, and the ones who do sure ain't saying anything. And yet, despite the lack of overall knowledge regarding the movie, it's already one of those most anticipated movies of 2008 – all thanks to an incredibly cryptic teaser trailer that ran with Transformers on opening weekend. You've probably already seen it – you know, the one in which a going away party is interrupted by what appears to be some sort of invasion outside. You know, the one that doesn't give any title, instead simply saying "from producer J.J. Abrams" and "1-08-08." You know, the one that pissed off the entire theater?
And yet, you can't say it wasn't effective, because I bet that most of the frustrated moviegoers were talking about that trailer after Transformers, and I bet a lot of them went home, signed online, and tried to find any information they could on it. I know I did. Unfortunately, there wasn't really much to find, and even as we've gotten a little bit more information, we still don't know anything. We know that it's called Cloverfield…except, according to Paramount, that's not the real name. We know it has something to do with the website Ethan Haas Was Right, where visitors solve puzzles in order to watch cryptic video messages (something about how Haas' end of the world predictions were initially laughed at, but have turned out to be unfortunately true)…except some sources say it actually has nothing to do with that site, and it's all just a giant diversion.
Well, at least we know the release date is January 8th, 2008
……except, maybe it's not.
In a day and age when nearly every single element of a movie is spoiled online months before its release, Abrams and Paramount have done the impossible. They've managed to surprise everyone, and have delivered an actual mystery to moviegoers. And we've taken the bait – already, the Internet has been buzzing with various theories and wild speculation about just what the heck this movie actually is.
Of course, not everyone is eager to join in on the guessing game. My girlfriend, for instance, refuses, and she doesn't even want me to vocalize my theories around her. She enjoys the secrecy, and apparently hopes to make it all the way to the film's release without finding out anything.
Well, nuts to that, I say. For one thing, it's not like she'll be able to get all the way to the movie's opening without getting some kind of idea of what it is – at a certain point, Abrams will have to lay at least some of his cards on the table.
But, more importantly, the guessing game is all part of the experience, and that's how Abrams wants it. He wouldn't have made everything so damn perplexing if he didn't want us to try to figure it out. So, what the hell, I'll play his game. Let's take a look at and analyze some of the more widespread theories about just what "The Unnamed Movie Currently Named Cloverfield actually is.
A live-action Voltron movie
Yeah…right. Look, I can understand why this particular theory was originated, given that the trailer did play in front of another "80s-cartoon-turned-live-action" epic. But, see, that's just it…if you wanted to sell a movie version of Voltron to a theater full of geeked-out fanboys on a nostalgia kick, as many of the Transformers theaters were (and I'm including myself in there, so I certainly mean no offense), you wouldn't do it with some vague, cryptic teaser. You'd simply flash the word "Voltron" up on screen. It's not rocket science (On that note, I would have loved to have seen an actual Voltron trailer surprisingly pop up before my Transformers screenings – if only to watch it set off the same kind of collective nerd-orgasm that the Transformers teaser originally did when it first hit theaters last summer).
Besides that, the tone of the trailer seems a bit off for Voltron, wouldn't you say? Hey, if Abrams wants to reinvent Voltron as a dark, moody, monster film, then more power to him, I suppose. But I just don't see it. Also, I somehow doubt something like J.J. Abrams taking over a live-action Voltron movie could have actually escaped the notice of the Internet-nerd community. Let's face it, we'd be all over that one, and the cat would have been out of the bag a long time ago. So, to summarize, I'd say this theory is primarily a case of wishful thinking. I'm sure that, with the success of Transformers, a future Voltron film is a definite possibility. But this ain't it.
J.J. Abrams' new Star Trek movie
It's pretty easy to see where this theory came from; after all, it's by far the laziest: "Hey, we know Abrams is attached to the new Star Trek film, right? And that just said this movie is from Abrams. Well, hell, this must be the new Star Trek movie!"
Now, ignoring the fact that this idea presupposes that J.J. Abrams cannot multi-task, and is somehow incapable of working on two projects at once, let's really think about this, shall we? Remember what I said about not having to be coy when promoting a Voltron movie? Well, with Star Trek, take that and multiply it by about a million. Never mind that Abrams' Trek flick is only in the early stages of production, and certainly won't be anywhere near completion by January. The fact is, when it comes time for Paramount to start giving us a taste of Abrams' Trek, they're not gonna do so with some kind of super-secretive campaign. No, they're gonna put it right out there – as they should. Abrams taking over a massive franchise like Trek is a huge deal, and doesn't need viral marketing and a mysterious teaser to get attention.
Besides, what I said about the trailer's tone not quite fitting Voltron also definitely applies here. There's been a lot of speculation about just how radical Abrams' re-imagining of Trek will be, but I'm fairly confident it won't be this crazy ("something calling themselves ‘Klingons' have attacked New York! Quick, put together a Starfleet and let's get after them!"). Personally, I wouldn't be at all surprised to see the first teaser for Abrams Trek movie play with whatever Cloverfield ends up being, but that's about as far as I'm willing to go with this idea.
A Lost spin-off film
Once again, this idea is kinda based on a lazy tendency to assume this top-secret project must have something to do with Abrams' other works (oddly enough, no one seems to suggesting Cloverfield might actually be an Alias movie, or, even better, a Felicity movie), but in this case, the argument actually seems to make a little more sense than with the Star Trek idea.
After all, right now Cloverfield is all about being mysterious, right? And what is Lost, if not a giant mystery disguised as a TV show? Could it all be one and the same? I mean, Lost has its own giant monster already – could the smoke-monster somehow have made its way to the mainland? And what about Ethan Haas – could he and Ethan of The Others be one and the same?
Probably not…but I can see why people would like to think so. Still, the very reason people have guessed that this might be a Lost movie is probably the very reason it's not - Abrams' involvement. He may have co-created the show, and still has a hand in it as an executive producer, but for the most part he doesn't seem to be all that involved with it anymore. For the last two seasons, Lost has pretty much become Damon Lindelof and Carlton Cuse's baby. I know it's tempting for Lost fans to think that Abrams has distanced himself from the show in order to put together a secret Lost movie, but how realistic is that?
Really, I wouldn't put it past Abrams to have a little fun with the fans, by putting a few "wink-wink" references into the film that suggest it might take place in the same universe as Lost. But as for it being a full-fledged spin-off? Not likely.
A new Godzilla remake
Now here's where it gets interesting – and slightly more plausible. I've seen it rumored that Abrams has been involved in a new Godzilla movie for the past two years – could this be that project? The preview sure has that Godzilla look and feel, doesn't it? Of course, the Ethan Haas stuff doesn't really seem to fit into the Godzilla mythos, so this theory works best if you buy into the idea that all that extra stuff has nothing to do with the movie itself, and is just meant to throw off people from the (more obvious) truth.
There are some other factors that make this idea somewhat believable, as well. For instance, we know that Toho (Godzilla's Japanese parent company) was none-too-pleased with the American version (along with the rest of the world), but were initially intrigued by the idea of a big-budget, Hollywood interpretation of their biggest star. It's certainly possible that they might want to take another stab at it, this time with someone at the helm who will have a little more respect for the source material. And hey, "their" Godzilla is dead, with Godzilla: Final Wars supposedly having been the final film in the series. It's not like anyone actually believes that's the case, but the question remains: Does Toho simply want to wait a few years and re-start the Japanese series, or are they willing to once again try to kick-off a brand new Americanized version?
As a Godzilla fan, I sure would love to see a proper Hollywood version that could actually get the story and themes right, while still delivering the big-budget spectacle an American studio movie promises. Yep, I would love to see that…but I don't think I will anytime soon. Once again, this falls into the whole "could they really keep this a secret" category. Do you really think if Abrams had a new Godzilla movie in the works, we wouldn't have heard about it until the first teaser? Doubtful. Plus, consider the release date. Even with the bad feelings toward the last American version, you'd have to think a new Hollywood Godzilla film would still earn a high-profile summer release (of course, there is that possibility that 1-08-08 isn't really the release date at all, but for now let's assume it is).
Whether it be Japanese or American, there will no doubt be another Godzilla movie sometime in the future. I just can't bring myself to think this is it.
One giant misdirect
There has been some speculation that this whole Cloverfield thing – the teaser, the websites, Paramount's comments – is nothing more than a giant smokescreen, a big goof being used to cover-up or keep attention off of a larger project (like Abrams' Trek film, for example). Personally, this is one of my favorite theories, if only for the perverse pleasure I would get from millions of people going to see what they think is one thing, but it turns out to be something completely different ("wait a minute, where's the monster? Where are the bombs? What is…it's a romantic comedy starring Miley Cyrus??? NOOO!!!")
Yeah, I love that idea…but I wouldn't bet on it. As intriguing as it might sound, and as much as some people might want to think that Paramount would be crafty enough to try something like that, I'm not so sure. Quite frankly, I don't think Paramount would want to risk the potential ill-will that would come from getting everyone's hopes up for something really cool, and the delivering something else entirely. Sure, there would be some people who applaud the subterfuge, and not mind being fooled. But there would probably be lots more who would complain – even if whatever the project was ended up being 100 times cooler than what they were expecting anyway.
And let's not forget, what we have seen of Cloverfield so far is pretty damn cool. Ditto the web stuff, and the overall mystery concerning it. Wouldn't it seem like quite the waste to come-up with all this great stuff, only for it to be a big "gotcha?" Abrams might be trying to surprise his audience, and maybe even fool them, but he doesn't want to disappoint them. Whatever Cloverfield ends up being, I'm sure it will deliver on what the initial teaser, and any subsequent trailers, actually promise.
A big-budget take on H.P. Lovecraft's inter-dimensional "Old Ones"
This seems to be the favorite theory at the moment, and from what I can tell that's only because it's the one held by Harry Knowles (cause Ain't It Cool News is never wrong!). That being said, it's a pretty cool theory, isn't it? And it seems to make sense – a big budget Lovecraft movie probably would have been more under the radar than something like Voltron or Godzilla (at least to most people – it seems like the horror-based websites would have heard about it), so it's not a stretch to believe that Abrams could have kept it a secret until now. If true, it would obviously be big news for Lovecraft fans. Not only would it be the biggest-profile Lovecraft movie to date, bit with Guillermo Del Toro prepping his own adaptation of Lovercraft's "At the Mountains of Madness," it would signal the beginning of a huge new cinematic interest in the author many consider to be the father of modern horror.
But then, just how big is the fan-base that would be excited about such a thing? Hey, I love Lovecraft (ha-ha), and would get a huge kick out of seeing Cthulhu laying waste to New York City. But are there really that many people like me? I know, I know, Lovecraft has a very devoted cult-following. But it's exactly that: a cult following. Is Paramount really willing to devote this much time, energy, and money to a project based on an author who appeals primarily to a very niche audience? I'd like to say "yes," but everything I know about how Hollywood works seems to scream "no."
Right now, I'd say this one is a lot more likely than all the other theories I've discussed so far, but I'm still not entirely convinced.
A Reign of Fire prequel
All right, truth be told, no one has actually floated this particular theory yet, but I thought I would just go ahead and throw it onto the pile myself. Why? Because I actually happen to like the 2002 "earth vs. the dragons" Reign of Fire. And it's not like I'm totally alone; there are at least 2 or 3 other guys who enjoyed this movie, and wouldn't mind seeing another installment – if only to get more of Matthew McConaughey as Van Zan. I mean, c'mon, did you see this flick? McConaughey deserves some kind of special Lifetime Achievement in Overacting award for that role alone. Brilliant stuff, really.
A completely original "giant monster" movie
Let's face it; at the end of the day, this is our most-likely option, for pretty much all the reasons I said it's not any of the above options. Would it really have been possible to have kept any of those really high-profile franchises secret until just six months before the release? Probably not. But a brand-new series that no one has ever heard of before? Heck, Abrams could have been working on that under the radar for years without any really taking notice.
Plus, the very nature of the ad-campaign, with its aggressive and mysterious style, suggests that Paramount is trying to build up interest for something that people wouldn't necessarily automatically be interested in. You don't need to go overboard to sell people on Godzilla, but something new that cynics might label as a Godzilla rip-off? In that case, it's probably not a bad idea to start building up a fan-base even before details of the movie come out, which is exactly what this whole Cloverfield-mess has been doing. Whenever Abrams and Paramount finally do announce the actual nature of the project, it will no longer matter if it's something no one has heard of until then – everyone will already be invested in it. If you ask me, it's probably a safe bet that Abrams has created something entirely fresh, and is now going out of his way to build up expectation for it (personally, I'm hoping it's a Godzilla-style movie told entirely through the hand-held cameras of people in the city, as the trailer suggests. If you ask me, that could be pretty damn cool).
So now, the only question left is, will it live up to the hype? Whatever the hell Cloverfield ends up being, it now looks like it will arrive riding a wave of massive hype. But is that necessarily a good thing? I'm sure that, at the moment, Abrams and Paramount are very pleased with the amount of attention and speculation that this project has already received – but, then again, so were the people behind Snakes on a Plane at this time last summer, and we all know how that one turned out. A lot of pre-release hype does not a success make. Right now, it seems easy to say that Cloverfield will be huge, simply because it's hard to remember this much excitement caused by something as simple as a cryptic teaser trailer. But in the end it's gonna take a lot more than that trailer to make this thing work.
For one thing, Abrams and Paramount have to be real careful about just how mystifying they keep it, and when they finally start giving some answers. Right now, it's a lot of fun to try to guess what the hell it is, but eventually they'll have to show us something – will they be able to keep things mysterious, even while providing actual information? One can only hope so, because obviously they have made the this guessing game into part of the whole experience – for better or worse – and it would be a shame to see them have to abandon it in favor of a more traditional ad-campaign. But it would likewise be disappointing to see the movie bomb simply because a large part of the audience gets frustrated with the lack of actual knowledge. It's going to be a fine line to walk – I hope they're up for the challenge.
If they are feeling at all nervous about it, let me offer them a little encouragement – right now, we are with them. We are more than happy to play along with the game, to tackle the puzzles, to decipher the clues. At a time when pre-release spoilers abound like crazy, it's actually somewhat refreshing to be in the dark for a change. No matter how much we might bitch and moan in the process, the truth is we secretly enjoy it. So, Mr. Abrams, as strange as this sounds, we are asking you for a favor – keep us in the dark.
Just make sure it's worth it when you finally turn on the lights.