Rian Johnson Has ‘A Big Cloud Of Ideas’ For The Third Benoit Blanc Movie – Exclusive

Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery

by Ben Travis |
Published on

Between its packed-out one-week-only cinema release, to its chart-topping Netflix release around Christmas, it’s fair to say that Rian Johnson’s Knives Out sequel Glass Onion was a major hit – another compelling Benoit Blanc mystery. With a fresh ensemble cast, a sunnier setting, and a different tone, it presented a distinct detective story from writer-director Johnson – who, as part of his Netflix deal, is confirmed to be working on a third film in the series.

While Johnson has his imminent Natasha Lyonne-starring TV series Poker Face and that long-awaited (and apparently still happening) Star Wars trilogy floating around his head, he’s putting the third Knives Out film first on his docket. “I’m making the next [Benoit Blanc movie] next,” he confirms to Empire, “because it’s the most exciting thing right now to me. That’s served me really well. I feel like any movie I’m making, I need to be making it because I can’t imagine doing anything else. I’m jumping into the next Benoit Blanc next because I can’t think about another story.” Just, what exactly that story is is still in the planning stages. “I’ve got a big cloud of ideas, but it hasn’t all snapped into focus yet,” Johnson says. “It’s exciting, though, and it’s very, very different from this one. That’s what I’m excited about.”

Talking about the process of building up Glass Onion’s multi-layered story, Johnson discussed the ways in which writing a Benoit Blanc mystery is all about creating an emotionally-engaging, cinematic experience, rather than twists for the sake of twists. “I start structurally,” he says. “I start working in notebooks. I don’t start with a crime, I start with the structure of the story, and what the audience’s journey is actually going to be through the story. Which has to do with the crime, but more than that, it has to do with who we care about and why.” Hence how you end up with plots like Knives Out and Glass Onion, where the real mystery becomes apparent relatively late in the runtime. “That’s great, as opposed to, ‘Let’s come up with a great murder’, where you’ll drive yourself insane trying to do it,” he says. Bring on the next case.

Empire – March 2023 – Ant-Man And The Wasp: Quantumania cover

Read Empire’s full Rian Johnson interview – talking the secrets of Glass Onion and his continued plans for Benoit Blanc – in the world-exclusive Ant-Man And The Wasp: Quantumania issue, on sale Thursday 19 January and available to order online here. Glass Onion is streaming now on Netflix.

Just so you know, whilst we may receive a commission or other compensation from the links on this website, we never allow this to influence product selections - read why you should trust us