Filmmaker David Fincher has been reflecting on his films so far and discusses why he’s plumped to work solely with Netflix for the next few years.
It’s fair to say that David Fincher can’t boast as extensive a filmography as some of his peers. However, most film fans would likely agree that his movies are at least largely recognisable as his own, not always a given in an era of Hollywood where producers and executives often gloss away a director’s individualities and idiosyncrasies. Those very elements that often give a film a sense of authorship and individuality.
Perhaps then that’s why Fincher seems to have found something of a home at Netflix. The last few small screen projects that he has produced such as Mindhunter, House Of Cards, Love, Death And Robots and his latest feature film as a director, Mank, have all been developed at Netflix. In fact you have to go back over six years to find the last fully-realised project that Fincher worked in that wasn’t in conjunction with the streaming giant, 2014’s Gone Girl.
Fincher has been chatting to Premiere France (via Dark Horizons) about that relationship ahead of the release of Mank next month, a black and white biopic charting the creation of the landmark 1941 film, Citizen Kane. He also revealed that he’ll be working exclusively with Netflix for at least four more years to come.
“Yes, I have an exclusivity deal with [Netflix] for another four years, and depending on Mank’s reception, I’ll either go see them sheepishly asking them what I can do to redeem myself or take the attitude of the arrogant a–hole who’ll require making other films in black and white. [Laughs] No, I’m here to deliver them ‘content’ – whatever it means – likely to bring them spectators, in my small sphere of influence”
“Now [because] I signed this Netflix deal it’s also because I’d like to work like Picasso painted, to try very different things, to try to break the shape or change the operating mode. I like the idea of having a body of work. And yes, I admit that it feels strange, after 40 years in this profession, to only have ten films under my belt. Well, eleven, but ten that I can say are mine. Yes, objectively, it is a pretty terrifying observation.”
It’s no secret that Fincher’s uncompromising style has led to difficulties for him when it comes to getting projects off the ground. With Netflix being something of a haven for filmmakers in that regard, where they are largely left alone to make the films they want, it’s hard to argue with his logic.
Whether this means we’ll get to see the director producing films with greater regularity over the next few years remains to be seen. In the meanwhile though, we can be thankful that we have a Fincher film to look forward to before the end of 2020.