TV & FILM
brian-mcgee - November 5, 2018
The Coen Brothers' last film was the underwhelming Hail, Caesar, which means there's quite a lot riding on their follow-up, The Ballad of Buster Scruggs. The film began life as a Netflix original miniseries, until they decided to cut down the six stories into one feature-length film that will make its way to select theaters this weekend before debuting on the streaming service on November 16.
The film will be the first Netflix original to debut theatrically prior to debuting on the service itself, a move that indicates the streaming giant is making a serious play at the Oscars this year, and their upcoming films Roma and Bird Box will follow this same strategy. Whether that translates to Oscar gold remains to be seen, as Netflix has only one narrative feature (last year's Mudbound) that scored any Oscar nominations.
As for the Coens, this will mark their return to the Western genre following 2010's smash hit True Grit, which itself landed 10 Oscar nominations. It's going to be interesting to see how this plays out and whether or not this flick will be a player during this year's awards season. Either way, it promises to be the first Netflix Original Film that most film geeks will stream the night it debuts.
The Ballad of Buster Scruggs opens in limited theatrical release on Friday, before premiering on Netflix the following Friday, November 16.