Coming off of First Man and La La Land, I don’t think I would have guessed that director Damien Chazelle’s next directorial project would be for Netflix. Yet, that’s exactly what happened. Chazelle signed on to helm the first two episodes of The Eddy, but working with the subscription streamer wasn’t without its own unique set of challenges.
In a recent episode of CinemaBlend’s own ReelBlend podcast, the director detailed what it was like working on Netflix’s The Eddy. The musical series was set in Paris and filmed often in real restaurants and locations, except for the club, which was actually a set for the miniseries. That wasn’t the biggest challenge, however; instead, it was trying to convince Netflix that filming on 16 mm was worth the effort.
You can hear more about how The Eddy came together on Reelblend, including a funny self-deprecating joke from Damien Chazelle about “always fighting for 16 [mm].”
Damien Chazelle is a self-proclaimed lover of 16 mm and Netflix is often noted for how open it is with letting writers and filmmakers do their thing on the small screen. However, convincing the subscription streaming service Digital wasn’t the path for some of The Eddy’s shots sounds like it was harder than you might think, though Netflix did concede in the end.
It actually wound up being the hardest thing to get through the transom. Because Netflix isn’t really into 16 mm or really anything that’s not super sharp, clean, Digital. So getting them over the hump was a thing. But to their credit, they did let me do it at the end. Then I think the thing you were describing was what I was going for I guess. It feels a little tactile. I like feeling the physicality of it.
The freedom offered by Netflix – not to mention the budgets—have led to the subscription streaming adding some huge names and critically acclaimed projects to its portfolio in recent years. The likes of Martin Scorsese, David Ayer, Peter Berg, Alfonso Cuaran, David Fincher, Guillermo del Toro have all worked with Netflix in some capacity, and I could go on with other big names. The allure of television and movies on the streaming service is changing the types of projects some of these directors get involved with and more, which brings us back to the wild idea that Damien Chazelle might want to do TV.
Now, he’s done it with The Eddy and we’ll have to wait and see if he dips his toes into the TV realm again, as next up he has a film called Babylon in the works. The good news? He seems to have an idea for how to navigate the streaming waters after this first foray.