Pulling off one of the coolest cinematic surprises in years, Bad Robot and Paramount revealed in January 2016 that the spiritual successor to Cloverfield would be landing in theaters in less than two months.

Kept under complete wraps aside from its shoot code name of Valencia and a cast list featuring Mary Elizabeth Winstead, John Goodman and John Gallgher Jr., 10 Cloverfield Lane, at the very least, allowed genre fans to ingest a movie without the standard year-long marketing blitz that usually obliterates all sense of discovery.

Director Dan Trachtenberg certainly delivered a smart thriller that deftly transitioned from a dark character exploration into a last-act blast of sci-fi thrills that firmly committed the story to the still enigmatic Cloverfield mythology.

Three months after the whirlwind release of 10 Cloverfield Lane, Trachtenberg talks to Blastr about the benefits of shooting the film in narrative order, initial audience reactions and whether t are more Cloverfield anthology stories in his future.

When the script was offered with the Cloverfield connection embedded in it, did that give you some creative pause considering this would be the official followup to the original?

It was Cloverfield in the fabric of it, but I never thought that I’m making Cloverfield 2.

The most challenging scenes were Michelle’s arcs: The opening with Michelle and the middle confession scene with Michelle talking through the wall with Emmett.

It really was from the fabric of the story perspective, asking, when are we saying too much or too little in the opening and middle because we were desperate for the ending to land.

We had a very luxurious rehearsal period of a week in the location, in the rooms, so it put the scenes on their feet.

10 Cloverfield Lane