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Kevin Hart Elaborates On His 'Forward Trajectory' At Netflix, And The Chance Of Lift Getting A Theatrical Push

 Kevin Hart in Lift.
Kevin Hart in Lift.

There are a number of talented actors, writers, and directors who have taken their talents over to Netflix. Adam Sandler basically makes movies exclusively for the streaming service now, including the upcoming Spaceman, which just dropped a trailer. Rian Johnson also cut a handsome deal with Netflix to make Knives Out mysteries for the foreseeable future. But if one star could arguably make the case that they are the face of Netflix, it would be Kevin Hart.

It seems that whenever we run a feature covering all the new Netflix offerings, Kevin Hart has a project to promote. Recently, it was the actor’s heist-thriller-comedy Lift, which will be followed by his collaboration with Chris Rock titled Headliners Only. Hart appears to be very happy at Netflix, where he has produced a steady stream of movies including Me Time, The Man from Toronto, Fatherhood, and Die Hart. When I got the chance to speak with Kevin and his producing partner Bryan Smiley about Lift and their Netflix relationship, the actor-comedian opened up about why it’s working so well for him at the moment, telling CinemaBlend:

The success that I'm seeing on a global platform like Netflix has been more beneficial for me as a talent, and also us as a company. The bandwidth, I guess you could say, the ability to create material but create it with the understanding of the world. Universal content. Universal storytelling. Stories that we want to tell, but we want to make sure everybody can see, and take something away. There's a lot of boxes that I'm able to check through this lens, and with this relationship. So right now, I'm happy. And the happiness comes with the trust, and the growth.

There’s something to be said about releasing a movie to Netflix, knowing that the film instantly can be made available to a global network of subscribers. That doesn’t mean that Hart will stop making movies. His collaborations with The Rock are extremely lucrative. And if they can get Jumanji 4 off the ground, you know that Sony Pictures will want that to be a tentpole on their theatrical release schedule. As Hart elaborated to CinemaBlend:

The theatrical business, I don't feel like is going anywhere, nor is the business of streaming. You know, at some point maybe they combine, but they already are to some degree, the way that they're sharing IP and sharing release dates and timelines, etc. So who knows where the business is going. I just like to stay in front of it, and right now I feel like I am. So I don't want to start thinking with the thought of going backwards. I need to think with a forward trajectory.

That “forward trajectory” has taken him to Netflix, where Lift received moderate reviews, but allowed him to film in Italy, which doesn’t suck. Keep track of all the movies coming to Netflix in 2024, which at the moment include the live action Avatar: The Last Airbender, Beverly Hills Cop: Axel Foley, and Zack Snyder’s Rebel Moon: Part Two.