TV and Movies·Posted on May 18, 2021Netflix's "The Woman In The Window" Seemed Cursed From The Outset — Here's Everything That Went On Behind The Scenes"It kinda sucked."by CT SealeBuzzFeed ContributorFacebookPinterestTwitterMailLink It seems like I'm not alone in finding Netflix's The Woman in the Window a bit of a chaotic journey, but like it or not, it's a wonder this film even made it to our screens! Tap to play GIF Tap to play GIF Netflix / Via giphy.com Despite an A++ list of talent onboard, production was plagued by delays, confused test audiences, reshoots, and scandals among those involved. Melinda Sue Gordon / © Netflix / Courtesy Everett Collection But where there's a will, there's a way (especially when there are content-hungry masses to please), and The Woman in the Window is finally available for all to see. Check out the unusual journey of the movie's making below. Author A.J. Finn sold the movie rights to The Woman in the Window to Fox 2000 for one million dollars before the book was even released. Netflix/ Courtesy Everett Collection This seemed like a good gamble, as the book entered the New York Times bestseller list at position No. 1 — only the 12th debut work to do so. A.J. Finn was revealed as the pen name of editor Dan Mallory, who got called out for being a big, big liar. David M. Benett Among his deceptions: his mom died of cancer, his brother of suicide, he had a tumor and spinal surgery, and he has a doctorate from Oxford (none are true). The novel is a riff on Hitchcock's Rear Window, though there are accusations that Mallory plagiarized plot elements from other works. Courtesy Everett Collection Namely, Sarah A. Denzil's novel Saving April and, coincidentally, a 1995 movie called Copycat. (Jake Gyllenhaal is slated to play Mallory in a movie adaptation of the author's wacky life.) The script was adapted by Pulitzer Prize–winning playwright Tracy Letts, who said the process in general "kind of sucked." Taylor Hill / WireImage He's penned such mammoth works as August: Osage County and Killer Joe (and played the dad in Lady Bird and the therapist here), and this was his first experience taking on the work of another writer. He says, "I got into the weeds of it. I was like, oh shit, this is hard. And I was also working with a lot of producers, a director, and they had a lot of notes." The movie was produced by Scott Rudin, who was exposed as extremely abusive in the workplace. Melinda Sue Gordon / © Netflix / courtesy Everett Collection The scandal came out just about a month before the film's release. Among his charges? Smashing a computer monitor on an assistant's hand (requiring a trip to the ER), throwing a glass bowl against a wall, throwing a laptop at a window, throwing a potato and a stapler at people in separate incidents, being racist, and forcing another producer out of his car while on a highway... The first test audience was in Paramus, New Jersey, and they did not like or understand the movie. Tap to play GIF Tap to play GIF Netflix / Via giphy.com So screenwriter Tony Gilroy (of the first four Bourne movie scripts) was brought in for rewrites—which audiences also didn't like. The release date of the film was delayed by over a year and a half. Melinda Sue Gordon / © Netflix / Courtesy Everett Collection It was originally supposed to come out in October 2019 and was pushed till May 2020 due to reshoots. Then of course COVID got in the way, so in the summer of '20, the film was sold to Netflix. Fox 2000 studios, which produced the movie, closed the day of its release. Tap to play GIF Tap to play GIF Netflix / Via giphy.com The studio was purchased by Disney in March 2019, and The Woman in the Window was its last film before being shuttered this month. Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross composed the original score but dropped out. Pixar They left during the reshoot phase and instead worked on Disney's Soul, for which they won an Oscar. Luckily Danny Elfman (Batman, Edward Scissorhands, The Nightmare Before Christmas) took over. This is noted director Joe Wright's very first thriller, a genre he's always wanted to tackle. Melinda Sue Gordon / © Netflix / Courtesy Everett Collection He's responsible for such book-to-film successes as Pride and Prejudice and Atonement, which definitely resonated with audiences. His goal for Woman in the Window: "What I hope people will take away from this is a sense that our own fears can incarcerate us. And this is a story about a woman who manages to overcome her own fears and leave them behind her." Netflix engaged in some unusual real-window advertising, which may or may not have been legal. jake dobkin @jakedobkin It’s animated, and the screens take up the whole window- this was not cheap to install 03:50 PM - 16 May 2021 Reply Retweet Favorite Twitter: @jakedobkin Regardless, it wasn't a hit with the neighbors in Brooklyn. The Manhattan brownstone from the film was actually built on a soundstage! Netflix The sprawling home serves as the vast majority of the movie's setting. Each floor was designed with its own character in mind, with that spooky stairwell as the unbroken, connecting thread. I think it's safe to say that this is a complicated film, both onscreen and off. Tap to play GIF Tap to play GIF Netflix / Via giphy.com What are your feels on the film? Let us know in the comments!