Netflix have seen great success with The Kissing Booth franchise, and have now locked the star of those movies, Joey King, into a first-look deal. King’s deal will see the streaming giant produce and develop movies under her new company All The King’s Horses.
King will serve as a principal at ATKH alongside Jamie King and Dan Spilo, with Tyler Frederickson serving as the company’s development executive. This makes King one of the youngest people ever to sign a production deal with a major streamer.
She recently produced the third Kissing Booth movie, which hits Netflix in August, as well as dystopian YA movie Uglies, directed by McG and based on Scott Westerfeld‘s book series. That one’s currently in production.
King said in a statement: “My relationship with Netflix started five years ago with me in a state of disbelief that I was getting to lead one of their first original YA films. That feeling of amazement and disbelief of working with them has only grown. I am honored to have a first-look deal with a company that changed my life and lifts me up in my journey in growing as a producer.
I’ve always had a lot of ideas and opinions, but now I have an outlet for those ideas and with a company that couldn’t be more collaborative. I can’t wait for us to make some movie magic happen.”
Ian Bricke, Netflix’s VP of Independent Film, added: “Joey is a formidable talent and a wonderful creative partner. We’ve had an amazing collaboration over the last many years with the Kissing Booth trilogy. With the final Kissing Booth releasing this summer, we’re thrilled to be Joey’s creative home in the next phase of her evolving career.”
This deal makes sense, as Netflix have clearly made it a priority to keep a hold of their homegrown stars and/or filmmakers behind their most successful content.
While she hasn’t signed a first-look deal like King, Millie Bobby Brown continues to have a strong relationship with the streamer after breaking out in Stranger Things and going on to star in Enola Holmes and its upcoming sequel.
The streamer also retains a close relationship with director Mike Flanagan, who created The Haunting Of Hill House, one of their most popular shows. Netflix has three separate Flanagan projects currently in the works.
So signing this deal with King makes sense. No matter how The Kissing Booth movies are received critically, they clearly get big viewing numbers and drive engagement amongst the key YA demographic. Netflix knows that those people watching The Kissing Booth will likely follow King to her next projects, which, with this first-look deal, will now keep them watching Netflix.
The streamer perhaps also saw the possibility of King becoming a bigger star and wanted to keep her best projects in-house. Prior to this deal, she’d already signed on to star in The Princess for 20th Century, as well as a limited series adaptation of Jodi Picoult‘s bestselling book A Spark Of Light for Hulu.
She also just wrapped the Paramount movie The In-Between, based on her own story pitch, while she’s also got a supporting role in David Leitch‘s upcoming action-thriller Bullet Train, which stars Brad Pitt.
So Netflix may have timed this deal exceptionally well. By the time King’s post-Kissing Booth Netflix movies under this new deal arrive, there’s a chance she’s much more of a household name.
The Kissing Booth 3 debuts on Netflix on Wednesday, August 11, while Bullet Train is currently scheduled to hit cinemas next April.