The 2020 Polish film 365 Days, based on the first novel of a trilogy by Blanka Lipińska, was a wild success over at Netflix, being in the daily Top 10 list on Netflix in over 90 countries around the world and it was the fourth most searched for film on Google globally in 2020. However, it wasn't exactly popular with critics and special interest groups. The story followed Massimo, a member of the Sicilian Mafia family, who kidnaps Laura, a sales director, and gives her 365 days to fall in love with him. Many accused the film of contributing to rape culture and sexual violence, eventually prompting a letter for its removal from the service. Netflix declined to remove the film on the basis they had followed proper policies in having the film carry a caution that forewarned audiences of the film's sex, violence, and nudity. Netflix continues to defend that decision but announcing not just one, but two sequels currently being in production. Lukasz Kluskiewicz, content acquisition manager of Netflix films for central and Eastern Europe and Poland, had this to say on the announcement:
“365 Days was one of our most popular films for our members in 2020. We’re working closely with Blanka Lipinska, the author of the 365 Days trilogy of books and writer of the film, to continue Laura and Massimo’s story on screen. Their journey together is full of many twists and turns as our characters continue to grow and learn more about themselves.”
The sequels will adapt the remaining installments of Lipinska's book trilogy which are This Day and Next 365 Days. While the first film ended with Laura's fate left in the balance, the sequel will see both her and Massimo returning and reuniting, though their relationship will be complicated by Massimo’s family ties and a mysterious man who enters Laura’s life to win her heart and trust, at any cost. Original cast members Michele Morrone, Anna-Maria Sieklucka, Magdalena Lamparska, and Otar Saralidze are returning for the sequels with it also announced Simone Susinna will join the cast, as a new character named Nacho.
Lipinska co-wrote the first film's script with Tomasz Mandes along with the films co-directors Barbara Bialowąs and Tomasz Mandes. Bialowas and Mandes will return to co-direct the sequels while Lipinska will co-write the scripts with Mojca Tirs and Mandes. Lipinska herself added to the announcement, “I’m so excited to show fans of my novels all over the world this fresh look at the characters and to continue Laura and Massimo’s story.”
Production on both sequels are set to start this month with shooting occurring in Poland and Italy. The films are slated to be released on Netflix globally in 2022. Stay tuned!