MCN Blogs
David Poland

By David Poland

Why NYT Should Not Be Doing Trend Stories: Episode 347

A Micheal Cieply piece comes up… “Ready for 2010, Some Films Shot Way Back When.”
The picture is of Shutter Island. That and The Green Zone are the highest profile holdovers. But Universal didn’t go on the record… even though they had some interesting things to explain. For instance, stars like Matt Damon usually oblige studios to keep a distance between their releases. In this case, Invictus won the Fall 2009 battle, so Green Zone arrives in 2010. (There was also talk that Paul Greengrass was not done fixing the movie in time for a 2009 release.) The Wolfman, on the other hand, had reshoots pretty late in 2009. Sometimes, the only sane choice is to slow the train, reconsider the marketing, and move forward when you are ready.
In the case of Shutter Island, Paramount cleared out their entire fall for reasons of strategy or cash flow, depending on who is telling the story. That’s their prerogative. And that’s a story.
But what got my attention was this comment: “At least 16 of the 28 films set for release by Hollywood

Be Sociable, Share!

10 Responses to “Why NYT Should Not Be Doing Trend Stories: Episode 347”

  1. dietcock says:

    Keep fighting the good fight, DP. The NYT could have Jayson Blair running their entertainment reporting wing and their stories would be more accurate. One would think that Cieply, having worked in Hollywood as an exec between journalism gigs, would “get it.” One would be wrong.

  2. LexG says:

    I’ve said this a zillion times, but goddamn I’ll be happy when SHUTTER ISLAND just comes out SO I DON’T HAVE TO SEE THAT TRAILER AGAIN. Nothing against the movie, but the TRAILER has run before EVERY. SINGLE. MOVIE. I’ve seen in the last six months.
    “You’re RATS IN A MAZE!”
    “Rachel SOLANDO!”
    The old lady with thin hair SHUSHING LEO!!!!
    Whether it’s Lovely Bones, Saw 6, The Box, Up in the Air, 2012, Jennifer’s Body, I kid you not: I have seen that trailer AT LEAST 30 or the last 40 times I’ve been to a movie.

  3. a_loco says:

    At least it’s a good trailer, Lex. The last time that happened to me was with motherfucking Vantage Point.

  4. Dr Wally says:

    Vantage Point is an editing masterclass, and was in my top twenty for 2008. It’s rote as a story, but as a 101 on film assembly it’s as good an example as you’ll find recently. Seriously – Stuart Baird is up there with Thelma Schoonmaker, Verna Fields, Anne Coates etc. as one of the all-time great editors.

  5. Don Murphy says:

    using IMDb for research? why not use Wikipedia for homework. It’s equally bullshit

  6. Jack Walsh says:

    “In the case of Shutter Island, Paramount cleared out their entire fall for reasons of strategy or cash flow, depending on who is telling the story. That’s their prerogative. And that’s a story.”
    This is back to my point in the other post-where are you getting this information? I know that journalists need to have confidential sources, but how can you criticize other people for writing ‘BS’ stories (in your opinion), when you expect your audience to take everything you write at your word? Maybe the story of “Shutter Island” is well-known in Hollywood, but the average person (reader) doesn’t know, and probably doesn’t care as much as you do.
    Is the NYTimes trying to compete with the gossip rags to a certain extent, in order to maintain viability? YES! Is doing so, destroying the traditional values of journalism ethics? YES! Is there ever going to be an end to the firing of traditional journalists, when certain people (like yourself), spend their days picking apart every detail of every story that gets printed (and do it on the cheap)? I wouldn’t think so….
    You keep writing these columns about how “Film Criticism is dead” because film critics are getting let go from their newspapers. Maybe it would be smarter to think about how you are basically making the suits realize that the film/cultural/art critics aren’t necessary to the papers anymore, because people like you are on the internet for them, for free (not free to your advertisers, granted). But if you saw a movie that you liked, I would think that according to your ethical standards, you would praise it without thinking about your bottom line.
    But, please stop pretending like you aren’t part of the problem for print publication-there is obviously a reason that print journalists are getting fired/let go. It’s because the studios can buy Oscar ads cheaper from your website than they can from a newspaper. You brag about how your ads are sold out for the season-do you ever think about how those ad dollars might have been spent in multiple cities, which would lead to jobs being saved? Aren’t we dealing with a zero-sum game here? The studios have X amount of dollars to spend, and you took some of those dollars away from the newspapers by starting a website that accepts said dollars.
    Why don’t you call up the critics that have been fired in the past couple of years to wish them well, while you’re standing in line at the bank to cash the MCN checks?

  7. David Poland says:

    You know, “Jack Walsh,” I wrote a 2000 word detailed response to you… and reading it back, all I can think is, “Why am I explaining to this idiot?”
    If you wonder why it comes down to “idiot,” re-read your last sentence. Nasty, ignorant, and arrogant.
    I’ve hired some of those critics that have been fired in the last couple of years. They cash MCN checks.
    Traditional Media as my victim. Lovely ego stroke, but about as stupid as anything I have read this year.

  8. Jeffrey Boam's Doctor says:

    I’m constantly amazed at DPs willingness to respond in length to tards and douches. Wasting your time on a 2000 word response to this insect goes beyond charity into insanity. This Walsh character smells like some trust fund rat who has no fucking clue about the real world but loves a jolly good semantic argument with fellow latte suckers.

  9. Jack Walsh says:

    Dave-just curious about this, since I’m such an ‘idiot’ (and you’re probably not going to respond to this because of the aforementioned claim, but I’ll still bite):
    “I believe when I threw out $75m in some piece projecting into his next check for post-theatrical profit.”
    So when the NYTimes, or Finke or anyone else ‘projects’ Hollywood numbers of any kind, based on ‘?????’, and you call them on being full of shit, we’re supposed to take you (and you only based on your claims) seriously when you criticize them? How am I the idiot here? I think anyone who didn’t question you in the same way that you question them would be the idiot.
    “And how do I know these things? It’s my job, JW.”
    If it’s your job to know these things, then know them-don’t say that you were ‘projecting’ (without fully explaining), and then criticize other people for doing the same thing. It doesn’t matter if you’re correct in the long run-how are we, the readers, supposed to trust anything you say if you’re just guessing like the rest of the people that you criticize, constantly?
    And back to this, because it made me laugh out loud:
    “Traditional Media as my victim. Lovely ego stroke, but about as stupid as anything I have read this year.”
    Didn’t you just post a link this past week to a piece that talked about former TM writers being fired, becoming bloggers, and bringing down the TM that they worked for before because of it? You act as if hiring the Michael Wilmington’s of the world makes you a saint, when in fact, it’s encouraging editors who have long-time relationships with their critics to get rid of them, because they can find jobs at places like MCN. I would bet a lot of money that the critics who have been fired had the “Don’t worry-you’ll get a severance package, and there are plenty of internet jobs out there” talks with their bosses.
    And for the record Dave, if I’m an idiot, then you must really love just getting your ass kissed and not having to deal with argument. After all, you were the one that gave LexG a column. Maybe if I typed my responses in all capital letters, you would take me seriously.
    JBD-Well, I don’t drink coffee, and I sure don’t have a trust fund (wish I did), but I thought maybe the discussion around here could progress beyond “So and so is a douche”, or “I want to F-K-Stew!”. Guess I was wrong…I’ll retreat back to my ‘semantic argument’ hiding hole. If you want to actually respond to what I said instead of resorting to kindergarten name-calling, we can talk.

  10. LYT says:

    I would bet a lot of money that the critics who have been fired had the “Don’t worry-you’ll get a severance package, and there are plenty of internet jobs out there” talks with their bosses.
    Speaking for myself — no. Only the first part.

The Hot Blog

Quote Unquotesee all »

It shows how out of it I was in trying to be in it, acknowledging that I was out of it to myself, and then thinking, “Okay, how do I stop being out of it? Well, I get some legitimate illogical narrative ideas” — some novel, you know?

So I decided on three writers that I might be able to option their material and get some producer, or myself as producer, and then get some writer to do a screenplay on it, and maybe make a movie.

And so the three projects were “Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep,” “Naked Lunch” and a collection of Bukowski. Which, in 1975, forget it — I mean, that was nuts. Hollywood would not touch any of that, but I was looking for something commercial, and I thought that all of these things were coming.

There would be no Blade Runner if there was no Ray Bradbury. I couldn’t find Philip K. Dick. His agent didn’t even know where he was. And so I gave up.

I was walking down the street and I ran into Bradbury — he directed a play that I was going to do as an actor, so we know each other, but he yelled “hi” — and I’d forgot who he was.

So at my girlfriend Barbara Hershey’s urging — I was with her at that moment — she said, “Talk to him! That guy really wants to talk to you,” and I said “No, fuck him,” and keep walking.

But then I did, and then I realized who it was, and I thought, “Wait, he’s in that realm, maybe he knows Philip K. Dick.” I said, “You know a guy named—” “Yeah, sure — you want his phone number?”

My friend paid my rent for a year while I wrote, because it turned out we couldn’t get a writer. My friends kept on me about, well, if you can’t get a writer, then you write.”
~ Hampton Fancher

“That was the most disappointing thing to me in how this thing was played. Is that I’m on the phone with you now, after all that’s been said, and the fundamental distinction between what James is dealing with in these other cases is not actually brought to the fore. The fundamental difference is that James Franco didn’t seek to use his position to have sex with anyone. There’s not a case of that. He wasn’t using his position or status to try to solicit a sexual favor from anyone. If he had — if that were what the accusation involved — the show would not have gone on. We would have folded up shop and we would have not completed the show. Because then it would have been the same as Harvey Weinstein, or Les Moonves, or any of these cases that are fundamental to this new paradigm. Did you not notice that? Why did you not notice that? Is that not something notable to say, journalistically? Because nobody could find the voice to say it. I’m not just being rhetorical. Why is it that you and the other critics, none of you could find the voice to say, “You know, it’s not this, it’s that”? Because — let me go on and speak further to this. If you go back to the L.A. Times piece, that’s what it lacked. That’s what they were not able to deliver. The one example in the five that involved an issue of a sexual act was between James and a woman he was dating, who he was not working with. There was no professional dynamic in any capacity.

~ David Simon