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David Poland

By David Poland

Weekend Estimates by Bad Car Klady


Friday was a tease.

Every film in the Top Ten other than the two new wide releases managed 3x opening. Neither Cars 2 or Bad Teacher came close. Both openings are still excellent. But while neither film had the weight of Thursday midnight screenings hanging on its Friday number, both showed a significant Saturday bump.

But that is nine $30m+ openings in 8 summer weekends.

The most interesting stat I have seen about the weekend was that Teacher’s audience, according to the exit polls, was 2-to-1 female and bigger with over 25s than under. It’ll be interesting to see if Sony shifts campaign strategy and shows more of the kids in the film in the second weekend tv spots.

Looks like X-Men, Pirates, and Panda will all be the weakest films in their franchises domestically.

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169 Responses to “Weekend Estimates by Bad Car Klady”

  1. Krillian says:

    I wish Christy & Ignatiy would debate the wide releases Roger reviews on their TV show instead of just a “thank you so much” and moving on to the next movie. So Roger says Cars 2 was better than Cars 1? And Christy & Ignatiy aren’t just dying to respond?

    Would be curious to see if Kartina Richardson gushes about every movie the same way she does with the classics she praises. “Green Lantern transports us to a magical world of excitement and wonder, a vibrant masterpiece…”

  2. bulldog68 says:

    Pirates and Panda were already underperformers by the second weekend, but Xmen still has a chance of not being the weakest performer if it can get even a slight wind under its sails this independence weekend and have a good hold. Its only about $4M behind the first Xmen, so there’s still hope. But that is only my wishful thinking as I think its the best comic book movie this year and would at least like the pyrrhic victory of not being the lowest grossing Xmen of the franchise.

    Truly sorry about Panda. It deserved more, and as for Pirates, well, that international number is just another middle finger in my face this summer. My predictions thus far have been fucking terrible.

  3. SamLowry says:

    What did they expect on X-Men, what with the all-new cast and none being real stars? It was a budget-slashing exercise and so the gross will be slashed as well.

    It would have been like expecting a theatrical release of Aladdin 2 to do as well as Aladdin 1.

  4. Sarina says:

    Thank you, SamLowry. I’m surprised anyone expected “X-Men: First Class” to make the same profit as the previous films. It doesn’t feature most of the iconic characters which made the comic into the success it was (No Wolverine, No Storm, No Jean Grey, No Cyclops), the cast is new and it features a different vibe, with the storyline’s setting being in the 1960s.
    It may end with 140 million in the end, which is a decent number and foreign numbers will most certainly give the film a small profit in the end.

  5. David Poland says:

    I don’t think it would be fair to expect it to be on top of the X-list. But matching the original was a pretty fair hope… which when it came out, really had no stars either.

    Is this a disastrous result? No. And the film will beat the original worldwide, already over $300 million. So a small profit is likely and a sequel is an option.

    But they make these films hoping it will catch a strong wind of zeitgeist and have a gross that is more than a little over acceptable.

  6. SamLowry says:

    Err, Patrick Stewart, Ian McKellen, Halle Berry, heck, even Famke Janssen was a bigger draw than most of the cast members in First Class (still having Xenia Onatopp flashbacks…drool…).

    Oh, my bad, First Class does have a star in Kevin Bacon.

    And “A studio spokesman conceded that young viewers that provided 36% of weekend business [for Cars 2] appear to be averse to 3D glasses and unaware of recently available child size goggles.”

    Uh, right. Try keeping it on the face of a child barely old enough to talk.

  7. Mr. F. says:

    The bigger question: does the critical dismissal of CARS 2 open the door for a non-Pixar movie to win Best Animated Feature next year? Pixar movies are typically locks, each and every year — so does RANGO have a shot if Paramount pushes hard enough? KFP2, or did that need to do better at the box office? Is there anything else coming along that could take the Oscar next year?

  8. Che sucks says:

    The point Dave and many others are making about the low-star power and the box office performance of X-Men: First Class seems sensible. I would also add that the colossal turd that was the Wolverine flick was also a factor in the box office numbers (sort of like a reverse Batman Begins to Dark Knight relationship).

  9. SamLowry says:

    It just leaves a bad taste in my mouth because it feels exactly like what’s going on in retail as well as the classroom–the bosses cut staff or replace them with cheap noobs but still expect the same results as before.

  10. The Big Perm says:

    I don’t get the hate for Cars. I haven’t seen this new one, but all I heard about the original from…mostly geek sites is how awful it was. Since I have nieces and nephews, eventually I ended up having to watch it, and it seemed about as good as a lot of the Pixar movies. I’d rather watch Cars again than Ratatouille. Is it just the Nascar thing, or the red state thing, is it Larry the Cable Guy? And normally I hate the fuck out of Larry the Cable Guy but he was likeable in that movie.

  11. Jason says:

    Cars 2 was fun, but it seemed rather long. I wonder if the kids thought the same. It certainly wasn’t as bad as some of the reviews indicated but KFP2 is a better movie and Rango is leaps and bounds better. Cars should do just fine and unless it made less than $50m, it will be a huge success (merchandising). I’m still in shock about KFP2 under performing domestically. Thought it would be bigger.

  12. SamLowry says:

    Agree with Big Perm. Even among the kids here it gets played more often than A Bug’s Life or Monsters, Inc.

    Maybe the coastal elites don’t like the message that jerks of the “Don’t you know who I am?” variety will be put in their place.

  13. Eldrick says:

    yep The Big Perm, its Larry The Cable Guy. Liberals hate him with a passion. never mind that he is a funny guy, as long as his politics are what they are, well, he is not welcome in the pantheon as far as gatekeeping critics are concerned. Imagine if Sasha Baron Cohen was in this movie?

  14. christian says:

    The worst Pixar is still the best American animation out there.

  15. SamLowry says:

    So…that explains the supposedly lousy reviews for the Madagascar movies?

    BTW, Madagascar 1 & 2–with Cohen in both–is loved a heckuva lot more by RT critics than Cars 2.

    Current RT ranking shows audiences liking Cars 2 twice as much as the critics. And yet “rusty storytelling” is blamed by critics.

  16. NickF says:

    Paramount is pushing 3D on Transformers so hard that it almost has to be a success and buck the negative trend. The only way it wont is if consumers put their foot down and say no to those screenings, but will theaters give them enough options to do so?

  17. The Big Perm says:

    I honestly think Larry the Cable Guy is the unfunniest fucker out there, so if anyone would hate a movie because he’s in it, it would be me. But he was good in Cars!

    Geeks are just annoying. In the sense that Cars is the WORST MOVIE EVER, somehow Scott Pilgrim is the BEST MOVIE EVER. I thought it was good, but come on.

  18. Brian says:

    Cars 1 is ten minutes too long which kept it from reaching upper echelon Pixar, but it’s still pretty great. I imagine the nationwide Cars to Happy Feet viewing ratio is about 10 to 1 since the latter took the Animation Oscar. Of course, given the option between an environmental lecture or championing small-town America, Hollywood doesn’t even have to watch the films to have a preference.

  19. David Poland says:

    Pixar was never going to win Best Animated with Cars 2. Made that call six months ago.

    I still feel Rango is the one to beat, depending on the disposition of Tintin and/or Happy Feet 2 (also an unlikely winner… at least from a distance)

  20. Eric says:

    I think once again Fox hurt one of their tentpool movies with a lazy marketing campaign or at least up until two weeks before release. You get the feeling they assumed with the rushed production schedule and the rumored turmoil on the set that the movie was a dog but once they saw the final cut they tried to save it or at least market it like a blockbuster. If they had Marketed x-men first class strongly the whole time it probably would have had a 70 million dollar opening and by now be over 150 million or maybe it was just the lack of Hugh jackman in a starring role or the stench of the last two movies.

  21. David Poland says:

    The opening salvos of “It’s a Larry, The Cable Guy cartoon” in so many reviews has surprised me.

    Once again, the negativity here feels like a function of Pixar’s history, far tougher on the film than on other mediocre animated films. It’s not great, but so many of the other films hurt to watch. This didn’t. At least, for me.

    What was odd – having never watched the first film from start to finish or on a big screen – are those eyes. I found them very Early South Park.

  22. LexG says:

    I saw Larry the Cable Guy live in concert once. I think he’s funny.


    Krillian’s first post: I know Poland is a friend of the show, and I know NO ONE ELSE ON EARTH watches the show, but I’ll still tread lightly: Where the hell did Ebert unearth Kartina Richardson? She is BEYOND ANNOYING, from the lispy voice to her effusive verbiage to the fact that all of her video segments appear to be shot in her studio apartment. It’s SO low-rent and she’s SO obnoxious. I honestly think in his United Colors of Benetton mega-liberalism, Ebert just was stoked for some indeterminately Pacific Island American camp vamp to be on the show, more for her ethnic novelty than anything. She sounds INSUFFERABLE.

  23. cadavra says:

    STAR TREK (2009) wasn’t exactly bursting with big names and seemed to catch on just fine.

    Re XMFC: I don’t want to get into a grumpy-old-man rant here, but if you’re going to set a movie in 1962, shouldn’t you at least make the teensiest attempt to make it look and sound like 1962?

  24. I think one of the reasons ‘Cars 1’ and ‘Cars 2’ are not that well loved as the other Pixar movies is because their themes are the most truly american and they do not travel so well overseas. True, Lasseter is obssessed with 50’s Americana (echoes of that nostalgia can be traced in ‘The Incredibles’ and ‘Toy Story 2’) but in the ‘Cars’ movie franchise, they take center stage. It’s strange ’cause Walt Disney also had a profound nostalgia for the lifestyle of small town America at the turn of the 20th century (look at Main Street at Disneyland and Magic Kingdom) and look how well it resonated with worldwide audiences. I strongly believe that one of the reasons Lasseter introduced the ‘around the world’ races theme in ‘Cars 2’ was to avoid this kind of critics and embrace the worldwide audience, which it’s where the big money is for this franchise (approaching $ 10 billion in merchandise, according to The Wall Street Journal).

  25. JS Partisan says:

    Cad, no, because what we perceive as 1962 is a lot better than 1962. You dig, yo?

    Gonzo, if you replace the Cars with people in the same situations. Those movies are appreciated much more than they are by typical film people. Typical film people being that lot who apparently never get that cars, like people, have personalities.

  26. Madam Pince says:

    I don’t get the continual dumping on the stars of XMFC, calling them effectively nobodies. Fassbender is not a star? McAvoy is not a star? Kevin Bacon is not a star? Oliver Platt? January Jones? Ironside? They are all nobodies?? Maybe they are not A-listers, but yes, they are stars. First Class had more stars than the first X-Men film. Bigger stars than any Spider-Man film ever had. Whatever the failings of XMFC it is not because it didn’t have enough or big enough stars.

  27. LexG says:

    I’ve been ranting about this to the point where people are sick of it, but, no Fassbender isn’t a “star.” Hugh Jackman is a star. Fassbender is a critcs’ darling with some great performances who nobody in America knows who he is yet. There’s nothing wrong with that, and obviously studios are REALLY trying to make him “happen,” but I work in Los Angeles, in post-production (alright, DVD subtitling and transfers), and if I said “Michael Fassbender” in my office of 40 people (most of whom aspire to be filmmakers or writers or some sort, or once did before they started hating movies and life), I would guess that 5, maybe 6 people TOPS would know the name. My mom and dad sure as hell wouldn’t know who he is.

    Yeah, if you explained “the guy who said ‘speaking the Queen’s’ in Basterds or did this-and-that in 300,” they MIGHT have an inkling. But he’s not a star yet. And I like McAvoy more and more, and, sure, people would remember “the main guy from Wanted/Atonement,” but I don’t think that’s a NAME that gets 99% of people pumped with recognition.

    Bacon is a star, but that’s about it.

  28. JS Partisan says:

    Again, First Class is awesome. Bitching about it in any other way does not change that fact at all.

  29. David Poland says:

    Lex…. Hugh Jackman was a nobody when he got the X-Men role… unless you were a theater geek.

    McAvoy’s been in more big movies – often in the lead – than anyone who was in X1 when it came out. McKellan wasn’t Gandalf. Patrick Stewart was a tv guy. Halle Berry hadn’t gone topless in Swordfish or won her Oscar yet. Paquin was washed up. Famke Jannsen was doing small indies, You could argue that Bruce Davison was the biggest movie name and Rebecca Romjin the biggest pop name in the film.

    And true, Fassbender sells no tickets here. But overseas, yes. McAvoy is Aldo Euro-bait.

    And Jen The Oscar Nominee? No hype around her at all!

  30. The Big Perm says:

    Yeah, Kevin Bacon is about it for star power in X-Men. If you think otherwise you’re deluded. People may know the movies these guys were in, but not their names.

    I don’t know what planet Madam is on but the first X-Men had Patrick Stewart and Halle Berry. You could maaaaybe make the case for Famke Jasen or Anna Paquin or Rebecca Romaign or however the fuck you spell her name.

    And Spider-Man had Willem Dafoe. And maybe Tobey Maguire and Kirstin Dunst weren’t huge, they had both headlined well-liked mainstream movies so people knew who they were.

  31. The Big Perm says:

    Patrick Stewart WASN’T just a “tv guy.” He was the lead in Star Trek, homes. And supporting player in many big Hollywood productions. I agree that McKellan and Jackmen weren’t really known at the time, much like Fassbender and McAvoy are now.

    And Jen the Oscar Nominee? Ha ha, let me ask my bro friends if they’ve heard of her. I’m sure they’ve all seen Winter’s Bone.

  32. LexG says:

    Poland, Halle Berry had done BAPS before X-Men, which everybody knew and loved! BAPS! Seriously, though, yeah, it was pre-Swordfish, but is Swordfish really considered the marker of where her A-list career started? She had been in hits (Boomerang) and had fronted her own movies (Rich Man’s Wife)… I wouldn’t argue she sold tickets, but she was more a “name” in 2000 than McAvoy or Fassbender are now to the general public.

    Still, I was going to clarify above that I meant Jackman is a STAR now, re: this new one being a drop-off compared to X3 or Wolverine. Though checking it out on IMDB, I’m kinda shocked to realize X-Men 1 WAS Jackman’s first Hollywood movie; Could’ve sword he’d already kicked around a year or two before that, because somehow I knew the name when he got that break. Can’t believe that Kate and Leopold and that Ashley Judd romcom were AFTER the first X-Men.

    And Swordfish is like the movie I can never place when it came out; It seems so totally 1999 or even 1997, not 2001.

  33. Rob says:

    “Re XMFC: I don’t want to get into a grumpy-old-man rant here, but if you’re going to set a movie in 1962, shouldn’t you at least make the teensiest attempt to make it look and sound like 1962?”

    I thought that’s why every female character was wearing go-go boots and a miniskirt in every scene, even at CIA headquarters.

  34. Rob says:

    Also, I made the mistake of clicking over to Movieline’s box office coverage. That Jen Yamato writes like a freshman in charge of the arts and entertainment section of the Ball State University student newspaper.

  35. LexG says:

    Rob, Jen Yamato writes dumber than a box of hammers. She’s at the EPICENTER of the CHUDFixMSNMovieline “crew” that’s always out doing karaoke together with like William Goss, Don Kaye, Fucking Faraci, and that idiot Gilchrist, her boyfriend. I’m sure some of them are nice people, as is often claimed, but they sure come off like STONE PRICKS to me.

    There isn’t an entity in this universe that could say that Jen Yamato is a better writer than I am, yet she interviews stars and writes movie reviews for a living, and I subtitle movies for DVD two weeks before they’re released, a job that makes me want to kill myself because it DESTROYS cinema, the one thing in life I enjoy.

    Imsgine your favorite movie ever, then imagine that the first time you ever saw it wasn’t beginning to end in a theater, but rather in a depressing cubicle watching an mp3 of it in black and white, out of order, often not even seeing the entire movie. “Here, subtitle the last 47 minutes of Captain America.”

    It causes me undue stress and makes me suicidal; Then to see Yamato paid to do something she’s not even good at. She writes like a SQUEEing hen on Television Without Pity.

  36. anghus says:

    come on Rob, how would be know it was the 1960’s if every character wasn’t dressed like it was Carnaby Street, 1967?

    How else would we know it was the 1970’s if someone didn’t say “mint” and mention their new fangled CB radio.

    I think they should just insert a frame at the cigarette burn that gives the audience a reminder what era the movie is set.

    At the end of the first reel

    STILL THE 1960’S

    X-Men First Class had bigger problems, but that was pretty good indicator of the half-assedness going in that movie.

    And yes, Fassbender is fantastic, but this didn’t propel him to stardom like X Men did for Hugh Jackman. And for everyone claiming a ‘slashed budget’ on First Class, how is 160 million a ‘slashed budget’? It might be lower than Last Stand, but since the first X Men cost 85 and made 150 million, spending almost twice as much to get the same kind of money back 10 years later….. seems like the returns are the only thing getting ‘slashed’ here.

  37. anghus says:

    Can we call time of death on Green Lantern as a franchise yet?

  38. LexG says:

    Anghus, McWeeny destroyed your ass in the critics thread like half a day ago; Thanks for totally missing it and thus depriving us of the awesome all-day smack battle (my money on Drew) we wanted more of.

  39. Ray Pride says:


    “Warner Bros. is already planning a sequel to Ryan Reynolds’ superhero pic Green Lantern, despite the film’s soft performance at the box office. Sources say Warners still believes in the franchise, even if the studio is “somewhat disappointed” with Green Lantern’s result…”

  40. Krebstar says:

    You know what else they didn’t have in the early 60’s? Fucking mutants. It’s a super-stylized FANTASY version of the 1960’s where people have super powers. It’s not supposed to be Mad Men, its supposed to be like the original Stan Lee era comics, where everyone did wear miniskirts and go-go boots and flew around in rockets. “If you’re wondering how they eat and breathe, you should say to yourself ‘I should really just relax.'”

    And Fassbender was NOT a star… but he might be now. Everyone who saw XMFC, whether they liked it or not, seemed to all agree he was fantastic in it.

  41. Jeffrey Boam's Doctor says:

    Lex no matter how dreadful a writer Yamamoto, she and all her talentless ilk do a couple of things very well. They network and they meet deadlines. There is no zero sophistication in that scene. They have no history or relationship with film other than what they are told or feel they should know.. They started watching film in the late 90s at the latest. There is a proliferation of genre nerds who have questionable taste who think they have the insight to write about all areas of film. They’re personable enough people but that has nothing to do with talent. These fawning geekoids have learnt most of what they know off AICN, CHUD, DARK HORIZONS and that is the most terrifying aspect of it all. They have studied through a smudged prism that constantly muddies and ruins the magic of film because the source is corrupt. When Cahiers Du Cinema has an iphone app and their analysis is covered by a simple tweet, expect Yamamoto & Gilchrist to be the editors.

  42. yancyskancy says:

    Krebstar: I haven’t seen FIRST CLASS, but it seems to me if you’re making a period piece, whether you’re introducing fictional elements or not, you’ve got to make an effort to be true to the period. The exception would be a complete alternate reality thing, where you make it clear that this particular take on the era is substantially redefined by the “what if?” premise. Maybe they needed a disclaimer, such as: “In this version of history, mutants exist, and their existence has had a butterfly effect that has led to haircuts not actually seen in the real 1960s.” 🙂

  43. Joe Leydon says:

    As I recall wasn’t the whole “era-specific” thing a problem with Wolverine as well?

  44. Krebstar says:

    I see your point of trying to be faithful to the period you’re trying to recreate, but I think in this case, much like other comic book movies like 300, Sin City, and Watchmen, it’s not really a “period piece”, and more of a “period pastiche”. They’re just taking elements of the sixties that are kind of cool to give the story a kind of classic comic flavor. Sort of like sampling a Rolling Stones song for a hip hop track. And I kind of really like it, and am totally cool with embracing the artifice of it. I’d rather a movie be beautiful than realistic, but thats just me.

  45. Philip Lovecraft says:

    Re: “X-Men: First Class”, the length of hair on some of those men in 1962 would get them killed faster than their mutant status.

  46. Joe Straatmann says:

    I find it funny that Poland said Anna Paquin was washed up when X-Men was being made. It’s not another ball-busting Poland thing, but it’s interesting that someone who was 17-18 when X-Men was made/came out (I know because she was my age and kind of my cinematic crush at the time) was pretty much done with a career cycle by the time she was out of high school. It’s like being handed your diploma and then being told you’re past your prime.

  47. anghus says:

    lex, didn’t even see it. don’t even care.

    it is funny to hear you swinging from his nutsack though.

  48. anghus says:

    what’s up with the edit function today?

    Ray, thanks for the link. I’m shocked. They seem confident, and i’m in no position to argue that they don’t know what they’re doing. But it seems…. weird.

    I keep hearing people refer to Green Lantern like Batman Begins: a film that was well reviewed, well liked by audiences, and made a decent amount of cash relaunching a major franchise. But is Green Lantern any of those things?

    Maybe it’s too soon to tell.

  49. David Poland says:

    I like Jen and Todd very much and both work their asses off and I am sure would do more esoteric work if it paid the rent. Please lay off.

    And Lex, do keep in mind that you probably make more than any of that group you are pissing on and one reason you don’t leave the job you say destroys your soul is because while you could have work in a second, you wouldn’t be able to earn as much, even if that meant doing a similar kind of job. They love movies. And they could do better financially doing something else. But they choose to stay. And that should be respected.

  50. Krillian says:


    “I keep hearing people refer to Green Lantern like Batman Begins”


    Who is saying that? It’s getting poor reviews and most people I know who’ve actually seen it didn’t care for it. Most of them don’t hate it, but few of them are actually thumbing it up. The first reaction of a friend of mine: ‘Is Warners deliberately trying to kill DC?’

  51. anghus says:

    i heard io mention it, and i’ve seen a few people make that kind of sentiment online (mostly from die hard comic fans), as if Green Lantern underperformng is somehow akin to how Batman Begins.

    and i’m with you. it makes no sense to me either.

    then again, Warner Brothers is going ahead with a sequel (supposedly). Then again again, remember the year after Superman Returns when they were ‘going ahead with a sequel’

  52. David Poland says:

    I give this sequel all the credence of the second Singer Superman or the sequel to GI Joe.

    That said, looks like GI Joe 2 is happening, so you never know… maybe they got some new foreign numbers in that are giving them hope…

  53. The Big Perm says:

    Hey Lex, you know how a bunch of people have offered you jobs interviewing stars and writing for their websites? I think…THINK…that may be a solution to you not interviewing stars and writing for websites.

  54. The Big Perm says:

    GI Joe 2 is DEFINITELY happening, I’m helping out on that a little bit.

    Green Lantern 2…I’ll believe that shit when I see it. Studios are always announcing sequels to their shitheaps because they’re not done making money off the first one yet and I’d make the first one look bad. Didn’t Disney announce a Tron sequel while the first one was bombing?

  55. Jason says:

    Question: the Sinestro ending/foreshadowing at the end of Lantern, was that a set up for a sequel or for the Justice league? I thought WB was also prepping League? It seemed as if they were going the Thor/Avengers route.

  56. Jason says:

    Perm, is Tron really considered a bomb? $400M worldwide ($172M domestic) isn’t too shabby. Now compared to the cost, that’s one thing and definitely would be risky to do a sequel given where the original ended up. A sequel at $100M, would probably end up in the black; at $150, probably not. Of course, could a decent one be made at only $100M?

  57. The Big Perm says:

    Well, I’m not the guy to really dig into box office numbers…but Tron is basically considered a disappointment, isn’t it? And you do have to compare it to the cost, because sure…if they made it for 40 million they’d be real happy right now. But they didn’t.

    I agree, maybe if they could do a cheap sequel they could do okay…but the very nature of a Tron movie seems to make that dicey. Hollywood can’t take a piss without spending $120 million and then going over budget.

  58. JS Partisan says:

    Legacy is only considered a bomb with the Devin Farci’s of the world but in reality, the guy who produced it now runs Disney. There’s going to be a sequel. End of line and Farci loses again!

    ETA: Jason, his uniform is that of the SINESTRO CORPS and eventually they go to war with the Corps.

  59. anghus says:

    but if Lex took that opportunity, he couldn’t lob criticism from the safety of his armchair.

    for some people, it’s easier to have never taken a shot then taken a shot and failed, or taken a shot and become notably average, unheard among a thousand other film bloggers who never find a voice or an audience.

    and you would think if he took said shot that he would improve his mental health and his love life. i can’t imagine writing for a film website would get you laid less than a transcription job. i’m not saying film bloggers get laid a lot, but i would have to image there were would be a fractional increase in the opportunity to more frequently bone.

    what’s stopping you lex?

  60. Jason says:

    Ok, Perm I’d agree with it beng a disappointment. I thought calling it bomb a bit much. Though I’d be curious to know how much it cost (budget and PA). I wouldnt be surprised if the studio spent $350M on Tron.

    JS, so the corps battle is for a potential sequel and not a Justice League movie?

  61. JS Partisan says:

    Jason, yeah, it’s a total GL thing and while I really do love having a GL movie in the world. If they do the CORPS WAR. They have to get a director worth a damn. Campbell is just not suited for comic book material.

    Anghus, leave him the fuck alone.

  62. Matthew says:

    I thought Cars 2 was disappointing with or without the baggage of being compared to the rest of the Pixar lot. I laughed perhaps twice, there was some weird stuff that made the young child of a friend of mine actually cry (e.g. a character being literally tortured to death), and it was depressingly unsubtle in conveying its message. No one can really call it “bad,” but it’s definitely not a film I feel any need to see again.

  63. The Big Perm says:

    Well, I guess the definition of “bomb” in these days of the megablockbuster has changed. If Disney spent $350 mil total, and Tron made $400 mil worldwide…of which only some of that money actually goes back to the studios. Isn’t that a whole lot of effort for very little gain? And it’s not like now they have a great building block for further movies, because there will be no Tron 2, no matter what IO says. And no one will care except for IO.

  64. anghus says:

    350 million on Tron Legacy? Really?

    I liked Legacy a lot more than a lot of people and would love to see a sequel. But man, 350 million to make and market a movie just blows my mind. 300 million for Green Lantern just seems like an obscene amount of money to spend on something so mediocre.

    All these 150-200 million dollar films, and most of them are so empty.

    it makes the Lord of the Rings Trilogy seem like a miracle. And i’m not even a huge Peter Jackson or LOTR fans, but i was watching Return of the King the other day and was thinking how wonderfully large and epic those films felt compared to phony, greenscreen worlds in junk like Green Lantern?

    To me, the sin is never the money spent, but the mediocre end product. All that money spent and you can’t create any magic at all. That’s a damn tragedy.

    I’m not the biggest fan of Pixar films, but i know enough people that love them to know that they’re about the only group making mega budgeted films that manage to create movies with scope and heart. I’ll be interested to see MI4 and John Carter to see if this translates to live action.

  65. JS Partisan says:

    Perm, go use google before you post.

    All of the LOTR movies, outside of the amazing make-up, suffer from some seriously bad FX. You also once again assume that your view of the world is the only one and that it had no scope or heart. Some of us love Green Lantern just fine but the fact that you can’t grasp that for a second is why this place is a toolshed.

  66. anghus says:

    oh yeah, there’s some FX work in LOTR that is not exceptional, but it’s still leaps and bounds above Green Lantern.

    To that argument i have the vast majority of film critics, ticket buyers, and award voters on my side.

    Though if we want to poll the ‘toolshed’,

    any Lord of the Rings movies versus Green Lantern: which is better?

  67. The Big Perm says:

    A million scripts have been written for a million movies that have never been made. We’ll see.

    I haven’t seen Green Lanterns but going by the trailers…the effects look fine I guess, but better than LOTR? At best I’d say the same. But one’s a comic book movie so there’s no arguing with IO, his mind was made up before he saw the movie.

  68. SamLowry says:

    “Geeks are just annoying. In the sense that Cars is the WORST MOVIE EVER, somehow Scott Pilgrim is the BEST MOVIE EVER. I thought it was good, but come on.”

    …um, Scott Pilgrim is currently playing in the living room to the yung ‘uns. Their combined ages are much less than Pilgrim’s and yet they can’t get enough of it. I must hear “It’s time to Chau down!” at least five times a day.

    And I assumed XMFC was a cheapie because it seemed to pop out of nowhere like some “dreck to video” sequel with hardly any buildup or promotion. $160m for something like that is outrageous.

    Also, I’d rather see mediocre effects in a great movie than great effects in a mediocre movie, which may explain why I have no interest in ever seeing Avatar.

  69. Joe Leydon says:

    IO: I’m confused. You seem to be saying Green Lantern is a great movie — but it was directed by someone who wasn’t suited for the job?

  70. jerryishere says:

    Tron and Green Lantern are apples and oranges.
    Tron cost significantly LESS than GL despite all the hyperbole out there about its costs. That’s a fiction. Was it cheap? Obviously not. But did they sink over $350 mil into it? Nope. It also grossed $400 mil WW and has done exceptionally well on Blu. GL will be lucky to hit $275 WW.

    And critically? Tron was divisive (an even 50% on Rotten Tomatoes). GL was only divisive in terms of did one hate it a LOT or a LITTLE. And remember… contrary to the blogosphere, audiences DID respond. It held steady throughout the holidays and was the highest grossing xmas release.

    Is a Tron sequel a slam dunk? Of course not. But Disney didn’t embarrass themselves and if they handle it right (animated show does well and kid base grows, right script/budget) the Batman Begins analogy could prove far more apt than GL.

  71. The Big Perm says:

    So Sam, you’re using your little kid’s tastes to say that Scott Pilgrim is good? Well, okay…hey, how do they like Once Upon a Time in the West or Badlands?

    And I’m not saying Scott Pilgrim was BAD…it wasn’t, I liked it fine. But the way geeks raved about it you’d think The Godfather fucked Gone with the Wind and squirted out Citizen Kane.

  72. The Big Perm says:

    jerryishere, give us the correct costs of Tron Legacy.

  73. Martin S says:

    GL sequel is make-good blather. Reynolds is now in a bind. How does Fox move on Deadpool with him attached?

    Poland – McAvoy’s been in more big movies – often in the lead – than anyone who was in X1 when it came out. McKellan wasn’t Gandalf. Patrick Stewart was a tv guy. Halle Berry hadn’t gone topless in Swordfish or won her Oscar yet. Paquin was washed up. Famke Jannsen was doing small indies, You could argue that Bruce Davison was the biggest movie name and Rebecca Romjin the biggest pop name in the film.

    Wow Dave, that statement is ripe with hoity “cinema is better than the boob tube” pre-2k thinking.

    Stewart was doing Trek movies just a year earlier. More people know Stewart as Picard than will ever know McaWho is or was. Fox had no option but to pay Stewart what he wanted or else the fanbase was going to erupt. He and McKellan, coming off Apt Pupil, were first on board. And Berry was the studio’s pick as the big name draw because she just grabbed a fuckin Emmy for Dandrige. She was seriously happening when X-Men was in production. If the shoot was a few months later, there’s no way she would have been available. More people knew Paquin than Famke, and as for Davison…come on. All he did was take JT Walsh’s “oh its that guy” gig.

    The super-hot names who passed were Norton and Crowe. Dugray Scott was Wolverine before Jackman but IM2 and an injury took him out during pre-prod.

    It’s totally off to compare Singer’s X ensemble to Vaughn’s. No one in XFC got anywhere near the check Stewart cashed and only Bacon had the namecheck. McAvoy and Fassbender are closer to Eric Bana and will be lucky to end up like McGregor. They’re solid actors pushed to a level because studios and agents want a farm league system.

  74. Don R. Lewis says:

    I LOVE (x10000) the SCOTT PILGRIM movie but the reason every “critic” (read; blogger) loves it is because Edgar Wright made it. And again, I fucking LOVE Edgar Wright but per the conversation in the “When Critics Attack” entry, he knows that hob-knobbing with the geek bloggeratti means you can do no wrong. If you don’t believe me, check out the hype being slathered on that “Attack the Block” movie he produced. Wright is the selling point and the reason these writers are giving it a shot and talking it up. I’m dying to see it but at this point, there’s no way it can live up to the hype being laid on it by that section of bloggers. No. Way.

  75. SamLowry says:

    I think I lucked out in that Pilgrim was the first time I ever saw Cera or else I might have been burned out like the critics who slammed the movie because of performances he delivered in other movies (yeah, really fair). Still, I thought Cera’s Pilgrim was an overly whiny bugger, but considering that Nega Scott was absorbing the memories of all the nasty things Pilgrim did, leaving him with what he thought was a clean conscience, I guess the happy-go-lucky attitude fits.

    And I wouldn’t have shown any of it to the kids if I didn’t think it was already top notch.

    Also, yes, Patrick Stewart was the selling point of X1 to the geekosphere. Never underestimate the power of TV (Bruce Campbell once said that more people watched the lowest-rated episode of “Brisco County” than all the Evil Dead movies put together. Yes, I bought his book, and for full price.).

  76. anghus says:

    i liked Scott Pilgrim. There’s definitely a wide divide on the love/hate side. I know people who think it’s brilliant and i know people who think it’s the worst thing ever made.

    Someone last year in a thread somewhere mentioned Anton Yelchin as a better fit for Scott Pilgrim. I never got that out of my head. That seems like a much better fit to me.

    My favorite Cera is Youth in Revolt. .

  77. SamLowry says:

    The haters must be hipsters. Hipsters are repeatedly mocked and eventually revealed as evil minions in the end.

    Even after reading his Wiki I am still left wondering “Who the hell is Anton Yelchin?” Looks like a douchey fratboy who would’ve definitely killed Pilgrim for me.

  78. LexG says:

    He was Chekov in the Star Trek reboot. The young Michael Biehn in Terminator 4. The kid they kidnapped in Alpha Dog. Gibson’s son in the Beaver. The heir apparent to Elijah Wood’s really gay comb-forward hair loss.

    And he got to body-paint K-Stew in Fierce People. Trust me, you had to have seen him in something.

  79. SamLowry says:

    Never saw any of those movies.

  80. LexG says:

    Reminds me of some dude on Wells blog last week who asked “Who the FUCK is Ryan Reynolds?” I listed like 25 movies and the dude’s all, “Why would I see any of THAT shit?”

    I mean, I get that people have lives or are discerning or whatnot, but if you don’t even see the biggest of the big stuff like Star Trek or Terminator, even on cable a year or so later… just out of curiosity, what compels one to post on movie blogs if you don’t really see many movies?

    If I said, “Never saw a single Ewan McGregor movie,” thus writing off some really high-profile blockbusters AND indie sensations, would my comments on ANYTHING have ANY validity?

  81. anghus says:

    you’re not wrong. if you’re posting on a movie blog, there’s a reasonable expectation that you’d know a guy who was in Star Trek, Terminator Salvation, and the upcoming Fright Night remake.

    You wouldn’t think Anton Yelchin would require an link provided with the reference….

  82. SamLowry says:

    I just don’t waste my time on crappy movies. And I am definitely staying away from the Trek reboot because it was obvious from the first trailer that Abrams didn’t give a crap about continuity or common sense.

    And I just checked Ryan Reynolds’ Wiki…the only thing I ever saw him in was the “Syzygy” episode of X-Files.

  83. LexG says:

    …none of which is to say that Yelchin still isn’t kind of a douche, and TOTALLY one of those interchangable Justin Chatwin-Ashton Holmes-Freddie Highmore-Lou Taylor Pucci dudes from Chumsucker and Thumbscrubber and Tadpole that I can’t BELIEVE get work year after year; Eisenberg was in that realm too until he started kicking it up a notch around the time of Zombie- and Adventureland. I can’t entirely diss anybody who chooses to turn a blind eye to this realm of smart-ass indie dweeb.

  84. The Big Perm says:

    It’s like in Pulp Fiction:

    “I don’t watch television.”

    “But you are aware that there is such a thing called television, and on that thing they show shows, right?”

  85. anghus says:

    i really can’t make a judgement on him being a douche. I think Fright Night is the coming out party career wise that many thought Terminator Salvation and Star Trek would be.

    I liked Charlie Bartlett and thought that showed promise. Since then, he hasn’t done anything that wowed me,

    Eisenberg is interesting because i don’t know what he’s going to do. I loved Adventureland, Zombieland, and the Social Network, but i’m wondering when the adult roles start coming just where he’s going to land.

  86. SamLowry says:

    I did see “Charlie” and “Finding Neverland”…but the rest of the names are blanks to me.

    Can’t afford cable and it doesn’t help that I can’t even watch broadcast TV because the digital conversion has significantly weakened the signals of towers only five miles away. Yay FCC for forcing us into the “Cable or nothing” conundrum.

    Sigh, quite a change from 30 years ago when I could watch Doctor Who on a B&W set that was just barely able to pick up a PBS tower 75 miles away. Turns out all that snow hid the cheap SFX, but imagination filled in everything that was needed.

    P.S. Nobody said “mint” back then.

  87. LexG says:

    It’s a selfish digression, but since it was raised upthread, bear with me:

    I don’t know how David figures I could be making money– any money– at movie reviews or whatever the hell Yamato/Gilchrist do; I don’t mind Big Perm or Anghus or whoever (logically) pointing out that I’ve seemingly begged out of some kind offers from DP and others, because that WOULD seem to be a pretty big “gotcha.”

    But truth is– and you can call me a pussy for not taking a chance or being a douche or whatnot– but my educated guess is a lot of you guys don’t know the particulars and stresses of a 40-a-week office job where you have deadlines and clients waiting for you and have to be there at a certain time and deliver a certain amount of work to make your steady paycheck. No one in their right mind would quit that on the spot– especially if you need health insurance and the other benefits that come from a square gig– without a guarantee of a comparable or at least livable wage as an alternative. If I quit my job to write movie reviews for god-knows-who, where’s my grand in credit card bills and grand in rent coming from every month? Where’s my insurance coming from? Do freelance movie bloggers just have NO INSURANCE?

    But with a JOB JOB, you can’t really skip out in the middle of a workday on your clients and deadlines to cover some movie at the Bridge at a moment’s notice.

    Yeah, it CAN’T be worse than doing transcription at a sausage fest office, but nobody’s ever offered to PAY me to do whatever we’re talking about… plus despite DP’s apparent perception otherwise, I absolutely COULD NOT interview celebrities and directors. I couldn’t do it. I want to be a creative type, and work with them as equals… the idea that Amanda Seyfried is there three feet away thinking I’m some hack douche and beneath her, I wouldn’t want to ask her questions I don’t care about and she’s bored answering. That’s pretty depressing in and of itself to someone who’d rather be doing comedy or performance or screenwriting. It’s all just me not doing what I want to do in life, which is writing and fucking models.

  88. SamLowry says:

    It’s time to embrace socialism. The medical aspect of it at the very least.

  89. cadavra says:

    Going back to my rant re X-MEN: It doesn’t matter if it’s a comic-book fantasy; you call it 1962, you make it 1962. Correct hairstyles, costumes, maps, dialogue et al are not that difficult to achieve and don’t cost any more. Otherwise, you are, in a sense, rewriting history. Joe Dante’s marvelous MATINEE is also set in 1962, yet it replicates the era with absolute authenticity. It can be done–you simply have to want to do it.

  90. The Big Perm says:

    Well Lex, when you’re 80 I’m sure you’ll be glad you never dove in and took a chance.

    And you don’t even HAVE to quit your job to do write for websites or whatever, you seem to have plenty of free time, my man.

    And I did have an office job, and I quit it. But then I made certain sacrifices you’re not willing to, so I guess you’re just going to have to complain about that shit every day for the next forty years.

  91. SamLowry says:

    This article points out several errors that have nothing to do with hair and costumes:

    And a heckuva lot more here:

    Was the 1960 Piaf song playing in a WW2 concentration camp one of the errors you were hinting at? Or the 1972 Caddy showing up in ’62? Or the Sunshine Skyway Bridge, built in ’82? Though I do love the inclusion of a fabric designed in 2009; you do have to admit it “looks” retro:

    Abrams has nothing on these amateurs.

  92. LexG says:

    I’d make sacrifices to work on actual movies, like writing scripts or doing more bad character part acting. Movie criticism isn’t really my life’s dream, and interviewing people isn’t something with my social anxiety can do, so I’m never just BURNING to throw caution to the winds and let the card fall… to write free-lance reviews for 100 bucks. Like, who do you even given your social and personal info to? Do guys who write for, say, Badass or CHUD or Cinematical ACTUALLY give out their SSN to other movie bloggers?

    I am shitty at networking, because I am socially awkward like K-Stew or Dee Wallace. I don’t know how to schmooze and chat people up. I’m not jealous that Gilchrist gets to interview John Carpenter, so much as I don’t think he’s WORTHY of doing so, but MOSTLY I am just annoyed that Gilchrist and Big Perm and Poland and anghus and IO and everyone here DOESN’T HAVE TO SUBTITLE THE LAST 42 MINUTES OF MOVIES weeks before they’re released.

  93. SamLowry says:

    Sounds like a heckuva lot more fun than dealing with schoolkids who spend the entire hour trying to figure out how to screw you over, or with managers who tell you that if you don’t greet everyone within ten feet of you while you’re trying to stock the busiest area of the store that you will be fired.

    Sounds like you get to sit down, too. Nice.

    But then I think I’ve trapped myself into a life of horrible pay and no retirement just because I occasionally luck into some extended moments to write stories that I still haven’t been able to get published. Ah well, I’ll have something to cast into the ‘net some day and maybe they’ll outlast all memory of me.

    Boy, that sucks. Yeah, get your ass moving and do something worthwhile with your life.

  94. LexG says:

    I used to stock shelves and unload trucks at chain stores when I was in college. It was more fun than what I do now.

    And I’d LOOOOOOOOOVE to teach. Especially like 11th 12th grade at some all-girls school. YEP YEP. Mr. G the COOL English and Drama teacher. (If I can’t sell a script by 40, I am going to get a teacher’s license.) YAY! CUTE CUTE!

  95. SamLowry says:

    Yay, cute cute, jail jail.

    Now is a lousy time to get into actual teaching, what with the Republicans convincing everyone that teachers are overpaid leeches. Hope you wind up in a well-off state that isn’t hoping to cut their pay even further.

  96. LYT says:

    “I am definitely staying away from the Trek reboot because it was obvious from the first trailer that Abrams didn’t give a crap about continuity or common sense.”

    And it’s obvious from actually watching the movie that he actually does care and bent over backwards to make sure continuity WAS respected.

    “Where’s my insurance coming from? Do freelance movie bloggers just have NO INSURANCE?”

    That’s right. No insurance. I had APPENDICITIS on no insurance and it cost me twelve grand after a fuckload of negotiation. I work a job now where I get insurance. Most freelancers don’t have it. Jen’s not a freelancer, though – she’s west coast editor of Movieline.

  97. Joe Leydon says:

    LYT: Very sorry to hear about the health-care expenses, man. Even with insurance, getting sick can be expensive — and getting well can be VERY expensive. It took me more than a year to pay off my share of the bills for my cancer treatment even though I was covered by my own policy AND my wife’s Blue Cross. I kept worrying that if I didn’t give them their money, they’d give me back the cancer.

  98. Foamy Squirrel says:

    I think Sam is trying to best me in “Who hasn’t seen a movie lately” stakes.

  99. SamLowry says:

    If it wasn’t for Redbox I’d be S.O.L.

    But building the Enterprise on the ground, and naming a drink after a civilization that the Federation won’t discover for a few more centuries? Umm, yeah.

    Unless it was all part of a trick that’s eventually undone with a galactic reset button.

  100. The Big Perm says:

    That’s some nitpicky shit, man. You don’t think it would be easier to build a ship on earth? They don’t build rockets on the moon.

  101. LexG says:

    “Jen’s not a freelancer, though – she’s west coast editor of Movieline.”

    Guess I can cross off that idea of inquiring about employment there.

  102. LYT says:

    “naming a drink after a civilization that the Federation won’t discover for a few more centuries?”

    Who says it’s a civilization? For all you know, “Cardassia” is a distant star seen through a telescope.

  103. movielocke says:

    Where/How do we find out about this ‘platinum 6’ version of the 3d version of transformers. Since my biggest complaint of every single fucking stupid ass 3D movie post Alice (inclusive) have been that they are way too fucking dark (I was a big fan of 3D up to and including Avatar, seeing almost every movie released in the format. But post Avatar all 3D projection and presentation has gone to utter shit and now I actively avoid 3D presentations). Not to mention that from Alice onward the policy has been to assrape the consumer with ever more exorbitant 3D premiums.

    So if Bay is going to the trouble of making theatres run Transformers at a proper brightness level I’m willing to buy in. But if I can’t find the platinum 6 theatres I’m not going to bother.

    I found an article that suggests the theatres showing it tuesday night are the Platinum 6 theatres, is that right? I note the Landmark is not such a theatre, since their 3D projection is some of the worst on the westside (dismally dull and dingy), I’m not surprised that they balked at upping the brightness level of their bulbs. I’ve compared Landmark and Arclight and Arclight is definitely a superior presenation, mainly because of the brightness of the bulbs and sharpness of the focus.

    So is there any official resource of what theatres are running the platinum 6? Sadly I don’t really expect any of these theatres except the arclight to actually comply with the foot-lambert requirements, but hey, at least Bay can be solaced in “it’s the thought that counts.”

  104. LexG says:

    I hate that we have to RESEARCH what theater has which 3D every time, as movielocke says; For some reason related to my astigmatism, the 3D they show at the Arclight with those special, clunky 1982 Neil Young vocoder glasses that flutter each eye electronically make me near-vomit; Saw My Bloody Valentine and Avatar there with those and had a migraine for 2 days; When I go to a “REAL D” theater, it’s perfectly fine, even if in general the effect never feels like it’s quite working for me the way it’s supposed to.

    Arclight is the best place to see a TF movie if ONLY to avoid the hordes of grunting thug teenagers who flock to these; But if it’s only those GIANT MEMOIRS OF AN INVISIBLE MAN glasses that make me vomit, I’ll have to either go 2D, or stick with Thug Central at the big Burbank theater.

  105. yancyskancy says:

    “I just don’t waste my time on crappy movies.”

    Unless you waste your time on them, you can’t truly know if they’re crappy or not. You can make an educated guess or a strong prediction, but you can’t form an true, honest opinion about something just from trailers and TV spots (though I have a feeling many folks will disagree).

  106. Anghus says:

    Lex, a point coukd be arguably made that with the amount of time you spend online posting could be focused on a more creatively fulfilling endeavor.

    Do you need to be good at networking to write a good screenplay? How difficult woukd it be to borrow a camera and film something you wrote?

    Trust me when I tell you that youre not the only one who understands the forty hour work week and trying to be creative. The second feature I directed had a shitty direct to dvd budget and I had to keep a full time job through pre production and post while taking vacation time for the shoot. And the full time job was a sales positiin with a hundred clients in 15 states. during pre production id work 8 to 5, then head over to the studio and sit in meetings and rehearsals until around midnight.

    I did this routine through three productions, though eventually I had to leave the safety of the job to try and make it happen full time.

    And trust me when I say I am not the smartest, sharpest, or most talented individual. But I know that you can have a full time, soul crushing job and still take a shot. Its not always easy, but its so much more rewarding to have tried even if it doesnt end up with red carpets and top tier film festivals.

    I guess the message is twofold. One, there is nothing unique about your scenario. There are a million unfulfilled souls in your neck of the woods managing shitty jobs while leveraging their dreams. Two, if so many other peoole have tried it, why cant you?

  107. JS Partisan says:

    Perm: who makes up their mind about a movie before they see it? What whacky fucking world are you living in?

    Joe, look at you being your snippy old self. How cute. GL is a good movie but Martin Campbell doesn’t let it breathe. First Class and Thor are better because they are given time, while GL gets treated like some Michael Bay treatment, and that just doesn’t suit that world.

    ETA: I really feel bad for your folks, that lack awesome 3D presentation.

  108. Jason says:

    Just to clarify, I have no idea nor have any source information, on how much Tron Legacy cost. I was just stating that I would not be surprised if the total cost to the studio for budget and PA was $350M. This is largely based on (1) the great SFX in the movie, (2) how long they were working on said SFX, and (3) that PA is usually a lot for a big movie to budget worldwide. Perhaps it did cost less, but I thought it would be high because it seemed like they were working on the movie for quite a while. This raises 2 questions that I would be curious how people in here feel:

    1. What costs more – SFX that is worked on for awhile (say 1 to 1 1/2 years) or SFX that they rush (say 6 mos to 1 yr)? I would think it would be the former and I wonder if there are any data on this out there.

    2. How do people define a bomb? Is it solely based on box office or do people take into account cost?

  109. Jason says:

    Whoops, typo. Meant how much it cost to market worldwide (not budget worldwide).

  110. JS Partisan says:

    You don’t have to justify anything to CW Perm. Seriously, Disney is invested in Tron but the only thing that would keep a Tron Sequel from happening is not the cost of Legacy but Olivia Wilde.

  111. Paul MD (Stella's Boy) says:

    I have not seen Tron: Legacy and have no opinion about its quality. reports that it cost $370 million to produce and market. Other sources put it at anywhere from $370 million to $400 million when counting production and global P&A costs. says it cost $150 million to make and $120 million to market.

    I don’t think most people would consider a $400 million worldwide gross to be all that great against $370 million in production & marketing costs. However, if merchandise and DVD sales are spectacular, then obviously that factors into the equation.

  112. JS Partisan says:

    Yeah those toys had some legs and it sold well on BD. Seriously though Paul, no love for Tron?

  113. SamLowry says:

    As I pointed out a few weeks ago, the Enterprise is too fragile to be built in a gravity well; even in zero-g it needs to be strengthened by a variety of internal force fields. Plus, there were spacedocks all over the solar system, one of which was shown in almost pornographic detail in the first Trek movie.

    And I suppose it’s just an amazing coincidence that some bartender named a drink after one of thousands of named stars in the sky that just happened to have an undiscovered civilization which would eventually play an important part in Trek history. Nah, I call bullshit and see such dickery as further proof–like the lens flares–that Abrams doesn’t give a shit and just likes to fuck around.

    In a similar vein maybe Spielberg could have Lincoln drink a Margarita, named after a saucy chambermaid. Why not, eh?

  114. Paul MD (Stella's Boy) says:

    I’ll see it eventually IO. Don’t get to see as many movies as I’d like these days. Last one I saw in theaters was Super 8. Next will probably be Cars 2 with the little guy. I’m always playing catch up.

  115. Geoff says:

    Ok, just read Harry from AICN’s review of Transformers 3 – his most entertaining review in years. I actually think the dude has some credibility on this subject since he has relentlessly bashed the first two movies after years of anticipation.

    Gotta give him credit – sometimes, he pulls these off: DEAD-ON on how he compares Bay to Russ Meyer and how he loves to use Oscar-winning actors to play the biggest idiots in his movies. Pricess, NOW I want to see this movie!

  116. Geoff says:

    Oh and another thing: I dug Super 8, but I’m wondering how much of an inside joke the whole lens flare things is with JJ Abrams – they pop up in the most unlogical scenes. In a dude’s bedroom with a lamp, really???? Still a kick to watch.

  117. Paul MD (Stella's Boy) says:

    How many paragraphs does he devote to playing with Transformers as a child, what he had for breakfast the day of the screening, his recent health issues, and his wife’s feelings about the Transformers movies?

  118. Gustavo says:

    SamLowry is one of those geeky, nitpicking, obssessive guys who don’t enjoy anything because of completely irrelevant details.

  119. Geoff says:

    Paul, that’s the good thing: Harry doesn’t bother with that stuff on this one. He devotes most of the content towards how Bay is a “fetishist.”

  120. Foamy Squirrel says:

    Hey, you never know – Galaxy Quest showed those details might not be as irrelevant as you may think…

  121. SamLowry says:

    I’m tired of seeing reality jettisoned because someone wanted a moment of “cool”.

    Heck, even Weird Al admits he spends time conducting research before writing each song, and in a recent interview he described spending an afternoon in a public library reading up on all the different types of hernias before writing “Living With A Hernia”. These days, fuck it, just make that shit up because no one really cares, right?

    With that attitude it would be pointless to devote any energy to shows like “Lost” or “The X-Files” because it’s obvious they’re making it up as they went along, but hey that’s okay because only a moron would care about such a dippy concept like “continuity” in the first place. Just take a deep breath, bro, and relax because we all know Elvis killed JFK since that would be cool, right? Anything you can imagine is better than whatever really happened, which no one but those stupid scholarly grinds give a shit about, anyway.

    P.S. My brother goes apeshit whenever he sees a sprinkler go off in a movie or TV show and the water comes out crystal clear. Unless those things are going off every day (you might want to consider moving) the water will come out rusty red or jet black from sitting in those pipes so long.

  122. Paul MD (Stella's Boy) says:

    Sounds like an uncharacteristic amount of restraint for Harry.

  123. The Big Perm says:

    That’s so adorable that IO denies loving a movie before he sees it, even though he spends the months before it opens jacking off to it and getting pissed at anyone who says anything slightly negative about it. I don’t understand how he can reconcile those conflicting issues but then I’m not like a crazy homeless person.

    And Sam, dude…if those issues ruin a Star Trek movie for you, then you must HATE Star Trek. And I mean ALL Star Trek. I used to watch some of the shows and a friend gave me one of those guide books, and it would point out in every episode the logical inconsisitences in it. There’s a TON of that shit, from the first series to the last. How would ANYONE know about how fragile a spaceship is, or care? It’s a tv show/movie, let it go. But if you want to get nerd, I can get nerd.

    So check this shit out…

    First of all in the new Star Trek movie, it’s established that the villain went back in time so who knows what he altered? And ion general, these ships have escaped from black holes and stuff, you’re telling me they can’t get out of orbit somehow, when we can do that very thing TODAY? Gene Roddenberry didn’t care about the specifics of that stuff anyway. And really, you’re not going to give a movie reboot ANY leeway to do things differently? Star Trek the movie is sort of a reboot and sort of a sequel, in a way it was pretty smart of Abrams to do it that way.

    As for the Cardassia drink…here’s what happened. This bartender named the drink after a star, and the drink turned out to be the most popular drink on earth. Then when they discovered this unknown race, some joker referred to them as “Cardassians” as a joke referring to said drink. The nickname stuck and eventually that became their official name, like how “Xerox” became “making a copy of a paper.”

    Expect these issues to be cleared up in later movies.

  124. SamLowry says:

    As someone who spent hours researching the chances of finding both tarantulas and scorpions in specific areas and elevations of Arizona, I guess you’d have to say that getting things straight is the sort of thing I care about.

    And as noted in the XMFC links I posted last night, the mind-boggling continuity errors show that the makers of XMFC either didn’t watch X-MEN 1-3, or they didn’t care. Either way, they come off as complete idiots.

  125. The Big Perm says:

    But you’re getting things straight about a fictional show set in the future where the storylines generally end with Captain Kirk punching an alien.

  126. JKill says:

    I’m in a quandry on TF3 because I despised REVENGE OF THE FALLEN with every fiber of my being. I enjoyed the first one, especially its first half, as Amblin-esq summer fun, and couldn’t believe in the half assed-ry, stupidity and vulgraity trumped up in its sequel in the name of being bigger and better, but was only louder, dumber and so ungodly long. The action, in particular, was a complete let-down, nothing inspired or exciting, even remotely so.

    That said, saw the TF3 trailer in 3-d in front of GREEN LANTERN, and man, it looks like it rules. It has went from something I had zero interest in, where I was actually rolling my eyes and supressing groans at the teaser trailer, to something I’m sort of getting pumped about.

    Your move, Mr. Bay.

  127. yancyskancy says:

    Sam, don’t most people who have sprinklers use them with some frequency? In hot climates at least, it’s not unusual to see them go off every day (that’s why they have timers).

  128. Krillian says:

    The lack of continuity of XMFC tells me that they’re pretending some of those movies – especially X3 – never happened or it’s a reboot that happens to feature some of the same actors (e.g., those two cameos). I took it like Superman Returns, where they pretended Supe 3 & 4 never happened.

    The lack of continuity in Star Trek I attribute to the fact that there’s been so much time travel, it’s any number of the millions of multiverses they’ve created from timeline disruption. Hence, among other things, Spock’s mom’s dead in the movies now. But between Super 8 and Star Trek, Abrams has shown he’s okay with logic problems and plot holes.

    And maybe the drink started as the Kim Khardashian and iot slowly morphed into Cardassia…

  129. nikki whisperer says:

    Jason: Actually, it’s usually the rushed VFX work that costs more, because last minute work usually involves teams working on triple overtime to make a release date. VFX are, indeed, expensive, but the biggest expense comes from the sheer waste of having to re-do whole sequences several times because the first vendor got it wrong or jettisoning completed work after the fact because the director and/or studio skimped on pre-production planning or were penny-wise and pound-foolish in hiring vendors or were too inept and indecisive to know what they actually wanted. Think of it this way: what costs more — a well-constructed house with detailed craftsmanship that sticks to the blueprint or one where the owner decides at the last second, after all the construction, that what he REALLY wants is the staircase on the other side of the house and more windows and the walls to the living room knocked out and, oh, by the way, he still expects you to deliver by the originally agreed-upon date? Whatever one may think of TRON (I didn’t particuarly care for it, much to IO’s chagrin), one thing I can guarantee you is that Kosinski knew EXACTLY what he wanted VFX wise and how to achieve it during shooting and there probably was little waste and most of the money spent wound up onscreen.

  130. hcat says:

    The bomb and flop label for a movie that makes a decent amount of money has always bugged me. I have heard people refer to Burton’s Apes remake, Superman Returns, MI3 and a whole host of other films as bombs or flops even though they made huge amounts of money. Shouldn’t a hit or miss simply reflect the number of people they got in the seats? What it made compared to the cost should be an entirely different arguement.

    Mars needs Moms is a flop. Lantern is merely a minor (100 million is not what it used to be) hit. And yes Tron was a hit, doesn’t matter what they spent to make or market it, 172 million and 12th for the year should qualify it by any yardstick.

  131. hcat says:

    And though it was established last week that The Art of Getting By was a non-starter, that 80% drop just looks brutal.

  132. nikki whisperer says:

    hcat: first rule of business: if you spend more manufacturing and marketing a product than you eventually recoup in the sale of said product, from a purely ecomomic standpoint, would you consider that product a failure or a success?

  133. Hopscotch says:

    Surprised there hasn’t been more coverage on “Conan O’Brien Can’t Stop” given the publicity O’Brien got during his tour.

    I watched it on U-Verse over the weekend. An interesting piece, but unless you’re a big comic nerd and enjoy some of the celebrity cameos I doubt you’ll find it interesting.

  134. christian says:

    When I worked in transcription gulch, two of my co-workers went off to run full-time very successful, high-profile film sites. Another sold his script. Another…well, somehow people who have the desire to do things will do them. Others won’t. It’s that simple.

  135. LexG says:

    Christian, but was it not the most brutally boring and soul-destroying (and movie-destroying) job ever?

    Why does a movie need to be DVD-subtitled a month before it’s released? Seeing Terrence Malick’s majesty on a 2-inch screen starting at minute 98 wasn’t exactly the optimal way to experience it.

  136. SamLowry says:

    Maybe I should’ve been more specific by adding “fire” before sprinkler, but that bit about water sitting in the pipes long enough to turn red or black should have been a giveaway, I thought.

    Singer even said he was picking up from the conclusion of Supes 2 (although the decision to cut a decade from the ages of the actors was a big screwup), but there was no announcement that XMFC was denying the existence of any of the very recent X-Men movies.

    Would it be any clearer if I said the Jim Shooter years at Marvel were the best ever? Like Marshal Tito, he ruled with an iron fist and kept everything in order.

  137. LexG says:

    Hey Sam Lowwwwwwwwwwwrrrrrry (TM Mar-iiin Lawrence):

    What are you ON about re: sprinklers? Jesus CHRIST. It’s called the Hot Blog not the Bore Blog.

  138. Foamy Squirrel says:

    Yancy – I’m assuming Sam is referring to internal fire sprinklers, rather than external lawn sprinklers. So, yeah, they go off once every few years? If ever? That water’s going to be doing some nasty stuff to your clothes if someone sets it off.

  139. anghus says:

    hmmmm, tough to say. who was running Marvel in the 70’s during the Dr Strange, Tomb of Dracula, Daredevil, Werewolf by Night, and the pimped out Luke Cage/Power Man years. I think creatively, when you look back, that was Marvel’s most interesting period. DC’s most interesting was the 80’s. If you take everything from V for Vendetta, Watchmen, Dark Knight Returns, go through Crisis on Infinite Earths, up until they killed Superman. That’s when it became a cash grab.

    Hmmm. When did Warner Brothers buy DC Comics.

    For me, the 1970’s… Make Mine Marvel. Nuff Said,


  140. christian says:

    Of course it can be soul-draining. But my trust fund had just run low and Mumsy insisted I work for a living. And the best thing about transcription/subtitling/spotting was getting laid off thanks to the company taking the work to the Phillipines. But I loved spotting and watching all the raw footage of DVD interviews, where you get to see the crew set up with Warren Beatty (quite congenial) or Tommy Lee Jones (a total terror) or the “reality shows” where people are literally told how to react. There are worse jobs. And a few of my crew came out unscathed (like me) and with dreams realized. That’s the real magic of Hollywood.

  141. hcat says:

    NW: I get your point and I am not saying that we shouldn’t talk about it, but whether Tron or Green Lantern are hits or wise investments are two different conversations. It is possible to have a hit film that does not make its money back, just as it is possible to have a profitable film that does not sell a lot of tickets.

    True Grit sold just a few less tickets than Tron, but its budget was much smaller. Does that make Grit a bigger hit even though more people saw Tron? By that logic wouldn’t that mean My Big Fat Greek Wedding the biggest hit of the last 20 years?

    I don’t think audiences in general care whether a studio spent 150 or 250 on a film, just the end product. Have you ever watched a movie and thought “that was a great movie, shame they spent so much on it?”

  142. The Big Perm says:

    hcat, if it were your studio, and you ended up making, say, 60 million from True Grit or one million from Tron, which would you call a hit?

  143. anghus says:

    christian, try doing dvd subtitle transcriptions for direct to dvd companies. I would have killed to see Tommy Lee Jones going freaky on an internview instead of trying to decypher just what an actor is saying when it doesn’t come within 1% of how it’s written into a script.

    There was this one rap artist in one of the films, and the line was something like.

    “He was trying to get with her.”

    and the line was read as

    “He was slippin’ on his pimpin’ on purpose”

    the Director didn’t know what he said. Neither did anyone else. I had to email the guy’s manager with a quicktime clip to get that one. And even after clarifying i needed to be explained just what the hell it meant.

    From Urban Dictionary.

    “Slippin’ on my pimpin’

    act of someone cock-blocking you and slipping in the way of your sexual activities with a fine lady

    I’m drinking at a party talking to a girl getting somewhat physical when another man (the Slipper) slips in from the side and either grabs the girl or tries removing her away from the initial point of communication thus slippin’ on my pimpin'”

    I’m not sure how one would accidentally “slip on their pimpin”….

  144. yancyskancy says:

    Sorry to prolong the sprinkler thing with my misunderstanding. I went with the first thing the word brought to mind.

    Still, what an odd thing to get bent out of shape about in a movie. Reminds me of those folks who get totally taken out of the story when a phone number has the 555 exchange, ’cause it doesn’t represent “reality.” It might be a movie about a killer robot from the future, but if someone starts dialing 555, it destroys these jokers’ suspension of disbelief.

  145. hcat says:

    Perm. thats the exact thing. I am not a studio. Now I can put on my studio hat and agree with you that Grit made a ton of more money and was a great investment even though on paper it might have looked riskier than Tron. But I can also put on my theater owner’s hat and see them as both hits. And then i can put on my audience hat and text the whole time you are asking the question.

    Each of these are different perspectives, and I am saying that the arguements often get muddled when we combine everything together.

  146. LexG says:

    Heh… I’ve had to do rap videos for years; Most people who do caps and ‘scripts are whiter than Matthew Modine, and haven’t listened to music since 1987, or met a black guy ever, so it’s a sad statement when I’m considered the go-to guy for hip-hop projects.

    But what I can never get around is, WHAT fucking DEAF person is sitting there staring at a tv watching Sippin’ My Sizzurp or whatever? Do deaf people watch music videos? Also, not like anyone who can actually hear can make out more than 20% of the lyrics anyway. Such a stupid job. And that’s not even counting the years I had to transcribe hardcore porn, which I’ve talked about before. Talk about soul-crushing, trying to register every one of Jenna Haze’s individual utterances of “Oh, my God, yes!” while coming up with 20 different ways of describing Randy Spears’s grunts and groans and moans.

  147. nikki whisperer says:

    hcat: Absolutely agree that an audience shouldn’t care what a movie costs and that it has nothing to do with the enjoyment of watching a film, but you said you were curious why the perception seemed to be that the aforementioned films were flops and the reason is because, in fact, by a tangible empirical yardstick, they were.

  148. anghus says:

    i believe the captioning in my case was for “foreign markets”.

    i’ll give you the MOST soul crushing.

    Writing a movie, having it produced, and then you have to end up doing to subtitles and watch every moment as a dozen rap artists mangle your script into an unrecognizable pulp.

  149. The Big Perm says:

    hcat, this is true. I guess I tend to look at things from a studio view, because a movie being a hit impacts their pocketbook since they shelled out the 120 million to make it.

    Lex, please write down five examples of how you would transcribe a Randy Spears grunt. Would they be like “Uhhhnhh!” Or “Ohhoohhhh.” Or do you do it by speed, like “Uhh!” You could write a whole website’s worth of blogs about that shit, do it.

    And someone tell me what EXACT color should sprinkler water be?

  150. The Big Perm says:

    Oh, and alos to hcat…I think I tend to look at what’s a bomb from the studio’s viewpoint because that’s what determines if a movie gets made or not. Maybe not always if they want to get in business witha star or whatever, but there’s a reason why the Coens have been cranking out movies for so long. They keep to a budget which makes their movies profitable. And being a hit in relation to cost is why we’re not seeing another Bryan Singer Superman.

  151. Jason says:

    Perm, I thought one of the reasons Returns was so expensive was because of all the money put into the earlier tries of the movie (i.e., Smith, Cage, and Burton – not necessarily for the same version)? Did WB really say “no” to Singer or did Singer not want to wait around for WB to get their act together? I thought Singer left or at the very least it was an amicable split.

    I know we are splitting hairs, but I always thought that on Day 1 when Singer signed on to Supes, $50M had already been spent trying to get the movie made.

  152. anghus says:

    see, i can buy into Superman Returns not being 200 million because of the deficit they were into for failed launches.

    What’s Green Lantern’s excuse. I haven’t seen Transformers 3 yet, but it looks like they get a lot more mileage out of their 200 million bucks than Green Lantern’s Oa backdrop/greenscreen and giant cloud of floating poo.

  153. Foamy Squirrel says:

    Perm – Got a lighter? Hold it up to the sensor. 😉

  154. christian says:

    The crystal clear sprinklers kill the opening to CADDYSHACK.

  155. leahnz says:

    i stormed out of ‘constantine’ during the clear holy water sprinkler scene

  156. hcat says:

    Perm – I know this is just argueing semantics, but wouldn’t bomb or flop simply be from an outside Box Office perspective?

    I like to look at things from a studio perspective as well, and I can fully see why they would not bring back Singer for Superman or make a Lantern sequel or why Cars 3 is inevitable even if it doesn’t reach 200 domestic (though i am sure it will), but it seems like when a lot of these conversations happens there is not a lot of room for nuance, and it is a black and white, this is a massive hit and this is a massive bomb.

  157. leahnz says:

    one could argue that looking at things from the ‘studio perspective’ is the devil

  158. christian says:


  159. The Big Perm says:

    Too bad most movies come from studios then.

    hcat I do agree, there’s not a ton of room for rational discourse on the internet. But, like you had said, what’s a flop or a hit is pretty fluid, in reality. So I think generally a cost/benefit analysis is the best way to look at it. So hit in relation to cost seems to work pretty well.

  160. leahnz says:

    because movies ‘come from studios’ means one should look at them from a ‘studio perspective’?

    not. (maybe if you’re a bean counter)

  161. The Big Perm says:

    Like I said earlier, which movies make money effects other movies that get made. So why not look at it that way? What do you define as a “hit,” if not how much a studio spent vs how much it brought back in? What’s your personal criteria for a bomb?

  162. anghus says:

    my personal criteria?


    The ruler to which all that is awful must be measured.

    An actual bomb?

    I’d say mathmatically a “bomb” is a movie that will never recover it’s investment even when you factor in DVD, cable, streaming, etc.

    If you’re going with straight up theatrical, a bomb is a movie that cannot cover 30% of what it cost in the theatrical release.

    So if you made a movie for 100 million dolalrs and it doesn’t get to 60 million worldwide, you’d be looking at a big tank.

    I mean, that’s bombing. I’d have to do some research to see what films fell into that mathmatical formula. One that pops up to me is Pirate Radio aka The Boat that Rocked.

    Production budget of 50 million before P&A, which i know wasnt a lot. Maybe 10-15 milion (that’s a total guess). For arguments sake, let’s say 10. So you got 60 million.

    Worldwide it makes 36 million dollars in receipts. Cut that in half with a favorable bump and you have 20 million going back to the producing parties. I think domestically this was a pick up so theres probably a lot of deals being made left and right and no one really ate a huge sum of money. But using round numbers, Pirate Radio was a bomb. Even if it managed to do well in the post theatrical arena, would it realistically ever recover the other 30-40 million sunk into that?

    A lot of people dub underperformers or dissapointments as ‘bombs’, but to me, a bomb is a movie with little prospects of ever making back what was sunk into it.

  163. SamLowry says:

    yancyskancy, my brother is in the fire sprinkler biz, thus the outrage.

    Red or black is what usually gets sprayed on you after years without a fire. The color depends on the composition of the pipe and whether there’s fire retardant in the water as well.

    Leaky pipes are even more fun. Imagine a swanky resort that looks like a Scandinavian lodge with cedar covering every surface, skylights over the pool…and sprinklers dripping black water into said pool. Cha-ching if you get hired to rip that all out and redo a job done by the lowest bidder.

  164. The Big Perm says:

    So I guess Leahnz and Christian will never actually put their brains to work and define exactly what we should think of as a bomb or hit.

  165. Triple Option says:

    Whether it should be or not is another matter but I believe performance vs expectations, which are often formed by unreasonably linked comparables, is a main culprit in determining the “bomb” label.

    Also, in some cases, I think a miss is as good as a mile. Like any other investment, a small return on an investment with great risk is a “bad” investment.

    I really want potatoes, bacon and eggs for breakfast but I’m only going to have oatmeal and an apple. No, that has nothing to do w/anything but I had to get that out since I’m feeling a bit headachy and needed to complain to someone but no one’s around. Well, there are but they’re a buncha drama queens and I don’t want to be held hostage for 15 mins hearing about the hassle exchanging their daughter’s blouse from the discount bin from Target.

  166. hcat says:

    How can you eat oatmeal in the summer? But Kudos on being healthy, I ate a pint of Chocalate Chip Gelato for breakfast.

    As for a bomb criteria, anything reaching $50 million would get a pass. Bomb or Flop to me would mean utter indifference upon release. Jonah Hex and Macgruber where both equally bombed even though their budgets were vastly different because the audiences avoided them in the same manner. If it is a wide release from a major studio and it fails to reach $20 million, I think that would qualify unless it was something extremely nichey like Disney’s Prom movie. Then yes, sometimes expectations play into it.

    Now if you look at things just by a studio’s perspective on budget, somethings like Gulliver’s Travels, or Bay’s Island which were flops or dissapointments here would be considered hits due to their international gross. If someone referred to Stallone’s Daylight as a flop, would you correct them by saying “what are you talking about, that was huge in Paraguay.”

    I guess what I was really complaining about when I started was how we tend to place things in just a few categories like Bomb or Hit, while there is much more to it than that. I would say as it stands now, Midnight in Paris is not a hit. It would need a qualifier like crossover hit or arthouse phenominon, and saying that would not be diminishing its remarkable performance but just giving a more accurate description.

  167. Steven Kaye says:

    Yowza! Midnight in Paris has made $2.8 million in Brazil after just 2 weekends – more than the $2.5 VCB made there after 20 weekends!

    Overall, it’s at $55.4 million from 7 countries.

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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