Thursday, 16 December 2010

Hollywood Babble On & On #649: Miramax & The Weinsteins Are Reunited Sort Of

Welcome to the show folks...

One of the major problems faced by anyone buying the mostly moribund Miramax movie company is that you'd have to deal with their founders the Brothers Weinstein. Despite being absent from Miramax for years, they still have a certain amount of say over what can and can't be done to a lot of movies in the Miramax library.

As it happens, the new owners of Miramax seem to be interested in bulking up that library and have just inked a deal with the Weinsteins to co-produce sequels to films from Miramax's golden age like Swingers, Shakespeare In Love, Rounders, Bad Santa, and Clerks.

It seems that this is not a pre-Christmas practical joke, and that they actually are serious about this.

Let's look at the pros and cons of this idea:


1. This project allows the new owners of Miramax to bulk up their library with lots of familiar titles.

2. When it comes to selling or merging film libraries,
which seems to be the ultimate aim of the consortium that owns Miramax, size matters, not box office performance.


1. Most of the films in the Miramax library are built
around specific filmmakers and specific stars. Do you know the odds of those filmmakers and stars going back to make sequels to films they did in the 1990s and early 2000s? Very slim. Not only because of the passage of time, but because the majority of them have bad memories of their past dealings with Miramax.

2. Most of the films are not the sort of concepts you build a franchise around. Can you imagine Good Will Hunting 2: This Time It's Geometry, or Shakespeare In Love Again? Also some have already had sequels, like Clerks II, that came and went barely earning minimum wage at the box office.

3. Remember that this deal involves the Weinstein Bros. How many of their partnerships ran smoothly with everything coming out sunshine and unicorns? Not many. I expect this partnership to last about a year, maybe two, then abruptly end with a lot of anger, threats, and lawsuits aplenty.

The rule seems to be that unless you're one some sort of "Golden Boy" list that exists in Harvey's head, you will do business with them once, and only once if you can avoid it.

So to sum up my feelings, I will actually be surprised if they actually make any of these proposed sequels, and I'll be even more surprised if any of them are any good, or do any business outside of the discount DVD bin nestled between copies of Mansquito 2: Even Suckier.

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