Just when you think Hollywood has hit rock bottom creatively, it starts digging.
Production company Benderspink has announced that they're developing a movie based on the restaurant chain Medieval Times.
That's right, a movie based on a restaurant, where tourists go to watch people in faux medieval garb risk life and limb recreating jousting tournaments on horseback.
What's next the family saga "The Olive Garden" or the intense thriller "Boston Pizza," or the sexy farce "Hooters: The Movie?"
Now this shows the difference between how Hollywood producers think, and how things work out in the real world.
Hollywood Producers think that this is a slam dunk project and here's why:
1. There's a familiar brand name, and audiences adore familiar brand names.
2. They can slap together a by the numbers script about scrappy nobodies fighting for the jousting championship in no time without creating a single original element.
3. It's guaranteed to be an orgy of product placement, and you know that audiences love it when movies tell them what products to buy.
Now here's how that thinking clashes with the real world.
1. Audiences only really like familiar brand names in movies when that brand name is associated with stories that deliver excitement and adventure. The brand names of restaurants, even ones that offer dinner theatre in the form of faux-medieval fights that have all the historical accuracy of an MGM musical, are not associated with excitement and adventure.
2. The corporation that owns Medieval Times is going to want script approval to protect their brand. That means that anything that has the potential to show the company in a negative light in the slightest way will be excised and sanitized into becoming one big fat 90 minute commercial.
3. Audiences will accept a certain level of product placement, they help pay for movies to get made, but if you push it too far you end up with...
Thus endeth the lesson.