Monday, 31 August 2015

Hollywood Babble On & On #1249: An Open Letter To International Audiences

Dear Movie International Movie Audiences.
Stop it.
You know what I'm talking about, if not, here's a little reminder from the twitter feed of Exhibitor Relations, the service that monitors the global movie box office:

Now do you see what you've done, or do I have to rub your nose in it?
You took two movies that North American audiences had the good sense to spurn as one would spurn fly-laden dog turd and you made them, not successful, but given them the APPEARANCE of being successful.
You see, Hollywood operates along a philosophy of appearance over substance.  
But to understand it, you have to understand how films make money.
It's next to impossible for a major Hollywood movie to profit in the theatres. It just costs too damn much to make and release a so-called blockbuster these days. Even including the international markets doesn't help, because the studios don't have as big a share of the box office, called "The Rental," in Asia and Europe as they do in North America.  
If the film is going to turn a profit it needs to be seen as worthy of repeat viewing either on DVD, Blu-Ray, or licensing to television channels and video streaming services like Netflix, or Amazon.
To key is the licensing deals. They are where the profits lie, but there's a catch.
The people who run TV channels, and streaming services will only pay the big bucks to license hits, or, what look like hits.
That means that the studios can now take a dropped deuce like Adam Sandler's Pixels and say: "Look, it was a huge success internationally, you show things internationally, so give us some big money."
Then there is message the international audiences give studios, filmmakers and stars.
Companies that went under after making
a Terminator movie.
In the case of Tyrmynatyr: Gynysys it means that producers won't take the franchise off the life support it's been on for 20 years, and will keep grinding out more installments, regardless of quality, or how many producers go bankrupt.
In Adam Sandler's case it means he'll just keep on squeezing out the lazy, tedious, and unentertaining movies and not stop and buckle down, and put his nose to the grindstone to do something that might actually be entertaining.
This makes you, the international audience, the equivalent of an uncle who greets his nephew, who is fresh out of rehab, with a celebratory crock of rum and a dime bag of heroin.
Is there a way to stop this?
Not really.
That's because Hollywood doesn't see that it has a problem, because the "international audiences" seem to love what they're doing, and it gives them the illusory appearance of not only success, but of being cosmopolitan and shrewd.
It's just that, an appearance, and it's a lie, but appearances are all that matters.
So if you're a member of the international moviegoing audience, and you're wondering why Hollywood keeps putting out so many bad movies, take a look in the mirror.
You're a part of the problem, please become more discerning, and then you'll be part of the solution.

--Furious D.

1 comment:

  1. Now just to be slightly pedantic, D (because I know you love that) but "Genisys" (which I know you took a shot at up there) is a reference to a real computer term.

    They still misuse it in the movie (yes I went and saw it, forgive me) but it wasn't just a misspelling out of nowhere.