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    #21
    Senior Member Justin Kuhn's Avatar
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    Either of these guys should shut up and make one. I would totally watch a Scorsese Kingpin movie, for example (I was going to say Punisher but Tarentino would really be THE one to do a great Punisher movie). There's plenty of room to work in the genre and constraint breeds creativity. Or they could choose a different constraint...a low budget.

    I find it laughable and hypocritical that Martin will talk sh!t about Marvel movies but he's perfectly happy to use the technology developed on them, namely post-production de-aging techniques, so he can use his old crew to make another gangster movie. Which I will happily watch on Netflix.


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    #22
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    https://www.fastcompany.com/90421057...ppola-classics

    Bob Iger defends the superhero flicks (no sh!t, what with Disney's stake in the game) but does some mental gymnastics when he says that "money helps fund the small, independent films". In the sense that there's a company pool that the financing is drawn from, he is correct but each project is green-lit on its own merits.

    Ken Loach defends Scorsese. Jon Favreau (director of several superhero movies himself) says that Scorsese and Coppola can say what they want because of who they are, though Scorsese backtracks a little calling it "a new art".


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    #23
    Senior Member Batutta's Avatar
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    Scorsese's last word on this, a considerately written op-ed about this controversy, and the state of the industry in general--

    https://www.nytimes.com/2019/11/04/o...u63JUN2lQSlW5s
    "Money doesn't make films...You just do it and take the initiative." - Werner Herzog


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    #24
    Senior Member hscully's Avatar
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    Great article, worth the read. I guess it comes down to what inspires you. We have such a tremendous wealth in tradition and talent in making movies about human beings that expose and explore our behavior with actual human beings - actors. How many times have we heard from great filmmakers, “... they would never make that film now.” It’s not a zero sum game but where do we go?

    BTW, congrats on your film, Batutta.


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    #25
    Senior Member GaryinCalifornia's Avatar
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    Years ago I remember hearing someone saying. Spike Lee was a really good filmmaker. But he was a better promoter. Every time he has a new movie come out. There is some problem out there in the world that needs to be solved. So maybe Martin is learning from Spike.


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    #26
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    The superhero genre is really limited for story variety and suspense. I read comics as a kid and enjoyed some of the movies (Superman 78 was probably the best made, all-star cast etc) but a little goes a long way (animation is a better medium for it than live action) and the fact is that Marvel Disney films in particular do have an assembly line feeling with canned musical scores and less than energetic action sequences. The suspense-breaking jokes don't help. These are films designed by bank managers who don't need to worry about making a profit since the film sector of the corporation is fully subsidized.

    It is a fact. The directors and writers are following tight orders. FX pioneer Rick Baker retired because he was fed up with 40-50 executive producers who did not know what they were doing telling him how to do his job. Phil Tippett, the FX supervisor for Robocop, said the same. Now the studio execs who don't like film anyway are able to dictate from watching a computer screen. They have total control. Worse, they have such narrow story tastes. I.e. anything that reeks to them of toxic masculinity is zapped to oblivion--which is quite a problem for a superhero story. It's nice that Tony Stark admits he urinates in his costume but it doesn't really fit the action-adventure genre. Imagine if Errol Flynn announced the same to Basil Rathbone in the 1938 Robin Hood.

    Scorsese is such a fan of film (he turns up in documentaries on Hammer, Cronenberg etc) that his criticism is worth paying attention to. Unfortunately I think he is too vague. The real problem here is the corporate stranglehold on distribution and marketing. Can an indie film that violates their limited themes and story limits get marketing? They don't need the money so I have to wonder.

    Maybe Scorsese is afraid to be too specific. There is no way that everyone loves superhero movies just as not everyone loved westerns. There used to be lots of choices for those who wanted something different even within the adventure genres. Pirate movies, jungle adventure films, gangster films, spy movies, peplum movies, monster movies. Even the western offered far more variety than a superhero film since the characters were mortal and you often were drawn in by the actors, not the cape.
    I think the first superhero film THE ADVENTURES OF CAPTAIN MARVEL is more sincere and enjoyable than these recent bloated corporate ads since it is a straight adventure where the character does what you expect. No griping about his lost dad or doubts about his relationships or signing some UN accords. But yeah I know-that's toxic masculinity.

    I remember in the 1980s we were told that the pirate film was dead--because of the Pirate Movie and Polanski's Pirates. But what about NATE AND HAYES? That little New Zealand film starring Tommy Lee Jones that was bought by Paramount and dumped so Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom could borrow some of its ideas? Even the first Pirates of the Caribbean has some story points which probably came from NATE AND HAYES. So the pirate film was not really dead, it was just that Hollywood was too unimaginative to make one.
    Hollywood needs new blood or more accurately, the western film audience needs new production companies (preferably not ones where the artists are bankers).


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    #27
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    The problem with "medium budget" films is that they still require huge advertising budgets and, even after that, the returns aren't guaranteed. The superhero budgets are humongous but they appeal to the wider global audiences at a higher percentage rate. In other words, a drama can play to 2%-5% of the US movie theater going public and to 0% of the Europeans/Asians, while an action flick will play to 5% everywhere.

    The streaming services are likely to pick up the slack on dramas because their marketing costs are very low across the board.


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    #28
    Senior Member Batutta's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kgg View Post
    They have total control. Worse, they have such narrow story tastes. I.e. anything that reeks to them of toxic masculinity is zapped to oblivion--which is quite a problem for a superhero story.
    Don't insert politics where there is none. Studios only care about one thing, maximizing profits. If they could do that with 'toxic masculinity', they would. The corporate mindset is to minimize risk. They copy what has worked in the past until it stops working and then they try something else. They crunch numbers, they do their market research, they see changing audiences and demographics and cater to that, to what they think the consumer wants. Catering to the individual politics and to the whims of producers, executives or artists is not in their mandate. Even if the studios put out a statement about wanting more diversity or what have you, it's just PR. They wouldn't do anything if there wasn't a dollar sign behind it.
    "Money doesn't make films...You just do it and take the initiative." - Werner Herzog


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    #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by Batutta View Post
    Don't insert politics where there is none. Studios only care about one thing, maximizing profits...
    Actually, that is not true. There's quite a bit of politics involved in the biz and not necessarily the one you're thinking of.


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    #30
    Senior Member Batutta's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DLD View Post
    Actually, that is not true. There's quite a bit of politics involved in the biz and not necessarily the one you're thinking of.
    A tricky subject to discuss here, but I still maintain the only politics that matter to studios are the ones that increase the bottom line. In terms of pushing a specific cultural agenda, they'll only go along with whatever is most profitable for them.
    "Money doesn't make films...You just do it and take the initiative." - Werner Herzog


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