“Let me try and be as direct as I possibly can with you on this. There was no relationship to repair. I didn’t intend for Harvey to buy and release The Immigrant – I thought it was a terrible idea. And I didn’t think he would want the film, and I didn’t think he would like the film. He bought the film without me knowing! He bought it from the equity people who raised the money for me in the States. And I told them it was a terrible idea, but I had no say over the matter. So they sold it to him without my say-so, and with me thinking it was a terrible idea. I was completely correct, but I couldn’t do anything about it. It was not my preference, it was not my choice, I did not want that to happen, I have no relationship with Harvey. So, it’s not like I repaired some relationship, then he screwed me again, and I’m an idiot for trusting him twice! Like I say, you try to distance yourself as much as possible from the immediate response to a movie. With The Immigrant I had final cut. So he knew he couldn’t make me change it. But he applied all the pressure he could, including shelving the film.”
~ James Gray
By David Poland email@example.com
Friday Estimates by Yo Ho Yo Ho Klady
Pirates 4 could be the first $100m spun as a disaster. It looks like it will open down from the last one by about 15%… or about what 3 lost from 2. And the drop of domestic gross of about 25% from 2 to 3 is unlikely here (it would be down to about $230m). Disney can’t be jumping up and down over this launch – still Top 20 all-time amongst Friday openings – but it’s not a disaster.
I do think this will be the poster child for the next era of 3D, which is to say, it’s now just another price point and combined with studio efforts to disincentivize the theatrical window, one has to conclude that 3D pricing is now pushing away ticket buyers in some cases. Roughly 8 million people will go see Pirates 4 in theaters this weekend for an average of about $12 a pop. Would 10 million have gone to see it at $8.50 a pop? Is there anything that sticks with an audience after seeing this film – or most films – in 3D instead of 2D? Only the empty space in the wallet.
3D is a good tool for some things and a great marketing tool for a few. Smart people have known for years that the price point on movies was an important component in keeping things movie forward. When Average Joe and Joanne figured out that 3D was just a way to bump up the ticket price by 25% and not giving them 25% more pleasure… when it occurred to them that there was a new 3D “event” every other week (or more often), the bloom fell off the rose.
The international market is usually 6 months – a year behind us in smelling a rat. But they will figure it out too.