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C'mon Hollywood #128

Jun. 29, 2007by: Sturdy

... slow down on the summer movies!
by Sturdy

One of the things that makes life so great is the fact you have so many choices in virtually everything you buy. You cant even buy a simple toothbrush these days without having to consult Consumer Digest. So the fact that we have a huge selection in movies at the theater at any given time in many ways is a good thing. However, as great as the summer movie season is, the vast number of movies released makes it a little frustrating. It seems like only a few years ago there was one big release every few weeks. Now you get a few big releases every week.


Man, I hope this movie is as good as it looks in the previews.

Although I cant confirm it, I hear that there are people out there that actually have social lives and cant go see several movies a week. Fortunately for me, I dont have that problem because my time is divided between ALF reruns and not having sex. So I can drop everything and go see the latest new release. However, Id bet the average fan can barely fit one theater visit in a week. With so many big time movies being released one weekend after the other, how is the average fan supposed to keep up?

And what about the 4th of July weekend? Ill be out of town this weekend, so that means on the fourth of July, I have to choose between DIE HARD 4 and TRANSFORMERS. Thats like choosing which kid to sacrifice. Its a decision no parenterrmovie fan should have to make. I guess that serves me right for trying to get a social life. What do the studios gain by going head to head with each other? I know theres a high pride factor amongst Hollywood executives, but when you put your film against another high profile film, even if it is one week apart, you both loose. Theyre probably both going to be successful, but theyd do better without the competition.


Chances are good Ill be seeing this one on the fourth of July.

So the real question is whether or not releasing a movie in the spring or in the fall really does hurt box office returns. I think traditional thinking points to yes and Hollywood seems to avoid Januaries and Septembers like theyre cursed. However, Im not so sure. I think that if SHREK 3 was released in the spring, it would eventually even out. Sure, it probably wouldnt have as high of an opening weekend, but it would last a lot longer and for about two months, it would be the only game in town. Instead, it has to compete against PIRATES 3, OCEANS 13 and others.


I think any popular kids movie would succeed at any time of the year

What makes the summer overload even more frustrating is the fact that even little comedies, documentaries and horror films are being squeezed in there. Its hard enough for smaller films to be successful and find an audience, now you want to compete against Spider-man, John McClane and Optimus Prime? Why? If you release your film in the off-season, you at least have a chance of a decent opening. Releasing it in the heart of the summer is practically suicide.

So after ranting about this for a while, you have to wonder if Hollywood even cares. Box-office returns dont have the impact on the bottom line like they used to, so maybe Hollywood releases films theatrically four months before they want the DVD to hit stores. Its backwards, I know, but they make more money off DVD sales, so it would make sense. There were a lot of comments about HOSTEL: PART 2 being released in mid-June, but that would put the DVD release right before Halloween. So maybe Hollywood executives know what theyre doing after all.

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11:42PM on 06/28/2007
While I agree with rants like this to a certain extent, the thing I like about the current model is that all the big, action/comedy films of the summer don't overcome the smaller entertaining but more intellectual fare of the fall...if they spread out those blockbusters more into fall, I'd be afraid of a lot of movies like the ones in fall 2006 - The Prestige, The Fountain, Marie Antoinette, Pan's Labyrinth, Stranger Than Fiction, Babel, Little Children, Children of Men (I didn't love all of
While I agree with rants like this to a certain extent, the thing I like about the current model is that all the big, action/comedy films of the summer don't overcome the smaller entertaining but more intellectual fare of the fall...if they spread out those blockbusters more into fall, I'd be afraid of a lot of movies like the ones in fall 2006 - The Prestige, The Fountain, Marie Antoinette, Pan's Labyrinth, Stranger Than Fiction, Babel, Little Children, Children of Men (I didn't love all of these but just giving some examples) all getting less attention due to the crazy big weekends that the blockbuster films generate and as a result, less of those kinds of films being made. Which would be disappointing for me cause personally, I look forward to those movies a hundred times more than I look forward to most summer movies.

However, I do agree with they should push things earlier in the year - as in January to March which generally has little of either fun popcorn flicks or entertaining but intellectual stuff and by and large, is a dumping ground at this point (with the occasional exception). I agree with this rant that releasing big blockbusters then, I think they could do pretty good in the long run and it'd make the year less lopsided towards the end.
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12:43AM on 06/29/2007

I wholeheartedly agree!

There are far too many movies coming out in the summer, and I just can't afford to see them all. Not at ten bucks a pop! Even the "matinee" price is eight bucks, and that's outrageous. Especially not when I only have to wait a few months and buy/rent it on DVD and watch it as many times as I want.

Execs in hollywood need to wake up and realize that the time of year is not as important as it used to be. Do something a little daring, and release a blockbuster in September or February!
There are far too many movies coming out in the summer, and I just can't afford to see them all. Not at ten bucks a pop! Even the "matinee" price is eight bucks, and that's outrageous. Especially not when I only have to wait a few months and buy/rent it on DVD and watch it as many times as I want.

Execs in hollywood need to wake up and realize that the time of year is not as important as it used to be. Do something a little daring, and release a blockbuster in September or February! You might just be surprised by the results.
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1:11PM on 06/29/2007
I totally agree with the Shrek thing. Look at Night at the Museum. It made $250 million dollars without a huge ad campaign behind it. I barely even saw commercials for it. But it was the only kid movie in the winter. I'm willing to bet if it was stuffed between two other big budget films in the summer, it wouldn't even crack $100 mil.

Now whoever put A Mighty Heart out there admist blockbusters should get fired. It's an obvious Oscar vehicle for Jolie, so it should have been put out
I totally agree with the Shrek thing. Look at Night at the Museum. It made $250 million dollars without a huge ad campaign behind it. I barely even saw commercials for it. But it was the only kid movie in the winter. I'm willing to bet if it was stuffed between two other big budget films in the summer, it wouldn't even crack $100 mil.

Now whoever put A Mighty Heart out there admist blockbusters should get fired. It's an obvious Oscar vehicle for Jolie, so it should have been put out later in the year.
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10:06AM on 06/30/2007

Buncha Whiners

Dudes, come on. Summer 2007 has been one of the greatest movie seasons in a long time. There's been plenty of dry stretches in recent years with nothing but crap, and now that we actually have a great summer you complain that you didn't save any money. Serves you right for going to see all the shit from other years :-)

I'm thrilled with all these great releases, and look forward to buying them again for the Christmas DVD season.
Dudes, come on. Summer 2007 has been one of the greatest movie seasons in a long time. There's been plenty of dry stretches in recent years with nothing but crap, and now that we actually have a great summer you complain that you didn't save any money. Serves you right for going to see all the shit from other years :-)

I'm thrilled with all these great releases, and look forward to buying them again for the Christmas DVD season.
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3:46PM on 06/30/2007

Come on!!!

Come on, actually complaining about to many great summer flicks this year??? Compared to the last 5-6 years this is great, just keep them coming I say…

And if there wasn’t so many great flicks coming now, there is only one you actually needs too see and that’s Transformers, wow what a movie, I had the pleasure to see it last night and I’m still having problems getting reed of this stupid “I just saw my first boob” smile of my face…
Come on, actually complaining about to many great summer flicks this year??? Compared to the last 5-6 years this is great, just keep them coming I say…

And if there wasn’t so many great flicks coming now, there is only one you actually needs too see and that’s Transformers, wow what a movie, I had the pleasure to see it last night and I’m still having problems getting reed of this stupid “I just saw my first boob” smile of my face…
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4:26PM on 06/30/2007

Frontloading is one thing...

...but there's something to be said for moderation in releases. I'm guessing had a couple of films either been released a bit earlier or later, they would have had their own time in the sun.

On the other hand, the dog days of summer are a great opportunity to catch up on the big releases at the cheap theaters while the industry shovels the August crap forward to make room for their Oscar pictures. The cheap theaters are probably where I'm going to see Ocean's 13 and Fantastic Four 2.
...but there's something to be said for moderation in releases. I'm guessing had a couple of films either been released a bit earlier or later, they would have had their own time in the sun.

On the other hand, the dog days of summer are a great opportunity to catch up on the big releases at the cheap theaters while the industry shovels the August crap forward to make room for their Oscar pictures. The cheap theaters are probably where I'm going to see Ocean's 13 and Fantastic Four 2.
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7:47PM on 06/30/2007

Yeah dudes

I've been really impressed with this summer. I mean there were some disappointments but Pirates, Disturbia, Die Hard, 28 Weeks Later, Knocked Up and Ocean's 13 have all been a blast. It seems like its a dammed you do, dammed if you dont situation. Too many and its overkill, too little and you get a repeat of the "box office slump."

But I do agree with the guy below about A Mighty Heart. It's definetly a September or August flick people see when the summer action starts to calm down.
I've been really impressed with this summer. I mean there were some disappointments but Pirates, Disturbia, Die Hard, 28 Weeks Later, Knocked Up and Ocean's 13 have all been a blast. It seems like its a dammed you do, dammed if you dont situation. Too many and its overkill, too little and you get a repeat of the "box office slump."

But I do agree with the guy below about A Mighty Heart. It's definetly a September or August flick people see when the summer action starts to calm down.
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