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Joss Whedon believes there's a big problem with Hollywood movies

07.25.2016

Though Joss Whedon was instrumental in helping develop the unstoppable behemoth that is the Marvel Cinematic Universe, he has never really felt destined for a lifetime of making big Hollywood movies. He has always seemed more at home as a behind-the-scenes creative type, a TV guru or a passionate auteur making adaptations like MUCH ADO ABOUT NOTHING. His two big goes at the blockbuster game, THE AVENGERS and AVENGERS: AGE OF ULTRON took a lot out of him, as he has spoken about blockbuster moviemaking in the past.

But The Wheds has even more to say about Hollywood, and he used his time at Comic-Con to address what he thinks is a major problem in the business:

It's gotten to a state where movie studios are pretty relentless about trying to have an in before they start production. That's not the case for all films, but it is the case for a ton of them, especially the big-budget ones. Part of the problem is there's a dialogue going on between audiences and studios that is devolving, because they keep finding a lower common denominator. This doesn't mean the films are bad --- it just means that the ways in which they're approaching what they're going to make have become kind of ossified. At the same time, audiences are more likely to turn out for something that they already know or like. The problem is that there isn't really a willingness by a lot of people to go into something that they don't already know. None of this helps you by the way, sorry. But it's something that needs to be addressed.

That paragraph was pretty thick, I know, but it appears what the man is getting at is that there’s too much focus on trying to plan everything out when it comes to big movies, letting audiences know what that plan is, and letting that audience have an input on what future plans will be. Basically, too much of the roadmap is unveiled and, as a result, there’s no mystery anymore as to what we’ll be seeing.

I happen to agree with Whedon that there’s no sense of surprise anymore, but who’s to blame for it is not as simple. It could be the fault of the audience, showing out for only certain kinds of movies, and obsessing over particular franchises. But it could also be the studio’s fault, pumping us full of the same stuff like the witch stuffing poor Hansel and Gretel with candy. My money is on the former, as Hollywood only gives us what we want, just like any business. They plan their movie slates around what is successful at the box office, and as soon as something becomes unpopular (look at YA adaptations like DIVERGENT), they shift to something else.

As long as the content Hollywood pumps out is mostly good I personally don’t care what it is, whether it be a big, anticipated blockbuster or a surprising little film like THE NICE GUYS. If it’s crap, then the audience will let you know (*cough* BATMAN VS SUPERMAN *cough cough*) and hopefully those who made it are properly chastised. I really wanted to say "flogged in the street", but "chastised" seemed more elegant.

Extra Tidbit: What do you think of what Mr. Whedon had to say?
Tags: joss whedon

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12:52AM on 07/27/2016
If the content are good I dont see problem with lot of previews and footages. That calm the pirate a little too. Suspense are for suspense movies, and if you base a movies on a big surprise, you just say that your movies will be good to watch just one time. With A good movie, you dont really care if you know what happens next, and you enjoy re-watch it multiple time. I think the actual problem are the same as in video game it just big marketing, and content are often not finished or just big
If the content are good I dont see problem with lot of previews and footages. That calm the pirate a little too. Suspense are for suspense movies, and if you base a movies on a big surprise, you just say that your movies will be good to watch just one time. With A good movie, you dont really care if you know what happens next, and you enjoy re-watch it multiple time. I think the actual problem are the same as in video game it just big marketing, and content are often not finished or just big copy. They try too make it look real and good for the eyes but they forgot most important thing like acting or scenario. Now if your beautiful and sexy you can play in almost all the movies they make. With big budget they have big pression so they prefer not to try complicated, and instead doing re-make or best-seller novel based movies. Some best-seller make good movies trought, but when it the tenth re-make of the same book that become harder a little to stand.
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9:16PM on 07/25/2016
This is the problem when source material is adapted faithfully. Did anybody not know that Ozymandias was the villain in Watchmen? Did anybody not know that Bucky was the Winter Soldier? There are no surprises anymore.
This is the problem when source material is adapted faithfully. Did anybody not know that Ozymandias was the villain in Watchmen? Did anybody not know that Bucky was the Winter Soldier? There are no surprises anymore.
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10:46PM on 07/25/2016
Lots of people did not know those plot twists. The comics in by comparison have a much smaller audience than movies so a good portion of people going into these movies had no idea of these previously. My wife was shocked when we were watching Captain America and the Winter Soldier turned out to be Bucky as well as a friend of mine both of whom are not comic book readers even though they are both avid movie watchers. A good selling comic book may have a couple million readers while a good
Lots of people did not know those plot twists. The comics in by comparison have a much smaller audience than movies so a good portion of people going into these movies had no idea of these previously. My wife was shocked when we were watching Captain America and the Winter Soldier turned out to be Bucky as well as a friend of mine both of whom are not comic book readers even though they are both avid movie watchers. A good selling comic book may have a couple million readers while a good selling movie will have tens of millions as an audience.
8:05PM on 07/25/2016
I have talked about this at length with my friends.
Tv is the new cinema, cinema is the new tv.
When I was growing up, dreck like Charlies Angels and The A Team were on tv, now that is in the theater. Movies used to be thoughtful entertainment, and tv was for quick titalation. Micheal Bay and Zach Snyder would be working on McGyver back in the day...
I have talked about this at length with my friends.
Tv is the new cinema, cinema is the new tv.
When I was growing up, dreck like Charlies Angels and The A Team were on tv, now that is in the theater. Movies used to be thoughtful entertainment, and tv was for quick titalation. Micheal Bay and Zach Snyder would be working on McGyver back in the day...
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7:50PM on 07/25/2016

Optional

True but from a weak argument from a weak director from weak history. I guess if you had made or come up with Alien, our the sequels, our directed, poor written anything original instead of puking viral bs than we would care. So make avengere 8 and complain but sick a big fat d.......loser
True but from a weak argument from a weak director from weak history. I guess if you had made or come up with Alien, our the sequels, our directed, poor written anything original instead of puking viral bs than we would care. So make avengere 8 and complain but sick a big fat d.......loser
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6:02PM on 07/25/2016
Smaller, better and more entertaining content will find an audience. The problem is now filmmakers can do whatever they want instead of being smarter about the film and the story within. They planned on showing the shark more in Jaws, but Bruce stubbornly didn't work right. So Spielberg and his team had to work SMARTER and HARDER to make the movie scarier, more intelligent and, thereby, better than it might have been. They CREATED a masterpiece, they didn't just settle for the shit that stuck
Smaller, better and more entertaining content will find an audience. The problem is now filmmakers can do whatever they want instead of being smarter about the film and the story within. They planned on showing the shark more in Jaws, but Bruce stubbornly didn't work right. So Spielberg and his team had to work SMARTER and HARDER to make the movie scarier, more intelligent and, thereby, better than it might have been. They CREATED a masterpiece, they didn't just settle for the shit that stuck to the wall. But now they can make whatever they want a reality. This means the intelligence and practicality, hey we actually have to BLOW UP this Death Star model, goes out the window. Ghostbusters is great partially because Slimer looks like you can touch him and the story has to keep up with this real version of a fantastical situation. The movie's better for it. Ghostbusters 2016 has nothing you can put your hands on and is just an awful remake in which whatever they wanted to pack in, they snapped their fingers and it's in. They EARN nothing, we GAIN nothing. Studios are taking the easy way out to get easy money in. The audience will eventually turn. Yeah, there's always sure things, Star Wars, Bond, etc, but they're REALLY pushing us away with how they seem to want to run their business now. They'll blame piracy or streaming, but it's CONTENT we come out for. Whedon knows his shit.
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3:38PM on 07/25/2016
Anyone who 'reds' this should have their 'film fan' card taken away. I'm tired of seeing Hollywood cannibalize itself to the cheers of closed minded mainstream geek culture who refuse to support anything original.
Anyone who 'reds' this should have their 'film fan' card taken away. I'm tired of seeing Hollywood cannibalize itself to the cheers of closed minded mainstream geek culture who refuse to support anything original.
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3:16PM on 07/25/2016

Hey

BvS Ultimate Cut is fantastic
BvS Ultimate Cut is fantastic
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+2
2:56PM on 07/25/2016

Gotta disagree with the BvS shade

The ultimate cut is quickly becoming one of my fav comic book films; it's just a full, epic beast of a film - and not your typical 'comic book' flick. Still to each their own.
The ultimate cut is quickly becoming one of my fav comic book films; it's just a full, epic beast of a film - and not your typical 'comic book' flick. Still to each their own.
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2:19PM on 07/25/2016
the real big problem with Hollywood movies, is they allow hack jobs like Wheadon to be in charge of anything. I just never got it with him. His writing is loose, and sloppy... Everything he makes feels like its tailored to 15 year old girls... He's a horrible director, and an amateurish writer...and clearly can't handle the inherent pressure involved with working in Hollywood.
the real big problem with Hollywood movies, is they allow hack jobs like Wheadon to be in charge of anything. I just never got it with him. His writing is loose, and sloppy... Everything he makes feels like its tailored to 15 year old girls... He's a horrible director, and an amateurish writer...and clearly can't handle the inherent pressure involved with working in Hollywood.
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1:56PM on 07/25/2016
He is totally right. I was just thinking about this the other day. What is the point of going to a movies when the outcome is already known. Don't get me wrong, I love watching Batman fucking shit up as much as the next guy, but when you eliminate any chance for surprise by already lining up multiple sequels with the same character in the years to come, basically guaranteeing that he will make it through this pending adventure, whats the fucking point?
He is totally right. I was just thinking about this the other day. What is the point of going to a movies when the outcome is already known. Don't get me wrong, I love watching Batman fucking shit up as much as the next guy, but when you eliminate any chance for surprise by already lining up multiple sequels with the same character in the years to come, basically guaranteeing that he will make it through this pending adventure, whats the fucking point?
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+2
1:18PM on 07/25/2016
He's right. BvS came out 4 months ago and already we have a trailer for the Justice League. It's getting ridiculous.
He's right. BvS came out 4 months ago and already we have a trailer for the Justice League. It's getting ridiculous.
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12:29PM on 07/25/2016
I don't disagree with whedon I do feel like people tend to only stick to things they know these days,however that's hollywoods fault for releasing pispor movies and losing their customers trust plain and simple.look at star trek beyond,paramount actually released a good star trek but not everyone went to see it because into darkness was just horrible.these days when you go to the movies plus 1 ur lookin at 50 dollars minimum,its not 1996 anymore when people could go see a movie with the entire
I don't disagree with whedon I do feel like people tend to only stick to things they know these days,however that's hollywoods fault for releasing pispor movies and losing their customers trust plain and simple.look at star trek beyond,paramount actually released a good star trek but not everyone went to see it because into darkness was just horrible.these days when you go to the movies plus 1 ur lookin at 50 dollars minimum,its not 1996 anymore when people could go see a movie with the entire family,food tickets and drinks for less than 40 bucks.why spend my hard earned money for something thats shit?if you put making money above quality ur likely to fail every time.....sorry but not every movie to release is a franchise,that right is decided by the viewers not the studios....
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10:30AM on 07/25/2016
I would love to see him come back and direct one more Marvel film.
I would love to see him come back and direct one more Marvel film.
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10:22AM on 07/25/2016
I used to like Joss Whedon, then I realised even Hitler made some nice roads.
I used to like Joss Whedon, then I realised even Hitler made some nice roads.
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11:23AM on 07/25/2016
Ah, keeping it classy I see. Nothing like comparing a massively successful and fan-beloved director to Hitler for no reason but lulz.
Ah, keeping it classy I see. Nothing like comparing a massively successful and fan-beloved director to Hitler for no reason but lulz.
10:22AM on 07/25/2016
Liked BvS, loved the extended cut
Liked BvS, loved the extended cut
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9:30AM on 07/25/2016

please go back to TV!

hes got a solid point, so please Mr Whedon lets get you back to tv where you can flourish again! Just not with FOX. Can you imagine if he landed something with AMC or Netflix? It seems thats where true creativity happens nowadays and the film system is only interested in epic things and not middle budget fair (although the success of Deadpool could open up some doors).
hes got a solid point, so please Mr Whedon lets get you back to tv where you can flourish again! Just not with FOX. Can you imagine if he landed something with AMC or Netflix? It seems thats where true creativity happens nowadays and the film system is only interested in epic things and not middle budget fair (although the success of Deadpool could open up some doors).
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8:25AM on 07/25/2016
I agree. Need more original movies, less announcing of movies. Movies should be made in secrecy.
I agree. Need more original movies, less announcing of movies. Movies should be made in secrecy.
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8:02AM on 07/25/2016
"If itís crap, then the audience will let you know"
*cough* BvS made more money than Deadpool *cough*
"If itís crap, then the audience will let you know"
*cough* BvS made more money than Deadpool *cough*
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9:09AM on 07/25/2016
Only worldwide. Domestically, BvS made $330m while Deadpool made $363. And the relatively small difference in their global grosses -- $90 million (BvS at $873m vs Deadpool at $782m) -- doesn't come anywhere close to covering the $200 million difference in their budgets. Nice try, though.
Only worldwide. Domestically, BvS made $330m while Deadpool made $363. And the relatively small difference in their global grosses -- $90 million (BvS at $873m vs Deadpool at $782m) -- doesn't come anywhere close to covering the $200 million difference in their budgets. Nice try, though.
9:29AM on 07/25/2016
BvS had the 2 biggest and best known comic superheroes and Deadpool was a relatively unknown character and an 'R' rated movie to boot. Based on percentage profit, Deadpool slaughtered BvS. Plus it was a much more entertaining movie.
The audience DID let the studios know.
BvS had the 2 biggest and best known comic superheroes and Deadpool was a relatively unknown character and an 'R' rated movie to boot. Based on percentage profit, Deadpool slaughtered BvS. Plus it was a much more entertaining movie.
The audience DID let the studios know.
10:27AM on 07/25/2016
"Only worldwide."
Yep, exactly. Worldwide gross is pretty important! And, worldwide, BvS made more money that Deadpool. So... I guess audiences around the world let the studio know that they liked BvS?
"Only worldwide."
Yep, exactly. Worldwide gross is pretty important! And, worldwide, BvS made more money that Deadpool. So... I guess audiences around the world let the studio know that they liked BvS?
10:37AM on 07/25/2016
You can't pretend that BvS wasn't a disappointment. Any live action film that starred the two biggest superheroes ever created onscreen together for the first time was guaranteed to make some money. But it should have done so much better. The fact that it didn't proves that word of mouth was bad, practically nobody went to see it twice or told their friends to go see it, and by any metric it underwhelmed at the box office. Unlike Deadpool, which did so much better than literally anyone
You can't pretend that BvS wasn't a disappointment. Any live action film that starred the two biggest superheroes ever created onscreen together for the first time was guaranteed to make some money. But it should have done so much better. The fact that it didn't proves that word of mouth was bad, practically nobody went to see it twice or told their friends to go see it, and by any metric it underwhelmed at the box office. Unlike Deadpool, which did so much better than literally anyone expected. You can't look at these numbers in a vacuum, you have to look at them in context. Deadpool got a big thumbs up from filmgoers. BvS got two even bigger thumbs down.
11:45AM on 07/25/2016
And your point is? BvS is utter trash. Made for and consumed by that lowest common denominator mentioned in the article.

And the movies profit margins aren't even comparable. Deadpool was made on a budget of less than $60 million, meanwhile BvS cost somewhere closer to $400 million. BvS barely even broke even.
And your point is? BvS is utter trash. Made for and consumed by that lowest common denominator mentioned in the article.

And the movies profit margins aren't even comparable. Deadpool was made on a budget of less than $60 million, meanwhile BvS cost somewhere closer to $400 million. BvS barely even broke even.
3:43PM on 07/25/2016
The only reason BvS made more was because Deadpool was banned from the second largest market in the world, China. Still, a $50million film that makes $700million worldwide is far more successful than a $250million film that makes $800million worldwide.
The only reason BvS made more was because Deadpool was banned from the second largest market in the world, China. Still, a $50million film that makes $700million worldwide is far more successful than a $250million film that makes $800million worldwide.
10:27PM on 07/25/2016
Grossing more is not making more. Deadpool cost much less to make and market.
Grossing more is not making more. Deadpool cost much less to make and market.
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