Gary Kurtz's thoughts on TPM and other SW related topics

Discussion in 'The Phantom Menace' started by hawk, Jun 5, 2003.

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  1. MeBeJedi Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    May 30, 2002
    star 6
    I wish some of these GUSHERS would do more than piss and moan.

    Right back at ya, sdj. [face_plain]

    "You can't convince us and we can't convince you so give up the moaning and groaning already..geez. "

    Even when it's someone else who starts the whining first? ?[face_plain]

    "Why should I care what Gary Kurtz thinks of Episode I and why do you have an unhealthy obsession talking about him for and praising him all the time?"

    I have 2 (count 'em) questions I would like you to answer. Why, then, should you care about a thread discussing what Gary Kurtz thinks of Ep.I, and why do you have an unhealthy obsession talking against him and bashing him all the time?

    As was put so succinctly..."Most of you should just write your standard response on Notepad and post it as your response to every post."

    Yeah, gotta hate those knee-jerk responses. ;)

    "Just sounds like yet another thread where all the friends can gather to bash Lucas and to celebrate that someone actually agrees with their opinion."

    See what I mean. [face_plain]
  2. hawk Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    May 3, 2000
    star 5
    So tell me again, how is this thread actually TPM-related? I mean, since in that interview, he speaks very little about the film. Just sounds like yet another thread where all the friends can gather to bash Lucas and to celebrate that someone actually agrees with their opinion.

    I think the title sums it up. Is that innaccurate? As for that one quote, I did make a point of saying it was "non-TPM". But it does relate to TPM in that this is why TESB succeeded while TPM failed.
  3. MECHA-SUPERIOR Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jul 3, 2001
    star 3
    "They parted on a mutual agreement. Gary Kurtz didn't like the creative direction George was taking with ROTJ, as he (Kurtz) felt it would not be a creative challenge, but more or less a rehash of ANH, with the second Death Star, etc"


    Mutual agreement my ass. Lucas had no interest in Kurtz producing even EMPIRE, after the difficulties of ANH's production. The process of making that film almost killed George, and he put the blame squarely on Kurtz. The fact is, Kurtz was considered a non-entity in regards to his handling of the British crew, Fox liasions, ILM communications.....The guy was just not confrontational enough to handle a big show like a SW film, and it put a lot of pressure on George to pick up the slack. On the eve of the sequel, Lucas was ready to terminate their relationship right there and then. But when Kurtz got wind of this, he BEGGED for another shot at producing a SW film. Although Lucas was dead set against it, he gave him one more shot.

    And Kurtz blew it.

    Everybody knows how ESB went seriously over budget and how much stress that caused Lucas at the time. He couldn't get any more money from the bank as budget overages were piling up. He actually had to go back on his *hand and knees* for an assist from Fox----which pissed him off royally. Kurtz already had a strike against him going into this second SW film, and Lucas had every reason to blame him for the out-of-control budget. Kurtz just wasn't doing what a producer is actually supposed to do on a film production:


    Keep it organized and on budget!


    Contrary to these ridiculous over-estimations of Kurtz's involvement on a storytelling level, it was his failure being an influence on a Production level, which killed his career.



    SIDENOTE: Little known fact that Lucas was instrumental in allowing Walter Murch the chance to finish "Return To Oz", when Disney got furious over budget concerns (sound familiar).

    Just another example of how a Kurtz production almost fell apart, if not by the power of the flanneled one:


    MURCH:......Anyway, on top of all that, the studio was so unhappy with the material that they were seeing, and the fact that we were falling behind schedule, that after five weeks they fired me off the film.

    INTERVIEWER:That I didn't know.

    MURCH:Yes. I only got back on board because George Lucas, who's a friend, heard about what happened and flew to England from Japan, where he was at the time. He met with me and looked at what I had shot, then met with the Disney executives and said ?No, this is going to be great, you guys just have to be more patient with this process, let's see what can be done to facilitate it.? And he guaranteed the rest of the production?he said that if something else happened, he would step in and take control. That was enough to make the executives at Disney feel more confident about what was going on, and I was back directing again after a few days. It was a fantastic act of generosity and commitment on his part.



    Wow, George doesn't just TELL stories about Honor, Loyalty, and friendship ;)
  4. Darth Geist Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 23, 1999
    star 5
    Interesting story, Mecha-Superior. George really does seem like a standup guy.
  5. AdamBertocci Manager

    Manager
    Member Since:
    Feb 3, 2002
    star 7
    Speaking of Gary Kurtz and his unemployment streak, Jake Lloyd hasn't done a thing either. His stunning Episode I performance didn't exactly open doors I guess.

    He did a coupla more movies, then quit acting. Last I heard he was living a 'normal kid' life. I hope he doesn't grow up all screwed-up and stuff like some child actors. :(

    But we'll always have Jingle All the Way.

    That's actually not that awful a movie... if you're reeeeeeally bored... and find Ahnold comedy funny.



    Rick McCallum loves you!
  6. Darth_Insidious Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Apr 26, 2002
    star 4
    MS: I'd sure love to see your source on George planning to get rid of Kurtz all along.

    And the producer's main job doesn't always have to be getting the production running off without a hitch. You think Jerry Bruckhiemer does whatever the director tells him to? Or John Peters? Even Rick McCallum says that for aspiring producers, the best thing they can do is work on as many movies as possible, so they learn the ins and outs.
  7. yodaschum Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    May 9, 2002
    star 4
    In other words, "Waaah! Stop disagreeing with our opinions! Waaah!" You don't like the heat, get out of the kitchen.

    No, I'm just amazed at the amount of stories and excuses you continually invent to yourself in order to keep the illusion up.
  8. AdamBertocci Manager

    Manager
    Member Since:
    Feb 3, 2002
    star 7
    You think Jerry Bruckhiemer does whatever the director tells him to?

    Bruckheimer, I think, is to the point where he can actually get to make his own creative choices. He and Michael Bay are pals and can get their kind of movie made.
    Bruckheimer is a powerful guy in Hollywood. Gary Kurtz isn't. Nor is Rick McCallum.
    That's why Jerry Bruckheimer movies are generally all the same... stuff blowin' up with snappy one-liners here and there.
    God, sometimes I hate him.

    Or John Peters?

    lol... ironic, since he produced Kershner's "Eyes of Laura Mars"...
    I'm not sure WHO Jon Peters listens to, but if you've been following the story of trying to make the Superman movie, I'd say he's got random voices in his head he listens to. Polar bears... gay robots... etc.
    And IMHO cinema would be far better served by getting Jon Peters away from Superman than from getting Lucas out of the director's chair for SW.
    God, I REALLY hate him.


    Rick McCallum loves you!
  9. Glorian-Eversea Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Dec 26, 2002
    star 2
    The obvious point here is that Kurtz is essentially affirming by agreement about 90 percent of the posts in the Basher's Sanctuary.

    Some gushers often argue that the only difference between the PT and the OT is the age of the basher watching it. We'll call it the "inner child" argument.
    Funny. Kurtz, who participated in the creation of the first two movies, sees a distinct difference between the ANH/ESB and ROTJ/PT and can even vouch for the FACT that Lucas shifted important plot elements between Empire and ROTJ.

    His opinions, which are much better informed than most, also seem to support what Bashers have argued for years.

    Lucas wants yes men?
    Check

    Lucas subverted the original vision for ROTJ and took the most family friendly approach to the ending, even though ESB purposely had set up something different?
    Check

    Lucas thinks his audience is more interested in big visual wows than intricate plots?
    Check

    TPM is riddled with souless CGI?
    Check

    No depth?
    Check.

    This is the producer of two of the best loved Star Wars films and HE is a basher of the PT. No one here is saying that gushers shouldn't go on gushing. Kurtz's opinion is just that _ Kurtz's opinion.
    But it really seems silly at this point to continue claiming that the basher movement is just a TFN phenomenon, or a media conspiracy.
    Everything points to a substantive difference in Star Wars, beginning with ROTJ.

    Glorian
  10. MeBeJedi Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    May 30, 2002
    star 6
    Though I hate to use these terms, I can't help but laugh at how, whenever Kurtz's name is mentioned, "Gusher" statements always make "Basher" statements look pleasant in comparison. [face_laugh]

    Lucas, the "sacred cow" of TheForce.Net. ;)
  11. Darth_Insidious Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Apr 26, 2002
    star 4
    Adam: No doubt that John Peters is one ****** up guy, but I'm using him, along with Bruckheimer, to illustrate the point that producers don't always have to be in servitude to the director and make sure everything goes off without a hitch. Kurtz had produced three immensely popular movies by the time ROTJ was starting production; he'd shown his worth.
  12. Kambei Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Jun 9, 2003
    Darth: It would be unwise to equate Peters/Bruckheimer with Kurtz. These guys initiate and control there productions, but Kurtz did not really have much affect on producing these SW films.
  13. Ultimate Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Sep 14, 2000
    star 3
    "Lucas wants yes men?
    Check"

    See but Kurtz's view is totally one sided and unfounded. If George wanted a yes man to helm ROTJ so much, why did he ask Kershner back? Why did he go to David Lynch after Kersh said no? Why did everyone but Kurtz have the choice to return for ROTJ? The thing is, Kurtz knows these things but chooses to ignore them for some reason. Or is he actually claiming that he was the only "no" man. Plus he has absolutely no idea what's going on behind the scens for the PT. Even if he did, he's shown that he'll lie about stuff he was around for.

    "Lucas subverted the original vision for ROTJ and took the most family friendly approach to the ending, even though ESB purposely had set up something different?
    Check"

    Again, what Kurtz wanted and what Lucas wanted were two different things. Guess what, Kurtz doesn't make the decisions. And I don't see how ROTJ contradicts anything that ESB set up. In fact it makes more sense than what Kurtz wanted: some new character isn't introduced at the last moment as important to the crux of the saga, Han Solo doesn't die just to shovel in phony drama, and a galaxy ruled by one man for decades isn't just suddenly overthrown and given to one woman (who isn't even one of the ranking members of the Rebellion) to run.


    "Lucas thinks his audience is more interested in big visual wows than intricate plots?
    Check"

    Well didn't he kind of know this on ANH? Hell, the PT is more intricate than the OT, so what exactly is the complaint?

    "TPM is riddled with souless CGI?
    Check"

    His opinion of course.

    "No depth?
    Check."

    Maybe he just didn't watch the films closely enough.
  14. Durwood Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    May 18, 2002
    star 5
    His opinions, which are much better informed than most...

    Here we go again with the whole "informed opinion" red herring. An opinion is "a personal belief that is not founded on proof or certainty." Mischaracterizing an opinion as "informed" is nothing more than an attempt to discredit those who disagree based on nothing more than the simple fact that they happen to disagree.

    As for your check-list of "faults" that have been "confirmed" by the mighty Kurtz, that's nothing more than opinion substantiated by hearsay, not the most compelling argument, to say the least.

    Finally, I feel the need to mention that Steven Spielberg has had a very high opinion of the prequels, even going so far as to say that Attack Of The Clones is his favorite Star Wars film right behind The Empire Strikes Back. But of course, we are supposed to embrace Kurtz's opinion simply because it happens to agree with your negative characterization of the prequels. Convenient, that.
  15. Durwood Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    May 18, 2002
    star 5
    Kurtz had produced three immensely popular movies by the time ROTJ was starting production.

    You don't suppose Lucas had anything to do with those successes, do you? [face_plain]

    Given the success and popularity of the prequel films, I think it's safe to say that Lucas did far more for Kurtz's career than Kurtz ever did for Lucas. The fact that Kurtz has had very little work since his days with Lucas speaks volumes.
  16. Glorian-Eversea Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Dec 26, 2002
    star 2
    The fact that Lucas' films have been on a clear downward slide, directly proportional to his increase in power, speaks volumes.


    Glorian
  17. JKBurtola Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Feb 4, 2003
    star 4
    Gary Kurtz's words speak of sour grapes.

    To the bashers he will remain a god because he "apparently" was instrumental in making Star Wars what is...... [face_laugh]

    And his opinion is not well informed. His opinion has as much worth as mine does, he is and outsider looking in and a very ignorant one at that judging by his comments toward TPM (I like how he fronts ESB above TPM, maybe cos you produced it eh Gazza? And maybe cos you think its great?).

    But to me he isn't worth listening to, he is about as intelligent as David Brin or any of the PT sceptics.
  18. Darth_Insidious Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Apr 26, 2002
    star 4
    And here we go with the word twisting, which is particularly annoying when I didn't even hint at what you're saying. Why must it always be George vs. Gary? Why can't I say something about the latter without it being related to the former. I gave mention, good or bad, to George at all, and you're jumping to conclusions to what, start another argument?

    JKBurtola: And herein lies the problem; the fanatics immediate labeling of all PT skeptics as lacking in the intelligence area, and that they have no legitimate beefs with the films.
  19. Glorian-Eversea Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Dec 26, 2002
    star 2
    And noting that someone has a better informed opinion is not a red herring. The true "red herring" is that all opinions about everything should be equally respected in debate.

    On whether Lucas has changed since ANH/ESB, Kurtz's opinion is better informed than yours because he has spoken directly to Lucas and participated in the creation of the two best loved movies of the saga.

    It doesn't mean he is right. But it does mean he has more data upon which to create an opinion. In the court of law, expert witnessess give their "opinions," based on study, evidence and their personal experience.
    When a defense attorney wants to prove his client is honest, they bring in the wife, the boss and the pastor to say he is honest. They don't bring in some guy who will say the right words, but under cross exam will have to admit that he only met defendant three months ago.

    None of this means Kurtz is right. But it does mean that a person with an informed opinion of the making of the early saga supports the opinions of those who don't like what happened to SW, post ESB.

    If the Basher's Sanctuary was on trial, Kurtz couldn't win us the case, but he would definitely be a good witness.
    A MORE INFORMED ONE, than me.

    Glorian
  20. AdamBertocci Manager

    Manager
    Member Since:
    Feb 3, 2002
    star 7
    Darth: True, but, let's face it -- they're just different kinds of producers.

    Bruckheimer and Peters are like David O. Selznick (sp?) used to be. These guys can make things happen and have some creative power. And while their job title remains producer and they are still responsible primarily for getting the movie made, they can make their own personal agendas work as well.

    Scenario:
    BRUCKHEIMER: Me and Michael Bay want to make a movie about a time-traveling lampshade. Ben Affleck will star as the guy who blows stuff up.
    FOX EXEC: I like it! (hands over $200M)
    KURTZ: I'm here to pitch an idea about a good movie... an involving and important character piece.
    FOX EXEC: Go away, Gary Kurtz!
    KURTZ: But... but some guys on a message board said...
    McCALLUM: Nyaaaah! (sticks tongue out at Kurtz)
    FOX EXEC: Who the hell are you?
    McCALLUM: I'm... I'm Rick McCallum.
    FOX EXEC: And?
    McCALLUM: I produced Star Wars I, II, III... um... I'm mentioned on the FOTR DVD...
    FOX EXEC (in Nute Gunray voice): Take him away.
    McCALLUM: (meekly) I love you.


    The fact that Lucas' films have been on a clear downward slide, directly proportional to his increase in power, speaks volumes.

    The fact that you claim that something is 'clear' when it is a matter of opinion and thus clear only to those who share your opinion speaks... well, nothing at all.


    Rick McCallum loves you!
  21. Kambei Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Jun 9, 2003
    Ultimate ---- If George wanted a yes man to helm ROTJ so much, why did he ask Kershner back? Why did he go to David Lynch after Kersh said no?

    Well said, that is very true. Another point is that in the end the main reason for obtaining Marquand was because he had to get a British director, Lynch could not have possibly made the film. It kind of blasts that "yes men" theory to smithereens, don't it? ;)

    Durwood: "You don't suppose Lucas had anything to do with those successes, do you?"

    Exactly, the only highly regarded work on Kurtz's CV is the films he made with an extraordinary young visionary filmmaker called George Lucas and many other great cast and crew!
  22. AdamBertocci Manager

    Manager
    Member Since:
    Feb 3, 2002
    star 7
    For what it's worth on Kurtz's other work...

    The Dark Crystal... I loved it as a kid. I've never seen it as an adult, and frankly I'm not sure I want to. I worry that if I see it through adult eyes, it might suck. I'd see a bunch of lame puppets instead of the story I loved.

    The Return to Oz... I'd like to see it. The book was good.

    5-25-77... Should be fun. But come on -- I've seen every Star Wars spoof and fan film out there, might as well see a professional one.



    Rick McCallum loves you!
  23. Durwood Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    May 18, 2002
    star 5
    The fact that Lucas' films have been on a clear downward slide, directly proportional to his increase in power, speaks volumes.

    I see you're still having difficulty with the concept of fact vs. opinion.
  24. Red_Clone Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Feb 25, 2003
    The fact that Lucas' films have been on a clear downward slide, directly proportional to his increase in power, speaks volumes.

    Opinion. I think you're wrong. AOTC was the best SW film to date. In my opinion.

    "TPM is riddled with souless CGI?
    Check"


    Opinion. Come back when you can objectively define CGI that has a "soul." Oh, and see if you can actually discuss something without interjecting your opinion into it. That should be fun.

    "No depth?
    Check."


    Opinion. Your focus determines your reality. If you don't bother looking for something, of course you won't find it. It's there, you just have to look and be honest with yourself when you find it.

    "Lucas thinks his audience is more interested in big visual wows than intricate plots?
    Check"


    Opinion. And a nice bit of mindreading. I'm impressed with your clairvoyance.

    This whole rehashed discussion comes down to one group of people agreeing with the opinion of one individual, while another group disagrees with it. A couple of people predicted that's how this thread would go, and shockingly enough, it's come true.

    Now let me look for the thread where Lawrence Kasdan compliments TPM.....
  25. Darth_Insidious Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Apr 26, 2002
    star 4
    Adam: But has Kurtz ever been turned away from a project he was interested in? He wanted to do Dark Crystal, he did. He wanted to do Return to Oz, he did. Has anyone ever said "No, we don't want you on this film" to him?
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