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Speculation Is Disney Capable of Learning the Lessons of John Carter and Phantom Menace?

Discussion in 'Star Wars: Episode VII and Beyond (Archive)' started by Jabbadabbado, Nov 1, 2012.

  1. The Hellhammer

    The Hellhammer Manager Emeritus star 5 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Nov 4, 2012
    John Carter is a movie that I simply looked through. It started...some stuff happened...dude jumped around...some **** blew ended? Or did I watch it to the end? Or stop it before?
    I honestly have no recollection of anything other than that - and I would like to point out that I was sober. That's how little of an impression that movie made on me.
    I'm not saying it's bad.
    I'm not saying it's good.
    I simply found it...very forgettable.

    Rarely does a movie get that kind of (non)reaction from me.
    WatTamborWoo likes this.
  2. Qui-Riv-Brid

    Qui-Riv-Brid Force Ghost star 5

    Apr 18, 2013
    Actually it largely is. I mean a rather massive part of it. You don't believe for one second that if it wasn't for the SFX of the first film people would have just gone for the story with mediocre SFX do you?

    Which movie was that? Harry Potter I suppose?

    Again which movie are you talking about?

    The point being?

    That can be a part of it of course but I do think that liking a character can be overrated. I mean just because you like a character doesn't mean they are actually likeable as that character.

    I don't know what that means really. You mean a sense of humour you like? Transplanting Quentin Tarantino type humour into Star Wars would be a disaster. Just saw Trek ID and it's no laugh riot and neither was the first one.

    There is always collaboration. Sometimes more sometimes less. I guess you believe the acting in the PT was terrible but the OT was awesome. I see no difference at all save for what the story required. i.e the PT was a time of elegance and civility with a formality and mannered talking. Extremely well done. You don't like it I'd guess.

    Why not?

    Yes if these new movies are as successful as the PT with adjustments for box office inflation, 3D and the asian market and therefore they all make well over a billion dollars then I think everyone at Disney will be happy.

    Doesn't make sense at all. If it was impossible to tell from a Star Wars prequel then instead of $282,778,100 it'd have made several times that.
    Gallandro, VMeran, SlashMan and 3 others like this.
  3. The Hellhammer

    The Hellhammer Manager Emeritus star 5 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Nov 4, 2012
    "Lord Vader, our ships have completed the dissection of a post and found nothing."
    WatTamborWoo and fishtailsam like this.

    DARTHVENGERDARTHSEAR Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Jun 8, 2002
    I hear you. I really do. but...

    Disney will never bend to the older audience, because they will always cater to the kids, too. Get over it - Star Wars is meant for all ages, which is why Disney made the purchase, anyway.

    God, I hope you're right.

    And I don't know about most of you guys, but I liked John Carter. It doesn't hold a candle to the book, but it's still pretty good entertainment, nonetheless.
  5. Jedirush2112

    Jedirush2112 Jedi Master star 4

    Apr 10, 2013
    That was awesome, No?
    FRAGWAGON likes this.
  6. thesevegetables

    thesevegetables Jedi Knight star 4

    Nov 11, 2012

    Can the management create a new community for pointless, embittered waffle?[/quote]
    So here's something I've noticed about community regarding sci-fi films in the past few years - most of them are one-shot movies, with no developed franchise. Star Wars has a developed franchise - there are tons of separate storylines, books, tv things, comics, games, etc. Avatar doesn't have this. There's just that one movie and one story.
    TRON: Legacy and John Carter are both movies with actual franchises (although TRON's has always been kind of cult and John Carter's is way past its prime), but at least they have those developed, substantial bodies of work. Movies like Battleship, and Oblivion, and Super 8 - now, these are all called science fiction, and they are, but they are like Avatar: one story and that's it. Nothing else has happened.

    I don't like this. The iconic sci-fi names like Star Wars and Star Trek had more than one story. Because they were actually good enough for these stories, and for people to be invested in the universe enough to follow these other stories. Recent movies do not have this depth.
  7. Sum-Wan

    Sum-Wan Jedi Master star 4

    Feb 16, 2013
    MODified - Yeah... let's not.

    I have altered the post. Pray I don't alter it any further.
  8. A Chorus of Disapproval

    A Chorus of Disapproval New Films Malleus Maleficarum star 8 Staff Member Manager

    Aug 19, 2003
    Everyone needs to take a time out. Don't make me pull this thread over!
    Jedi Merkurian likes this.
  9. KilroyMcFadden

    KilroyMcFadden Jedi Knight star 3

    Oct 31, 2012
    Why be so rude?
  10. Jabbadabbado

    Jabbadabbado Manager Emeritus star 7 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Mar 19, 1999
    I posted this in November of 2012. I was a different person then, naive and lacking a full appreciation for the unmitigated greatness of all things Star Wars. It's not so much that I've disavowed my opening post as completely forgotten about it. Or tried to, until it started jamming my alerts.
  11. EHT

    EHT New Films Manager star 7 Staff Member Manager

    Sep 13, 2007
    It came back to haunt you. :p
    Jabbadabbado likes this.
  12. Sitara

    Sitara Jedi Master star 3

    Oct 8, 2001
    9. Don't kill off the best thing about your movie at the end of the movie.

    10. Have male/female romantic leads show off true sparks of romance. At the least, have them say lines that don't make the audience want to clamp their ears shut.

    11. Have cool bounty hunters that don't mimic Boba and Jango. In ESB the bounty hunters assembled next to Boba were just as cool. IG-88 looked amazing. I want so much to see a bounty hunter like that. There is so much mystery there: What makes a droid become a bounty hunter? Is he sentinent somehow, or is someone controlling/programming him (aka the real bounty hunter) etc etc.
    Jabbadabbado likes this.
  13. Jabbadabbado

    Jabbadabbado Manager Emeritus star 7 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Mar 19, 1999
    Let's get to the bottom of what makes IG-88 tick is probably the most original suggestion I've read in the whole Episode VII forum. I would go see this movie.
    Sitara likes this.
  14. chris hayes

    chris hayes Jedi Master star 4

    Nov 13, 2012
    John Carter was way better than I thought it would based on the negativity ..... It failed mainly due to casting , promotion & the fact nobody had really heard of it before .

    The Phantom Menace failed in the fans eye's not the box office ....It had it's flaws but was a great visual experience .
  15. ezekiel22x

    ezekiel22x Force Ghost star 5

    Aug 9, 2002
    I'm compelled to watch at least a bit of John Carter every time I find it while channel flipping. Very fun film that for some stretches nails it like few big effects adventures from the past several years have managed. The sequence of John and Woola making their stand intercut with John burying his wife is phenomenal.
    FRAGWAGON likes this.
  16. A Chorus of Disapproval

    A Chorus of Disapproval New Films Malleus Maleficarum star 8 Staff Member Manager

    Aug 19, 2003
  17. Corvax855

    Corvax855 Jedi Knight star 3

    Jan 23, 2011
    Episode VII is the lesson Disney learned from Tron: Legacy and John Carter. ;)
  18. Kev Snowmane

    Kev Snowmane Jedi Knight star 3

    Jan 1, 2013
    Plenty of fans liked it just fine.
  19. Narutakikun

    Narutakikun Jedi Knight star 4

    Nov 8, 2012
    The problem with John Carter wasn't that it was a bad movie - it wasn't. The problem with John Carter isn't that it didn't make money - it did. The problem with John Carter was that it was so horrendously expensive to make that it couldn't simply make money - it had to make an astronomical amount of money in order to be profitable. It didn't. It basically couldn't. It would have to have been an Avatar-level hit for that, and that was never a realistic goal for it.
    FRAGWAGON likes this.
  20. Pfluegermeister

    Pfluegermeister Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Jun 30, 2003
    Oh, no you don't. Don't you take back ONE WORD of that post. Every point you made was and is valid; the fact that TPM apologists want to nitpick it only means you're absolutely right. Stand by it and defend it proudly. DON'T back down.
    Jabbadabbado likes this.
  21. Jabbadabbado

    Jabbadabbado Manager Emeritus star 7 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Mar 19, 1999
    That's not really true. It would have had to make about as much as Dark Knight Rises, so it only would have had to have been the fourth most successful movie of 2012.
  22. HankSolo

    HankSolo Jedi Knight star 3

    Dec 3, 2012
    In John Carter, the problems I saw were the following:

    (1) No backstory.
    (2) Mark Strong's character's reasoning, or lack thereof.
    (3) Every time James Purefoy was on screen, I kept thinking 'Its Mark Antony."
  23. classified

    classified Jedi Master star 4

    May 24, 2005
    I agree with all/most these.
    1. Precisely. Marketing and advertising gets people to theaters, not CGI. I have never once thought "Oh, I should go see that film, those special effects look amazing!". I really couldn't see how anyone could think this to themselves unless they were a complete moron.

    2. I think there are plenty of counter examples to this (though E.T. is the only one I can think of off the top of my head, see here). Casting good child actors can be very difficult, but it can be done. I also think that audiences will allow a bit of leeway in the quality of child acting while still suspending reasonable disbelief.

    3. Yup. The kind of child-like "sillyness" that is omnipresent in the PT feels like a childless adult trying to entertain at a children's party. Rest assured, if it has spaceships, young kids will be glued to it. You don't have to constantly patronise their sense of humour with drole slapstick.

    4. I don't think this even needs affirmation. Cinema is a medium for story telling, so this part should be (hopefully) obvious to the producers.

    5. One of the worst things about the PT is the total un-relatable characters. Often dry, stoic, and downright boring, all they do is talk about space-politics and get angry at each other. Han, Luke and Leia are real, multi-faceted human beings who the audience really cares about.

    6. "Blah blah space politics blah blah killing younglings." Boo.

    7. The acting in the PT is bad for 2 reasons: 1) Bad script. Too obvious to even explain why. Just watch this and cringe. 2) Blue-screen. Pretty much the whole films were filmed on a blue screen, not allowing the actors to interact with their environment and get into character. You see actors getting interviewed and being like "Man, I was so excited to get to be a part of Star Wars, I couldn't wait to get started filming!" But once they're on set and they realise that this is what it all is, you can just see how bored and disheartened they are and it often comes through in the acting.

    8. The OT was good because there was the creative inspiration (Lucas), the money (the studio), and the crew. These three entities worked together to make 3 awesome movies. It was so successful and Lucas got so rich, he just thought "Hey I could do this all myself, and have no one (no matter how qualified and knowledgeable they are in film-making) stifling my creativity and holding me back!". While Lucas is a great creative individual and has a lot of great ideas, like any human he also has bad ones. When he's wielding the cash, no-body is going to tell their boss his ideas are bad, so everyone just goes along with it.
  24. Gallandro

    Gallandro Force Ghost star 4

    Jul 8, 1998
    I recommend you read "John Carter and the Gods of Hollywood" by Michael D Sellers it explains EXACTLY what happened to John Carter, and why it failed. Basically a number of internal factors at Disney came into play:

    1) John Carter was a project which was greenlit under Dick Cook who was head of the studio at the time. Cook was a big supporter of Andrew Stanton's pet project and hoped it would be a new franchise Disney could bring under its mantle. However, Cook was not Bob Iger's guy and he brought in Rich Ross to oversee the movie studio. Unfortunately Ross was a poor choice and oversaw a series of box office failures/disappointments. Ross seemed to be more interested in controlling costs and developing "market synergy;" while these are not necessarily bad things, running a cable network (Ross' previous job) does not necessarily make one qualified to run a movie studio. Basically Ross was in over his head, for example for Carter and a couple of other projects he brought in an unproven marketing group whose primary work had been in marketing for fashion designers.

    2) The marketing for John Carter was a disaster, with Stanton and MT Carney frequently clashing over how best to market the film. Part of the blame certainly lay with Stanton who oversaw the initial teaser trailers which were convoluted and didn't give audiences a sense of the story. However most of the blame lies squarely with MT Carney who made decision like dropping "of Mars" from the title and designing the very obscure "JC" logo for the film. There was little to no internet buzz generated by Disney and the official website often went untouched for months. Additionally movie web sites began to suggest the film was running massively over budget (which was in fact untrue) and the film required major reshoots (which again was untrue, John Carter had two weeks of scheduled reshoots mainly for pick up shots, and to reshoot a minor sequence to clarify a couple of plot points). Oddly Disney remained completely silent over these rumors and allowed them to fester in the press (actually if you look at the timing of these events it becomes pretty clear why they happened... but I'll get to that in a minute).

    3) John Carter test screened well... extremely well. In fact John Carter actually test screened better than Pirates of the Caribbean Curse of the Black Pearl,,, you would never have known that. Disney again made no effort to push the test screening results in the press. They just continued on as if the film were doomed. Shortly before the film's release the production budget was mysteriously cut, and soon articles in the press began to appear suggesting Disney was will to take a bath on John Carter and simply write it off. John Carter came and went and quickly died on the vine.

    4) What became readily apparent following the release is something else was going on behind the scenes, and a few short months later it became very evident. Bob Iger did not want John Carter to be Disney's "space franchise' he was after a much bigger fish. Ultimately John Carter was not his baby, he had almost nothing to do with it... this was Dick Cook's project. Bob Iger was now in the business of putting his stamp on Disney Studios with the acquisition of Marvel... and then the acquisition of Star Wars. Do the math... John Carter was released March of 2012, Star Tours II was released May of 2011, and according to Iger himself he first approach Lucas about acquiring the rights to Star Wars around that time. He was indeed after a much bigger fish and he was more than willing to take a $250 million dollar bath to get that fish.

    Toonimator likes this.
  25. Randwulf Crescentmoon

    Randwulf Crescentmoon Jedi Master star 4

    May 25, 2013
    Well, I still feel as though movies have gone in the direction of R-rated and mostly dependence on CGI...and in terms of pushing the envelope, I wonder as to if we're just pulling away from tried and true concepts just for the sake of being inventive and not for the sake of being entertaining?
    A perfect example of this is James Bond "Die Another Day" where people "disliked" that the movie was special-effects driven and when the Bourne movies came out James Bond went back to its original formula for a great Bond flick, which was always a combination of cool stunts, that past Bond films have even set world-records with, and a great story driving the movie forward...