Monday, August 25, 2008

The stupidity of executives

My brain hurts.

Unless you've been living under a rock, or trying to access the internet from Beijing, you know that BATMAN: THE DARK KNIGHT is making all kinds of crazy money for Warner Brothers and breaking records. Quite the contrast from the nearly universal indifference which greeted SUPERMAN RETURNS, isn't it?

That difference hasn't gone unnoticed by WB. They announced late last week in an article in the WALL ST. JOURNAL that Superman would be rebooted. The last film would be considered "out of continuity", which pretty much means, "it'd didn't make us a ton of money so forget that it ever existed."

What the brain trust at WB has decided to do with Superman is to try and copy B:TDK. President of Warner Brothers Picture Group puts it this way:

" 'Superman' didn't quite work as a film in the way that we wanted it to," Robinov said of Singer's movie, which made just $215 million domestically. "It didn't position the character the way he needed to be positioned," he continued. "Had 'Superman' worked in 2006, we would have had a movie for Christmas of this year or 2009, but now the plan is just to reintroduce Superman. We're going to try to go dark to the extent that the character allows it."

They're going to try and dark up Superman. This is the stupidest thing I've ever heard since, oh... I don't know, someone said, "Hey! Let's get Joel Schumacher to direct the next Batman movie! He REALLY understands those characters!"

You can't 'dark up' Superman. You just can't because it DOESN'T WORK! The most you can do is maybe darken up the villains but, even then, you're working against type because Superman's villains aren't NEARLY as dark as Batman's. Superman is about hope. He stands for truth, justice and the ever-changing 'American Way'. He's not about 'taking the fight to the streets'. He's about doing the right thing no matter how painful it might be or what it costs you personally.

It's a shame that the President of Warner Brothers Picture Group doesn't understand that about a character his company OWNS. I guess he didn't have the time to read any of the several THOUSAND Superman comics that his company published. I'm sure he has assistants working on that right now and they'll write up a one paragraph synopsis of the character for him to read while he's enjoying 'quiet time' on the toilet.

And even if he doesn't have time to read all of that paragraph, I'm sure Schumacher is available.


Anonymous said...

You are so right, Sam. It is a silly idea, but it's always been about money, even from the beginning.

Michael Vance

LordShazam said...

True but in chasing the Dark Knight money, they'll be LOSING money because a dark Superman movie simply isn't going to make the same dollars. That movie won't be as popular because that formula doesn't fit Superman so they'll end up back where they started without a Superman franchise.