The New York Times Discusses Comic-Con, Expects Many Fewer Movie Presentations
You know how every year, pretty much all of the best parts of the Hollywood and nerd communities merge for one awesome, fangasm filled weekend? It is called San Diego Comic Con, and it is the magical place where people like Joss Whedon, J.J. Abrams, Robert Downey Jr., Ryan Reynolds and Tina Fey (as well as your favorite comic book creators) roam freely among hordes of people dressed as Tusken Raiders and giant mythical sea creatures.
Well, according to the New York Times, you might have to expect a lot less of that this year.
As the Times puts it, movie studios are seeing more damaging effect than good when they put their stock on the table at the convention (emphasis ours):
Comic-Con, as a growing number of movie marketers are realizing, has turned into a treacherous place. Studios come seeking buzz, but the Comic-Con effect can be more negative than positive. The swarm of dedicated fans — many of whom arrive at the convention in Japanese anime drag or draped in Ewok fur — can instantly sour on a film if it doesn’t like what it sees, leaving publicity teams with months of damaging Web chatter to clean up.
It would seem as if the simple answer (provide better content and you’ll get better reviews) could fix that issue, but apparently that’s not all the studios are worried about. Even when a presentation brings forth rave reviews at Comic-Con, that doesn’t always indicate that the film will do well once it hits the box office. The geek contingent is better known for its cult followings, after all, than it is its mainstream appeal. Whereas the audiences at Comic-Con “vibrated with excitement” over movies like Sucker Punch, Tron: Legacy, and Buried, but none of those films performed nearly as well once they got to theaters. Even Scott Pilgrim vs. The World, which could easily be described as the belle of the ball of last year’s convention, earned back only half of what Universal spent on it.
Now, keep in mind that none of this is for sure yet: Comic-Con doesn’t usually lock in its final schedule until up to two weeks before the convention. Cowboys and Aliens and The Adventures of Tintin: The Secret of the Unicorn are still planning big presentations, as is next year’s The Amazing Spiderman, so if you’re wandering around the con you still have a chance of spotting Andrew Garfield or Steven Spielberg.
Studios are also realizing that the con is much more suited to TV shows than to movies, so you can expect an outright barrage of presentations for fall debuts. And you can count on something like this happening again, too.
Of course, the advantage to all of this is that maybe Comic Con can be at least a little bit about comics again, particularly with DC’s Flashboot being, for better or for worse, one of the bigger things to happen in the American industry in a while. And if not, there’s always Tr!ckster…
(via The New York Times)
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