There’s Blockbuster, And Then There’s Blockbuster

March 21st, 2005 · No Comments
by Booksquare

Far be it for us to suggest that movie stars don’t matter (no, we’ll let Stephen King do it for us), but if one thing is clear, it’s that big names don’t necessarily pull in big audiences (this is why there is speculation that Vin Diesel should have avoided pulling a Schwarzenegger). Motion picture studios love, love, love to spend lots of money on really lousy films. This is not something to understand or analyze; it is sufficient to accept this as gospel.

It is the story that matters, boffo opening weekends aside (it takes a lot to miss the top ten when you’re opening on 2,000 screens, but that’s another issue entirely). Story propels repeat audiences and word-of-mouth. Story, not surprisingly, is the most expendable part of a major motion picture release. Only in the movies could a clueless executive offer “notes” as nonsensical as they are useless. Ego is all fine and good (we rely upon ours with alarming regularity), but, if we may, looking back on the films considered classics leads us to an unavoidable conclusion: story, not stars, ruled the production process. Next: our theories on why remakes of classics suffer the same fate as star-driven originals.

File Under: Square Pegs