James Gunn goes HARD after Hollywood insiders confused about 'Deadpool' success
Over the weekend, Deadpool knocked it out of the park, shattering records for R-Rated movies left and right. If you even casually follow the Hollywood machine, you know what comes next. People in thousand dollar suits trying to figure out how to replicate the success of Deadpool and probably getting it dead wrong.
Case in point. Over at Deadline, one anonymous insider after another scratched their heads over how Deadpool beat the odds. One “suit” — literally how the person is described in the article — had this to say:
“The film has a self-deprecating tone that’s riotous. It’s never been done before. It’s poking fun at Marvel. That label takes itself so seriously, can you imagine them making fun of themselves in a movie? They’d rather stab themselves.”
And Marvel writer/director James Gunn (Guardians of the Galaxy) is having none of this person’s guff. Taking to Facebook this morning, Gunn savaged the industry insiders who will no doubt try to replicate the success of Deadpool without realizing what actually made the film click for audiences. In a no holds barred essay, Gunn takes Hollywood to task for continuously missing the point of hit films and lobotomizing them to repackage and resell, only to be frustrated when these hollow shells fall short of the material they are aping.
Check it out below!
"The film has a self-deprecating tone that’s riotous. It’s never been done before. It’s poking fun at Marvel. That label...Posted by James Gunn on Monday, February 15, 2016
And — in case you can't read the embed — the entire transcript:
"The film has a self-deprecating tone that’s riotous. It’s never been done before. It’s poking fun at Marvel. That label takes itself so seriously, can you imagine them making fun of themselves in a movie? They’d rather stab themselves.”
That's a quote from Deadline Hollywood, attributing it to a Hollywood "suit." I love Deadline and get a lot of my film business news from them. And I love Deadpool even more - the film is hilariously funny, has lots of heart, and is exactly what we need right now, taking true risks in spectacle film - but COME THE FUCK ON. That's no reason to rewrite history. This quote has to have been said by the dumbest fucking Hollywood exec in the history of dumb fucking Hollywood execs.
Let's ignore Guardians for a moment, a movie that survives from moment to moment building itself up and cutting itself down - God knows I'm biased about that one. But what do you think Favreau and Downey did in Iron Man? What the fuck was Ant-Man??!
Come on, Deadline.
After every movie smashes records people here in Hollywood love to throw out the definitive reasons why the movie was a hit. I saw it happen with Guardians. It "wasn't afraid to be fun" or it "was colorful and funny" etc etc etc. And next thing I know I hear of a hundred film projects being set up "like Guardians," and I start seeing dozens of trailers exactly like the Guardians trailer with a big pop song and a bunch of quips. Ugh.
Ugh. Ugh. Ugh. Ugh. Ugh.
Deadpool wasn't that. Deadpool was its own thing. THAT'S what people are reacting to. It's original, it's damn good, it was made with love by the filmmakers, and it wasn't afraid to take risks.
For the theatrical experience to survive, spectacle films need to expand their definition of what they can be. They need to be unique and true voices of the filmmakers behind them. They can't just be copying what came before them. So, over the next few months, if you pay attention to the trades, you'll see Hollywood misunderstanding the lesson they should be learning with Deadpool. They'll be green lighting films "like Deadpool" - but, by that, they won't mean "good and original" but "a raunchy superhero film" or "it breaks the fourth wall." They'll treat you like you're stupid, which is the one thing Deadpool didn't do.
But hopefully in the midst of all this there will be a studio or two that will take the right lesson from this - like Fox did with Guardians by green-lighting Deadpool - and say - "Boy, maybe we can give them something they don't already have."
And that's who is going to succeed.
Have a great day.