Facing down Battleship and John Carter

It must have been an anxiety filled year for Taylor Kitsch.

He starred in John Carter, which was a big dud even though it’s clearly got its fans that love it, and now he’s about to star in another big budget Hollywood gamble, Battleship.

John Carter ended up costing the chairman of Disney his job, and there’s a lot riding on Battleship as well, so try to imagine being in both movies.

As Kitsch told the L.A. Times, right after the word was out about John Carter, someone came up to him and said, “Next one. Don’t worry about it, you’ll be fine.”

But Kitsch told the guy, “I’m not worried about it, man. I didn’t market the movie. I didn’t finance it. I gave everything I had to the film.”


So far Battleship has made $250 million overseas, but it’s got a ways to go to compete with The Avengers, which the box office pundits predict will still be the number one movie in the country three weeks in a row. 

Still, those who worked with Kitsch like Battleship director Peter Berg and Oliver Stone, who directed Taylor in the upcoming film Savages, enjoyed the experience, and as Donna Langley, co-chairman of Universal, told the Times, “His character in Battleship is misunderstood and goes from bad-boy antihero to hero. He’s exceptionally good at that – showing innate vulnerability like he’s a diamond in the rough.”


Stone told writer Amy Kaufman, “I felt sorry for the guy, because I knew he was in this mega-expensive movie, but I still think he’s gonna grow into a major star.” 

And Berg, who hasn’t exactly been sweating the Battleship pressure either, also said, “No one I’ve ever heard of has had the year (Kitsch’s) had. Yeah, John Carter hurt him. But it wasn’t like he was inconsolable.”


While the verdict’s not in on Battleship yet, it also may not be in on John Carter in the sense that it could still find its audience on home video in June. As we’ve seen by the traffic and fan comments on TG, there’s a lot of John Carter fans out there, so we may know for certain by next month.