It’s often been said that what goes on behind the scenes of a film is far more dramatic, intriguing and scandalous than anything you can possible see on the screen.
In the case of Cleopatra and Heaven’s Gate this was certainly true, because both productions were in big trouble, and the stories behind how they got so out of control were way more interesting than the actual films themselves.
The Hollywood press loves a runaway train story, and the most recent one to hit the trades was about World War Z, which has required major rewrites and reshoots. Among the geeks, there’s also usually a lot of complaining about a beloved franchise before anyone’s seen a foot of film, and the recent whipping boys have been the reboots of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, and now RoboCop.
The new RoboCop is slated to shoot next month, but Hugh Lauire has already departed the film as the villain, and reviewing the script on his Twitter feed, Drew McWeeny, formerly of Aint-It-Cool-News, ripped it apart. Then a report hit Indie Wire that Cop director Jose Padilha is very frustrated he can’t get what he wants on the film. (As this story was being finalized, reports have been confirmed that Michael Keaton is the new RoboCop villain, and it’s good to see him back in action again).
Padilha is making his first big jump from the indie world to big time blockbusters, and he may be encountering what many directors big and small have to deal with in the system: A lot of stupid meddling from the suits. A source close to Padilha has claimed he’s calling RoboCop “the worst experience. For every 10 ideas he has, 9 are cut. Whatever he wants, he has to fight.”
As for the other geek whipping boy, Ninja Turtles, Cinema Blend recently ran a report about “the unrelenting nerd rage Michael Bay kicked off,” and it may have had some effect on Paramount putting the project on hold. Then again, Paramount’s also had major trouble with the latest G.I. Joe film, which got yanked from June 29 to next March, as well as the aforementioned World War Z, and perhaps they don’t want to add to the raging bonfire.
Cinema Blend apparently got a look at the script, and they didn’t have much praise for it either. Apparently the script didn’t have their sensei or Splinter, and the characteristics of the individual Turtles also got switched around, or perhaps the screenwriter could have lost track of them for all we know. This script was posted by a site called TMNT, NOT TANT, and Paramount made them take the script down.
Now it’s important to remember that the geeks often over-react to every little thing, and lash out on the ‘Net like this as a knee-jerk action. In fact, I remember everybody was predicting doom for the first X-Men film, that it was going to be a bigger disaster than even Batman and Robin, until everyone actually saw it and realized Bryan Singer didn’t screw it up. In fact, X-Men was the milestone where comic films finally turned around, but many fans were bracing themselves for the worst.
You may also recall that years back JJ Abrams was going to do the remake of Superman at Warner Brothers, and reports were all over the ‘Net about how much the script allegedly sucked. Soon enough, that incarnation of the film collapsed, and rumor had it somebody at Warner Brothers hated the screenplay, and leaked a bunch of sh*t to the geeks to sabotage the film.
Clearly, somebody somewhere is not happy with what’s going on with the Turtles and RoboCop reboots, because there’s been a lot of negative stuff hitting the ‘Net about them lately, so like the saying goes caveat emptor, because who knows who’s letting this stuff out, and what their agenda is for doing so.