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RED SPARROW | 03.02.18 | Fox | Jennifer Lawrence

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Just now, straggler said:

My understanding is that Reeves was attached in 2009 very early in the project. A Solaris like approach would have been interesting, but I think the story changed before Lawrence and Pratt came on board.  

Reeves was attached for 6-7 years up until 2014. It was his project.

 

https://www.yahoo.com/entertainment/keanu-reeves-is-super-bummed-that-hollywood-studios-100673401392.html

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The inability to land a studio film is not for lack of trying on Reeves’s part. As he told Yahoo Movies recently, he has been attempting for years to bring the Black List scriptPassengers to the big screen, and in 2013, The Weinstein Company — an indie, albeit a deep-pocketed one — picked up the rights. But the project has been plagued by the departures of actresses like Reese Witherspoon and Rachel McAdams, as well as financial problems. Weinstein eventually dropped Passengers, and earlier this year, Universal’s Focus Features failed to resurrect the film.

 

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8 minutes ago, straggler said:

My understanding is that Reeves was attached in 2009 very early in the project. A Solaris like approach would have been interesting, but I think the story changed before Lawrence and Pratt came on board.  

not really. the original Spaihts blacklist script has a couple different story beats but the broad strokes/tone are pretty much the same as what we got.

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Basically she was falsely claimed to be a huge box-office draw on the basis of Hunger Games, X-Men, and O. Russell films, when none of the grosses for those movies had much to do with her.  Now that she's trying to sell movies on her own name and they're not doing so great despite massive marketing budgets, she's been exposed the way Lawrence detractors predicted she would be when her fans were comparing her to actual box-office stars who'd been making hits for 25 years.  Bravo to the PR agencies, but it was a con game.  

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1 hour ago, CoolioD1 said:

not really. the original Spaihts blacklist script has a couple different story beats but the broad strokes/tone are pretty much the same as what we got.

In that case it would likely have been subjected to the same critical shellacking. 

 

44 minutes ago, Jeriosnal said:

Basically she was falsely claimed to be a huge box-office draw on the basis of Hunger Games, X-Men, and O. Russell films, when none of the grosses for those movies had much to do with her.  Now that she's trying to sell movies on her own name and they're not doing so great despite massive marketing budgets, she's been exposed the way Lawrence detractors predicted she would be when her fans were comparing her to actual box-office stars who'd been making hits for 25 years.  Bravo to the PR agencies, but it was a con game. 

How does this work again? If she is in a big hit she did not contribute in any way. If she is in a film that does better than should be expected under the circumstances-Passengers or  RS, which will  make more OS than Atomic Blonde made WW despite being "rotten" and a two and a half hour non-action film-she gets no credit. And if she delivers great performances in successive interesting films, so what? OK. 

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8 hours ago, Firepower said:

Maybe because Aronofsky was her boyfriend? You know, friends with benefits.

If you can't make your movie profitable, you're not worth 20 mln $. Period. JLaw is a great actress and maybe has some draw, but not enough to justifiy this kind of salary. She's not Jolie-level of draw at the peak of her career. There are many other great actresses with reasonable demands. And 40 mln $ version of Passengers with Keanu Reeves and Rachel McAdams would've made at least the same profit as JLaw-Pratt version, maybe even more with better movie.

Do you realize that RS won't be profitable and studio will lose money? That means she didn't earn that paycheck, it's as simple as that. Passengers would have made at least the same profit with the original cast and budget.

Aronofsky wasn't her boyfriend when the deal was cut.  She also took a pay cut for American Hustle and 'only ' asked $15M for Joy -- and the studio came to her and DOR to make it, and kept asking. She asks less up front for passion projects.

 

However, if a studio wants HER in a picture, it is up to them what they pay.  As I stated above, I think she is sort of a catastrophic loss insurance policy for movies with poor reviews and little IP - Passengers made money despite it, and so will Red Sparrow, even if it ends up making it in the after market. RS has already made $130M ww on a $69M budget, and none of that money is from China so there is no steep applicable discount. It will make over double the budget in theaters, and her blu rays and streamed films sell well.

 

And no, I don't think a Reeves/McAdams Passengers makes nearly as much with those scorching 'date rape' reviews.  They are great actors (I really, really like Keanu) but they don't have the overseas draw Jen and Pratt have, nor the domestic draw to fight those reviews, imho.  We will never know what that film would have done however, because it couldn't get financed until they had Jen's name on it, and Keanu tried for years.  (His company was still associated with the final project.) Getting it financed was worth $20M to someone, clearly.

 

@straggler  RS passed Atomic Blonde's total take world wide early in RS's second week.

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4 hours ago, straggler said:

In that case it would likely have been subjected to the same critical shellacking. 

 

How does this work again? If she is in a big hit she did not contribute in any way. If she is in a film that does better than should be expected under the circumstances-Passengers or  RS, which will  make more OS than Atomic Blonde made WW despite being "rotten" and a two and a half hour non-action film-she gets no credit. And if she delivers great performances in successive interesting films, so what? OK. 

Why mention Atomic Blonde like Charlize Theron is a box-office juggernaut?  She's not.  She's virtually as unproven on her own as Lawrence is.  

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10 hours ago, Jeriosnal said:

Basically she was falsely claimed to be a huge box-office draw on the basis of Hunger Games, X-Men, and O. Russell films, when none of the grosses for those movies had much to do with her.  Now that she's trying to sell movies on her own name and they're not doing so great despite massive marketing budgets, she's been exposed the way Lawrence detractors predicted she would be when her fans were comparing her to actual box-office stars who'd been making hits for 25 years.  Bravo to the PR agencies, but it was a con game.  

that joy movie would have done much worse with any other actress tho.

 

 

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7 hours ago, Jeriosnal said:

Why mention Atomic Blonde like Charlize Theron is a box-office juggernaut?  She's not.  She's virtually as unproven on her own as Lawrence is.  

It's one of like 2 female based spy movies, the other is Salt.  You have to draw comparisons somewhere and there's limited data.

 

Really, there are no box office juggernauts anymore, at least not like back in the 90's and early 2000's.  Even The Rock had a flop recently. Nobody is immune these days.

 

Back on the subject of Red Sparrow and the box office...please.

 

The part of this I don't understand is how Fox ever thought this was going to be a hit, even with good reviews.  It's just not that kind of a movie, dark, slow, violent content.  It's not surprising it's doing so well in Europe, they haven't become addicted to comedies and action movies over there yet, and this type of content doesn't bother them.  With good reviews, and no BP, it might have hit $200M WW, and that would barely be enough to make some money.  A sequel would've been iffy.

 

Ultimately this is all on Fox.  They had unrealistic expectations of what a movie like this would do at the box office even with JLaw as the lead.  They either should've demanded some changes to the content, more action, maybe a hot sex scene, to punch it up a bit, or they should've demanded a lower budget.  Either might've scared her off and the movie would've been made with either a B-List actress, for a lot less money, or it would've been shelved.  Likely the latter, because even if you made this for $30M if you didn't have a name to sell it it wasn't going to make squat overseas.  Maybe using a popular, and much cheaper, European actress would been the way to go in this case.

 

I'm assuming some of these problems showed up in test showings, but with an already too high budget they probably couldn't see doing expensive reshoots to make it more commercial.  It's like throwing good money after bad.

 

The movie is also a departure from the books, which have very sexual content, and I think part of the problem was you were trying to sell this as a sexy spy movie, and what you got was TGWDT meets TTSS. It was a bit of a bait and switch, and audiences, and even critics, hate that.  I remember some of the reviewers immediately going, "This is NOT a Black Widow or Atomic Blonde movie".  That indicates that the expectations weren't managed very well.

 

Some are never going to agree, but when you take it all into consideration it's doing about as well as could be expected, and anyone who went to see it went for Jennifer Lawrence.  There's nothing else there to draw anyone to see it, the movies appeal if very limited beyond her being the star and giving a great performance.

 

 

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On 4/3/2018 at 7:09 PM, Firepower said:

If you can't make your movie profitable, you're not worth 20 mln $. Period. 

Exactly this.

If a studio gives you 20m $ and you can't make the movie profitable, your big salary days are over.

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1 hour ago, Marcus Cato said:

Exactly this.

If a studio gives you 20m $ and you can't make the movie profitable, your big salary days are over.

She helped make Passengers profitable despite nasty reviews. And RS will end up the same way as Fox did not go overboard with advertsing. But this is very oversimplistic. Was the studio overly optimistic about Red Sparrow's potential given how films like GWTDT had performed? Perhaps. But maybe they thought if the film had stronger reviews it could make enough money to build a market for a potential sequel. And from Jlaw's perspective it reflects a clear refusal to be pigeonholed. Female stars do not have the luxury of doing the same type of film and character over and over.   

 

But by your logic she made Passengers profitable. So more big salaries. :).But nothing wrong with some back end deals.

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It's really not fair JLaw forcing studios to give her $20m per picture.  It's not fair on the poor studios.  The studios should form a union to fight the unconscionable demands from these powerful actors.

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lets be honest, ive dragged her before but she's a box office draw. she just picks bad projects

 

RS would have done 35 with ANY other actress

 

Joy would have flopped with any other actress. SLP would have done worse with any other actress etc

 

other than her, sandra and melissa mcarthy, no female is a draw since rom coms died

Edited by TombRaider
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12 minutes ago, AJG said:

Watching now...

 

Not that bad so far.

I actually really like it. Its just a tad bit too long and a bit more gore than I was expecting. thats it.

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6 hours ago, casabona said:

Joy, Mother!, Red Sparrow under Budget*2.

 

bye bye 20m $.

Well, not RS, and it's not done with it's run overseas

 

Total Lifetime Grosses
Domestic:  $46,515,233    32.6%
Foreign:  $96,244,205    67.4%

Worldwide:  $142,759,438  
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It has passed $100M international, and worldwide it will make or be close to $150,000, once it opens in Russia. It will end up making money in the aftermarket, particularly since they had Fox International distributing a bunch of places, but unless they have plans to trim the budget, I don't see a sequel happening.

 

I really thought it was well done, though, and I loved the ending.

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I feel like such an outlier with this film. I actually liked it. I thought it could've been 10-15 mins shorter, but I liked that it kept having me guess whether she was working for the russians or the US towards the end. I had no idea which one. It wasn't a predictable film at all.

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