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There was a big deal being made a couple weeks before Wonder Woman opened about how Warner had already spent more money advertising JL than WW. There was a real sense that DC felt Wonder Woman was a failure (reportedly the executives were shocked by the positive reviews) and they were already moving on. They did end up giving it a late push, but the $103 million opening was seen as a huge win.

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The DCEU lacks the right person with the right vision to steer their ship. It also doesn't help the WB is almost Sony-like in their ability to just shoot themselves in the foot and over-manage.

The MCU constantly craps gold over and over and over again because you have someone like Kevin Feige at the forefront. They have a proven formula for creating a universe and churning out one hit after another. Until the DCEU has someone half as good at Feige at this and until WB just trusts them to do their thing, it's going to be increasingly uncommon to see a critical and commercial success. It makes me wonder how Chris Nolan was able to make it work.

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Because Batman fans have no taste, they just want more Batman, no matter what.

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Nolan made it work because he was at the tail-end of the previous era of superhero movies, before THE AVENGERS made a billion (the same year Nolan's last Batman film came out) and changed the game to the point where the superhero mandate was that you'd have a new film (or even better: two!) every year in a shared universe of interconnected stories that would eventually pay off in a big crossover event movie that the world would fork over a billion dollars to see.

If Nolan came along today, there is 0% chance that WB would be like, "Sure, take 4 years between movies and get your story right."

It's kinda hard to believe in retrospect, but the superhero genre actually used to be, in large part, an auteur-driven space.  You handed Spider-Man over to Sam Raimi, or Batman over to Burton, or Hulk over to Ang Lee, or X-Men over to Bryan Singer and let them see if they could make interesting cinema out of it.  And sometimes it worked and sometimes it didn't, but it was almost always interesting.  Now, if you're a director on a superhero film, you're just another worker on a factory line who has to get in where he fits in.

Marvel seems to be trying to shift gears on that a little bit by bringing in Coogler to do his thing on BP and letting Gunn treat his GOTG movies as, more or less, an isolated thing, as I think they're once again ahead of the curve in Hollywood in terms of sensing the market shift as it pertains franchise fatigue.  It honestly wouldn't surprise me at all if AVENGERS 4 is the last Avengers movie for a long, long time.

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1 hour ago, Mickie Zeidler said:

Because Batman fans have no taste, they just want more Batman, no matter what.

Image result for batman reaction gifs

Batman's the best, that's why.

: p

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58 minutes ago, EVA said:

Nolan made it work because he was at the tail-end of the previous era of superhero movies, before THE AVENGERS made a billion (the same year Nolan's last Batman film came out) and changed the game to the point where the superhero mandate was that you'd have a new film (or even better: two!) every year in a shared universe of interconnected stories that would eventually pay off in a big crossover event movie that the world would fork over a billion dollars to see.

If Nolan came along today, there is 0% chance that WB would be like, "Sure, take 4 years between movies and get your story right."

It's kinda hard to believe in retrospect, but the superhero genre actually used to be, in large part, an auteur-driven space.  You handed Spider-Man over to Sam Raimi, or Batman over to Burton, or Hulk over to Ang Lee, or X-Men over to Bryan Singer and let them see if they could make interesting cinema out of it.  And sometimes it worked and sometimes it didn't, but it was almost always interesting.  Now, if you're a director on a superhero film, you're just another worker on a factory line who has to get in where he fits in.

Marvel seems to be trying to shift gears on that a little bit by bringing in Coogler to do his thing on BP and letting Gunn treat his GOTG movies as, more or less, an isolated thing, as I think they're once again ahead of the curve in Hollywood in terms of sensing the market shift as it pertains franchise fatigue.  It honestly wouldn't surprise me at all if AVENGERS 4 is the last Avengers movie for a long, long time.

All of this.

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Transformers movies made loads of money for ages, because fans didn't want to  admit to themselves they were shit movies. So did Star Wars prequels. First one makes money because it's always going to, second one makes money because it might be better than the first, third one makes money because they might have got it right this time, and then they give up. Man of Steel made money, BvS made money, Suicide Squad made money, and then everyone knew Justice League was going to be shit, so they didn't go.

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The other thing: BvS opened big, but it crashed in a way few movies ever have. It crashed so badly that it's not only by far the largest domestic opening for a movie to hit make a billion worldwide, but it's failure directly led to Warner Brothers completely restructuring the department that oversees DC movies. 

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I watched Justice League yesterday as it came out on DVD this week in the UK and I right enjoyed it. We get more of Gal Gadot’s Diana Prince/Wonder Woman which is a win, likewise for Jeremy Irons’ Alfred. I liked Aquaman, wasn’t sure about the Flash. Ezra Miller performance reminded me of Jim Parsons from The Big Bang Theory, fitting with Sheldon Cooper as a big Flash fan. Still find Superman’s bottom jaw funny as Henry Cavill wasn’t allowed to shave of his moustache for Mission: Impossible 6. The CGI is bad from Steppenwolf to the purple snakey things.

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On 3/26/2018 at 7:52 AM, EVA said:

Nolan made it work because he was at the tail-end of the previous era of superhero movies, before THE AVENGERS made a billion (the same year Nolan's last Batman film came out) and changed the game to the point where the superhero mandate was that you'd have a new film (or even better: two!) every year in a shared universe of interconnected stories that would eventually pay off in a big crossover event movie that the world would fork over a billion dollars to see.

If Nolan came along today, there is 0% chance that WB would be like, "Sure, take 4 years between movies and get your story right."

It's kinda hard to believe in retrospect, but the superhero genre actually used to be, in large part, an auteur-driven space.  You handed Spider-Man over to Sam Raimi, or Batman over to Burton, or Hulk over to Ang Lee, or X-Men over to Bryan Singer and let them see if they could make interesting cinema out of it.  And sometimes it worked and sometimes it didn't, but it was almost always interesting.  Now, if you're a director on a superhero film, you're just another worker on a factory line who has to get in where he fits in.

Marvel seems to be trying to shift gears on that a little bit by bringing in Coogler to do his thing on BP and letting Gunn treat his GOTG movies as, more or less, an isolated thing, as I think they're once again ahead of the curve in Hollywood in terms of sensing the market shift as it pertains franchise fatigue.  It honestly wouldn't surprise me at all if AVENGERS 4 is the last Avengers movie for a long, long time.

I can't agree with any of this since there's a lot of revisionist history here regarding Guardians of the Galaxy and The Winter Soldier. 

Fox generally treated X-Men like garbage in the 00s. Don't talk to me about superhero films being auteur-driven pre-Iron Man or Avengers with the likes of Brett Ratner.

The change in the 00s was that comic book superheroes were treated generally more seriously and like real movies with actual budgets instead of cheap hot garbage or ugly TV pilots that were gone after a season.  They got real actors and real budgets.

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3 hours ago, TheVileOne said:

I can't agree with any of this since there's a lot of revisionist history here regarding Guardians of the Galaxy and The Winter Soldier. 

Fox generally treated X-Men like garbage in the 00s. Don't talk to me about superhero films being auteur-driven pre-Iron Man or Avengers with the likes of Brett Ratner.

The change in the 00s was that comic book superheroes were treated generally more seriously and like real movies with actual budgets instead of cheap hot garbage or ugly TV pilots that were gone after a season.  They got real actors and real budgets.

I'm not suggesting that it was a utopia for auteurs or anything -- there's always going to be the push/pull of art vs. commerce when dealing with IP (clearly, both Sony and Fox ultimately ruined good things with Spider-Man and X-Men with their meddling.  Enter: Ratner) -- but it's really inaurguable that superhero films were much more driven by the voices and visions of unique directors before Marvel basically turned franchise filmmaking into a TV model where the directors are largely interchangeable and primarily exist to execute the showrunners vision (in Marvel's case, Feige's).  Raimi's Spider-Man movies are uniquely his and couldn't have been made by anyone else.  Same with Singer's X movies or Nolan's Batman movies.  And Burton's.  Hell, WB even let Schumacher turn Batman into a neon disco spin on the 60's show, because....that's just what you did.  You picked a filmmaker and let them run with it, so long as it met the budget and the schedule.

On the flip side, a movie like SPIDER-MAN: HOMECOMING is so anonymously directed, it could've been anybody in the director's chair.  And with a few exceptions (but more of them recently), that's pretty much par for the course with Marvel: just bring in a solid hand to guide the implementation of Feige's template for success with no fuss.   For a while post-AVENGERS, they even went on a binge where they were exclusively hiring TV directors and studio journeymen for that sole purpose.

But, like I said, I think they've seen the error in that, and clearly an effort is being made to bring in directors with strong voices and allow them to use them.  (Even if, in Taika Waititi's case, his take on a Thor movie was to shit on Thor movies.)

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The whole approach for Warner Bros.' attempt at DC Universe that they were going to be "filmmaker driven."  That's what they wanted with Man of Steel, Batman v Superman, et al. They were going to stand out from Marvel because they were going to have gritty filmmaker driven stories with Zack Snyder, the director of films like 300 and Watchmen, a film based on the comic that's like the linchpin of the dark and edgy era of comics that was ushered in by the 1980s. 

The worst parts of Wonder Woman are also when it looks more like Man of Steel and Batman v Superman.

I can't agree with your assertion about Marvel when you look at The Winter Soldier and Civil War by the Russos, Guardians of the Galaxy by James Gunn, and Black Panther by Ryan Coogler.  And Joss Whedon did a fantastic job with the 2012 Avengers movie.  Even The First Avenger by Joe Johnston has a lot of appeal to me and I find highly underrated for what it did. 

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About Ratner:. He only got the job because he was willing to bring the film in on the insane time frame given. Whedon and Vaughn both passed on it because of how little time there was, after Singer bailed for Superman.

For all his faults, Ratner is a guy that can get a movie done on time and under budget.

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Well, for one thing, I specifically cited GOTG and BP as examples of Marvel's changing approach to how it hires and handles directors in my first post on this topic.  So I mean...those movies aren't really a contradiction to anything I said.

The Russo Brothers made 2 very good movies (Winter Soldier is my favorite Marvle movie to date), but those movies don't really display a unique voice, other than being perhaps the optimal distillation of Feige's voice as defacto "showrunner" of this universe.  They are quintessential "Marvel" movies, not "Russo Brothers" movies.  The Russos were career TV directors, and a TV director's job is to be anonymous and efficient in capturing the showrunners vision.  That's what they were brought in to do at Marvel, and that's what they've done (quite excellently).

There's definitely a lot of Joss in the first Avengers movie, but he was still working from the original template for the movie (which is why Zack Penn got a writing credit, despite Joss throwing his script in the trash).  When he tried to assert more control and make a full-on Joss movie in Age of Ultron, they basically fought him every step of the way and ultimately turfed him out of a franchise they had just signed him to a huge money deal to shepherd well into the future.

Interestingly, Joss's success with that first movie seemed to be the big "A-HA!" Moment for Feige as it pertained to realizing that hiring faceless TV guys was the way to go, because immediately after that he hired the Russos and Alan Taylor (although that one didn't really work out).

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4 minutes ago, EVA said:

Well, for one thing, I specifically cited GOTG and BP as examples of Marvel's changing approach to how it hires and handles directors in my first post on this topic.  So I mean...those movies aren't really a contradiction to anything I said.

The Russo Brothers made 2 very good movies (Winter Soldier is my favorite Marvle movie to date), but those movies don't really display a unique voice, other than being perhaps the optimal distillation of Feige's voice as defacto "showrunner" of this universe.  They are quintessential "Marvel" movies.  The Russos were career TV directors, and a TV director's job is to be anonymous and efficient in capturing the showrunners vision.  That's what they were brought in to do at Marvel, and that's what they've done (quite excellently).

There's definitely a lot of Joss in the first Avengers movie, but he was still working from the original template for the movie (which is why Zack Penn got a writing credit, despite Joss throwing his script in the trash).  When he tried to assert more control and make a full-on Joss movie in Age of Ultron, they basically fought him every step of the way and ultimately turfed him out of a franchise they had just signed him to a huge money deal to shepherd well into the future.

Interestingly, Joss's success with that first movie seemed to be the big "A-HA!" Moment for Feige as it pertained to realizing that hiring faceless TV guys was the way to go, because immediately after that he hired the Russos and Alan Taylor (although that one didn't really work out).

Well, Guardians of the Galaxy came out almost four years ago. 

I highly disagree with you about Winter Soldier. That is a fucking game-changing comic book movie that was excellently executed. Just because they have a TV background doesn't mean they don't have any vision of their own.  It just seems like you are denigrating their careers and accomplishments because they used to work on TV shows and basically you are saying Feige is the real visionary and director. 

The template Whedon took from Penn I think was a fight with the Hulk and the whole team coming together in the final act.  You can't tell me that Whedon's vision and fingerprints aren't all over the movie.  Penn was only given a story credit because of the work he'd done beforehand and not an actual screenwriting credit.  That means that Whedon rewrote more than half the script. 

I'd hardly say Whedon was turfed in Age of Ultron. It's not like he didn't make mistakes there either. 

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1 minute ago, TheVileOne said:

Well, Guardians of the Galaxy came out almost four years ago. 

I highly disagree with you about Winter Soldier. That is a fucking game-changing comic book movie that was excellently executed. Just because they have a TV background doesn't mean they don't have any vision of their own.  It just seems like you are denigrating their careers and accomplishments because they used to work on TV shows and basically you are saying Feige is the real visionary and director. 

The template Whedon took from Penn I think was a fight with the Hulk and the whole team coming together in the final act.  You can't tell me that Whedon's vision and fingerprints aren't all over the movie.  Penn was only given a story credit because of the work he'd done beforehand and not an actual screenwriting credit.  That means that Whedon rewrote more than half the script. 

I'd hardly say Whedon was turfed in Age of Ultron. It's not like he didn't make mistakes there either. 

If Avengers was the first turning point of "Oh, I need to get some TV guys/studio journeymen to churn out these movies the way I want," then I think the success of GOTG was another turning point to where Marvel is at now, in terms of embracing idiosyncrasy.  It took a while for the production cycle to catch up, but I definitely think that's what got us Waititi's Thor and  Coogler's Panther (well, that and leverage) and hopefully more cool stuff.  As out-there as the first Guardians movie was, it was still tied down by a lot of the standard Marvel trappings that undermine a lot of there other movies.  By the time the second movie came along, it was clear that Feige had removed any and all responsibilities of stewarding the greater MCU from Gunn and allowed him to follow his id (which, ironically, I ended up not liking as much as a film).

As far as Feige goes....I don't think it's at all contrarian to say that he's the visionary of the franchise.  Pretty much everyone who is working or has worked in the MCU says the same thing.  It's his baby, much the same way BREAKING BAD was Vince Gilligan's baby.  Or better yet, COMMUNITY was Dan Harmon's baby.  And if you're the Russo's, you can show up and put in good work on that show, but in the end, you're translating Harmon's vision, not your own.  And that's not a denigration at all.  In fact, to be able to do that at an exceedingly high level, as they do, is a very useful skill that will keep you gainfully employed for a long time.

 I don't know how you can interpret Whedon's exit from the Avengers as anything other than being turfed.  It's not a great secret that the making of that second movie was contentious, to say the least.   And you're not winning any power struggles with Feige.

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Not sure how you can say no responsibilities of the greater MCU for James Gunn, when Guardians of the Galaxy is our point of entry for Josh Brolin as Thanos and another one of the Infinity Stones, and Gamora and Nebula, who are the "daughters" of Thanos. I maintain what the Russos have done is more than just translating the vision of Feige. If that's the case, than Coogler is no more than a tracer/inker as well. 

I can definitely interpret Whedon's exit in many ways.  Whedon looked burnt out after Avengers and all the deadlines he had to meet there. I don't think he wanted to work on anything like that again for a while. He clearly needed a break.  Secondly, he was also going through an ugly divorce. 

I don't doubt there was contention. Whedon was honest and open about that already. But it also sounded like he was tired and wanted to move on as well. 

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Just now, TheVileOne said:

Not sure how you can say no responsibilities of the greater MCU for James Gunn, when Guardians of the Galaxy is our point of entry for Josh Brolin as Thanos and another one of the Infinity Stones, and Gamora and Nebula, who are the "daughters" of Thanos. I maintain what the Russos have done is more than just translating the vision of Feige. If that's the case, than Coogler is no more than a tracer/inker as well. 

I can definitely interpret Whedon's exit in many ways.  Whedon looked burnt out after Avengers and all the deadlines he had to meet there. I don't think he wanted to work on anything like that again for a while. He clearly needed a break.  Secondly, he was also going through an ugly divorce. 

I don't doubt there was contention. Whedon was honest and open about that already. But it also sounded like he was tired and wanted to move on as well. 

It always amazes me when someone who gets paid to write struggles with reading comprehension.  I clearly stated that the 2nd GOTG movie was the one where the shackles were taken off Gunn.  There is no Thanos or Infinity Stone in that movie.  Vol. 2 is strictly about Vol. 2 and isn't tasked with doing any legwork to set up anything else going on in the greater MCU.  They just let Gunn tell a story without constraint.  It turned out to not be such a great story, but que sera.

As far as Coogler goes, it's not a big secret in the biz that he knew he was in a unique position to push for whatever he wanted without getting much pushback and that's what he did.

As far as the Whedon stuff goes, hey, if you want to be obtuse about it, that's fine with me.

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4 minutes ago, EVA said:

It always amazes me when someone who gets paid to write struggles with reading comprehension.  I clearly stated that the 2nd GOTG movie was the one where the shackles were taken off Gunn.  There is no Thanos or Infinity Stone in that movie.  Vol. 2 is strictly about Vol. 2 and isn't tasked with doing any legwork to set up anything else going on in the greater MCU.  They just let Gunn tell a story without constraint.  It turned out to not be such a great story, but que sera.

As far as Coogler goes, it's not a big secret in the biz that he knew he was in a unique position to push for whatever he wanted without getting much pushback and that's what he did.

As far as the Whedon stuff goes, hey, if you want to be obtuse about it, that's fine with me.

Sorry I misread your initial post and the nuance of what you meant. 

I still can't agree with your assertion because it disregards the more exceptional efforts Marvel has produced outside of Black Panther and the Guardians of the Galaxy. 

It's far from my favorite, but I also like Doctor Strange, and I believe it did a good job with delivering some general weirdness into the MCU as well. 

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23 hours ago, Brian Fowler said:

The other thing: BvS opened big, but it crashed in a way few movies ever have. 

Well that's not true. It had a big second weekend drop off but so have plenty of movies that opened huge including the last Harry Potter movie and Spider-Man Homecoming among others. They did reorganize the DCEU because they weren't happy but they were the cause of it.   The editing on BvS was terrible because they wanted to maximize the number of showings instead of telling the entire story. The Blu Rays and DVDs of BvS sold very well and the movie turned a profit for WB.   

Snyder had a lot to do with Wonder Woman including casting Gal Gadot and ghost directing some of the action scenes.  Patty Jenkins is a big supporter of him and his "vision".   Less so of that hack Joss Whedon.  The man who ruined Justice League. 

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On 3/27/2018 at 6:12 AM, AxB said:

Transformers movies made loads of money for ages, because fans didn't want to  admit to themselves they were shit movies. 

Or maybe people took movies about toys less seriously than you did...  

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13 hours ago, TheVileOne said:

The change in the 00s was that comic book superheroes were treated generally more seriously and like real movies with actual budgets instead of cheap hot garbage or ugly TV pilots that were gone after a season.  They got real actors and real budgets.

The Dark Knight remains the only superhero movie that peers in Hollywood actually respected as a real film.  Logan might the second. Wonder Woman and Black Panther round out the top 4. While they may be treated a tad more seriously than before,  most people still see them for what they are. 

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Spider-Man Homecoming opened to way less and finished with a higher gross.

Did the movie eventually turn a profit? Probably (although I guarantee not on paper. According to Warner Brothers, all 8 Harry Potter movies lost money) but it didn't make nearly as much as they wanted and expected it to. 

I mean, we get it, you don't like Whedon. That's fine. But the reason they hired Whedon to revamp Justice League is because BvS was a failure. JL ended up failing as well, in fact even worse, but you don't do what WB did in the wake of that movie if it was a success. 

And the editing in the Ultimate Edition is still really poor. Better than in the theatrical cut, but that's a really low bar.

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Let me put it another way. Of the top 16* opening weekends of all-time, BvS (11th) has the lowest final domestic gross by a touch over 50 million dollars.

*Arbitrary endpoint

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