They Just Don’t Care
So I was browsing Tumblr and came across this thread:
sewickedthread: fairy-anon-godmother: ford-ye-fiji: kaladork: rose-child: freelancerkiwi: wet-raccoon: toadprince: toadprince: dark-angel-be-thirsty-af: toadprince: karpad: toadprince: toadprince: so far, I have quotes from the russos on how they think Cap is old fashioned and needed to go, how black widow was damaged and needed to “complete herself” how tony “needs to go.”
The thread consists of screenshots of interviews that Joe and Anthony Russo, who helmed the MCU films, and JJ Abrams, who directed Star Wars: The Force Awakens and Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker and the new Star Trek films, and the Russo brothers basically hated the vast majority of the MCU characters, including Iron Man, Black Widow and Loki, and that Abrams wasn’t a fan of Star Trek as a kid and felt it was “too philosophical.”
And maybe I’m just really late at realizing this, but it’s not just the leftist desire to destroy anything that straight white males love…but it’s that they just do not care. They know nothing about the IP, and don’t even bother to do much research or understand why the property is so appealing and why it is successful.
I can point to so many recent examples. My sisters and I are big fans of the original Matrix movie, and so last month, when I was at my sister’s house, we all watched Matrix Resurrections. I had no desire or plans to watch it, but decided to go ahead anyway. It’s not super woke, which is surprising, but it is a soulless cash grab…and that was by one of the original directors.
Or Charlie’s Angels. The original TV show and movies were cheesecake fun. Instead, director Elizabeth Banks wanted to turn it into some tedious lecture on feminism and racial diversity. And, of course, Elizabeth Banks hadn’t really directed an action film before, unless you count Power Rangers and according to most reviewers, it showed.
And there’s the Star Wars sequel trilogy. Terminator: Dark Fate. Ghostbusters 2016.
I have already written two novels in my alien invasion series, and have been working on a third. Oh, and two prequels. I am still working on revising the finished ones, and one has already gotten a major rewrite and needs an editor, and the other is going to get a major rewrite.
I bring this up because I would be so incredibly heartbroken if someone who didn’t care about my work had gotten a chance to adapt it. They likely wouldn’t understand what I was trying to say, and would turn it into something that it very much isn’t. The fact that one of the main characters is black is even worse, because if, somehow, Hollywood wanted to turn it into a movie or TV series, it would be become about how oppressed and discriminated against that character is.
An example of love and care going into the adaptation of a series is definitely the Lord of the Rings film trilogy. I LOVE those movies. My sisters love those movies. They’re widely regarded as the best film adaptations of all time, and for good reason – the director, Peter Jackson, was a big fan of Tolkien’s trilogy. The writing hewed close to the original work, the casting was fantastic (and no dumb stunt casting or gender swaps, or race swaps), the costumes and sets were gorgeous…I could sperg on and on about how completely awesome those movies are.
Peter Jackson tried to recreate that magic by turning a regular-length novel, The Hobbit, into a three film epic, but it pretty much failed, according to many. I thought they were okay, but just not as good as Lord of the Rings.
I was also a HUGE fan of Game of Thrones and yes, back when the showrunners gave a crap about the show, it was good. The best of all television shows. It made fantasy series much less of a joke, and then they wanted to move on to other projects, particularly when they ran out of source material to work with. The show’s quality nose-dived, and yes, I am among the many who are absolutely pissed off about the last season.
I don’t know much about the people who made the Harry Potter and Hunger Games films, but you can tell that they at least respected the source material. I don’t know much about Harry Potter as I’ve only seen the first two movies and have never read the books, but I can tell you that the Hunger Games films are well done, and are fairly close to the source material. I don’t like how they bloated the final installment, Mockingjay, into two films (obviously following the example set by Twilight: Breaking Dawn parts one and two). Part one was far too long, obviously, but the studio wanted to milk that cow for as long as possible. One could also say the same for the Twilight saga, as I believe the author, Stephenie Meyer, was one of the producers for the last two installments of that franchise.
Hollywood thinks that the fans of a given property will just show up, no matter the quality of the actual work. They clearly have no respect for their audiences, given how nasty they get whenever what they put out gets backlash or criticism. It’s sad, but maybe they’ll learn. In the meantime, there’s works of art outside of the entertainment industrial complex. Sure, we won’t get big budget adaptations of, say, Jon Del Arroz’s novels, or mine, but we should support artists that aren’t greedy, soulless jerks. I hope that would send a message, but I don’t think Hollywood will change anytime soon.