Wednesday, August 15, 2012

The Hollywood Reporter A-list is Missing a True Star!

The August 24th issue of The Hollywood Reporter features on the cover, the A-listers that they have crowned for 2013. Really? What the fuck does a Fassinator have to do to help get Michael Fassbender the respect he deserves? With the exception of Jessica Chastain and Tom Hardy, and no offense to Mia, but Shia? Oh, I see, it's those damn Transformer movies. Never mind, I get it! Not!

You can read the article at this link, but I will post this portion here for us to challenge:

In fact, Chastain illustrates how A-lists -- whether new or old -- contain two distinct subcategories: those who demonstrate box-office prowess and those who attract top-tier talent. "Sean Penn and Daniel Day-Lewis are A-listers, but they are not bankable," explains Bowen. "They are lightning rods for attracting other talent."
Although franchise gigs such as Twilight and Potter can help a star rack up hits, they also can lead to his or her decline. In the wake of Spider-Man 3 -- and the $20 million payday ­-- Tobey Maguire hasn't had another big hit. Indeed, he dropped his fee to less than $2 million for Warner Bros.' summer 2013 release The Great Gatsby.
All of these actors are trying to navigate an environment that has become increasingly challenging, with studios and directors in such ascendancy that stars often seem like an afterthought.
From Michael's January THR cover article.
 Michael Fassbender, who seemed to be at the top of the new A-list in the wake of Shame and X-Men: First Class, has become less of a sure thing since Prometheus, but he remains one of the few names that foreign financiers get excited about -- and they're willing to sink $15 million-plus into a project with his attachment. "International sales are hugely driven by the star power in a movie," says Mark Gill, president of Millennium Films. "If you don't have $100 million worth of special effects, you've got to have some reason for people to go -- and that's the stars." (Others on that internationally viable shortlist include James McAvoy, Robert Pattinson, Daniel Radcliffe, Carey Mulligan, Scarlett Johansson, Zoe Saldana and Mila Kunis.)

Well excuse us Mr. Gill. Can you believe this? First of all, they are dissing Prometheus unjustly. The movie was awesome and Michael did a brilliant job, and it earned $126 million domestically, and $195 million in foreign box office (btw, it's going to open in China any minute now, so you can toss in another $40 million for that, if not more) with a current total of $320 million in box office earnings (Box Office Mojo). Secondly, I reckon you have to be on the A-list for Ridley Scott to want to work with you immediately after one film, on a project written by a Pulitzer prize winning author, Cormac McCarthy. So, what do you guys think, did THR screw up in blowing off Michael? I think so, especially with having Shia on the cover. Whatever.

11 comments:

saphron-girl said...

It's studio politics. That issue was a vehicle for the cast of Lawless, which is being bankrolled by the Weinstein. Prometheus (and The Counselor) are both being backed by Fox, one of their competiors.

Unknown said...

Calm down. The reason those four stars in particular are on the cover is because they're all in Lawless and they were all conveniently together to be photographed in Cannes. Those are their red carpet outfits. How exactly was Michael supposed to be featured on the cover considering that scenario?

And their Prometheus comments are fair. Whatever anyone's personal feelings/opinions are about the film, the critical consensus is that it was disappointing. You also cannot argue that it was a box office hit. It made back its money, but that's about all. I guarantee that the expectations were much higher than a mid-$350 million take.

You should be focusing on the fact that he's become extremely attractive in the international market in a very short time. That's not unexpected to me. For awhile, I've thought that he was much more likely to become a major star in Europe than the US.

saphron-girl said...

"You also cannot argue that it was a box office hit. It made back its money, but that's about all."

False. Prometheus cost $110 million. It has made $350 million. That was the reason its sequel was approved so quickly. I agree with your take on the critical consensus, but let's be fair; Michael's performance was universally raved as the best thing about the film.

Again, I contend that this article is nothing more than studio politics. It's the Weinstein Company versus Fox. After X-Men, Prometheus and The Counselor, Michael is practically a Fox staple.

émilie said...

I guess @saphron-girl is right about the studio politics. The article seems to have been written by an accountant! It doesn't take into account the artistic dimension of Michael's work. And I loved Prometheus, I hope the misunderstanding about this movie won't prevent it from becoming a classic in a few years.

Petra said...

I totally agree with @saphron-girl. To add I would say that the criteria for making the A-list is completely shallow based on who they put on it and why. I know for myself, some movies I went to drew me in based on the premise and not necessarily on the actors that were in it. "Transformers" made Shia Lebouf, it had a huge following for it despite him. "Spiderman" the same thing, the audience for it was already there Tobey McGuire was cute. So now what?

Michael's potential is on the scale of Deniro, Denzel and Pacino. I even heard Brando's name dropped. If Hollywood wants to give him scripts, which by the way, when asked in the GQ interview...What kind of scripts are you getting? Michael said "romcom's,historical, family entertainment." Really? Why? Michael is no longer "just" in that box.

It became clear the studios couldn't come up with a viable movie/script for his kind of talent. They are trapped of in this mega-hit system of movies based on the flavor of the hour.ie Twilight,Harry Potter,Marvel Comics and now Fifty Shades of Grey.

Michael is most definitely an A list actor. More so than the one's who made the cover. The scope of his abilities would require the studios to challenge themselves in giving him suitable material to his level talent. Instead of bringing him down to the level of theirs.

émilie said...

@Petra: perfectly said!

Unknown said...

A movie only breaks even if it makes 2.5 times its production budget. So many people have no clue how Hollywood money works.

And his actual work in Prometheus is irrelevant. The article didn't comment on his performance.

Dionne said...

Regardless of what THR thinks, Michael will be just fine. He will continue to do great work and get accolades and acclaim as he's been doing.

Kelly Shelton said...

The part of the article that I couldn't understand is when it talks about Michael becoming less of a sure thing since Prometheus. I think he's become more of sure thing. He's got TYAS and depending on when it comes out it could be another round of awards for Michael. The same for The Counselor.

I would take this whole thing with a grain of salt. Michael is an actor's actor and a director's actor. No matter what the project is you know you're going to get something incredible from him.

However, I am trying to figure out how Zoe Saldana made it onto the international list. *kanye shrug*

captwentworth said...

Prometheus will open in China on Sept. 2. Technically, it will be the first Michael's movie showing on Chinese screens,aside Hong Kong and Taiwan of course. Fish Tank and A Dangerous Method showed in Shanghai and Beijing international film festivals separately, but not nation wide. I'm sure that Chinese audience will enjoy and love Michael's performance. Besides, there are lots of Alien and Ridley Scott fans in China. I believe Prometheus will be doing great there.

I don't think Michael becomes a less sure thing after Prometheus. It's the opposite. He becomes a more sure thing. Look at how fast Prometheus gets the green light on the second one.And with Michael current career path as an actor and a producer, I will say he is doing great.

Kruschelkasten said...

But with one thing the author has a point (as far as I think). There are no new "stars" made with just one film. And in my opinion the big household names in the movies today are not there because everyone talks of their films/music but because they hit the headlines with their private lives or other escapades ( e.g. Cruise, Brangelina, Downey).
If that means Michael Fassbender will not be counted among them, better this way than the other way round.