Popular Opinion Podcast Popular Opinion Podcast #14: ROGUE ONE Trailer Reaction and BATMAN V SUPERMAN Fallout written by Sean Gerber April 8, 2016 Sean Gerber and Mark Hughes give their take on the new trailer for Rogue One: A Star Wars Story. Then, their attention shifts back to Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, answering your questions about the film, its box office performance, and what comes next for Justice League and the DC Extended Universe. Please rate, review, and subscribe to Popular Opinion Podcast on iTunes. Popular Opinion Podcast #14: ROGUE ONE Trailer Reaction and BATMAN V SUPERMAN Fallout was last modified: April 8th, 2016 by Sean Gerber Related Batman v Superman: Dawn of JusticeRogue One 17 comments 0 Facebook Twitter Google + Pinterest Sean Gerber Sean Gerber is the founder and editor-in-chief of Modern Myth Media. When he's not writing here, you can catch him as the host of Popular Opinion Podcast, Batman News, and Marvel News! previous post Batman News #14: Batman Scripted, Suicide Squad Reshoots, And BATMAN V SUPERMAN Q&A next post The Politics of BATMAN V SUPERMAN: DAWN OF JUSTICE You may also like POP – Top 25 Superhero Movies Of... November 3, 2015 POP – Talking ANT-MAN With Director Peyton... November 30, 2015 POP – Top 25 Superhero Movies Of... October 22, 2015 Popular Opinion Podcast #13: BATMAN V SUPERMAN... March 30, 2016 POP – Top 25 Superhero Movies Of... November 11, 2015 Popular Opinion Podcast: STAR WARS: THE FORCE... January 18, 2016 Popular Opinion Podcast: Marvel Vs. DC February 2, 2016 POP – STAR WARS: THE FORCE AWAKENS... November 8, 2015 POP – Top 25 Superhero Movies Of... October 28, 2015 POP: BATMAN V SUPERMAN, JUSTICE LEAGUE, And... February 22, 2016 SeanLM -I had to chuckle at some of Mark’s apologetics. “Given its negative critical and audience reaction, the movie could have topped out at 750 million! Its under-performance is not as dramatic as what we might have expected.” Well… I suppose that’s one way to look at it. By the way, Disney’s stock went down after the Force Awakens so pegging stock price of a publicly-traded studio to the box office fate of a particular movie is something of a fool’s errand. -Reports (from the Hollywood Reporter for example) indicate that BvS needs to make between $800-900 million to be profitable. They split the gross with theater owners in the US. Internationally, they take home even less of the gross box office because the cost of doing business overseas is usually substantially higher for 100 different reasons. Production budget also doesn’t account for marketing costs. As far as merchandising is concerned, this movie is not a gift that will keep on giving. What kid wants “Glowering Superman,” or “Do You Bleed Batman” action figures when they can get Star Wars and Marvel toys? There isn’t a tie-in videogame (not that those are ever any good but they do extend the movie experience). The New JLA cartoon being developed won’t be on the air until at least 2017 and certainly won’t have anything to do with BvS. -Even if it is profitable, WB has to explain to its shareholders why it’s wise to pour so much money into massive tent-pole projects in order to squeeze out a relatively marginal profit margin. The shareholders are well aware that Fox made Deadpool very cheaply and got a huge return on its investment with far less financial risk. Deadpool, a movie released in the traditional dumping ground of February, is going to make more in its domestic run than BvS when it’s all said and done. And it’s R-rated. And Deadpool didn’t have 3D ticket prices either. 3D ticket prices are obscuring a fact about BvS– audience attendance (as in # of butts in the seats) is unimpressive. Mark’s implication that BvS making more internationally than Deadpool is some sort of validation or moral victory in the face of the “doomsayers” is odd especially when you consider the fact that Deadpool was banned by China’s government which controls the second largest economy on Earth. -Mixed Reaction to Dark Knight Rises? 87% on RT. A on Cinemascore. 1.08 billion with no 3d showings. Yes, quite mixed. Nonsense. TDKR’s reaction has nothing to do with how BvS has been received internationally other than perhaps BvS paling in comparison (that might explain its disastrous 78% drop in China). Also, MoS is the direct predecessor to BvS. That movie had truly mixed reactions at the time and still does. If you want to talk about lingering ill-will carrying over into another movie, then talk about MoS carrying over into BvS. stock Would add that TDKR also had a mass shooting in CO on opening night that likely did affect its BO. But man, you’ve done your homework. pud333 The only thing I’d really disagree with is the last line. Critics think it’s bad, but the audience thinks it’s okay for the most part. They don’t think it’s a bad film. It’s not 70% thinking it’s bad like the critics. That said, “okay” doesn’t get you to 1B. No way. It needed a better audience response than just okay. That said, I think they’re all wrong. It’s an amazing movie, but I understand I am in the minority and I’m fine with that. aRJedi Yea Hughes is the very definition of Phantom Menacing this movie. Someone who’s so desperate to believe what he saw was great. pud333 Great podcast guys. Few things: – With regards to how much money BvS will make, I recall a while ago, near around the time this movie was announced, I felt that BvS would not make 1B. It seems so easy it should, and that’s the expectation, but I was doubtful because of Zack Snyder. Yes, I love Snyder, yes I love BvS, yes I love this world he’s crafted even though I am not 100% thrilled with his portrayal of Superman (By far I do not believe Zack hates Superman. When JL1 is done, he’ll have spent something like 8 years working with the Superman character. You don’t spend nearly a decade of your life purposely working on something you hate and loathe if you’re someone like him.) I always felt this movie would be just as polarizing, if not more, than MoS, and I was sad to see that my prediction came true. – When it’s all said and done, my own personal prediction is that it crosses $900M, but only by the slimmest of margins. If they do release the 3 hour cut as a limited theatrical release, then it should do more, but even then I am skeptical it gets to 1B. Now is that a flop? Far from it. Is it a crushing success? Heck no. $1.2-1.3B would have been a crushing success. (Let’s put it this way: One Deadpool will have done almost as much as the Trinity, without China.) – Here’s where I’m coming from: I invest people’s money for a living and part of my job – actually a huge part of my job – is managing people’s expectations and emotions. If someone comes into my office saying they’re conservative but want an 8% annual return, that’s a red flag. I have to manage their expectations to a more 3-4% annual return over the next ten years. Not 8%. If they are a high risk taker, and want 8%… I still have to manage their expectations down. Now if that conservative investor is expecting 3-4%, and I get it for them, they are happy. If they get better, they are thrilled and I get referrals, and if they do worse, well, I need to start looking for new clients. Perception is reality for most people and expectations go a huge way in shaping that perception. When you have a movie like Deadpool, no one expected it to be this world beater, but it was. Expectations were way low. But with BvS, you have the two biggest DC superheroes, and expectations were through the roof – fair or not. And it did not meet them. I have to feel that WB isn’t super happy. They’re probably “Yeah, it did well” but you gotta figure in the back of their minds, there’s a voice going, “It should have been way better. We left a lot of money on the table.” I think that’s why their stock price didn’t fluctuate much. It’s more like, “It’s fine. It ain’t a disaster, and it ain’t Christmas in March. We’ll make money.” When it comes to return on investment, including the risk they took, you gotta figure they came up short and they know it. They gotta be feeling like those investors that expected 3-4% return, but only got 2.5%. Yeah they made money, but real return after taxes and inflation, probably isn’t so hot. – Now, I normally don’t post anecdotal evidence since it’s usually useless and people can make up whatever stories they want to fit their narrative. But I just want to share my experience. On second viewing, I took four non superhero movie fans to BvS. I look at these four as a good representation of the average moviegoing public – they like movies, they’re just looking to enjoy themselves. One was my wife, one was a friend who reads some comics (no Superhero ones, but he loves Scott Pilgrim and Saga) and the other two are just movie fans. When the Darkseid dream sequence with the parademons came on, my wife was all, “WTF? Maybe this is a bad movie. What is going on?” All four gave it basically a 7/10. They liked it just fine, even loved some parts, but they were confused in other parts and it took them out of the movie. BvS is a movie for hardcore fans – that can be a bit of a curse. There’s a trope in comics, a saying, that goes, “Every comic book is someone’s first comic book.” The idea is you shouldn’t need to know the detailed back history in order to enjoy a random comic book. When I explained all the stuff they didn’t understand, each one said, “Oh! That’s a more interesting movie now. I wish I had known this before.” I feel hardcore fans can keep a genre or character alive in the dark times, but in times like this, when it hits the mainstream, those four people I took – the casual mainstream audience – you need at least a couple to go back for a repeat or multiple repeat viewings in order to really make a superhero movie a smash hit. The hardcores won’t do it alone – and really I think us hardcores give ourselves more credit than we probably deserve – we probably think there’s more of us than there probably are. It’s like when guys say they slept with X number of girls. Whatever number they said, you probably want to divide by 4 and you’ll get your real number. And none of those four said they’d go back again. Heck, I’m seeing it a third time tonight, and will see it again at least one more time. I’ll buy both versions of the movie, and if they release the 3 hr version in theatres, I’ll see that a couple times. So I’m doing my part. But it won’t be enough to help it cross 1B. – The problem is Zack Snyder. I love Snyder, I love this world he created, I am 100% invested even though this isn’t “my Superman.” I want to see Zack’s vision play out to the fullest. But I’m in the minority. The criticisms levelled against him are mostly really unfair – he hates Superman, he’s another Michael Bay – this last one is ridiculous. Just because a spartan apple and a red delicious apple are apples, doesn’t mean they’re the same. Not even close. Snyder has more talent and ideas and ambition in one finger than Bay has in his entire body. But I liken Snyder to a rock star trying to make a double album with 24 songs on it. It’s probably better as a regular single album with 12 songs. I think he needs someone more than his wife and Roven whispering in his ear. He needs someone to just go, “No… just no.” (Insert gif from Family Guy of Brian swatting Peter on the nose with a rolled up newspaper.) Someone has to rein him in, and I think that even though they all came out ahead of this and said JL would be going a different way, WB is probably going to turn up that dial a bit more. That said, I still stand by what I said in previous posts: I wouldn’t go in expecting Snyder to have completely changed his tune. Expect controversy. I just think that’s who he is. When you look at MoS and how that was received, and you look at BvS and how that was received, the common denominator is Zack Snyder. I think it’s a fair criticism to think he’s the problem. That said, I don’t want to see a neutered Snyder film. I understand that’s what’s needed in order to really push JL over the top, but I scoff at this idea of George Miller taking over. Remember his take on Justice League? Everyone wanted to burn it with fire. It’s ridiculous to me that now fans want him in charge. No. I don’t want to see that;. I love his Mad Max films, and Fury Road was the best film last year for me, but stay away from JL. If he’s a producer, fine, but I don’t want to see him directing. Again, sorry for the essay. I intended some quick thoughts and then I began rambling and ranting. aRJedi Come on. The length of time Snyder has spent on the character doesn’t matter. The guy hates Superman. Enough so that he killed him not once, but TWICE in BvS. He’s bastardized the character to the point where I don’t even know why he’s still called Superman. pud333 The more I debate the Superman thing, the more I realize that I’ve seen a different movie. Like so many others, Superman’s my guy, ever since I saw the first Donner Superman movie as a child. I’ve always looked at him like a father figure. Over the years I’ve learned to roll with the punches – for example, I don’t think Superman has been done justice in the New 52. But I didn’t see Snyder bastardizing Superman at all. Even though I had a feeling he might get killed off once I knew Doomsday was in the movie, I cry twice every time I see this film (I just saw it a third time late last night). Once when Jonathan Kent shows up and Clark holds back tears asking him if the nightmares ever stop, and the second time when Superman dies and Martha puts that photo of Jonathan in the casket with their son. You, like many, think Snyder hates Superman and if that’s how you feel, I can’t change your mind. (Mark Hughes wrote a wonderful piece on why Snyder doesn’t hate Superman. Definitely check it out if you haven’t already). But what I see is a Superman that eventually comes around to the Superman that I have always loved – the selfless, humanity loving Superman who sacrifices his own happiness at the end to stop Doomsday. Would I like to see him being more Super? Of course. I can’t get enough of the smiling Superman. But I watched Man of Steel last night before seeing the movie, and I was blown away as to how much hope and positivity and lightness there was in Man of Steel. Watching MoS on its own, if you compare it to other Superman versions, seems like a dour take, but once bookended with BvS, you’d be amazed at how positive and hopeful MoS ends up being. The entire first 15 minutes is nothing but talk of hope and making a better world, being a symbol, etc. Maybe it’s because BvS is so dark that MoS looks so bright in comparison. But I can see what Snyder is trying to do, and I am excited for Justice League. I hope Snyder proves me wrong an produces a JL that resurrects a Superman that is the shining beacon of hope we all want him to be. Regardless, I need to see his take on it, and I need to see it play out – for my own selfish sake. Oreole Speaking about Justice League, am I the only one a bit baffled that many are taking on the assumption that Justice league will be better because it’s brighter or more a crowd-pleaser than BvS? The tone was really the least of BvS’s problems. A funner movie doesn’t automatically mean a better movie. If that was the case, then folks would be saying Green Lantern is a better movie than the Dark Knight because it was more “fun”. Going with a lighter tone isn’t going to fix poor storytelling, pacing, and editing issues. Sorry. pud333 For sure. The tone wasn’t really the issue with BvS and a funnier movie doesn’t equal a better one. I’m sure WB understands that. I don’t think anyone expects Snyder to suddenly make The Avengers. I think when it comes to crowd pleasing, it’s more like satisfying some of the lingering complaints about Superman, and not making it as dark as BvS. It’s been said many times that BvS is probably the darkest because when you have your two greatest heroes fighting, it doesn’t get much darker than that. I’ll repeat it here: I urge people to watch MoS before they watch BvS. Back to back like that, you’d be amazed at how BvS makes MoS’ positivity and hopefulness shine, and MoS makes BvS all the more tragic when Supes bites it in the end. They really work well together. I am REALLY looking forward to what JL looks like, and how they treat Supes’ resurrection. I have a feeling when JL is done, what you will find is a trilogy with an overarching epic story that works incredibly well together. It won’t be Nolan’s Dark Knight level of awesomeness, but I feel it will be unique and thought provoking and it will definitely stand out from the CBM crowd. But I still doubt JL will hit 1B. WB really needs to control their spending in order to make these movies as profitable as possible. It all goes back to expectations. Oreole Resurrection of Jesus Christ symbolism is inevitable with Superman in Justice League, knowing who this is from. pud333 I expect Superman to come back halo and all. Oreole Oh Superman our lord and savior, where aren’t thou? http://wp-uhf.static-cdn.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/07/Super-Jesus.jpg stock I can appreciate a guy who sticks to his story, and certainly get the role expectations play, but, any way you slice it, it’s a mess. A beautiful mess, if you place all your stock in visuals and action sequences, but, ideas, plot, and storywise, an utter mess. And I agree completely on Michael Bay. His Transformer movies are brainless, so I assumed he was as well. Until I saw 13 Hours. It’s the best war film I’ve seen in quite a while. And, if you’re worried about its political message, it really keeps that ambiguous. It’s the story of what happened to those guys. And Bay did an excellent job with it. Every American should see it, IMO. pud333 I saw the trailer for 13 hours but I wasn’t very interested in it. I’m going to have to check it out now in order to give Bay a fair shake. I’m not American, but I’ve always been able to appreciate American war films and put aside my own politics for the sake of the film. So I’ll definitely give it a look. I just came back from seeing it a third time with a friend who was seeing it for his second time. (He was one who hated MoS because of the killing, but apparently a discussion I had with him changed his mind about the ending and now he loves it. And he loved this film too.) But he and I had the same view on BvS – You’re right, it is a bit of a mess. A glorious mess, but it’s not as bad of a mess as most people say it is though. We figure it’s two things: 1) The editing. For example, one of the goons holding Martha pulls out a clock that says 34 minutes left. We cut to Diana getting back to her hotel, then she has a shower, changes, pulls up her email to watch the JL videos, then somehow gets to the airport, and boards her plane, apparently all in less than a half an hour. It’s a bit jarring, and completely unnecessary to cut it that way. (It’s funny how in a movie with flying men and centuries old amazons, not being able to get from one’s hotel to boarding a plane in 30 minutes is what bothers me, lol) The whole JL files thing could have been done as an end credit scene and the geeks would have still gone nuts over it. But for casuals, because of where it is, it takes them out of the movie right when the film is really starting to ramp up with the big fight. 2) The nightmare future visions Bruce has of the parademons and the whole Flash scene. While that is still one of my favourite scenes, this is the sort of thing that could be left out for the 3 hour version. I really don’t think you need to show the entire thing. Yes, it’s a setup film, but I still think the JL videos sets things up nicely even if you put it into an end scene credit but WB is so obsessed with not being like Marvel, so it is what it is. Really, I feel some minor changes would have gone a long way – take out the nightmare scene, the flash bit, and put the JL videos / email at the end of the credits. This is why Snyder needs another person who is not his wife to reel him back sometimes. stock Agree on both of those scenes, and it’s at least part of why I think the film is a mess. I’m sure they didn’t want to copy Marvel with a post credit scene, but it could have been either placed in a different part, perhaps as a fuller intro to WW herself, or at least in the second act, not the climactic scene. The dream sequence reminded me of the Thor Ragnarok scene in AOU. Simply put, just a jarring scene that did nothing except cause confusion as to why it happened. I suggest Bruce lay off the Vicodin. pud333 Jeeze. I forgot about the Ragnarok scene. Man, I really don’t remember much about AoU. That was such a blah movie. I mean, it was fine, I liked it for what it was, a popcorn flick, but man I don’t remember anything about it. Now that I think about it, I remember Whedon not knowing what to do with Thor. I remember way more about Winter Soldier, so I hope Civil War continues the WS trend. In the end, that’s what I prefer: I want an entertaining movie, but something I will remember. stock It kind of proves Snyder isn’t the only one who needs reigning in. But it’s a problem with the genre, especially with multi-character team movies. Very hard to do all of them justice and still maintain a clear narrative.