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Ratner talks X-Men DVD and Van Damme

BrettRatner.jpgBrett Ratner has been talking about the DVD version of X-Men: The Last Stand, and it sounds as though he's been putting a lot of work into the audio experience. He also mentions that old rumour of Jean Claude Van Damme appearing in Rush Hour 3.

In an interview with UK IGN he tells us about the X-Men DVD:

I spent as much time doing the color correction and a new sound mix...Most people who see this movie internationally or even domestically in small towns, are not really seeing this movie in the best way it should be seen...now I've remixed the film in 6.1 sound so you can hear it through your home system - but in the best possible way. In the way that I intend the movie to look and sound.

As for Van Damme, he says his involvement was definitely a rumour and there's no way that's happening.

I love Van Damme, and I even love Steven Seagal, but I don't want to put them in the movie that I'm doing now, but definitely five years from now in will hopefully most likely consider it. But right now Van Damme is not a guy who I'm interested in putting in Rush Hour

Aww now there's a shame, I'd have loved to see JVD back as a big baddie, and I think his time is right, making a Patrick Swayze type comeback would be superb about now.

Over the page he goes on to talk about why Snakes on a Plane failed and why the Internet "fanatics" aren't a big audience...

You have to understand - and I think a movie like Snakes on a Plane is a perfect example - if you look at what that audience is, I'm not knocking your site or whatever, but that audience obviously has no box office influence whatsoever. Because they were fanatics, they were flipping out over Snakes on a Plane and at the box office it did $15 million. But that audience is so small; comparatively to all the people on the internet that didn't like it or don't like me or don't like my movies, if you look at the numbers they've done over a billion dollars, so someone's liking them (laughs).

You see I don't entirely agree with that. The majority of people will go to see a film once, not multiple times, so it's that one trip that's getting the studios the cash. So it's all down to how these people decide to go and see a film and when they decide. People will not wait until their dream movie comes along, they'll go and see films which might be decent and entertaining, films with great trailers, write ups and history behind them, that hits the X-Men on the head so it was doubtful that a third film in that series would totally flop.

The overriding issue here is that people have to go and see a movie to decide if it's any good, they aren't going to be able to decide that until after they've paid their money, so it's not really a great indication of how the film does in that middle ground between absolute winner and absolute loser.

Yet if a film is just bad then that opening weekend is going to kill the audience, because people will talk about how bad it is - hence Snakes on a Plane. If it's not bad, or some like it and some hate it, people are still going to go and see it to make up their own mind, giving the studio their money.

So it's not as clear cut as Ratner would like to think. Snakes failed because it was an awful movie and a terrible idea. X-Men was in that middle ground and had a huge history to fall back on. It's not that the Internet fans are a small audience, and I'm surprised he can say that thinking about who the audience is for X-Men.



I think you're mistaken on this one. Your argument is that the poor quality of the movie (something I'm not really disputing) resulted in low box office.

The problem with that line of thinking is that it had a low opening weekend before that audience had seen it to generate bad word of mouth. The only word of mouth prior that was the blog induced Snakes on a Plane hysteria and the trailer.

Blogs simply aren't as big or influential a part of the offline world as they seem to like to believe they are. Most people do not trawl the internet for movie reviews prior to release. Most people make their weekend movie watching decisions based on what their local cinema shows and any trailers they happen to have caught on tv.

Another example of this is Serenity which has a lot of obsessively loyal online fans, and garnered plenty of good reviews, but simply couldn't turn that into serious box office.

Clearly the segment which is motivated enough to actively post or discuss these movies simply isn't large enough to influence box office.

I also have a sneaking suspicion that many of them are like me and rarely actually go to the cinema despite a genuine interest in films. With 2 small boys, its far easier for me to wait on the DVD release.

Nope, you haven't swayed me. Snakes was a bad film full stop, so not a lot of people wanted to go and see it.

I didn't make it entirely clear but for downright bad movies I'm not saying that everyone will go and see it and make up their mind opening weekend, they won't, because everything is saying it's a bad movie.

The argument was more about those middle ground movies like X-Men where I don't think you can say taking are a sign of a good or bad film (unless they are the far end of the good or bad scale, like stinker or stunner). It's because people have to go to make up their own mind, and if it is in that middle ground there's plenty to tell them it's good and it's bad.

Serenity is slightly different to both Snakes and X-Men because there was a huge marketing campaigb behind both films. That definitely wasn't there in the same scale for Serenity.

Snakes on a Plane was a pathetic film, period. Not even Samuel Jackson can save this movie. I dont even know what he was thinking when he took the job.


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