I want to first thank you all for reading and continuing to support this column and the Schmoes. It’s pretty awesome doing this every week. I’m thankful for the little things, you know? This column. The grass on my toes. A beautiful sunset. My dogs licking my face as I finish off a turkey pot pie– ah, screw this! I’m too excited really to talk about all that cheesy crap. We gots some shit to discuss!
Okay, I’m going to call myself out in front if you all. I am REALLY excited for a movie releasing next week. You could call me a certified fanatic. And with a movie of this caliber… scratch that… a franchise that has such a high magnitude of awesome-ness… I am thrilled a quality piece of entertainment is there for my consuming. It really is a rare thing in my opinion when a studio movie continues to amaze, to do huge business and which follows the story elements set forth in the source material.
I’m talking Potter boys and girls. Harry Potter….
What do they call them…? Potter-heads? Harry-fans? Wizard-weenies? Scooby-Doobies? Shit, I don’t know. And I don’t care. I’m one of them – a proud member of the Harry Potter fan club. Metaphorically speaking, I did not pay to be a member of the actual fan club. That would be lame.
“I’m not only a member of the Harry Potter fan club….um….yeah that’s all I am, just a member.”
The big finish is coming next week, folks. Part one of THE DEATHLY HALLOWS. Which is such a great title, by the way. It is also quite amazing that they are splitting the movie into two parts. A lot of people, including me, had a gut reaction to this news. Non Wizard-Weenies screamed to the sky that Warner Bros. was just trying to get us to fork over more money. A valid point. But in the past couple of months, a few bits of news popped out into the ether and it makes me believe, without a doubt, that the brothers Warners are actually giving the boy wizard a descent and caring send off.
It starts with the books. Have you read them? Why not? Are you afraid? Can you not read? I know there are no pictures in them but, come on! They are truly fantastic. JK Rowling is one of the most prolific and amazing writers ever. The way she created a mythology, the way in which the characters leapt off the page – the way in which she pulled you in where you HAD to read ever-single page! I mean, have you EVER seen people in your life lining up twenty-four hours before, outside a store… for a BOOK!!!??? That’s Star Wars nuts right there. In print form. Kids were getting excited about reading! Think about that for a minute. Their parents were getting in on the action as well! That shit went global. Harry Potter was like crack. And it was crack-tastic!
Anywho, let’s keep our eye on the ball here. THE DEATHLY HALLOWS was released a couple years back and it was the 7th book in the series. It promised the big finish, Harry vs. Voldemort. And it delivered. As the series progressed, it went darker and darker and we soon realized, no one was safe. Major characters that you loved were off’ed in books 4, 5 and 6. I won’t go into spoilers but damn. I cried. There, I said it. I am a man in touch with his feelings. And I liked the Notebook… What are you going to do?
Following in similar fashion, the book version of DEATHLY HALLOWS was intense. And the body count, holy-guacamole! I DID NOT see those deaths coming. Again. Cried. Manly-tears.
The book is epic. It’s as thick as ATLAS SHRUGGED and just as layered. So many plot points that were woven together, set-ups that came from the first book were paid off and a crazy mythology that was created with extreme care came to a very satisfying end.
So when Warners split the movie in two, it wasn’t because of money. They did it to serve the story. Trust me, you are going to want to see every detail, every last story point from the seventh Potter.
I really want to applaud Warner Bros. I don’t get enough chances to really pat a studio on the back. But this is a great move. Way to trust your story, guys. Frankly, I think Warners is the only studio with some balls, aside from Marvel, who also really cares about their properties. And I am NOT talking about ALL Marvel properties, e.g. FANTASTIC FOUR and GHOST RIDER. Are you listening FOX? You keep screwing up other peoples’ shit. Rebooting FANTASTIC FOUR??? A sequel to GHOST RIDER with the CRANK directors?! Seriously, you are a bunch of smelly turds from a smelly turd island! Why don’t you go home!?
< MARK REILLY-BANNED FOR LIFE
Hats off to you, Warner Bros. and David Heyman (Producer). You managed to keep the cast intact, without a single one of those kids crashing their Bentley’s into a drug store, high on coke and crazy glue. In fact, Daniel Radcliffe, Rupert Grint and Emma Watson as Harry, Ron and Hermione respectively, have grown into fantastic actors and are all very serious about their careers.
“It’s your last movie Potter? Goooood Goooood, now you will see the power of the dark siiiide!”
When HARRY POTTER AND THE DEALTHY HALLOWS opens on November 19th, it will mark the only time a director, David Yates, has directed more than two of the movies. This is another cause for celebration as this was a guy who only did some British television series. He comes in for the 5th movie and nails it. So he stays on and makes his mark.
When I look back to the series, it truly is one of the most remarkable in all of movie-dom. The six previous movies in the series have grossed 5.7 billion dollars worldwide! That’s almost a billion dollars per movie! DVD sales 1.3 billion! The books, 400 million in 69 different languages! If my math is correct, and it was my understanding there would be NO math in this column…. That’s 7.4 billion dollars in revenue!
That means you’re doing something right. And everyone involved at Warners Bros has done it right. If you look at the rest of the kid’s movies being adapted, they have a very short shelf life. SPIDERWICK CHRONICALS? There’s like 12 books in the series, only one movie. THE GOLDEN COMPASS? Three books, one movie. INKHEART? Five or so books…. One movie. NARNIA has a third movie coming out but, news flash, it’s being run by FOX now so… I think you better say hasta la arivaderci to that series. Everyone has been chasing Harry since he came on the scene. Directed by Chris Columbus, the first two movies were, by design, kids movies. But the story was there and it was all fun and games until the third movie… And then things got interesting. Alfonso Cuaron comes in and darkens it up a bit. The guy knows his stuff. Hiring him was genius. Another feather in your cap, Warners.
“Someone get this Reilly kid a part in the next Batman, I haven’t had this much positive press since I fired McG off Superman back in 03.”
Then the fourth movie GOBLET OF FIRE comes out… And it’s awesome. Mike Newell directs this one… the guys who did DONNIE BRASCO? Again, genius. I never would have thought of him but he nailed it. And then of course, David Yates comes in and the rest is history.
On a side note, did anyone see CLASH OF THE TITANS in 3D? There was a moment when Liam Neeson’s hair, like 3 strands of it, was moving… in eye-popping 3D! However, the rest of him was looking to be in 2D. Then he moved and the hair went back to 2D while half of him went to 3D. I was so confused! What the hell was I watching? It was like a 3 year old was in charge of the conversion but gave up half-way through to watch BARNEY.
“Trust me, Worthington was stoned the whole time…how do I know? I sold it to him.”
It seems Warner Bros learned from their mistake. For as it was announced about a month ago, they decided NOT to convert the last Harry Potter because it wasn’t up to snuff and their main concern was keeping the integrity of the Potter universe intact.
Clap… clap…. clap… clap, clap, clap, clap, clapclapclapclapclapclapclap– shit, how to you write the slow build of a generous applauding audience?
Anyways, I was cheering for this decision because it went against everything the studios have been doing lately. Instead of trying to cash in on the craze, they said, no – F that! We’re not gonna take it. No, we ain’t gonna take it!
They’re releasing DEATHLY HALLOWS in glorious 2D. Why? Because, I’m sure, they have faith in the movie, the story, their director and cast and the source material. This, my friends, is the model for what the studios should do. And it’s the antithesis of what I have been bitching about lately.
Warner Bros is, shockingly, serving the story and pleasing the audience all in one, grand gesture. I would love to reward them with another billion dollars, per movie – Part 1 and Part 2.
For as you Wizard-Weenies know…. HARRY POTTER AND THE DEATHLY HALLOWS is a true epic, a just finale for the boy wizard who changed the world. In the hands of any other studio, we might have only gotten one movie. And that would have totally sucked. Because Warners have served the material, Harry Potter has touched on many of the classic themes of friendship, heroism and dealing with loss and becoming stronger for it. The kids who lined up for SORCERER’S STONE are now young adults lining up for DEATHLY HALLOWS.
So this column really didn’t have much news… I just wanted to write a love letter for once. Thanks to JK Rolwing and Warners Bros. for making such an awesome franchise. You all deserve the riches coming to you.
Now, can I borrow 100,000 dollars?
Thanks for reading, folks. Next week, I’m going to touch on another franchise, namely SUPERMAN!!!! Seems Warner Bros. is trying to do good some more and they are taking it seriously by hiring Chris Nolan to story it up and produce. And they went off and hired Zack Snyder. I will comment. I will illuminate. I will dance around and around in daisies pontificating on all this… So won’t you be my neighbor next week to find out what I’m thinking?
You will! I like you, neighbor.
See you in line…