The New York Times has an article up on John Carter, which opened this weekend. The headline, “‘Ishtar’ Lands on Mars”, tells you the tack they’re taking. The facts are damning: “cost an estimated $350 million to make and market”, took in just over $30 million this weekend, will require Disney to “take a quarterly write-down of $100 million to $165 million”.
Because of its enormous cost and the way ticket sales are split with theaters, analysts say the film needs to take in over $600 million globally to break even.
It’s not going to happen. The article goes on to blame it all on director Andrew Stanton, who had never worked on a live-action movie before and who also controlled the marketing. It’s also asserted that Disney refuses to point the finger at him because they want to keep him happy at Pixar.
I’m kind of surprised that the piece was published, since there are a lot of anonymous comments and background. (Maybe someone’s exercising some grudges in this hatchet job?) The piece also doesn’t seem to acknowledge that the material itself is fusty, dating from a hundred years ago.
At least it has pretty people...