Saturday, December 04, 2010

Outside Addresses: Oscar Politics, Tron Prospects, Depp on Sparrow

What others were saying this week about the many worlds of Disney entertainment:

"When it comes to best-picture glory, Pixar has gotten the shaft over and over again. But spending millions of dollars buying clever Oscar ads isn’t going to make a difference, although it will surely inspire wonderers to wonder about the whole pay-to-play aspect of the Oscar game. The only way an animated film will win a best picture Oscar is if the academy changes its mind-set about what represents a great film. For now, if you’re Pixar, you’ve earned our eternal cinematic gratitude for making movies that appeal to our childlike sense of wonder, sorrow and delight. But you still haven’t earned the right to be taken seriously by the motion picture academy."

Patrick Goldstein
Los Angeles Times

"With some high-profile holiday movies starting to hit Hollywood's prerelease tracking services, it appears first-weekend prospects for Disney's Tron: Legacy are significantly below where the studio needs to be with its pricey tentpole.  The 3D sci-fi film has been marketed heavily for months en route to its Dec. 17 bow, and many have been suggesting a big opening and leggy theatrical run based on built-in interest from the cult base of its 1982 predecessor. But at this point, tracking suggests Tron: Legacy with as little as $35 million.  Technically a sequel, Tron: Legacy references characters and events from the original Tron in a tale that occurs years later. But its $200 million production heft alone puts the 3D romp squarely in the category of movie reboot -- the first picture cost just $17 million to produce -- and an opening well north of $50 million would seem necessary to put the picture on a path to profitability."

Carl DiOrio
Hollywood Reporter
"We went up there for a day, showed it to their key people, had a nice two-hour roundtable where we told them what we wanted to improve, and they had some suggestions. Little nips, tucks, tweaks. We incorporated some of their ideas into the shoot we did in June and even though it only amounts to a couple minutes of stuff, it's those little adjustments that I think help bring the story to the next level."

Tron: Legacy Director Joseph Kosinski, from an interview on, speaking about screening footage from the film at Pixar Studios 
"Clearly with Mickey Mouse, I mean, the guy is on everyone's paycheck so there are lines you just don't cross. I'm a big believer in pushing things too far and forcing people to pull you back. I put together a folder of Mickey smoking and drinking and abusing farm animals and, you know, shooting em and skewering em. Mickey did a lot of bad stuff back in the day but it doesn't matter that he used to do it. It doesn't matter that he used to do that because I don't even want to do that with Mickey, but I just wanted test where the line was. You'd be surprised at how far they've let me go."

Game designer Warren Spector, discussing his handling of the iconic character in the new Epic Mickey video game
“They couldn’t stand him. They just couldn’t stand him.  I think it was Michael Eisner, the head of Disney at the time, who was quoted as saying, ‘He’s ruining the movie.’... Upper-echelon Disney-ites, going, What’s wrong with him? Is he, you know, like some kind of weird simpleton? Is he drunk? By the way, is he gay?… And so I actually told this woman who was the Disney-ite… ‘But didn’t you know that all my characters are gay?’ Which really made her nervous.”

Johnny Depp, from an interview in Vanity Fair

What have you been saying about Disney entertainment this week?  Let us know!