The first trailer for the new Ghostbusters film has dropped and, as predicted, the fanboy community has lost its collective mind over it (much to this author’s amusement). YouTubers, Redditors and Tweeters have all leaped to the same conclusions. “SJW’s, stop trying to appeal to ‘minorities’ by ruining classics” or “SJWs think people hate this cause it stars women, even though the movie looks meh and is a reboot of something that didn’t need to be rebooted.” *
Guess what, stupids, it’s because of fucking money!
Sorry to be so blunt there, but allow me to explain. A movie studio will only green light a film if that film is considered financially viable, or a prestige film that could win the studio an Academy Award or Oscar.
So let’s look at the Ghostbuster franchise and its director Ivan Reitman from a purely-financial perspective, then compare it to current Ghostbusters director Paul Feig’s financial viability.
Okay. The original Ghostbusters film was made on a budget of $30million dollars. By the end of the film’s run it had grossed a total of $295,212,467. Not bad at all, especially for the 1980’s. This meant that Sony was primed and ready for a sequel, and through some wheeling and dealing, the original cast signed back on for Ghostbusters 2. Ghostbusters 2 was made for a rumoured $25 million and brings in a total of $215,394,738**. Still a reasonable profit. But wait, something’s up. Ghostbusters 2 makes nearly a third less than the original. Same cast, director and writers are involved, so what happened? To put it simply, it was an average film, and audiences rejected it. Sony put the franchise on hold.
This meant that Sony was no longer feeling comfortable putting more money into Ghostbusters. But what about the director Ivan Reitman? How did his future films fair at the box office?
Reitman never recovered after Ghostbusters 2. But this probably has more to do with modern audiences not getting the Reitman sense of humour, right? I mean, those numbers aren’t great, but I bet current Ghostbusters director Paul Feig wished he had numbers like those.
Oh shit, looks like Feig might have the upper hand here. But here is the real rub: What do all those Feig films have in common? They’re comedies focused on women. Does that mean that more women are watching comedies than men? No, that can’t be, it just can’t. Quick, let’s pull some Seth McFarlane box office results. That should make it all better.
Oh no! Is it possible that female-geared comedies outperform male ones at the box office? No, wait, Sacha Baron Cohen films are beloved worldwide! Surely his films have brought in truckloads of cash?
Ok, enough of my smartarse attitude, let’s get to the point. Everyone right now who says that Hollywood is just pandering to the female demographic are absolutely right. Here’s a news flash for you: Hollywood panders to anyone willing to give them tons of cash. If movie goers love little people movies and box office numbers reflected that, then we would be inundated with movies about little people. That’s how Hollywood works.
“But Matt,” you might say, “aren’t films meant to be about creativity and the director’s vision?” Haha, no. Not by a long shot. Indie films made on microbudgets are about creativity. Large-budget films made in the Hollywood system are a business decision.
For example, due to Deadpool’s recent success, there are plans now to produce a ton of R-rated (MA15+ here in Australia) films. These plans wouldn’t be happening if Deadpool hadn’t brought in over ten times its production budget in profits. Sure, they got to be creative and do Deadpool to the vision of Ryan Renolds and Director Tim Miller, but Deadpool was made on a microbudget of $53 million. Now, that may seem like a lot of money, but keep in mind that most super hero films are made for $200 million. Batman vs Superman is rumoured to have cost $400 million.
Hollywood has never once considered being progressive, unless there was a big payday attached to it. If you want more male-focused comedies, go to the cinema and spend the money. See the male-centric comedies twice, instead of downloading a pirated copy seven months after the Blu-ray/DVD comes out. But, for the love of sanity, stop pretending that Hollywood is being progressive or giving into SJWs. Hollywood is only in it for the money, as it has been since the 1950’s.
*Quotes sourced from Youtube – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w3ugHP-yZXw
**Box office figures sourced from Boxofficemojo.com