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Feb 20, 2024
Gustav Truly Addicted User
Disney exec gaslights us all, blames misogyny for flops
An unnamed Disney executive:

Everyone says “It’s the movies, stupid,” which is an easy thing for people to say. More appealing movies are a great way to jump the political issues. But more and more, our audience (or the segment of the audience that has been politicized) equate the perceived messaging in a film as a quality issue. They won’t say they find female empowerment distasteful in The Marvels or Star Wars the latest trilogy starring Daisy Ridley], but they will say they don’t like those movies because they are “bad.” So “make better movies” becomes code for “make movies that conform to regressive gender stereotypes or put men front and center in the narrative.”

The problem is that there are many movies disproving this. The issue seems not to be with female empowerment as a theme, or with a demand that leads be males, but with making mediocre movies that seek to be excused for their mediocrity on account of their (alleged) message.

Consider that Ellen Ripley is inarguably one of the most popular sci-fi protagonists of all time, and Alien came out 1979. Are male nerds and sci-fi fans more misogynistic now than then? The sequel leaned more into action and . . . fans loved it. Because it’s a terrific movie. And it even managed to make Ripley overtly maternal, which you almost never see in female-led action movies. See also Sarah Connor.

Even if you set aside kids movies (see, e.g. Frozen: $1.3B), it’s easy to find other movies disproving these claims.

One of the most popular sci-fi (an allegedly male-skewing genre) movies in years was Fury Road, which de-emphasized the iconic male character in favor of a new, empowered female character – and people loved it, because it’s a great movie.

Did Wonder Woman 2 flop because it had a strong female lead? No, it flopped because it was bad – we know that because Wonder Woman 1 made $800M.

Enola Holmes seemed to prove very popular despite featuring a teen girl upstaging Sherlock and Mycroft.

Little Women made $206M on a $40M budget. Brooklyn made almost $40M on an $11M budget. Maybe Disney should consult more with Saoirse Ronan?

Birds of Prey, which was marketed as being about girl power, flopped because it was bad.

Can we really blame the fact that The Marvels was a flop on misogyny when Captain Marvel made over a billion dollars, despite being terrible?

Meanwhile, Ready or Not made almost $60M on a $6M budget – because it was fun. 10 Cloverfield Lane made $110M on a $15M budget – because it was good. Both are about female leads outsmarting, outmaneuvering, and escaping men — and male audiences enjoyed them.

Barbie made well over a billion dollars and Magic Mike, which is decidedly more targeted at women than men, is now a franchise with three movies and a musical.

Clearly women will turn out for a movie if it’s good (or, in Barbie's case, at least if it seems ro be in tune with the culture), and yet the turnout for even The Marvels and Birds of Prey skewed more male. Hard to blame men when those movies perform badly . . .
This message has been modified
Originally posted on Feb 20, 2024 at 1:11:26pm
Message modified by Gustav on Feb 20, 2024 at 1:17:37pm
Message modified by Gustav on Feb 20, 2024 at 1:17:47pm
Message modified by Gustav on Feb 20, 2024 at 1:49:32pm
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