Friday, September 19, 2014

The Fun Left in Hollywood

Hollywood has always been known as the cutthroat heart to the American film industry, usually filled with professionals and never much room for laughter. And all of this is totally acceptable when many budgets cross over a hundred million dollars and studios are looking for the biggest bang for their buck. But it was the seventies and the rise of the American auteur that gave Hollywood some of the most iconic films and at the same time showed that directing is really just about the inner child's imagination. George Lucas and Steven Spielberg both created so many films that will be ingrained into film history for the rest of time. And as they dominated the seventies box office looking back it almost seems as if they were playing a game with each other.
In the late seventies George Lucas was nervous about his new release Star Wars. So when he turned to his friend Steven Spielberg and saw that he was was working on Close Encounters of the Third Kind it just made him feel worse. Lucas believed that Spielberg was creating "the biggest hit of all time" and that Star Wars would fail miserably. So as a small bet at the time Lucas bet 2.5% of Star Wars in exchange for 2.5% of Close Encounters. What was a small bet at the time turned into a forty million dollar investment for Spielberg. But even that wasn't the end to their game.
For the next decade the two would play box office ping pong and when it came to video rentals the two would send letters to each other publicly about the others success. 
The two showed that what they were doing was something that was fun no matter how serious it was, and that through the millions of dollars it wasn't about money. 
For a long time in Hollywood I feel like we have lost that. The sense of fun behind the movie making and that no matter what, film should be about making something that you feel should be made and having fun with it. But hope is not lost! There has been a new resergence in the industry and in a way it comes from the same franchise, Star Wars. 
J.J. Abrams is deep into production on the new trilogy and is bringing the same atitude as Lucas once did. Meanwhile on the other spectrum Zack Snyder is working on Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, and between the two films they are both approaching the situation just as the original duo did. With a twenty first century twist the two have been crossing their respective franchises in a way to respect the massive amount of pressures they both hold. It's the fun that Hollywood was missing and I hope it continues to stay. 

These images have been sent back and forth to each director. And the video below is the most recent gag from J. J. Abrams.
Here's to hoping the fun is still alive. 

No comments: