Disney is anticipating losses of up to $200m on its sci-fi epic John Carter, released only eleven days ago to a resounding critical ‘meh’. Disney shares fell by almost 1% in reaction to the news, although the company will still be in comfortable profit thanks to its insanely lucrative television properties. Blame for the Carter debacle has been placed at the feet of everyone from director Andrew Stanton (accused of being arrogant and incurring huge costs in reshoots) to the marketing department, so obsessed with not alienating anyone (the ‘Of Mars‘ part of the title was dropped for being unappealing to female viewers) that it forget to convey any sense of what the movie was about.
Flixist found some fun in the movie, although much of what is fun about Burroughs’ text – the gritty, pulp sensuality – was ironed out in favour of focus group-friendly seriousness. Lynn Collins’ fantastic Dejah Thoris being ignored by the promotional campaign was an astonishing oversight, being how she’s one of Hollywood’s very few female leads competent enough to attract women and sexy enough (although sadly clothed, going against Burroughs’ word) to bring in the men. There’s still a good movie to be made from Burroughs’ Barsoom series, but Carter has been a debacle from start to finish.[via BBC]