DC Comics confirmed yesterday that the superhero who'll be rebooted this month as a gay character — is "gayboot" a thing yet? — is Alan Scott, the Green Lantern. The reveal will happen in an upcoming issue of Earth 2. That's "The Green Lantern" as opposed to just "Green Lantern." I know what you're thinking — can't we stop labeling people and just accept everybody for the special, shining lanterns they are? Totally. But here’s why the "The" is pertinent.
Michel Gondry — who’s probably relieved that thanks to Green Lantern, his January non-blockbuster The Green Hornet will not go down as 2011’s worst superhero movie with “green” in the title — gets back to his let-us-make-un-film-with-stuff-we-bought-at-Yarn-Barn roots with a three-minute Sweded version of Martin Scorsese’s Taxi Driver in which he plays Travis Bickle. We will not be jerks and suggest that he re-do The Green Hornet next.
Once upon a time, it was easy for a working actress to pad her résumé with a Razzie for Worst Supporting Actress. Just pick a terrible script, play your wafer-thin girlfriend/wife/mom/coworker role as woodenly as possible, and then walk away with the gold(-painted raspberry). Hell, Faye Dunaway won a Razzie in 1993 for The Temp, and Estelle Getty in 1992 for Stop! Or My Mom Will Shoot.
Then came Madonna and the reign of the superhotties. The Worst Supporting Actress Razzie stopped rewarding bad performances in terrible movies and started rewarding the latest flash-in-the-pan babe who looks good on a press release. So awards started going to, yes, Madonna, Estella Warren, Britney Spears, Paris Hilton, Carmen Electra — nonactors all, for whom a Razzie is worth little more than a shrug. They don’t understand, or care, that a Golden Raspberry is a feather in an actor’s cap.
Let’s give the Razzies back to the real actresses! The awards the past two years for Sienna Miller and Jessica Alba give us hope. We’ll see if this coming January 23 the Razzies continue the trend.
Green Lantern opened and bombed in mid-June — or, in blog years, in 1874 — and since then its failed cinematic vision of a charismatic Ryan Reynolds and a heroic Space Chicken has been on the mind of absolutely no one, save for the accountants at Warner Brothers who have to try and explain away over $300 million in sunk costs. Still, a creative and financial disaster like that can only mean one thing in Hollywood: sequels! Yes, Warner Brothers president — and apparent masochist — Jeff Robinov told the L.A. Times today that Green Lantern 2 is still in the works. According to Robinov, the problem with the first one wasn’t the cartoony CGI, it wasn’t the fleet of Muppet-y space cops, and it certainly wasn’t the Pullman Loaf with Abs that is Ryan Reynolds. No, Green Lantern’s Achilles' heel was that it wasn’t edgy and dark enough: "To go forward we need to make it a little edgier and darker with more emphasis on action," says Robinov. To aid with the transition, director Martin Campbell will be jettisoned in place of someone bleaker (Lars Von Trier?).
It all makes sense, of course. Because a movie about a test pilot with a magic ring that can project giant emerald fists would be a success if only it were broodier. Cue up the torturous backstory and throw some Linkin Park on the soundtrack! Creeping Nolanism strikes again!
In predicting who might be nominated for Worst Actor, first you have to ask: What does the Golden Raspberry look for in its leading men? It’s a question that drives Razzie gurus crazy. Sometimes the winners of the Worst Actor award are megastars like Eddie Murphy, John Travolta, and Adam Sandler. Sometimes the winners barely qualify as actors at all: the Jonas Brothers, George W. Bush, Roberto Benigni.
Occasionally, an actor will dominate an era, as Kevin Costner did the 1990s, a decade in which he was nominated six times (and won three Razzies). But sometimes an actor will leap from obscurity with a performance for the ages, as Tom Green did when he won the Razzie for Freddy Got Fingered in 2001. (He’s still the only Worst Actor winner to accept his award in person at the ceremony.)
It’s hard to believe 2011 is already half gone! It seems like just yesterday that the cold of winter had descended upon us as we celebrated The Last Airbender and its five Razzie wins. But now we’ve finished off our Fourth of July hot dogs and legally purchased fireworks, and just as all the finest Oscar blogs are rolling out their early-bird 2011 predictions, so too is it time for RazzieWatch to step out on a limb and make some bold guesses. Which films will achieve Razzie glory come January 23?
In the coming weeks we’ll predict the acting awards and other categories. But today we'll start with the big kahuna: Worst Picture!
Winning an Oscar is the ultimate validation of an actor's work — but it won't pay for private school! So when the bills come due, lately it seems like even the most serious thespians will step over Terrence Malick to get to the nearest green screen (and easy paycheck) to deliver crappy dialogue into a 3-D camera. 2011's bumper crop of sequels, remakes, and general schlock has built swimming pools in the backyards of some of our most revered actors. But at what cost to their dramatic cred? Exactly how much of the shine have they taken off their Academy Awards? And which actor did the most damage this year? With Oscar-winners currently stinking up theaters in Larry Crowne and Transformers: Dark of the Moon, Grantland's department of made-up entertainment-related statistics decided to find out.
As a network, FX is known for making unconventional choices: investing heavily in the notion of Michael Chiklis as a leading man, cancelling the brilliant Terriers (RIP!), and hitting ratings gold, or at least bronze, with a sitcom starring Frodo Baggins and a talking Australian dog. So perhaps it's best to give the brain trust over there the benefit of the doubt in the face of perhaps their strangest behavior yet: doubling down on the summer movies of 2011 with the irrational confidence of Jason Terry at the 3-point line.
What do auteurs Michael Bay and Terrence Malick have in common — other than that they’ve both made Megan Fox wash their cars in a bikini in lieu of auditioning for a role? (Fox got the part in Bay’s Transformers but her performance as "Celestial Dinosaur No. 3" was sadly cut from Malick's of Tree of Life.) They’ve both written letters to projectionists, advising them on how best to present their 2011 films! While the letters themselves strike differing tones (Malick terms his a "fraternal salute" to a "forgotten art" while Bay, unsurprisingly, uses capitalist logic – "your theaters invested a lot of money in this equipment" — in his plea for 3-D perfection), they are the latest missives in a trend that stretches at least as far back as noted control freak Stanley Kubrick, whose own letter re: Barry Lyndon also recently surfaced.
But this epistolary practice goes deeper than most cinephiles realize. Grantland gained access to some other recently-penned letters to projectionists from the directors of a few of summer 2011’s other prominent releases. We are proud to share excerpts of them with you now.
It’s June, which means that Hollywood is readying another buffet of crap. Endless superhero sagas, pointless remakes, a third Transformers movie — 2011 just might be the worst summer movie season ever. But a lousy summer for movie-watchers is a great summer for Razzie-watchers, because everyone knows that summer is Razzie season.
The Razzies, of course, are the coveted Golden Raspberry awards, the brainchild of Los Angeles PR man John Wilson, who turned an Oscar-party roast of bad movies into a 30-year cottage industry celebrating the worst Tinseltown has to offer. The Razzies (dis)honor Hollywood the day before the Academy Awards in a ceremony that has even occasionally attracted some star power. (Two years ago Sandra Bullock accepted her Worst Actress Razzie for All About Steve in person, her good sportsmanship aided, no doubt, by the fact that she was a lock to win an Oscar for The Blind Side the next day.)