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Tuesday, 30 September 2008

SPIKE LEE'S FILM BOMBS AT BOX OFFICE - IS THIS THE EASTWOOD AFFECT




Spike Lee's movie has opened to shockingly low box office takings. Earlier in the year the outspoken director knocked Clint Eastwood for not including black actors in his back to back war movies,Flags of Our Fathers and Letters from Iwo Jimo - All EASTWOOD could do was stand back and quote the historical facts.

To my mind accusing Eastwood of racism was nothing but a publicity stunt and one in bad taste at that. Anyone who has followed Eastwood will know he is not, in anyway, racist.

Clint Eastwood is movie royalty and it's a fair bet that the war of words has affected Spike Lee's movie which had an opening weekend of just over three million
dollars.


QUOTE - You have to wonder whether silver screen legend Clint Eastwood has a smile on his face this morning.

You have to wonder whether silver screen legend Clint Eastwood has a smile on his face this morning.Last year, Lee verbally tussled with Oscar-winning director for his lack of portrayals of black officers in other World War II epics, like “Letters from Iwo Jima” and “Flags of Our Fathers.”

Looking at the opening numbers for “St. Anna,” it’s clear Lee made a mistake challenging Dirty Harry to a directorial duel.

You cannot get into higher Hollywood royalty than Clint Eastwood. And burning that bridge can’t be good for Lee or any studio that wants to employ his services.

After this weekend’s poor showing, there’s only one question for Lee, “Do you feel lucky? Well, do ya – PUNK!”

Here is the rest of this weekend’s Top 10 list:
1. "Eagle Eye," $29.2 million.
2. "Nights in Rodanthe," $13.6 million.
3. "Lakeview Terrace," $7 million.
4. "Fireproof," $6.5 million.
5. "Burn After Reading," $6.2 million.
6. "Igor," $5.5 million.
7. "Righteous Kill," $3.803 million.
8. "My Best Friend's Girl," $3.8 million.
9. "Miracle at St. Anna," $3.5 million.
10. "Tyler Perry's The Family that Preys," $3.2 million.
[Seattle Post Intelligencer, Associated Press via CNN.com]



Now I'd like to reopen this argument and complain that Lee's film about an all black military unit during World War II doesn't feature any white soldiers.

6 comments:

Charles Gramlich said...

Shows how out of the loop I am. I never even heard of this controvery.

Chris said...

Most likely a publicity stunt--where was he when Eastwood's films were out and generating all that buzz a couple of years ago?

Still think he's a great director and that the work he's done over the past 10 years is really underrated. I'm going to see this sometime.

ARCHAVIST said...

Chris - I agree about Lee's talent but I feel this was a cheap blow given that there are very real racial problems in the world. To say Eastwood only uses black actors as hoods - what about Bird? What about Morgan Freeman's roles in The Unforgiven and Million Dollar Baby?

I think Lee has damaged himself in this verbal tussle and Eastwood has come up smelling of roses. I, for one, will boycott the movie.

David Cranmer said...

You are on the money with this post... Reviews for this film are terrible and now according to TIMESONLINE Italian war veterans denounce 'insulting' Spike Lee film. http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/europe/article4853669.ece

ARCHAVIST said...

Yeah - it seems that Eastwood's war movies were true to historical fact and Spike Lee's film is pretty much the way he want to tell it.

Chris said...

Bird is a good example of how Clint shouldn't take this sort of criticism. Good call.

I just checked the Rotten Tomatoes site for the overall picture of St. Anna, and it definitely isn't rosy. Ebert gave it a favorable review, though (http://tinyurl.com/4wo2m5), and I think rightly didn't bring up this whole mess--as Lee never should have in the first place.