Join 3,564 readers in helping fund MetaFilter (Hide)


Badder Santa
December 21, 2012 5:22 PM   Subscribe

Terry Zwigoff unloads over the battle for 'Bad Santa'
posted by Artw (42 comments total) 5 users marked this as a favorite

 
Diablo Cody isn't a 12 year old girl?
posted by cmoj at 5:35 PM on December 21, 2012 [1 favorite]


There will apparently be a Bad Santa 2,from the director of Hot Tub Time Machine. Hmm.
posted by Artw at 5:38 PM on December 21, 2012 [1 favorite]


Dear Terry:

Louie Bluie and Crumb were great.

Shut up now.
posted by timsteil at 5:44 PM on December 21, 2012 [1 favorite]


I have to admit I never saw Art School Confidential.
posted by Artw at 5:47 PM on December 21, 2012


God Bless this man.
posted by unSane at 5:47 PM on December 21, 2012 [2 favorites]


Art School Confidential isn't that bad. It's like Ghost World, but...less so. It's not as funny, the characters are all kind of one-dimensional, but it's funny and okay enough for what it is. It's nothing to be reviled. It's just a movie. I'm a little surprised to learn it's apparently been a career impediment for Zwigoff, as it seems less like a failure than sort of a minor film between better ones.
posted by kittens for breakfast at 5:58 PM on December 21, 2012


I was really excited for Art School Confidential, and really wanted to like it, but I thought it was fucking terrible. It really turned me of off Zwigoff for awhile.
posted by Snyder at 5:59 PM on December 21, 2012


The source material is... kind of slight. Fun though.
posted by Artw at 6:01 PM on December 21, 2012


Interesting interview, tho. Thanks.
posted by Snyder at 6:01 PM on December 21, 2012


I loved Crumb and own Ghost World, but was hugely disappointed by Art School Confidential. The Dan Clowes story that it was based off of wasn't one of his better works--basically, it's just Clowes unloading on art student stereotypes, the sort of strip that just about anyone who's been to art school, or even been mildly acquainted with art majors at almost any college, could write--and the movie makes it worse, with a protagonist who comes off as sort of creepy because he goes to that particular art school in order to meet the nude model in the school's brochure, and carries the idiot ball to service the ridiculously contrived plot about the serial killer that's suspected of being associated with the school somehow. Huge waste of actors and director.




SPOILERS



The movie could have potentially been saved by making the undercover cop--the one who's at first suspected by the protagonist of being the killer--into the protagonist, especially since, in the little time he's given on the screen, he starts to question whether he made the right choice of careers once his art starts getting noticed. Yes, that's basically making the movie into Kindergarten Cop at art school, but what the hell, even describing it that way makes it sound better than what we got, which was the main character being sort of an idiot and a creep.
posted by Halloween Jack at 6:03 PM on December 21, 2012 [2 favorites]


God the stuff on page 3 about hiring $35,000/day lawyers to get final cut makes me happy I don't work in that industry.
posted by Lukenlogs at 6:06 PM on December 21, 2012 [2 favorites]


Absolutely love Ghost World and Crumb. Bad Santa is great, but Art School Confidential is just the pits. I can't think of a film that was a greater disappointment from a much-loved director in the last decade.

See also: AV Club's take on the multiple versions of Santa, posted earlier this week.
posted by porn in the woods at 6:06 PM on December 21, 2012 [4 favorites]


Honestly like that will get you nowhere in Hollywood. But kudos to the man, that was a fun interview.
posted by roger ackroyd at 6:30 PM on December 21, 2012 [1 favorite]


God the stuff on page 3 about hiring $35,000/day lawyers to get final cut makes me happy I don't work in that industry.

He's exaggerating, and very rarely do lawyers work for talent for anything other than a percentage of the deal; with lawyers, it's usually 5%.

I could see his lawyers working out some kind of deal with him ("Hey, Terry, you're asking to make half as much money on this, how about we take 6.5% instead?") but $35k a day is just him bullshitting.
posted by incessant at 6:39 PM on December 21, 2012


No, that's not true. Contract lawyers (like mine) work for 5%. Litigation lawyers charge full whack. $35,000 is per day during trial.
posted by unSane at 6:45 PM on December 21, 2012 [2 favorites]


and how when he read "Juno" he thought it was 'a retarded version of 'Ghost World.' "

That is actually, in sentiment, a pretty good summation of Juno.
posted by Mezentian at 7:48 PM on December 21, 2012 [2 favorites]


I had a friend who worked at a movie theater when Bad Santa was released, who told me that more than half the ticket sales for that movie were to parents who apparently thought it was some kind of wacky kids movie and had never seen commercials, or something. They would then come streaming out of the theater in the first five minutes or so asking for their money back.
posted by to sir with millipedes at 7:49 PM on December 21, 2012 [2 favorites]


Having read the AV Club article, they are entirely right. The opening scene is much improved by the narration Zwigoff excises, and if the rest of the movie follows like that, his cut is probably not worth it.
posted by kafziel at 7:55 PM on December 21, 2012


Ironic that a site called "indiewire" has dynamic content trying to bring in content from 14 different domains. NoScript is stacked with entries like a Christmas tree. Gonna have to pass on this one.
posted by crapmatic at 7:56 PM on December 21, 2012


Ironic that a site called "indiewire" has dynamic content trying to bring in content from 14 different domains. NoScript is stacked with entries like a Christmas tree. Gonna have to pass on this one.
I'm only seeing five hits in Ghostery, SnagFilms & IndieWire in NS and Cloudfront in RP.
posted by Mezentian at 8:03 PM on December 21, 2012


Wow -- Terry Zwigoff sure doesn't like people who aren't Terry Zwigoff, does he?
posted by Sys Rq at 8:43 PM on December 21, 2012 [3 favorites]


I'm quite enchanted with the idea of the Brothers Cohen & Weinstein in a swear-off. Or a dance-off.
posted by Mezentian at 8:46 PM on December 21, 2012 [1 favorite]


I kinda liked Art School Confidential, even though it had huge and obvious problems as a film. And I'm an Art School graduate so I know all the stereotypes.

I like Bad Santa but it has to be the most mangled film around. I once saw it on a cable channel, which had edited out every single swear word. Not just blanked the audio, they actually cut most of them. What the hell is the point of a Bad Santa version with no swearing?
posted by charlie don't surf at 9:02 PM on December 21, 2012


Doesn't get along with the producers or directors of his biggest a commercial success? And then had a flop?

I think he has an uphill battle ahead.
posted by zippy at 9:25 PM on December 21, 2012


I watched the first half The King's Speech last night and intend to finish it tomorrow, but I'm having the same response as him so far. "Wow. This is surprisingly good for a Best Picture winner."
posted by brundlefly at 9:44 PM on December 21, 2012 [1 favorite]


When I read articles like this I wonder how any film ever gets made.
posted by BitterOldPunk at 9:53 PM on December 21, 2012 [1 favorite]


It makes me happy that Terry Zwigoff dissed Juno so hard. I think that's something everyone should do. That movie was SUCH a piece of shit. Art School Confidential might not have been any great shakes, but I would rather watch that again every day for a year than Juno once more.

(also Ghost World, Crumb and Bad Santa were all great.)
posted by Rev. Syung Myung Me at 10:44 PM on December 21, 2012 [2 favorites]


The opening scene is much improved by the narration Zwigoff excises, and if the rest of the movie follows like that, his cut is probably not worth it.

If you're going to write a review of a director's cut, it's my opinon you should WATCH THE THING FIRST. But I'm old fashioned that way.
posted by mek at 11:41 PM on December 21, 2012


Naive rambly question, but how do directors or creative-type folks who have big gaps in their oeuvre pay the bills? Do they make enough on residuals and initial payment to support themselves between paying jobs, or do they get pick-up work like script-polishing, or get money from projects developed but that never come to fruition?

Obviously there's not one single answer, but it's something I often wonder about, and how it can affect a career - if Wiki's anything to go by, Terrence Malick did scriptwork between Days of Heaven and The Thin Red Line; was there a concern that he'd be able to do the job two decades after the last time?
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 12:03 AM on December 22, 2012


What the hell is the point of a Bad Santa version with no swearing?

That was actually the remake, Not So Good Santa. For Minnesota, where people a nicer.

And you shouldn't say "hell."
posted by GenjiandProust at 3:02 AM on December 22, 2012 [1 favorite]


A ton of directors shoot commercials and TV during layoffs.
posted by unSane at 4:09 AM on December 22, 2012


"It's nothing to be reviled. It's just a movie. I'm a little surprised to learn it's apparently been a career impediment for Zwigoff,..."

Yeah... If I had to guess from reading the article, Zwigoff's swearing matches with producers and brutally negative appraisal of his audience and his colleagues work has been a lot bigger career impediment than Art School Confiedential...

What is it someone said about working in the arts that I heard about when Dan Harmon got canned? You can be good, you can be on time, and you can be liked. All three are equal, and if you've got two out of three you can keep any job, but if you only have one then you're probably going to be looking for work sooner than later.
posted by midmarch snowman at 9:42 AM on December 22, 2012 [2 favorites]


Contract lawyers (like mine) work for 5%. Litigation lawyers charge full whack. $35,000 is per day during trial.

Sure, but he didn't go to court to get final cut. This was a contract negotiation.
posted by incessant at 11:18 AM on December 22, 2012


Sure, but he didn't go to court to get final cut. This was a contract negotiation.

The contract had already been negotiated. The studio broke it by refusing him final cut. He didn't go to court because it would have cost him $35000 a day.
posted by Sys Rq at 1:10 PM on December 22, 2012


If you hated Juno, do not see Bobcat Goldthwait's God Bless America. I have almost no words for how self-aware, preachy and snide that movie is.
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 1:12 PM on December 22, 2012


Ah, I see now reading comprehension is not my friend today. I stand corrected on a variety of accounts.
posted by incessant at 1:23 PM on December 22, 2012


/Actually kind of liked Juno.
posted by Artw at 1:29 PM on December 22, 2012 [1 favorite]


Yeah, I liked Juno. I think I may like Bobcat's movie too, if I ever get around to watching it.
posted by evilDoug at 1:36 PM on December 22, 2012


If you're going to write a review of a director's cut, it's my opinon you should WATCH THE THING FIRST. But I'm old fashioned that way.

If you're going to slag on a review, it's my opinion you should READ THE REVIEW FIRST. But I'm old fashioned that way. The reviewer did watch the entire movie, and says so, and says they focused on the opening scene because it is emblematic of the problems with the rest of the cut.
posted by kafziel at 1:38 PM on December 22, 2012


I also liked Juno. A lot, even. I don't really understand Zwigoff's "retarded version of Ghost World" criticism. The two films are nothing alike. For one thing, Juno has a story. I love Ghost World, but there's not much there other than attitude.

Art School Confidential was one of two or three films I have ever considered walking out on. It's just not good. To call it mediocre would be over-praising.
posted by Sys Rq at 1:45 PM on December 22, 2012


For one thing, Juno has a story. I love Ghost World, but there's not much there other than attitude.

The story is: two girls who have been best friends since forever are growing up and growing apart. It's a fairly basic plot.
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 2:40 PM on December 22, 2012


The first half of Art School Confidential is the greatest movie about going to college for art ever. It is perfect. The second half of the movie feels like a tumor that the first half grew.

Juno is so offensive on a musical level, plus the characters aren't people so much as moment-spouting machines. I would say I really hate Diablo Cody, but Young Adult kicked ass.

Anyway, it's a little sad to hear Bad Santa was such a problem for Zwigoff because I love it to death. We watch it every year. The opening is one of my top five movie openings of all time. It also contains the terminal performance of John Ritter, which wouldn't be terribly sad if it wasn't practically promethean. He is amazing in that film.

I would really like to get my hands on the director's cut. I have the "Badder Santa" and the only thing it really adds is more time in Florida before the second heist. It's not critical, but has some funny scenes excised from the original cut.
posted by lumpenprole at 2:58 PM on December 22, 2012 [2 favorites]


« Older ?uestlove's Top 50 Hip Hop Songs Of All Time...  |  Almost Everything You’ve Heard... Newer »


This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments