Old Time Radio at OTRCat!

Monday, April 02, 2012

Dear Disney....

Two words: "of Mars".

I hear you will not recoup the ~$250 million pricetag for your "John Carter" movie.

All from saving a little advertising ink. "Of Mars" would not have cost that much more on posters and print ads, or in video and film trailers. "John Carter of Mars". Now that's  a title that grabs you. And, you know, some people may have recognised the book title, and gone to see the movie that they had waited so long to see. But no, Disney title minimalists had to strip it down to "John Carter". If this sounds a familiar rant, well, it is.

Now, your Aardvark is not so dim that he would expect the mere title to be the whole reason for the movie's poor showing. Rather, it is the bellwether of the entire Disney culture of Making a Classic Title OURS. "Rapunzel" becomes "Tangled". Cool. Kitschy. Post-modern. Probably ironic.

Howzabout you do summat really cool...Take a classic fairy tale like Andersen's The Snow Queen and animate that ! Give it a catchy title like, "The Snow Queen". or better yet, "FROZEN".



Michael W said...

What I've been listening for is news of people actually going out and looking for the book "John Carter Of Mars" and ending up being more confused than before (the book actually being two novellas: "John Carter and the Giant Of Mars" and "Skeleton Men Of Jupiter").

Right now I'm holding my breath, fearful that other literary franchises I've enjoyed will be targeted for similar treatment by Disney (and similar companies). I haven't yet read any of Suzanne Collins' "Hunger Game" books, but I understand the first film was a much more honest adaptation of the source novel than what Burroughs enjoyed at Disney's hands (imagining the Disney version of the books, entitled SNACK).

I've recently traced the sound that's been keeping me awake over to Glendale, California, where Walt Disney's ashes have been doing the Sufi Whirl. He once turned his imaginative people loose on filmmaking, and then on amusement parks. But he died, and to these tired eyes it looks more and more as if his vision died with him. His notion of EPCOT became just another Six Flags, and the films from the studio have had to work harder and harder, when once they led the pack.

Perhaps Walt should've tried to spread his philosophy over the Marketing and Promotion Department.

The Aardvark said...

Richard C. Hoagland was on "Coast to Coast AM" last night, and he is convinced that through some trick of hyper-dimensional physics, Burroughs was giving his readers a glimpse into Mars' actual past. He had some intriguing facts to back up his hypothesis.

Poor Walt...his remains must be close to lightspeed by now.

Michael W said...

I'm sorry I missed that.

Can you imagine what we'd be getting if the classic Disney films were being made today? SLEEPING BEAUTY would be SNOOZIN', BAMBI would be DEER RUN, etc. etc.

Jay Agan said...

Why doesn't Disney Studios just rename all their recent films with a single, simple, honest "one title fits all" title?

My suggestion would be:


Sorry. What these hacks do to the stuff I love makes my blood boil.

Michael W said...

Well, I ain't exactly as cool as a cucumber over it either. Then again, I never enjoyed pandering to the lowest common denominator either.

The Aardvark said...

Hey Michael...d'ja get 'em?

Jay said...

Hey! GREAT NEWS! John Carter is already on pre-order at Amazon! They don't know when it will be available though.

Get your pre-orders in while you can! Who knows how long you'll have to wait otherwise to own this "classic".

Me, I'm all a'twitter over this un'. NOT!