These days of additional shooting before hitting the cinema allow the post-production to film new scenes and shots. This common practice in the blockbuster industry captivate more and more fans and media, while the real place of the directors in the Hollywood industry keeps on being questioned. Incapacity of studios to control the information or cynical use to occupy the media space? Honest mean to correct the shot or pathetic manoeuvre to eject a director and to smooth the production? Reshoots are a boundless source of buzz whether it is positive or negative.
Rogue One (Star Wars) is the last example. Kept a close eye on, the first spin-off of the saga was back on set in June after the official end of the filming in February. The Hollywood Reporter assured in August that the director Gareth Edwards was losing the control of his film – the studio calling Tony Gilroy (director and screenwriter nominated for the Oscars for Michael Clayton, especially known for writing the trilogy Jason Bourne and directing Legacy with Jeremy Renner) to correct the shot. Firstly to rethink the end, then to work on the story and eventually to supervise the editing.
During the promotion Gareth Edwards mastered unsurprisingly the topic and assured that there had not been any problem in post-production and that Disney supported the movie. Of course.
DISNEY, THE DEVIL OF THE HOLLYWOOD CINEMA ?
If the answer will not come before the 16th of December the Hollywood cinema history does not lack of reshooting examples. Whether they are highly covered by the media or whether they are less known, absolutely disastrous or well-thought. But what is it with the reshoots? Are they certainly extraordinary or a synonym of a future disaster?
RESHOOTS AND GO
The original pilot of Game of Thrones is a perfect example of the reshoot benefits : because HBO was ready to bury the series project David Benioff and D.B. Weiss decided to reshoot about 90% of the first pilot with a new director and five recasted roles (including Daenerys and Catelyn Stark). The appearance of George R.R. Martin was eventually cut whereas the episode was deeply transformed to introduce the universe and the protagonists. Wise decision considering the amazing success of the show.
Same story for the Pixar studio : it is used to rewrite and reshape its highly-loved films which are being created on several years. Andrew Stanton declared to Slashfilm in 2011 : “Why are our movies so good? Not because we are smarter or better but because we do it over and over again and we try new things until we make it right.”
FANTASTIC 4 : Josh Trank vs himself/Fox
“A year ago I had a fantastic version of the film. And it would have received great reviews. You will never see it. But this is the reality.” In August 2015, this message posted by Josh Trank on his Twitter account – erased after being noticed and taken back – confirms that the rumours are absolutely true : the new version of Fantastic 4 escaped so much to his director’s control that he came off and preferred atomising it.
While the first images of the movie promised a high-quality blockbuster – wrapped by the Chronicles director – the post-production took a disastrous turn. Fox demanded to reshoot urgently (e.g. Kate Mara’s wig) to reshape the film – without Josh Trank to supervise it. The rumour of the uncontrollable behaviour of the director began to appear – with his departure from the spin-off of Star Wars (who will become the film on Han Solo) in May 2015 – and to feed the debates on his skills in the matter of blockbuster. Officially it is Trank’s choice. But no one is fooled. Since the release, Fantastic 4 case is still passionating so much it is spectacular. Toby Kebell confirmed since that the movie escaped from his director’s hands : “Josh had a version you will never see. It is such a shame. Such a way darker version.“
SUICIDE SQUAD : DC vs the world (well almost)
After that Batman vs Superman fed so many debates around its qualities and its failures, reshoots had been at the centre of discussions. Shot during the summer of 2015, David Ayer’s movie was back on the set in May 2016. Suspected reason : just after the release of the dark and serious teaser in Comic Con 2015 – while the movie was still still being shot – the enthusiasm concerning the second one (lighter and more pop with Queen music as a background) encouraged the studio to correct the shot. Warner was accused to bet on humour and entertainment with first degree. The welcome reserved to the dark and serious Batman vs Superman would have comforted the producers for their decision. Beside, rumour has it that the climax needed readjustments. Several ten million of dollars were given away for these reshoots while the team attempted to minimise the damages in the press. Ayer assured that the rumour of this “reshooting for fun” was stupid. “When a studio loves your film and asks you more, you go !”
One thing is for sure : just like a lot of other blockbusters, the production of Suicide Squad was launched very quickly with a release date (and a ton of agreements and financial partners) programmed. Ayer would have written the script in six weeks with a little more time to refine the product in pre-production. Hence a marathon and an appraisal in the beginning of the post-production to notice the problems.
With an official budget of 175 millions (without the reshoots) Suicide Squad will collect more than 745 millions in the box-office : less than Batman vs Superman – which costed more and laid on two well-known heroes; and more than Ant-Man – which costed less and seemed riskier to sell.
However there is very clear impression that the film had been botched and suffers from rhythm and internal logical problems. If David Ayer assured during the promotion that there was only one version of the movie with ten minutes maximum of cut-scenes Jared Leto confirmed that he shot enough unprecedented scenes to edit a movie on the Joker.
Tell us what you think about this new cinema trend in the comments down below !