Les Mis set to be highest grossing movie musical of all time.

best12bars
Broadway Legend
joined:6/29/05
It should pass "Enchanted" over this weekend in U.S. grosses.

It's currently at $121.6 million (US) and an additional $115 million internationally.

That's a grand total of $236.7 million and going strong!
"Jaws is the Citizen Kane of movies."
blocked: logan2, Diamonds3
Dave19
Broadway Star
joined:12/23/11
Producers should change their focus.

This is only about the first few weeks and the initial box office numbers, but we all know that box office success doesn't equal quality and never has.

Sometimes good movies do well, other times they tank. Sometimes horrible movies do well, other times they tank, as Best12bars beautifully said.

Reasonable box office successes can grow out to be bestsellers on dvd and even financial flops (Sleeping Beauty) can still be hugely popular on dvd more than 60 years later because of it's pristine quality and craftmanship.

When the initial response is over (let's go see the gladiator, should be fun, oh, he doesn't sing so well and then post on twitter; "went to Les Mis with girlfriend, Gladiator could not sing, I want my money back", etc), it really comes down to the true quality. Are people floored by the ability of the actor playing Javert of combining acting with singing enough to have the desire to watch it again? Or recommend it to other people? When I speak for myself, I loved the film, but have to admit they did somethings right, but other things terribly wrong, which makes me not want to see it again immediately. Casting Russel Crowe as Javert might ruin the glorious future of this film. Certain choices of Hugh Jackman too (holding wrong notes for too long and sounds strained and forced in the weirdest moments felt fake, which kicked me out of the story at many points). I will buy the dvd but I will definitely skip certain parts (Bring him home, Stars, etc).

I really believe that people who love action hero movies would also appreciate movie musicals much more with the right people in it. My brother for example (a big action hero fan) did not appreciate Russel Crowe (and Hugh Jackman at certain points) at all, but he (surprisingly) loved Aaron Tveit and he knows nothing about musicals. He even downloaded the songs "Do you hear the people sing" and "red and black" the next day, because those songs/scenes were sung/acted in a way that really got to him. Producers need to think of this effect. This is what lives on in the world for many years to come. I can name a handful of actors right now which could have caused the same effect with the role of Javert. This it what people want and this goes from mouth to mouth.

My point is, they need to be very careful about this and realize that they are cutting themselves in the fingers. All these little things are what keeps a film going for years.
The initial box office numbers say nothing. They could be reasonably high for the wrong reasons.









Updated On: 1/17/13 at 07:22 PM
jimmycurry01
Broadway Legend
joined:5/28/05
Producers do not care if it is for the right reasons or the wrong reasons that the box office numbers are high. Producers just want to see the money coming in. It is all business to them, period.

Reissuing DVDs throughout the years does add to the movie's grosses, but only with great marketing. Sleeping Beauty is my favorite Disney movie, and it is actually a great example to illustrate this point. Sleeping Beauty does not make money every time it is rereleased simply because of its outstanding quality or craftsmanship, which it does have. The marketing of the Disney Princess brand combined the the fantastic Disney Vault marketing ploy is what truly lies behind the film making big bucks every time it gets released.

We are all theatre people, and like the actors and directors of these movies, we wish making a movie was all about making great art, but it is not. Making a movie is about making a product that can quickly be capitalized on. It is about making as much money back as quickly as can be done. Can a movie be 100% artistically fulfilling, tank at the box office and still make $70 million on home video over the course of 60 years? Sure, but no movie company wants to wait that long for it to happen, if it happens at all.

On a side note, I do think people are seeing Les Miz for the right reasons. I do think a number of people are returning to see it at least a second time, and I believe that the many artistic awards it is being given have been earned because of its quality and craftsmanship. I am certain that it will enjoy a very nice initial home video release and that with the proper marketing it will sell very well for its 50th anniversary in the future.
Dave19
Broadway Star
joined:12/23/11
Is still think that quality brings in more money than any other thing in the world.

Every little tweet as described above will prevent 10 of his friends from seeing the film.

And about the wrong reasons, it's naive of the producers to not care about that. They can lure in people with all kinds of (generation specific) names, but if they can not deliver a great performance or live up to te expectations, it will work against the film. And against bringing in money.

Ps. Sleeping Beauty is my favorite Disney film too. The quality is just outstanding. Today's generation has no idea who Bill Shirley is (voice of prince Philip and movie star at the time) but they can tell that he is a magnificent singer and actor. Now, more than 60 years later, people are still in awe of the performance and buy the dvd. Besides the marketing of course, but that only holds up if the performances actually live up to it.






Updated On: 1/18/13 at 07:35 AM
best12bars
Broadway Legend
joined:6/29/05
Sleeping Beauty had a huge star attached to it. His name was Walt Disney. It was anything but a "no name" film.

That's all the star power and box office pull it needed back then.

You forget that "stars" aren't always in front of the camera. There were a handful of star directors and producers that could generate big box office on their names alone. They had some flops, too, (as do most movie stars), but names like Hitchock, Disney, Frank Capra, John Ford ... they did the job as well as any actor does.

"Jaws is the Citizen Kane of movies."
blocked: logan2, Diamonds3
Updated On: 1/18/13 at 07:42 AM
Jay Lerner-Z
Broadway Legend
joined:4/4/11
I'm not sure I know what Dave19 is talking about, but I doubt that the producers give a hoot about what people sixty years from now will think. They want their moolah now, and I imagine they're quite satisfied with their haul so far.

AKA McDreamy
Updated On: 1/18/13 at 07:59 AM
best12bars
Broadway Legend
joined:6/29/05
Very few (if any) producers and studios make films for posterity. Up until the last few decades, they weren't even preserving them. They were meant to be current "events," make a ton of money, and that's it. Some of them were buried in the ground in great vaults in the Midwest. Others were chopped up (original negatives) for television airings, to allow for commercials. Others were destroyed in warehouse fires, or just rotted away on forgotten shelves.

Only (really) since the '90s has there been any widespread movement to preserve and honor film as an enduring art form.

Again, I admire Dave19's passion, but he isn't in tune with the history or realities of the film industry.
"Jaws is the Citizen Kane of movies."
blocked: logan2, Diamonds3
metropolis10111
Leading Actor
joined:7/28/06
The initial box office weekend is such a huge factor for studios because that is the weekend that they get the highest percentage of the receipts. While these are not the actual numbers the idea goes like this:

Opening weekend the studio gets 80% of the money made over the weekend, the remaining 20% is what the theater showing the movie gets

The next weekend that number goes to 70%- 30%
The third weekend it might be more like 60%-40%

The film is still making money, but it's not AS much for the studio which is why allot of ad campaigns fall off after the first 2-3 weeks. It just dons't make fanatical sense for a studio to keep promoting it.


As for DVD sales adding to the bottom line. With so many people just downloading content illegally these days that profit number is a joke. Even on here you'll get people saying "I can't afforded to by (insert album name here) till payday can some one help me out" It's not a total dead market but people wait till things are discounted heavily which again makes the profits of the DVD very small.
Updated On: 1/18/13 at 09:13 AM
Dave19
Broadway Star
joined:12/23/11
I guess you guys are right, and they do not care.

That's difficult for me to understand, especially when you realize that truly great performances will live on forever. Nowadays we do know that films are being preserved, so it's kind of important.

I would like to understand where this comes from. Why do filmmakers nowadays settle for such performances? Why are they so scared to go for quality instead of names? Why do they know for sure that quality will bring in no money? Why do they have so little trust in the audiences and themselves? Is it the filmmakers fault or the audience's fault that they settle for this instead of quality? Why do I feel that such a performance would not even be taken seriously 50 years ago? Will the new generation grow up with this low standard of quality and cast people that sing like Crowe in this kind of roles too in 50 years? I know that Tom Hooper did not really understand this artform before seing the show, but I had hoped Cameron and his team would fight for this a bit more. Or were they too intimidated by the names too?

I know this, all those millions of reactions and tweets about Crowe did not do the box office good. Even if someone like Anne Hathaway gave a great performance, if the next scene has such a quality drop it does not sustain the quality of the film. Therefore so many people come home with mixed feelings.

There is a big difference between "getting away with it" and "true quality". Getting away with it is easy nowadays, but let's raise the bar a bit shall we?




metropolis10111
Leading Actor
joined:7/28/06
Because there is very little money left in forever only now. Look how long it look for those Disney films to actually make money and there are some that still haven't.
Dave19
Broadway Star
joined:12/23/11
"...which is why allot of ad campaigns fall off after the first 2-3 weeks. It just dons't make fanatical sense for a studio to keep promoting it."

So after those 2-3 weeks it's all about word of mouth. The film will lead it's own life and the names do not count anymore. What is good and what is bad about the film? Do the good things win it from the bad things? Failed scenes/vocals/casting will stay like that forever. What am I to tell my kids in 30 years? "Yes, but he was a name at the time"?. What if they ask me "were the no better people for the role at all?". What should I say? "Yes, but the producers did not want to see them"...... "why"?

Which brings me to the next point; How on earth can you cast a role like that, without seeing each and every possible candidate in an elaborate audition first? It is very dumb to see 1 audition of 1 person and then say "I could not imagine this role being played by anyone else"........
Of course you can't if you refuse to see who else is out there! This tunnel vision, especially in casting makes me really mad.



Updated On: 1/18/13 at 02:25 PM
CarlosAlberto
Broadway Legend
joined:6/29/10
I know this, all those millions of reactions and tweets about Crowe did not do the box office good. Even if someone like Anne Hathaway gave a great performance, if the next scene has such a quality drop it does not sustain the quality of the film. Therefore so many people come home with mixed feelings.

I'm going to have to agree with this. This is exactly how I felt seeing the film, and I went to see it twice to see if my feelings would change. I would get so caught up in a really exceptional performance from either Samantha Barks or Eddie Redmayne and then Crowe or Seyfried would open their mouths and I would just think, "Ugh...this could have been soooo much better" and I don't mean they had to belt it out or sing it as a broadway performer..just better, period.



DAME
Broadway Legend
joined:4/15/04
It is all about money. All of it. And no one is pretending it isn't. Look... in many places R. Crowe is a far bigger star than everyone else in the film put together. And there is a good chance they probably couldn't get the film financed without his name attached to it.

As far as how the film will be viewed years from now.. who knows. It is all changing rapidly. Media keeps changing. the way we have access to films keep changing. We are more immediate with the way we get to see things and I think that will all affect how we come to judge things in the future. Right now this film has legs and is a huge success. To deny that or try to poo poo it is to reveal your own agenda.

HUSSY POWER! ------ HUSSY POWER!
Updated On: 1/18/13 at 02:44 PM
best12bars
Broadway Legend
joined:6/29/05
Keep in mind, when you're talking about money and box office receipts, you're talking about facts and figures.

When you're talking about quality, you're talking about ideas and opinions. Not everyone agrees with you (or me or anyone else). Not everybody else shares your values of what is good and bad.

I'm sure most (probably not all) producers care about "quality," which is an opinion. They definitely care if the movie does well. That is a direct reflection of audience satisfaction, even if it's not a reflection of quality in some people's eyes. For others, audience satisfaction equals quality, and they're not interested in anything else said.
"Jaws is the Citizen Kane of movies."
blocked: logan2, Diamonds3
best12bars
Broadway Legend
joined:6/29/05
I agree with DAME in that what will be perceived at "good" 50 years from now, who knows?

There are a lot of great films (or at least great when I first saw them) that don't hold up well at all today. There are a lot of so-so films from the past that actually play much better today.

Nobody can predict that.
"Jaws is the Citizen Kane of movies."
blocked: logan2, Diamonds3
songanddanceman2
Broadway Legend
joined:8/31/06
'Is still think that quality brings in more money than any other thing in the world.'

Tell that to MGM, Showgirls is one of their highest selling DVDs ever

Namo i love u but we get it already....you don't like Madonna
Jay Lerner-Z
Broadway Legend
joined:4/4/11
At least it wasn't like the Phantom movie, where the cast weren't stars or good singers.
AKA McDreamy
theaternut
Broadway Star
joined:8/4/03
Jay; This is a Oscar nominated, Golden Globe Winner, box office hit. Phantom doesn't even begin to compare in any way.
metropolis10111
Leading Actor
joined:7/28/06
Evita was a Golden Globe wining oscar nominated movie as well....

Updated On: 1/18/13 at 07:44 PM
Jay Lerner-Z
Broadway Legend
joined:4/4/11
Well they're both movies based on extremely successful West End/Broadway shows, and both produced by Cameron Mackintosh...so they compare in some ways. That was kinda my point, anyway...at least it's not Phantom.

I loved the Les Mis movie, by the way, and don't necessarily agree with the naysayers.

AKA McDreamy
Updated On: 1/18/13 at 07:55 PM
theaternut
Broadway Star
joined:8/4/03
@Jay. Got it. You are right.
StageManager2
Broadway Legend
joined:10/21/05
At least it wasn't like the Phantom movie, where the cast weren't stars or good singers.

Les Miz actors couldn't sing, either, save for one or two exceptions. They massacred the score. It was painful to get through the movie.
Salve, Regina, Mater misericordiae
Vita, dulcedo, et spes nostra
Salve, Salve Regina
Ad te clamamus exsules filii Eva
Ad te suspiramus, gementes et flentes
O clemens O pia
Iris Chacon
Broadway Legend
joined:9/9/04
I loved it. Except for Crowe I am very happy they did not cast legit singers. That would have been pretty but boring. They obviously made the right choice since it is resonating and being loved by so many people that normally would not tolerate this kind of thing.
Kiss it baby. Kiss it now!
theaternut
Broadway Star
joined:8/4/03
"I know this, all those millions of reactions and tweets about Crowe did not do the box office good. "

I disagree with this. It might have even helped. Curiosity killed the cat.
ggersten
Broadway Legend
joined:5/11/06
>>I would like to understand where this comes from. Why do filmmakers nowadays settle for such performances? Why are they so scared to go for quality instead of names? Why do they know for sure that quality will bring in no money? Why do they have so little trust in the audiences and themselves? Is it the filmmakers fault or the audience's fault that they settle for this instead of quality? Why do I feel that such a performance would not even be taken seriously 50 years ago?<<

Well, such performances in musicals have been around for decades - even more than 50 years ago. You apparently never saw the film version of Guys and Dolls with Marlon Brandon "singing" - or the film version of Paint Your Wagon with Clint Eastwood AND Lee Marvin "singing" - and of course Lucy in "Mame". Even people who should have sounded at least okay - Rosalind Russell in Gypsy - haven't sounded so good. Even when they cast non-singing stars like Peter O'Toole in Man of La Mancha who were dubbed, the dubbing voice sounded awful. Was Twiggy really the best person to be in "The Boyfriend"?

ggersten
Broadway Legend
joined:5/11/06
double post. sorry.



Updated On: 1/18/13 at 11:51 PM

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