So, I'm reading a bit of frank, I mean, mark kermode's new book. The opening is fairly disastrous rambling about how we enjoyed cinema more when there was a risk of burning to death, frustrating laptops, and his hatred of Brando; there's a lot of petty score settling. So I skipped a chapter to his more coherent writings about he lack of possibility of a film failing, if it had a big enough budget (and a star and explosions).
And we all think, aha mark, doesn't John Carter prove your theory wrong? That's the biggest disaster in film history? And he of course can reply, no, he put that caveat about not having a big name draw attached, so the theory holds.
Except, it doesn't have to. Despite the huge news stories that bounced around the mainstream news for days after its opening week, carter in fact made its money back. It says so on the wiki; currently at cost $250M, took $280M. Not much of a profit, but definitely not a loss.
Where was the retraction? When did the media come crawling back to tell us that story they'd sold us was a lie based on insufficient data? A prejudice? That they'd ignored international box offices - apparently, it was a big hit in the former communist CIS, making you wonder about those theories about the 50s 'red menace' - which is exactly the sort of argument dr K makes for a big film never losing money. Rather than being dismissed by Carter, he's been entirely vindicated.
And while the success or failure of a film is trivial, I'm sick of the media over-hyping controversy and then ignoring the more sensible follow up. Exactly like the mmr-autism swindle, and every other case of sensationalistic reporting ignoring the facts for a narrative.