That Unique Grindhouse Theatrical Experience Just Got Rarer
by Alex Billington
April 9, 2007
Are you one of those people that love to brag to your friends about seeing Fight Club or The Matrix in theaters before it blew up into the cult (and even mainstream) success once it hit DVD? Well, if you haven't already, then you need to go see Grindhouse right away! It's going to become an even rarer experience in its 3-hour-and-10-minute double-feature exposition, as news just came in early today that The Weinstein Company may split each film up individually, just as they're going to do in Europe. But they're going to do it quickly, maybe even this weekend, right here in America.
The whole "Grindhouse failure debacle" (an article coming soon on that) has sparked a flurry of discussion on every major movie discussion website on the internet. It only made a shallow $12 million over Easter opening weekend. Over at Nikki Finke's Deadline Hollywood blog, she caught up with the big man Harvey Weinstein and got him to spill the beans about their reaction after such a poor opening weekend.
"First of all, I'm incredibly disappointed. We tried to do something new and obviously we didn't do it that well," Harvey told me today. "It's just a question of how is it going to hang in there. But we could split the movies in a couple of weeks. Make Tarantino's a full-length film, and Rodriguez's too. We'll be adding those 'two missing reels' that's talked about in the movie."
Wow, I have to just sit back and exclaim "wow!" How did we get to this? One of the best reviewed films of 2007 so far, plus one of the most widely publicized and hyped films (at least on the internet) with two solid weeks of emphasis, and it turns out such a poor weekend? That whole argument is another story, this one is all about what we're looking at for the future, and the destruction of the experience that made Grindhouse so unique - the double feature!
Nikki says this should've been done all along, the rest of us, those who embrace movies as they should be, believe that this is a bad idea - it will ruin the experience. Unfortunately, Harvey is right, it will probably make them more money in the end. So far, with a combined cost including promotion and advertising of upwards of $100 million to make this entire feature, The Weinstein Company is sure to be concerned about losing money with such a bad opening weekend, but Harvey is a bit more confident.
"We're smart businessmen. Thank God, we protected ourselves economically. I've spent the last year diversifying the company. We're making profits everywhere but the movie business. But on DVD sales, we're doing well," he claims.
Will this split actually happen and how soon is all up in the air. But for now, the least we can do here at FS.net, is stress to get your ass to the theaters to be one of those people who will grin at their friends and exclaim "I saw Grindhouse in its full double feature first as well as individually." I know, I know, not everyone can handle a zombie movie, and not everyone can handle a revenge, slasher, car chase flick, but this movie cannot go overlooked. We've already had our share of those this year: Children of Men, Perfume, Little Children, and Zodiac, and we can't keep tossing more good movies down the drain!