I Love Talking About Pop Culture and Other Useless Information.
Is the Action Cartoon Dead?
Cartoon Network debuted the new Thundercats Roar trailer and the verdict is in... a lot of people think it trash. It's a lot of people in their 30s and 40s. You know, the ones that grew up with the original Thundercats and not the core demo that they're trying to catch with this series, but people, nonetheless. There was a Thundercats reboot that came out in 2011 and it was really good. It had good action and a very complex, dark storyline, and it got canceled after 26 episodes. So Cartoon Network is gonna take another crack at the Thundercats by making it a comedy and giving it an animation style that looks like a five-year-old boy drew it.
Weekend Box Office
War for the Planet of the Apes takes the number one spot at the box office this weekend with a domestic gross of $56 million dollars and a worldwide gross of $102 million dollars, making it the most successful Apes movie overseas. Spider-Man: Homecoming drops down to number two with a weekend gross of $45 million dollars with the movie's daily box office falling since its July 7th release and an overall 61% drop since July 7th. Despicable Me 3 is still holding strong at number three with a weekend gross of $18 million dollars. Baby Driver is still holding its own at the box office at a strong number four with an $8 million dollar weekend gross with only a 32% drop since its June 28 release which is really good for an Edgar Wright film. The Judd Apatow produced comedy, The Big Sick, moves up three spots to number five with a weekend gross of $7 million dollars, becoming the highest grossing Sundance movie this year and the second highest grossing Amazon Studios release so far.
1997: The Year The Superhero Died.
Superhero movies have been enjoying a measure of success as of late, with the genre making a total of $16 trillion dollars at the box office. Since the late 1930s, superheroes have captivated the minds and hearts of young people all around the world with comic book characters like Superman and Batman swooping in to save the day. The first superhero movie was released in 1941 as a 12-part serial based on the Fawcett Comics hero Captain Marvel. But the first full-length theatrical adaptation of a superhero wouldn't come until 1966 with Batman: The Movie which is based on the popular 1960's tv version of the DC character. Marvel got into the superhero movie business as well, but on a smaller scale with television movie adaptations of Spider-Man in 1977 and Doctor Strange in 1978. It would be that same year that we would get our first serious superhero film with Superman: The Movie. Superman is considered the first superhero so it would only make sense that he would be the one to put superhero movies on the map.
Wonder Woman Was A Success, But What's Next For DC?
Wonder Woman opened this past weekend with a weekend gross of $103 Million and a worldwide gross of $228 Million. The first female-lead superhero movie to accomplish this feat. It is also the first DCEU movie to receive positive reviews. Let's face it, the start of the DCEU has had its critics and Wonder Woman is the soft reboot it needed to survive because if this movie failed the DCEU would be dead in the water. Now that Wonder Woman was a box office and critical success, DC and Warner Bros. need to keep the momentum going with Justice League coming out in November. But does DC or Warner Bros. have a clear cut plan going forward?
What Happened To Live Action Kids Movies?
Diary Of A Wimpy Kid: The Long Haul was released on May 19th debuting at number six with a first weekend gross of $7 Million and a domestic gross of $15 Million, which means it will probably not make back its budget of $22 Million. I'm not sure maybe one more weekend will be the charm for the Wimpy Kid. But with the failure of this movie and Monster Trucks(another live action kids film) the question has to be asked: "What Happened To Live Action Kids Movies?" The live action kid film has been on a steady decline since the start of the 21st century with some exceptions like the Harry Potter Series, but those movies also got a steady influx of fans from the geek culture to help make that franchise a success. Other live action kids movies haven't been so lucky and the number of theatrical releases for live action kids movies has gone down as studios choose to focus more on animation due to the fact that those movies make way more money than live action kids movies. Which in my opinion makes me sad, as a kid who grew up in the late 80's and early 90's with classic live action kids films such as The Goonies, Home Alone, Hook, The Mighty Ducks and The Sandlot, movies that kids of my era still hold in high regard along with animated classics like The Lion King, Toy Story, and The Secret of NIMH, so where and why did live action kids movies fall off the tracks? The first reason was the low quality of kids movies that were being released in the late 90's "I mean did anyone really ask for a Mr. Magoo live action movie or a Home Alone movie without Macaulay Culkin? The second reason was DVD and The Disney Channel, straight to video is nothing new, neither are made for TV movies but near the late 90's into the 2000's live action kid films thrived on these platforms, which is a smart strategy for studios.Why release five live action kids movies in the theater when you can release ten on DVD and The Disney Channel and now Netflix and make double the money. The rise of superhero movies is also a reason why live action kids movie don't do well at the box office, now that kids can see their favorite superheroes in live action save the world in a PG-13 and sometimes R-rated setting why would they want to see some kid do it in a G-rated setting? The final reason live action kids films are on the decline is the rise of CGI animated movies. Since Toy Story was a worldwide phenomenon in 1995 every studio has been fighting to duplicate that success. In 1998 Steven Spielberg's animation company DreamWorks got involved in the CGI game with their first CGI animated film Antz, which grossed $171 Million and since the success of Toy Story, Pixar has been the standard for CGI animation with films like Monster's Inc, Finding Nemo and Inside Out. DreamWorks is a close second with films like Shrek, Kung-Fu Panda, and The Croods and with other animation studios like Illumination and Laika getting in the game, it doesn't look like animation is dying at the box office anytime soon. But what does this mean for live action kids movies? It means that the genre will have to reinvent itself. One thing studios have to do is stop insulting kids intelligence with movies like Diary of a Wimpy Kid and give kids movies with story and depth that's the reason kids like the Marvel movies and all these CGI movies because they are not insulting their intelligence and it's the reason I liked movies like The Goonies and Home Alone. So if the live action kids movie doesn't change it will die.