News

Brad Pitt's 'War Z' Undergoes Reshoots

Late Add June 19-NY Post reviewer Kyle Smith gives the movie a low-but-not-diastrous two-star rating...link below
By Robert Marich
   June 16, 2013—Hollywood has a pretty good track record of avoiding box office catastrophes with big-budget movies—meaning production budgets of $120 mil. or more--and Paramount is determined that its World War Z doesn’t get added to that short list.
   A Hollywood Reporter article recounts how Paramount Pictures engaged in a late revamp of its Brad Pitt apocalyptic yarn World War Z after deciding its final one third needed retooling. The PG-13 rated zombie epic will premiere June 21—six months later than originally envisioned (Dec. 21, 2012). The article says World War Z is now on track to gross $40-50 mil. its opening weekend, which is decent for a sci-fi film that cost over $200 mil..
   “Normally a studio would go to great lengths to avoid taking on the cost and bad publicity that can follow when a $200 million-budgeted film's opening is pushed,” says the article by Kim Masters in Hollywood Reporter. “In this case, Paramount did not have much choice. The film lacked a third act, and the studio hired (ABC Television’s) Lost's Damon Lindelof and Drew Goddard to create a new ending.”
   Shooting of additional scenes for the film’s ending took place in London in October 2012, which are rumored to have cost $20 mil., according to a Vanity Fair article by Laura Holson. Paramount also insisted on a PG-13 rating, while filmmakers wanted action that risked an R rating (World War Z is officially rated PG-13 now).
   An analyst at investment firm Cowen & Co. predicts that World War Z will be a flop, which is a concern for the stock price of Paramount-parent Viacom that is publicly traded. The prediction is based partly on the industry factor that the peak summer season is clogged with a high number of big-budget extravaganzas.
   While delays and reshoots are always a caution flag, the Hollywood Reporter story notes that late retooling is becoming more frequent. Box office hits The Great Gatsby, The Hobbit and G. I. Joe: Retaliation shined, despite experiencing delayed releases.
   Paramount’s last minute overhaul aimed to prevent World War Z from being added to the short list of recent big budget films that bombed. Flops include Disney’s John Carter ($73 mil. in domestic box office on $250 million production cost), Universal’s Battleship ($65 mil. in domestic BO on $209 mil. cost) and Warner Bros.’ Jack and the Giant Slayer ($65 mil. in domestic BO on $195 in cost). It’s a short list given all the successes with most big budget extravaganzas.
For full text, click links below; this website’s text is searchable via search box at upper right of homepage:
http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/brad-pitt-world-war-z-565740
http://www.vanityfair.com/hollywood/2013/06/brad-pitt-world-war-z-drama
http://www.digitalspy.com/movies/news/a404558/brad-pitt-discusses-world-war-z-reshoots-its-a-monster-of-a-film.html
http://www.nypost.com/p/entertainment/movies/world_war_zombie_flick_falls_flat_dR3sSbdQylwJiRUr8LhrMI
http://www.marketingmovies.net/chapters/chapter-10-major-studios/