One thing that is abundantly clear is that no one understands the business model for Hollywood. Except that the cost of movies continues to rise and the cost to go see them rises accordingly. Still, when one type of movie is a success against the grain, it seems like the rest of Hollywood rushes to capitalize on said success.
Still, that doesn’t prevent GQ’s Mark Harris from trying to write another one of those “problems with Hollywood cum why do they only produce comic book and sequel movies” type of articles. And even though the article feels like a tired retread of what’s wrong with Hollywood, Harris makes some excellent points.
Like, for instance, the problems with the current system all started with Top Gun. And the problems are a vicious cycle. Studios need to make money, but the window to make money has closed considerably, so every movie they release has to be a hit. Which is why consumers get lots and lots of sequels, prequels, reboots, and familiar franchises each and every year. Because those are the only movies that have proven to be surefire can’t miss movies.
We can complain until we’re hoarse that Hollywood abandoned us by ceasing to make the kinds of movies we want to see, but it’s just as true that we abandoned Hollywood. Studios make movies for people who go to the movies, and the fact is, we don’t go anymore—and by we, I mean the complaining class, of which, if you’ve read this far, you are absolutely a member.
In the end, the only truism of Hollywood is that it’s a business and the studios aren’t in it for the art, even if moviegoers want them to be, they are in it for the profit. The only problem is, Hollywood hasn’t figured out the magical formula to make money and it’s doubtful they ever will.