Earlier in the week, when pondering the nature of photo shoots, Kristen Stewart was quoted as saying:“The photos are so … I feel like I’m looking at someone being raped. A lot of the time I can’t handle it.”
This is, at the very least, an insensitive statement. But let’s consider the context here. Kristen Stewart is 20, and she’s been in the public eye since she was twelve. Think of the mistakes you made at 20. Now think of doing a couple hundred hours of press a year. How many strange things would you say? If you were constantly asked the same question, how long would it take you to get tired and start throwing out some nonsense?
Yes, it’s true that K-Stew doesn’t love being in the public eye, but it’s pretty strange that our culture thinks lesser of her for that. What if Ms. Stewart just wants to act, to create? Why should knowing how to give a bland interview have anything to do with that process? Detractors will point out that by accepting the role of Bella Swan she gave up any hope of a non-celebrity life. But she made that call when she couldn’t even legally vote! Stewart is an honest person, and as such she can’t fake “wanting” to participate in interviews and photo shoots. But instead of commending her for that fairly logical stance we trot her out to face the discomfort again and again. The issue isn’t with Stewart. It’s with our culture’s constant craving for celebrity controversy.
On Tuesday Guillermo del Toro took his leave from The Hobbit. The reaction was instant, and predictable. “Oh nooooooo, The Hobbit is doooooooomed!” But c’mon. This has always been Peter Jackon’s project, and Peter Jackson generally delivers. He did okay overseeing District 9, right? And he’s not going to let the new director ruin his Lord of the Rings legacy.
Plus, and not for nothing, Del Toro’s last film was Hellboy 2: The Golden Army. Did you catch that one? It wasn’t very good. At all. Pan’s Labyrinth is a classic, but it wasn’t ever a given that Del Toro’s visual style would translate to The Hobbit. So worry not fanboys and girls, we’re going to make it through this just fine. And when The Hobbit and Hobbit Deux hit theaters you’re going to find yourself enjoying them. Too many smart people are involved for one departing Del Toro to derail the process.
I think we’re long past the point where we’d expect a legitimate story out of Sex and the City 3. Which leaves only one option. Stunt casting. Throw Tilda Swinton into the mix as the new Miranda, only do it Iron Man 2 style, with no mention of it in the script. Then you could get the “Which Miranda do you prefer?” debate going. For Sex and the City 4 you give the role of Charlotte to Jennifer Aniston. Sex and the City 5: The Empire Strikes Back will feature Tyra Banks in the role of Samantha. What have you got to lose? It’s about the spectacle, not the story. Which frees the casting agent up to go bonkers. I’m only partly kidding here. Let’s do this!
Tom Selleck recently went on the record saying he’d been contacted about a project called, gulp, Three Men and a Bride. Tom Selleck! Steve Guttenberg! Ted Danson! It burns, it burns!
The fact of the matter is that Three Men and a Baby was a cheesy idea when it came out 23 years ago. It’s not going to come off as less cheesy now. Culture has evolved. We no longer ponder why three men can’t get it together to get a paternity test. Three poppas is one too many. Now if you’re willing to meet me halfway on a My Two Dads movie, I might be willing to invest.
On that note, I hope you all have a great weekend, devoid of bad ideas!
Laremy is the lead critic and senior producer for a website named Film.com. He’s also available on Twitter.