May 28th, 2010
02:12 PM ET
As evidenced by a number of recent releases - “Transformers,” anyone? - a movie doesn’t have to rely on solid critical reviews in order to turn profit at the box office. If fans want to see it, they’ll pay for the ticket, whether critics say it's garbage or not.
And, as we saw with “The Blind Side,” word of mouth is just as important these days – critics were middling on Sandra Bullock’s vehicle – which ended up winning the actress her first Oscar – but the social media buzz was strong, and so was the box office gross.
Lionsgate is hoping that they can accomplish something similar with “Killers,” starring Katherine Heigl and Ashton Kutcher as newlyweds who find out their next-door neighbors are assassins aiming to kill them. The movie opens June 4, but Lionsgate isn’t screening the movie for critics.
Typically, a movie that’s kept from the purview of film reviewers suggests that the film is probably a bomb, but Lionsgate said in a statement that they’re simply trying to capitalize on the power of Twitter, Facebook and the like.
“We want to capitalize on the revolution in social media by letting audiences and critics define this film concurrently... In today's socially connected marketplace, we all have the ability to share feedback instantly around the world,” the studio said Wednesday. “In keeping with this spirit, Lionsgate and the filmmakers want to give the opportunity to moviegoing audiences and critics alike to see ‘Killers’ simultaneously, and share their thoughts in the medium of their choosing. We felt that this sense of immediacy could be a real asset in the marketing of ‘Killers.’ ”
Interesting theory. Surely you've seen the promotions for this by now - are you planning on seeing “Killers” no matter what, or does the lack of critical reviews raise a red flag that this one may be worse than “The Ugly Truth”?
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