He’s not happy at all! The first trailer for Road House is set to arrive later today. Yesterday the studio dropped the first poster for the remake of the well-loved 1987 Swayze classic. Here it is:
The original is so beloved because it is a slice of pure Americana, totally unpretentious, goofy as heck but plays itself totally straight. It is highly quotable, while also wearing its heart on its sleeve. It represents much of what was so good about the 1980s.
So many feared the worst when it was announced it was being remade. The team-up of Jake Gyllenhaal and director Doug Liman gave some hope. Then came the news that the movie had tested off the charts in test screenings. The highest scores of Liman’s career.
So it was somewhat surprising that Road House wasn’t going to get a theatrical release. It will open at the SXSW film festival, and then go directly to streaming on March 21st via Prime. Reports said there was tension between the team behind the movie and the studio over this decision, with Liman and Gyllenhaal traveling to Amazon overlord Jeff Bezos’ yacht to show him the finished movie.
Yesterday afternoon, Deadline published a big editorial featuring Liman and he announced he is boycotting his own movie’s premiere over this. That’s not all. He came out swinging at Amazon:
“We made Road House a ‘smash hit’ – Amazon’s words not mine, by the way. Road House tested higher than my biggest box office hit, Mr. and Mrs Smith. It tested higher than Bourne Identity, which spawned four sequels. I’m told the press response has been Amazon’s best since they bought MGM.
Road House has a strong tie-in to the UFC, which has a rabid and loyal fan base that has spawned over 1.5 billion social media impressions for the film, and marketing hasn’t even started yet.”
Then he dropped a massive bomb on Amazon:
“I’m not opposed to streaming movies. I made one of Amazon’s first original movies for streaming, and during the pandemic sold a streaming movie to Warner Bros. I’m currently making Instigators for Apple. But I am opposed to Amazon gutting MGM and its theatrical business.
Amazon asked me and the film community to trust them and their public statements about supporting cinemas, and then they turned around and are using Road House to sell plumbing fixtures.”
Either way, we get the feeling Outposters may well be lining up to watch this, beer in hand, when Road House premieres on Amazon Prime Video on Thursday March 21st.
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