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Title: WOLVERINE anecdote


Lenny Moore - April 10, 2009 07:55 PM (GMT)
I was returning to work after having lunch outside the building this afternoon and happened to peer into the resident recreation room before heading to my office. What film do you suppose was playing on the HD / surround sound set - up? Why, none other than the much discussed on the internet, bootleg copy of WOLVERINE, with unfinished special effects and all. What was somewhat striking was that when I verbalized my surprise, I was met by several responses of what, you haven't seen this yet? I mean, where have I been?

Quality of the film aside, I doubt Fox is going to make as much money as it would like (not that I care about Fox), if this thing has already been seen as extensively as this example suggests.

Doran Gaston - April 10, 2009 08:57 PM (GMT)
Mark Evanier had a few words on this subject that I generally agree with:

http://www.newsfromme.com/archives/2009_04_05.html#016914

It's not something that I've done very often, but I can recall seeing bootleg copies of at least one or two (completed) movies before their U.S. theatrical release, and from what I recall, this wasn't a very satisfying experience (the last time I watched a bootleg copy like this, I think it was on a VHS tape, so this is something I haven't done in a while). In each case, I later paid to see the movie in a theater and found that to be a much more enjoyable experience.

Now, my attitude is completely different. If there's a widely available bootleg copy like this of a movie that I care about at all, I'm avoiding it like the plague.

John W McKelvey - April 11, 2009 11:58 PM (GMT)
QUOTE
He might also have been faulted for reviewing an unfinished, unreleased work...which is unethical even if you come by a copy honestly.

Is this that bad, considering he made it quite clear that it was an unfinished film he was reviewing? It was clearly going around a lot... it seems odd that acknowledging/ talking about it should be forbidden. It's like he's the scapegoat for the actual guy who leaked it (who, of course, wasn't affected by the firing).

William D'Annucci - May 2, 2009 03:22 AM (GMT)
Harry Knowles: WOLVERINE isn't an embarrassingly awful film... It just feels limp, empty and completely lacking in satisfaction.

Yee-ouch. Considering how easy to please Knowles is, a review like that should give even Logan a bone bruise.

Doran Gaston - May 2, 2009 06:57 PM (GMT)
QUOTE (William D'Annucci @ May 1 2009, 09:22 PM)
Harry Knowles: WOLVERINE isn't an embarrassingly awful film... It just feels limp, empty and completely lacking in satisfaction.

Yee-ouch.  Considering how easy to please Knowles is, a review like that should give even Logan a bone bruise.

Yeah. I typically give anything that Harry doesn't like a wide berth. I don't take him seriously as a film critic at all (well, I don't want to speak too negatively about him since I've actually been around him in person once or twice and he seemed like a nice enough guy), but I think he is useful as a sort of "early warning system" when it comes to really bad-to-mediocre movies.

Domenick Fraumeni - May 2, 2009 08:01 PM (GMT)
It's not that bad at all. Lots of action, and Hugh Jackman and Liev Schrieber are great. Schrieber nailed Victor Creed/Sabertooth really well and I liked the scenes where he leaps forward like a tiger. Problem is, after a really solid opening, it fails to give weight to anything that's happening. Characters are introduced, but very underdeveloped. And the climax is goofy, to tell the truth. Pure mad scientist stuff.


It really looks like for the first half, director Gavin Hod is getting the movie he wants, but then the studio and other producers enter and the obligatory introduction of future X-Men we never get to really know comes in, with one also wondering just how old everyone is, as some X-men are shown here already fairly adult, making them pretty old by the time of X-MEN. And we also get yet another setup for what looks to be a really bad idea. And the de-aging on Patrick Stewart is terrible. I really don't know why they need to de-age him, as he hasn't changed that much in the past 25 years.

Basically, this is a popcorn film, with material that demanded more weight to it. By all means worth seeing, but I'm hoping, though not holding my breath, for maybe an expanded DVD cut down the road to help fill things in better.

Vincent Pereira - May 2, 2009 08:18 PM (GMT)
QUOTE (John W McKelvey @ Apr 11 2009, 05:58 PM)
Is this that bad, considering he made it quite clear that it was an unfinished film he was reviewing?  It was clearly going around a lot... it seems odd that acknowledging/ talking about it should be forbidden.  It's like he's the scapegoat for the actual guy who leaked it (who, of course, wasn't affected by the firing).

He didn't merely "acknowledge/talk about it"- he wrote a review for it for a major news website. I think there's a pretty big difference between that and merely "talking about" it.

Vincent

John W McKelvey - May 5, 2009 11:30 PM (GMT)
QUOTE
He didn't merely "acknowledge/talk about it"- he wrote a review for it for a major news website. I think there's a pretty big difference between that and merely "talking about" it.


Still, he made it quite clear that it was the unfinished bootleg he was reviewing. Heck, half of his review was the story of how he came across it and his hopes that the finished work could be improved. It's not like he was misleading of his readers. He watched the same bootleg we all saw and gave his opinions on it. I'm still not sure why he should be forbidden from reviewing it? Tim Lucas and heaps of other highly reputable writers have written extensively about workprints before - or are you saying they should all have been fired?

Anthony Thorne - May 6, 2009 12:19 AM (GMT)
The workprints Tim Lucas and similar writers cover are, from memory, usually of films (frequently low budget cult films, to boot) already released. The writer from Fox was covering an expensive studio film that was yet to hit theatres. I understand why some would see a difference.

Also, the Fox writer (I can't be bothered looking up his name at this point) included a blurb in his piece about how great downloading was, and how it was much easier to view things illegally online than to go through the hassle of chugging through the wind and rain to visit an actual theatre. This was probably a dealbreaker. If the reputable writers you mention ever made a point of suggesting we download illegal copies of discs from Blue Underground and Synapse rather than buying the actual DVD's, I'd have a problem with that too.

I haven't seen the WOLVERINE bootleg, and I'm not that interested in seeing the finished film either (not much of a fan of the franchise) but recent AICN comments, if they can be believed, suggest the 'workprint with unfinished effects' is damn close to the final release version, if not identical. (Reviews of the final film complaining of the crap nature of a few of the F/X might back that up). David Poland wrote an interesting piece attacking AICN for printing that last bit of info, saying it would only benefit the people who had already watched the film illegally. I think that's all I have to say on this.

John W McKelvey - May 6, 2009 03:47 AM (GMT)
I read the review back when it was new, so maybe I'm misrembering; but I don't think he actually recommended downloading (in fact, he didn't even recommend viewing the movie at all), he just talked about how he found it and the current situation re: movie downloads. And (with very rare exception, like the recent Blade Runner set) those workprints still weren't released to the public either, and just as technically illegal to acquire. The only ethical or legal difference seems to be that Wolverine is new?

I don't know... I guess I just don't see why someone should be forbidden from writing about something illegal. I mean, if I snuck into the president's office and found a signed confession where his entire economic policy was really just a scam set up to profit a business he secretly owned, that wouldn't be a legit news story because I stole the sheet of paper?

If the reviewer hadn't made it clear that it was an unfinished bootleg he had seen, and just reviewed the flm as if he had some access to the proper, finished film, that would be unethical. Or if he had somehow leaked the film himself, of course. But as it is, I don't know. Maybe I'm totally missing some obvious logical point, but it seems to me he didn't do anything wrong, and people are shooting the messenger.

Anyway, it's something interesting to think about... probably moreso than the film itself. ;)

Brandon Crawford Smith - May 6, 2009 04:17 AM (GMT)
I think the mistake the reviewer Roger Friedman made was that he s*&% where he eats. He worked for Fox and the film was produced by another division of the company...

William D'Annucci - May 6, 2009 04:45 AM (GMT)
QUOTE (John W McKelvey @ May 5 2009, 10:47 PM)
Maybe I'm totally missing some obvious logical point, but it seems to me he didn't do anything wrong

The point is that this is a business.

Say you're running a big department store. And in the Sunday newspaper circular, in promoting a new hot product, the ad writer describes how he took the item from the store without paying for it and (in vague terms) talked of how anyone else in the public could do the same thing. Now, of course, I'd be wondering how the hell this could have happened and where was the editor during all this.

But another thing would happen. I don't know about you, John. But, personally, I'd fire the guy pronto.

It's a business.

William S. Wilson - December 20, 2011 03:22 PM (GMT)
Update (in Robert Stack voice)!
QUOTE
A New York man who admitted illegally uploading to the Internet a pirated, nearly final “workprint” copy of the movie “X-Men Origins: Wolverine” was sentenced this afternoon to one year in federal prison.

Gilberto Sanchez, 49, who resides in The Bronx and who used screen names that were variations on “skillz,” was sentenced by United States District Judge Margaret M. Morrow, who described the offense as “extremely serious.” In addition to the prison term, Judge Morrow imposed one year of supervised release and numerous computer restrictions.

“The federal prison sentence handed down in this case sends a strong message of deterrence to would-be Internet pirates,” said United States Attorney André Birotte Jr. “The Justice Department will pursue and prosecute persons who seek to steal the intellectual property of this nation.”

Sanchez “uploaded the workprint more than one month before theatrical release, he has a prior conviction for a similar offense, he had been regularly uploading pirated movies for four or five years, and did not appear remorseful after charges were brought,” prosecutors wrote in a sentencing memorandum.

Sanchez pleaded guilty in March to one count of uploading a copyrighted work being prepared for commercial distribution. When he pleaded guilty, Sanchez admitted that he uploaded a “workprint” copy of the copyrighted “X-Men Origins: Wolverine” to www.Megaupload.com in March 2009, about one month before the motion picture was released in theaters. After uploading the Wolverine movie, Sanchez publicized the upload by posting links on two publicly available websites, so that anyone who clicked on the links would have access to the movie and be able to download it. Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation owns the copyright to the movie.

“Although Fox was able to get defendant’s Wolverine Workprint removed from his Megaupload account within approximately one day, by then, the damage was done and the film had proliferated like wildfire throughout the Internet, resulting in up to millions of infringements,” prosecutors said in court documents.

This case is the result of an investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

Shawn Garrett - December 21, 2011 12:23 AM (GMT)
QUOTE
Update (in Robert Stack voice)!


(ta-bingy bingy bingy... ta bingy bingy bingy...) (sorry, that's what the update music loop always sounded like to me)

Chester Berne - December 21, 2011 02:35 AM (GMT)
Buh-Bye!

Mike Thomas - December 21, 2011 04:37 PM (GMT)
How much jail time are the studios going to get?

Studios are pirates too




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