because Hollywood is truly mystified that women might like Robert Downey Jr.

Look: Lots of women identify as “geeky.” Lots of women are delighted to check out the latest comic-book superhero blow-’em-up cartoon action movie purely on the basis of its being the hot new comic-book superhero blow-’em-up cartoon action movie of the weekend. I realize that many many many people in Hollywood simply cannot comprehend this, but perhaps they should wake the fuck up and actually see their audiences instead of making up shit about whom they think is seeing a film (from Variety via Thompson on Hollywood, because Variety made the dumbass decision to go behind a paywall):

According to Paramount, Iron Man 2 earned a Cinema Score of A, not only showing a 60% to 40% breakout in males to females attending, but in the under 25 to over 25 demo.

The studio is marveling at how strong the film is playing with females. “What you’ll see on Sunday is people taking their moms to see Iron Man,” says Paramount distribution executive vp Don Harris. “You can’t make a statistic like that up.” In tracking, the female figures for Iron Man 2 were so high, adds Harris, “you would expect such numbers from a film like Sex and the City 2.”

On how many levels can we say “Fuck you!” to this? More than one. First of all, people took their moms to see Iron Man 2 on Sunday? Maybe a few — I do know of one geek girl pal who did, indeed, take her mom to see the movie on Sunday. But there’s no way in hell this can account for the fact that 40 percent of attendees at Iron Man 2 this past weekend were female. This is as bad as saying that women go to see movies like Iron Man 2 only because they’re deferring to their boyfriends’ choice of movie, and would not otherwise see such a film. And unless moviegoers were surveyed to see whether the women attending were all somebody’s mom along for the ride on the way to dinner afterward, you sure as hell can make up a statistic like that. I saw Iron Man 2 for the second time on Saturday — paid for a theater ticket and everything, just like a regular moviegoer and not like a high-society film critic! — because I like these kinds of movies. And I saw lots and lots of women in the theater, too, most of which did not appear to be with their children.

Second: Does Don Harris seriously think that the audience for Sex and the City 2 over opening weekend will be 40 percent male? If so, I want some of whatever he’s smoking.

As Melissa Silverstein at Women & Hollywood sums up:

Sex and the City was successful in spite of the fact that few [men] attended, Iron Man 2 was successful because they got women to come.

Isn’t it interesting how getting women to a action movie is seen as a success but if you don’t have guys come and see a film starring women it’s because it just doesn’t appeal to men. It’s the same old story

Male movies = universal

Women’s movies = other

And then there’s this: If you’re a stupid, sexist Hollywood executive jerk who cannot appreciate that women might actually, genuinely like a movie about a dude in a metal suit kicking bad-guy ass, shouldn’t you at least be able to acknowledge that when you cast a guy in the lead who looks like this:

And like this:

And like this:

And like this:

And — Jesus Christ — like this:

that even the most shallow, most un-comic-book-obsessed gal might — just might — want to check it out.

I mean: Why can’t the sexist pigs at least be consistent?

This has been your WTF Thought for the Day.

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