Space Ramblings

A 100 Million Dollar Joke

You know how something starts out as a joke and then everyone gets more and more serious about it, which almost makes it funnier, but doesn’t really, because it’s not really a joke anymore. It’s like you set out to build the world’s largest ceramic twinkie and then the actual task of doing it, getting corporate sponsorship, drawing up plans and spending two years doing it takes away the joke, until you’re left with the world’s largest twinkie and it’s a new kind of joke now, not the old kind that was fun because it remixed the serious with the goofy, but the new kind that is on everyone involved with the project.

In completely unrelated news, here’s the latest trailer for Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter

Abraham Lincoln Vampire Hunter Estimated budget for this is 70 million. That’s not a lot for a movie that looks like this, but that’s more than any Civil War movie made in decades. I’m not counting Cold Mountain. Gods and Generals cost way less than this and made much less money. There’s something infuriating about that, because whatever its merits are, Gods and Generals was serious. And what’s this exactly? A joke that everyone involved has to take seriously because it cost over a 100 million, with promotional costs, to tell this joke.

In 2012, we are actually releasing a grimly serious and expensive movie depicting Lincoln as a vampire hunter. This is something that is actually happening. And it began as a joke. It ends as a different kind of joke. And the joke is on all of us.

It used to be the Japanese that would make something like this, because they didn’t really care. They could mash up bits and pieces of American history and culture with dragons, vampires and spaceships and release it. Otaku would eat it up, but no one else would. Now we’re doing it to ourselves. Sort of.

A company owned by an Australian tycoon financed a movie with a Russian director, sets by a French production designer, with special effects from New Zealand, to bring all this to international audiences. All this is a 100 million dollar joke based on a book that even Entertainment Weekly called, “A labored send-up that refracts the life story of one of the most important, famous, and minutely analyzed figures in all of American history through a cockeyed and ultimately foolish lens”.

Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter

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