So the word got out at the end of this week that director Gavin Hood is Vancouver working on re-shoots for his upcoming superhero film X-Men Origins: Wolverine. The report, from Collider, stated that reshoots are “extensive” and that they were more than “a few days of pick-ups.”
On the face of it, this doesn’t look good at all. It is well known that the production of this film has been fairly troubled. Hood and the Fox brass clashed repeatedly, with Hood even being temporarily removed from the project before being reinstated.
It is understandable that Fox is concerned about a film that they hope will be a blockbuster for them come its release this coming May. Out of the 16 films that the studio released, only Marley And Me was met with any box office success. The studio needs a hit in a big way, and they are hoping that Wolverine will be that big hit. But the don’t need Wolverine to be a big hit in just the short term. Also riding on the film’s success is the future of any sequels or spin-off films featuring the X-Men comics characters.
And I think that Fox is in trouble and they know it.
I’ve already expressed some steep reservations about an early draft of the film’s screenplay, so I already have some low expectations for the finished product. The recently released trailer looks a bit better, but not enough to allay any fears. And now this. Reportedly, the level of interference got so bad that a set was reportedly repainted on orders of an exec who wanted it a different color. That level of studio interference never bodes well.
Now the Collider story states that Fox is considering having some journalists on-set to cover the reshoots. It seems that Fox is in damage control mode, trying to show the X-Men movie franchise fanbase that all is happy and well with their movie. While it is always a good PR move to try and control the spin on a project, that control is probably more effective when when that spin is invisible. But invisible is the last word I’d use to describe their actions here. Desperate is more like it.