Click to Skip Ad
Closing in...
David Fincher Says He Shouldn't Have Directed 'The Game,' Dislikes Superhero Movies & Talks "Crazy" '20,000 Leagues' David Fincher Says He Shouldn't Have Directed 'The Game,' Dislikes Superhero Movies & Talks "Crazy" '20,000 Leagues' Matt Damon & Paul Greengrass Are Returning To The 'Bourne' Series Matt Damon & Paul Greengrass Are Returning To The 'Bourne' Series First Look: Angelina Jolie And Brad Pitt In 'By The Sea' First Look: Angelina Jolie And Brad Pitt In 'By The Sea' The Best, Worst And Most Disappointing Films Of The 2014 Toronto International Film Festival The Best, Worst And Most Disappointing Films Of The 2014 Toronto International Film Festival David Fincher Says Differences Over Casting And Disney's Corporate Culture Stalled '20,000 Leagues Under The Sea' David Fincher Says Differences Over Casting And Disney's Corporate Culture Stalled '20,000 Leagues Under The Sea' Review: 'No Good Deed' Starring Idris Elba and Taraji P. Henson Review: 'No Good Deed' Starring Idris Elba and Taraji P. Henson Watch: Shailene Woodley Gets NSFW In 2 Clips From 'White Bird In A Blizzard' Plus New Pics Watch: Shailene Woodley Gets NSFW In 2 Clips From 'White Bird In A Blizzard' Plus New Pics TIFF Review: 'Cake' Starring Jennifer Aniston, Anna Kendrick, Sam Worthington & More TIFF Review: 'Cake' Starring Jennifer Aniston, Anna Kendrick, Sam Worthington & More Watch: First Trailer For Rom-Com 'Playing It Cool' With Chris Evans, Michelle Monaghan, Aubrey Plaza & More Watch: First Trailer For Rom-Com 'Playing It Cool' With Chris Evans, Michelle Monaghan, Aubrey Plaza & More Watch: First Trailer For ‘Serena’ Starring Jennifer Lawrence & Bradley Cooper Watch: First Trailer For ‘Serena’ Starring Jennifer Lawrence & Bradley Cooper First Look: Matthew McConaughey & Ken Watanabe In Gus Van Sant’s ‘Sea Of Trees’ First Look: Matthew McConaughey & Ken Watanabe In Gus Van Sant’s ‘Sea Of Trees’ Tom Hardy Says He'll Never Do Another Romantic Comedy Again Thanks To 'This Means War' Tom Hardy Says He'll Never Do Another Romantic Comedy Again Thanks To 'This Means War' David Fincher Apparently Thinks 'Dragon Tattoo' Sequel 'The Girl Who Played With Fire' Could Get Made David Fincher Apparently Thinks 'Dragon Tattoo' Sequel 'The Girl Who Played With Fire' Could Get Made Revisiting On The Rise: Where Are Our 2012 Picks Now? Revisiting On The Rise: Where Are Our 2012 Picks Now? Fall TV Preview: Our 22 Most Anticipated Shows For The Rest Of 2014 Fall TV Preview: Our 22 Most Anticipated Shows For The Rest Of 2014 TIFF Review: 'Still Alice' Starring Julianne Moore, Kristen Stewart, Alec Baldwin & Kate Bosworth TIFF Review: 'Still Alice' Starring Julianne Moore, Kristen Stewart, Alec Baldwin & Kate Bosworth The Best Documentaries Of 2014 So Far The Best Documentaries Of 2014 So Far The 20 Best TV Shows Of The 2013/2014 Season The 20 Best TV Shows Of The 2013/2014 Season The Best Films Of 2014 So Far... The Best Films Of 2014 So Far... The 10 Best & Worst Movie Sex Scenes The 10 Best & Worst Movie Sex Scenes

MGM Takes A Loss On 'Dragon Tattoo': Does This Mean David Fincher Is Out?

The Playlist By Kevin Jagernauth | The Playlist March 22, 2012 at 6:36PM

Well, it's not quite "John Carter," but today MGM revealed in a call with investors (via Deadline) that though "The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo" took in $231 million worldwide (not bad for a hard-R crime drama that runs 2 1/2 hours long) it still didn't meet the numbers honchos thought they would get out of a fanbase that snapped up 18 million copies of the book. “...it is below our expectations and we booked a modest loss,” exec Gary Barber said, adding that they ”were hoping we’d do 10% more than we did.” But what does this mean about the proposed sequels?
21
David Fincher Dragon Tattoo Sequels

Well, it's not quite "John Carter," but today MGM revealed in a call with investors (via Deadline) that though "The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo" took in $231 million worldwide (not bad for a hard-R crime drama that runs 2 1/2 hours long) it still didn't meet the numbers honchos thought they would get out of a fanbase that snapped up 30 million copies of the book worldwide. “It is below our expectations and we booked a modest loss,” exec Gary Barber said, adding that they ”were hoping we’d do 10% more than we did.” But what does this mean about the proposed sequels?

Back in January, it was announced that Sony (who has a co-financing and distribution deal with MGM) would be moving ahead with "The Girl Who Played With Fire" and "The Girl Who Kicked The Hornet's Nest." However, with the numbers now in and finalized, Barber cautions that sequels will only happen “assuming we can achieve better economics.” So what does this mean?

Well, we presume that studio executives are now looking long and hard at whether or not they want to keep director David Fincher on board. Now, he does have an option on 'Fire' -- said to be his favorite book of the series -- and his pay-or-play deal stipulates that he gets $5 million whether they move ahead with him or not. It's a pretty penny to pay, but studio heads might be ready to cut the cord. By most accounts, the production of 'Dragon Tattoo' featured a lot of head-butting between the director and the studio, starting with the casting of Rooney Mara, a decision that Fincher had to fight for. There were also concerns about the running time, which at one point was closer to three hours, something that Sony was not happy about (a movie that long usually means a sharp drop in how many times during the day it can screen at the multiplex). If a movie is a big success, that kind of friction is easily forgiven, but when a picture underperforms, it isn't so easily forgotten.

We're guessing a couple things will happen here: Firstly, MGM will probably watch the numbers of the recently released BluRay/DVD to see how it does (oh yeah, that DVD disc is pretty cool -- see below). Next, you can expect the budget on 'Fire' to be lower than the reported $90 million (which doesn't include the extensive P&A campaign, and we wonder if that number includes the late-stage reshoots on the movie) and as for Fincher? We think MGM may try to renegotiate their deal, and perhaps keep him on as an executive producer (keep the fanboys happy), give him a taste of the box office on the sequels and avoid paying out $5 million for him to walk.

But again, who knows. With Fincher apparently battling Netflix over "House Of Cards," perhaps the 'Dragon Tattoo' franchise is at least a fight he's been through already and is familiar with, and he'll be willing to bend a bit to return. But it'll be interesting to see how it plays out.

Dragon Tattoo DVD Disc skip crop

This article is related to: The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo, The Girl Who Played With Fire, MGM, David Fincher


The Playlist

The obsessives' guide to contemporary cinema via film discussion, news, reviews, features, nostalgia, movie music, soundtracks, DVDs and more.


E-Mail Updates