David Poland vs. TOH

by Anne Thompson
October 20, 2010 7:46 AM
10 Comments
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Thompson on Hollywood
Monday, The Hot Blog's David Poland took off after me without realizing at first that the story that so enraged him was written by ex-Variety box-office analyst Anthony D'Alessandro. And both stories he pops off about, my rather sober analysis of what went wrong with Tamara Drewe and D'Alessandro's take on the poor performance of Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps, are among TOH's most popular, sparking healthy debate.

Poland tends to jump on pieces that stray into his perceived area of expertise (particularly box office), and he often adopts a pro-studio POV, as though he's arguing in their defense. His rants tend toward personal invective ("Anne isn’t going to make it by playing Queen Bitch") or say what? assertions (Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps's b.o. "has nothing to do with the future of studio dramas"). He doesn't see why anyone would compare one studio drama with others that clearly drew audiences away from Wall Street 2: The Town and The Social Network.

And if a studio casts Shia LaBeouf in a movie in the hopes that younger audiences will turn up, and they don't: that isn't worth noting? Everyone knows that adults are tougher critics than younger audiences. Duh. So you argue with that conventional wisdom by bringing up stray counter-example Eat Pray Love, a picture starring Julia Roberts, who drew starving women's audiences despite bad reviews?

If Poland wants to go after a story for not being thought-through and analytical enough, he might try take a little more time to craft a precise and well-written response.

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10 Comments

  • indyFAN | October 23, 2010 1:10 AMReply

    David has an ugly history of problems with women more successful than he is (ie, Anne, Nikke). I personally don't believe anyone takes him seriously at this point.

  • Koto | October 21, 2010 10:56 AMReply

    I don’t understand English perfectly.So I'm not sure what his(David Poland) point is,but he seems as if he tried to sound rude and unintelligent.Btw,people say "You are what you say".So maybe he is "Queen Bitch" himself...

  • Ryan | October 21, 2010 3:27 AMReply

    I only read you and the Playlist, because I only like to read the pros.
    It's incredibly offensive that David Poland called you Queen Bitch, Anne. Don't even listen to him.

    The guy is sans class.

  • Keil Shults | October 21, 2010 2:32 AMReply

    Maybe he's a Bowie fan.

  • Sergio | October 21, 2010 1:38 AMReply

    I had read earlier Poland's angry pieces regarding you and wondered what in the hell did you do to get him so upset? I was hoping you would respond in your usual classy way. Look at it this way he considers you a worthy adversary. Perhaps he's jealous that you're so repected in the busniess while he's considered...David Poland. Enough said.

  • mary | October 20, 2010 9:02 AMReply

    I think that both Anne and Davie made some good potins on the box office runs of "Tamara Drewe" and "Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps". When someone in David's blog tried to trash Anne, David and Sasha Stone also tried to defend Anne.

    On the other hand, there is nothing wrong for chasing popularity. But based on what I know, Anne definitely isn't a person who would disrespect other people and journalism ethics just for chasing popularity.

    By the way, the not-so-successful results of "Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps" and "Never Let Me Go" may not be good news for Carey Mulligan. Maybe Carey Mulligan's future career direction should be similar to Ellen Page and Mia Wasikowska : focus on chasing critical acclaim rather than box office glory.

  • Crow T Robot | October 20, 2010 8:47 AMReply

    You should take his pigtail pulling as a compliment, Anne. Dave (like all egomaniacs) never EVER crusades after anyone he perceives to be less important than himself.

    Also, any journalist who puts ANY spin on weekend box office numbers is automatically taking a pro-studio stance... a stance that can be best stated as "Everything we do we do for financial reasons."

    It is completely unethical. And that's why no real journalists do it. And why only thug bloggers looking to "make their bones" can get away with it.

  • Keil Shults | October 20, 2010 8:22 AMReply

    I still don't understand why Poland cares what you do on your own blog. If it's working for you, then he comes off as jealous and bitter. If it turns off your readers, won't they be more likely to visit his blog instead of your own? Either way, I can't see the point in bashing your methods.

  • David Poland | October 20, 2010 8:04 AMReply

    The "Queen Bitch" thing was, simply, about you running two days in a row of - one written by you and the other by someone else, oddly under your header - "5 Things That Went Wrong With..." And as I wrote, you are not where you are because you play Queen Bitch. It is your generally even-handed, generous posture that so many embrace.

    What pro-studio position did I take? I'm not supporting Wall Street 2 or Tamara Drewe particularly. I do think that you telling Stephen Frears what he should have done in casting is absurd and not remotely sober. And I panned Wall Street 2 weeks ago, fully aware that it would be a fluke if it hit.

    Your position, in another entry, is that lists get eyeballs. Wny not just admit that you are chasing popularity instead of trying to claim high ground on those two crap pieces... one too myopic, one too premature and arrogant?

    And no, Anne, Wall Street 2 will not cause a single drama to be greenlit or not greenlit. It will not hurt Shia. It is another soft film for Carey Mulligan, getting in the way of her commercial ascendance. But no... since there are so few situations like Wall Street 2. I guess if Redford still wants to do a remake of The Candidate, it won't help him.

  • Stephen Lourdes | July 23, 2013 4:47 PM

    @David. Nearly three years old, still here. See? This is the great thing and a curse that the internet is a bit forever if you say something to embarrass yourself. I was reading up on Wall Street and found this entry. As a fan of great writing and yes, I include Ms Thompson and the whole TOH! team, I think the best writers look at what they're doing in front of them, not worry about others or looking over the shoulder which your MCN Blog attack does in this context. It really serves no purpose for readers.

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