By David Thomson | Thompson on Hollywood August 8, 2013 at 2:29PM
So Bruce Wills has outraged Sylvester Stallone because he turned down the offer to shoot four days on "The Expendables 3" in Bulgaria for $3 million. "Uh-hh," said Bruce, in a way that has made his reputation on screen, even in "Expendables" pictures. "If it’s four days I want $4 million." The Hollywood Reporter “Insider” was quoted as saying, “I think Willis was pretty surprised he was replaced in 72 hours by Harrison Ford -- a better actor, a much nicer person and a more interesting direction for the film.”
Can we talk?
Do we have the remotest idea whether Harrison Ford is “a much nicer person” than Bruce? And do we care?
When did anyone mention the topic of “acting” with these films?
What sum did Ford take for four days on "The Expendables 3"? Was it $37.50 a day? Was it scale? Was it a beautiful set of Shaker furniture? Was it the original $3 million which, if you’ll excuse the preposterous concept, must have been a budgeted item? So, if someone didn’t get $3 million for four days, the money was going free and Sly has never seen a floating $3 million he didn’t admire.
So $4 million for four days is in a different class of absurd from $3 million for four days?
And "Expendables" 1 and 2 (it may be I and II) grossed $500 million worldwide?
Plus who can possibly imagine a direction, let alone a “more interesting direction,” in these films?
Put all these factors together and can we surmise that in the name of a spurious nicety of etiquette among these people, there has been a shot of "Expendables" promo injected into our moribund system? And we are idiots enough to go along with it?
Meanwhile, Sly is tweeting (I can think of days when the Stallion would have been mortified to think of himself tweeting instead of making Spartacus-like proclamations from the steps of City Hall in Philadelphia), “Expendables Looking Fresh and Strong.”
Fresh and Strong. I seem to recall a time when those admittedly vague words carried some meaning, like “movie” and “entertainment.”