Wonder Woman 1984 director Patty Jenkins opens up about her frustrations with the streaming boom and calling streaming movies for looking fake. Jenkins kicked off her career in strong fashion in 2003 with the Oscar and Golden Globe-winning biographical crime drama Monster before exploring the world of television with episodes of Arrested Development, Entourage and The Killing. She would later return to the film world in 2017 for the DC Extended Universe film Wonder Woman, which would once again score her rave reviews and was a box office smash, putting her further on the map.
Jenkins would return to the DCEU world with Wonder Woman 1984, which was primed to hit theaters in summer 2020 before the COVID-19 pandemic forced Warner Bros. to delay its release. The film would ultimately become the studio’s first to receive a same-day theatrical and HBO Max release, which would lead to it falling short of its break-even point with only $166 million grossed worldwide and a mixed reception from critics, though it would become the most-watched straight-to-streaming title of the year. Jenkins, however, has been one of the most vocal critics of this decision, calling it “heartbreaking” and attributing its financial failure to this hybrid format, but her criticisms aren’t stopping there.
As part of this year’s CinemaCon (via LA Times), Jenkins participated in a panel to discuss the future of cinema, in particular the recent boom of streaming platforms supported by the global pandemic. In reflecting on original films produced by streaming platforms, Jenkins opined that the titles all didn’t appear real and supported her opinion with a lack of discussion about them reaching her. See what Jenkins said below:
“Aren’t you seeing it? All of the films that streaming services are putting out, I’m sorry, they look like fake movies to me. I don’t hear about them, I don’t read about them. It’s not working as a model for establishing legendary greatness.”
As streaming platforms have sought to break out into the mainstream with audiences, studios have financed films that certainly have proven to be critical and viewership duds and drawn criticisms from the public for their ridiculous existences. That being said, Jenkins opinions that streaming films “look like fake movies” is sure to ruffle feathers in both audiences and fellow filmmakers as the streaming home has allotted many a true creative freedom and home for their stories that may not come from a big studio. Netflix has frequently been celebrated by filmmakers and actors alike for their willingness to bring unique projects to life however they see fit and it has led to some of the biggest hits creatively and financially for the platform, some of which include David Fincher’s Mank, Vince Gilligan’s El Camino: A Breaking Bad Movie and Zack Snyder’s burgeoning Army of the Dead franchise.
To her credit, Patty Jenkins’ criticisms are not entirely unfounded as many a film to come from various streaming platforms become laughing stocks on social media as users question whether they’re real or joke projects. Given her incredibly busy schedule, it could be argued that Jenkins not hearing of the bigger streaming films or seeing discussions for them could simply come from her being more out of the loop than she believes. Though with Jenkins’ general distaste for the world of streaming originals, it seems just as likely she may avoid those conversations altogether despite the value many will argue they hold.
Source: LA Times