JODIE FOSTER Says Superhero Movies are 'Like Fracking,' GUNN Responds

James Gunn & Michael Rooker
Credit: James Gunn

Jodie Foster became the latest filmmaker to voice a disfavorable opinion about the proliferation of the superhero genre in movies, saying superhero films are "like fracking - you get the best return right now but you wreck the Earth."

“Going to the movies has become like a theme park," Foster told Radio Times magazine (via Deadline). "Studios making bad content in order to appeal to the masses and shareholders is like fracking - you get the best return right now but you wreck the Earth."

“I feel like I make movies because there are things I have to say in order to figure out who I am or my place in the world, or for me to evolve as a person,” she added, though she conceded she would participate in a superhero film only if it had "really complex psychology."
 
Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 writer/director James Gunn responded to Foster's comments, offering his respect for her skill, but saying her perspective was "old-fashioned" in a series of tweets.
 
"I think Foster looks at film in an old-fashioned way where spectacle film can’t be thought-provoking. It’s often true but not always. Her belief system is pretty common and isn’t totally without basis," Gunn said. "I say not without basis because most studio franchise films are somewhat soulless - and that is a real danger to the future of movies. But there are also quite a few exceptions. "For cinema to survive I believe spectacle films need to have a vision and heart they traditionally haven’t. And some of us are doing our best to move in that direction. Creating spectacle films that are innovative, humane, and thoughtful is what excites me about this job."
 
"But, to be fair, at least from Foster’s quotes, she seems to see filmmaking as something that’s primarily about her own personal growth," he continued. "For me, that may be part of why I do this, but spending many millions of dollars on a film has to be about more than that - it’s communication - so my experience is merely one spoke on that wheel. But I respect Foster and her talent and what she’s done for films and I appreciate her different way of looking at Hollywood’s landscape."
 
Foster and Gunn's positions each found their own supporters, with Amazon Studio’s Head of Motion Pictures Development, Production, & Acquisitions Ted Hope retweeting Foster's quotes, and Deadpool co-creator Rob Liefeld chiming in to take Gunn's side.
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