Tom Rothman has long been a somewhat controversial figure in film fandom, and his latest comments probably won’t win him any new admirers.
The Hollywood Reporter asked the Sony Pictures chairman how he felt about the amount of vitriol being spewed at the upcoming ‘Ghostbusters’ reboot - and his response was perhaps surprisingly enthusiastic.
“It’s the greatest thing that ever happened. Are you kidding me? We’re in the national debate, thank you. Can we please get some more haters to say stupid things?”
Rothman went on, “you can feel the momentum of the movie. We had a thing last week where Bill Murray, who had just seen the movie, came out and said how great it was. You just could feel the cultural excitement.”
Nor is ‘Ghostbusters’ the only fan-beloved property Rothman has a stake in at present, as Sony are also collaborating with Marvel on next year’s ‘Spider-Man: Homecoming.’
The Sony boss described the studio’s relationship with Marvel as “fantastic,” and shed a little light on how their collaboration works: “Sony has the ultimate authority. But we have deferred the creative lead to Marvel, because they know what they’re doing.”
Many Marvel fans may be surprised and/or relieved to hear Rothman say as much, given that he earned a bad reputation as chairman at 20th Century Fox in the early days of the ‘X-Men’ series.
The troubles the X-movies ran into midway - specifically on ‘X-Men 3: The Last Stand’ and ‘X-Men Origins: Wolverine’ - have been widely blamed on Rothman’s interference, and his reported dislike of the superhero genre. It has been suggested his tenure at Fox is largely to blame for that studio’s notoriously tense relationship with Marvel.
Still, though the aforementioned X-movies have been widely panned, they did make plenty of money - so perhaps Rothman knows what he’s talking about when he describes all the ‘Ghostbusters’ hate as a positive. Indeed, the reboot is projected to have a $40-50 million opening weekend in the US.
We’ll see if the fan rage translates into ticket sales when ‘Ghostbusters’ hits UK shores on 11 July.
Picture Credit: Sony, The Hollywood Reporter