Oldie but goodie, posted on 12.18.06: “Not long ago, the Bagger was at a restaurant event with a major film writer and director and ended up in a booth with him for several hours. He admired the man tremendously, [but] did not like his last project. Finally, the subject came up and the Bagger told the truth, after which there was suddenly very little to say.
“Later, Carr asked an experienced colleague if he, Carr, had been wise to speak his mind. ‘No, that was profoundly stupid,’ he was told. ‘They really don’t want to know the truth.’” — from David Carr‘s “Ten Things I Don’t Hate About You, or At Least Your Movie,” also posted on 12.18.06.
“Carr’s friend was right, but I’ll never forget my initial reaction to Michael Bay‘s Armageddon after an Academy screening in June of 1998. It gave me a headache because of the machine-gun-like cutting. As Variety‘s Todd McCarthy famously said at the time, the pace felt like that of ‘a machine gun locked in the firing position.’ This over-accelerated editing, I was later told, was a result of a deliberate Michael Bay strategy of cutting out as many frames as possible in each scene order to make the film play as fast, hard and compressed as possible — i.e., ‘frame-fucked.’
“In any event, when I saw Bruckheimer in the lobby after the screening I did the usual chickenshit industry thing — I half-lied. I told Jerry that the film ‘rocked’ or felt like ‘rocket fuel.’ (Which wasn’t a total lie — it did feel like that, sort of.) As soon as I said this, however, Bruckheimer cocked his head and gave me a ‘look’. He knew I was snowing him, and I knew that he knew. I felt like a snivelling coward, possibly due to the fact that I was being precisely that. He didn’t look at me for the rest of the evening.
“I later shared this moment with a director friend, and he told me one of his own. A very big (one could use the word ‘legendary’) producer told him that an actress in a scene he was directing was ‘fucking smiling‘ too often, ‘just like fucking Tom Cruise…always smiling, always with the teeth. Tell her to cut it out.’ The director later spoke to the actress, who had seen him speaking with the big-name producer. ‘Did he say anything about me?’ she asked. The director replied, ‘He compared you to Tom Cruise.'”
Flash-forward to 4.24.13: “There’s absolutely no question that Pain & Gain director Michael Bay said to Miami Herald critic Rene Rodriguez that ‘I apologize for Armageddon‘ — here’s the mp3 of Bay blurting out these exact words — but he meant the hyper-fast pacing of that 1998 blockbuster and not the film as a whole.
“But then other outlets ran this and sloppily made it sound as if Bay was apologizing for the entire film. And then Bay said on his website that he’d been misquoted by Rodriguez.
“In a piece called ‘I’m Proud of Armageddon,’ Bay said Rodriguez had gone ‘too far in reporting false information. He has printed the bare minimum of my statement which in effect have twisted my words and meaning. What I clearly said to the reporter is [that] I wish I had more time to edit the film, specifically the the third act. He asked me in effect what would you change if you could in your movies if you could go back. I said I wish we had a few more weeks in the edit room on Armageddon.”
“Here, again, is the line in which he says the phrase ‘I apologize for Armageddon.’ Bay can’t deny what he said, but the mainstream press — not Rodriguez — did distort his meaning by implying Bay was apologizing for making a crappy film or something. Which he certainly didn’t do.”