Faced with an either-or situation, I chose to see Peter Berg‘s The Kingdom last Monday night and not Len Wiseman‘s Live Free or Die Hard, which I was invited to see at Westwod’s Avco by Fox publicity. This was my only Die Hard shot, I was told, so I decided to shine the Avco and pay to see it at a commercial screening on Wednesday. (I’ll probably be going to today’s 4:15 pm show at the Grove.)
What follows may sound insubstantial or overly inside-baseball or anecdotal to some, but it’s a weird snapshot that gives you a taste of what advance-screening policies and politics can be like.
I saw David Poland at last Monday night’s screening of The Kingdom at the Arclight, and yet he somehow saw LFODH in time to write a review last night. How did this happen with Monday’s Avco screening ostensibly being the only time Fox had shown it to non-junket press? A freind told me this morning that Fox had a LFODH screening last Friday that Poland (who had openly complained about the Monday evening LFODH conflict situation on the Hot Blog, just as I did last Friday) was either invited to or heard about and wangled himself into.
Fox publicity read my belly-aching item and therefore knew that this conflict was giving me pause, but they chose not to alert me to the Friday screening. And yet Poland somehow got into it, and today he took a huge dump on the movie.
It would be nice if we lived in a fairer world on a more level-type playing field, but we don’t and that’s that. I can roll with it. Missing LFODH wasn’t the end of the world, although paying to see it later this afternoon will be undoubtedly painful.