A Fox employee has a slight beef with his employer and no love at all for Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer, but he’s mainly differing with Drew McWeeny‘s defense of the projectionist known on AICN as “memflix” who got canned a few days aho for reviewing FF: ROTSS off a test screening:
“I’ll be honest with you — I work for a division of Fox. So this might come off as me making excuses for the company I work for but that’s not quite the case. First off, I saw the movie during a private screening on Friday and the truth be told, yes, memflix was more right than not. It’s really a movie made for 14 year-old boys who still laugh at fart jokes. That being said, in a very broad overview I just don’t understand it. If all my company wanted to do was make money from middle school boys then I must say they hit the mark. But if they had any intention of opening this up to a broader audience and give it some legs then I think they made a huge mistake.
“All that being said, as passionate as Drew’s anger may be he cannot be serious. For him to single out Fox as the big, bad corporation that wronged memflix is a joke.
“AICN and their like make a living off of people willing to either violate a written contact or violate the very nature of a theatre chain/studio understanding. And while I agree that perhaps memflix may or may not have signed anything, he cannot seriously hide behind the nature of the basic understanding, which is that whatever he and others see at a trade screening is to remain confidential.
“I am not naive. I know full well that the system is designed to be circumvented but when one circumvents that system, they have to expect that once they are identified, they will suffer the wrath of the studios. For Drew and all the talkback minions to shit on Fox is disingenuous at best. Why should a studio that has paid for a massive production do anything less that protect their product to the last possible moment? And should they not be able to do so, why shouldn’t they crap all over the theatre chain execs who allowed the leak to occur?
“Perhaps I’m jaded, but I really believe in my heart of hearts that memfilx got what he deserved. If all he wanted to do was warn others to avoid the movie then why not use a different name to avoid recognition? It seems to me that it was vanity that brought about his downfall. I think you were dead-on when you suggested the same thing.
“Please know I fell asleep about 45 minutes into Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer and woke about 20 minutes later. Yes, it sucked because I’m not 14. But that has nothing to do with the plain and simple fact that studios, Fox or anyone else, have the right to try and protect their product right up to it’s release.
“Trade and test screenings are a necessary evil. And while I harbor no ill will towards random screeners who choose to submit their opinion in violation of contracts they have signed, I think memflix stepped over that line. He was in a position of power (metaphorically speaking) that he shat upon. He knew the potential consequences and chose to take his chances. Unfortunately, he got caught. So sad, so sorry.”