The Cove director Louie Psihoyos has told Gothamist editor John Del Signore that he doesn’t believe director Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu should walk away from his role as jury president of the Tokyo Film Festival if the allegedly green-themed festival declines to show his film, which exposes the dolphin-slaughtering Taiji fishing industry. And yet Psihoyos calls the director of the festival (a possible reference to TIFF chairman Tatsumi ‘Tom’ Yoda) “a hypocrite” in the same breath.
“Jesus, it’s a little bit daunting,” Psihoyosa says about The Cove‘s dismal box-office so far. “I mean we thought we had this crossover film. This film has action, adventure, was set up like an Ocean’s Eleven film, and at the end of the day, you know, you feel better for it. I think it’s a great date film, actually, because you want to see that hardcore guy next to you crushed, you want to see him crumble, you want to see a tear, you want to have something really interesting to talk about when you get back to his place?
“This is the film to do it. It makes the guys feel alright cause it’s got this action-adventure component, and for the women, it’s emotion-packed. It’s got everything. Except an audience!”
The Del Signore/Psihoyos q & a doesn’t specifically address one of the reasons — if not the main reason — why The Cove isn’t doing the business it could and should, and guys like Some Came Running‘s Glenn Kenny will just laugh and snort if I bring it up again. But I’ll donate my car, my motorcycle, $500 out of my savings and my 42-inch plasma to a charity of choice if it’s not true.
The Cove is dying commercially in large part because of skittish women not wanting to see Flipper harpooned to death.
In an 8.14 piece called “The Girls Won’t Watch It,” I wrote that “my head and my gut have been telling me for weeks that for every impassioned woman who will attend The Cove because she cares about the plight of dolphins and wants to feel and do something that might help the cause in some way (like my dolphin-loving friend Gini Kopecky), there are nine others who are saying to their girlfriends/dates/ boyfriends/husbands, ‘No way…can’t watch that…too much.’
“Please present any sort of observational evidence that indicates I’m wrong. I haven’t polled a cross-section of a couple of hundred women or hired a research firm to do same. I just know what women are like when it comes to blood. Sorry.
“Women call the shots when straight couples go to the movies. Guys can be harassed or cajoled into seeing a flick they wouldn’t otherwise catch on their own, but if a woman doesn’t want to see a particular film…forget it. End of discussion, wasting your breath. Which is why good-movie-seeking, green-minded guys, I suspect, aren’t pushing their girlfriends/ wives to see The Cove with them — they know it’s futile. Which is why The Cove is falling off the radar. Tell me I’m wrong.”