I don’t think it needs to be said that directing is a tough gig, but I’ll say it anyway: Directing is a tough gig.
It’s an all-enveloping, physically-taxing, mentally-exhausting sucker punch to your body. You’re literally being pulled in every which direction for months (perhaps even years) straight. Yet despite this, it’s not incredibly uncommon for big hollywood directors to do a film a year with almost no break in-between. That was the plan for director David Yates who, following the completion of WB’s “Tarzan,” was set to jump onto the “Harry Potter” spinoff film, “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them.”
As I mentioned before, this isn’t exactly uncommon, but according to Yahoo! Movies, “Tarzan” has already had some test screenings, and they did not go well.
An inside source said the following:
“The schedule of the J.K. Rowling movie got in the way of an appropriate postproduction schedule on Tarzan. Why would you ever crowd a director into starting a movie before his other movie is properly finished?"
The implication here is that Yates’ being yanked off the project after its completion is to blame for the film’s lackluster reception from test audiences. It is a bit worrisome that a risky $180 million picture like “Tarzan” would be getting pushed to the side so quickly. According to the article, Yates was too preoccupied with “Fantastic Beasts” to give “Tarzan” meaningful editing feedback. However, some inside sources at WB disagree with the previous statement, claiming that the film is still undergoing changes.
They also stated that Spielberg and Eastwood have, on occasion, gone into pre-production on their movies before their previous one is completely finished, so this move from Yates isn’t exactly unprecedented (though Yahoo! goes on to acknowledge that few films that are abandoned by their director in post have the budget of Tarzan).
It’s also worth noting that this was not an unforeseen problem from the studio:
“While it's somewhat unusual, we are extremely comfortable with the production timelines, which were set in advance, and have total confidence in the skill of David Yates — who is a four-time ‘Harry Potter’ director — to deliver both of these pictures.”
Following the failure of “Pan” (which will lose the studio around $150 million) Warner Bros. really does need to focus and make sure their movies are as good as they can be. While one could argue that it’s good that Yates is giving “Fantastic Beasts” the attention it deserves, what does this mean for “Tarzan,” or for Warner Bros. as a whole? Are they not giving their talent enough time to make their projects as good as they can be?
With the film currently facing a release date of July 1, 2016, is this the kind of work that can be carried about by someone that isn’t the director, or will they need to push the movie back to a later date?
What do you guys think? Is the new “Tarzan” movie in trouble? What should WB do with it? Let us know your thoughts down below!