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It is around this time every year that movie-goers find themselves oddly divided by a line in the sand. With Oscar talk in full swing, some of the more snobbish film fans feel the need to distinguish a difference between what they deem to be great cinema, and simply box office fodder. Well, it turns out that Guardians of the Galaxy director James Gunn isn't a big fan of the attitude, and has decided to say something about it.
The filmmaker took to his personal Facebook page this afternoon to write about the aforementioned attitude, specifically citing two moments from this past weekend's award shows. While he noted that he had no problem with Jack Black's joke about superhero movies in the opening number of the Oscars, he did take particular issue with a comment made by Nightcrawler writer/director Dan Gilroy at the Independent Spirit Awards, and expressed his feelings about elitist views of comic book movies. You can read his message in its entirety below:
It's pretty hard to argue with his point. Surely the amount of money involved with big blockbuster films does involve certain conversations that smaller, independent productions don't have, but that doesn't meant that the people making and working on the big movies are any less passionate about what they're doing and what they're producing than those making and working on the smaller ones. James Gunn specifically points to his Marvel Studios brethren Joss Whedon and Joe and Anthony Russo, but the same sentiment can surely be applied to other franchise filmmakers as well (like, for example, J.J. Abrams, who has been expressing his love of Star Wars for years).
To branch out to another point, I'm not necessarily sure it's fair to say that independent movies are surviving a "tsunami of superhero films" simply because of the way the distribution method for indies has improved over the last few years. It's true that comic book blockbusters have grown to become a big part of many studios' wide release plans during the course of a year, but smaller movies are still managing to set limited release records and the growth of video on demand platforms has certainly helped micro-budget features get exposure they otherwise wouldn't get at all.
Do you agree with James Gunn about this matter, or do you have a counterpoint to his argument? Hit the comments section to express your feelings on the matter!