Not a big fan of Michael Bay but loved this email he sent to Paramount when he came to know that it was nearly a tie between box-office collections of his Transformers 2 and Ice Age 3. It was obnoxious, self-loathing but funny and commanding. Read on...
Irate Michael Bay Blasts Paramount Over Unacceptable Tie With Ice Age 3
In early May, panic-stricken director Michael Bay fired off an angry e-mail to Paramount, accusing the studio of not providing Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen with the kind of marketing campaign worthy of the most explosive, least-comprehensible summer event movie of all time. After receiving the bad news that his movie had merely tied the debuting Ice Age: Rise of the Dinosaurs in its second weekend after the release of the initial box office figures, a livid Bay once again communicated his thoughts to the Paramount brass. Movieline has exclusively obtained this latest angry missive, reprinted below in full.
Sent: 05 July 2009 10:09
To: Grey, Brad - Paramount; Weston, Brad - Paramount; Moore, Rob - Paramount; DiBonaventura, Lorenzo - Paramount; Colligan, Megan - Paramount; Vahradian, Mark - Paramount; Lesher, John - Paramount; Greenstein, Josh - Paramount; Cripps, Andrew - Paramount
Subject: New Super-Urgent NOTE FROM BAY
Hello everyone, Bay here. Again.
OK, now I KNOW I’m missing something. I’ve been locked away in the Real World suite at the Palms for the last six days with fifteen Hungarian supermodels and a gimp manservant named Bad Boy to drown the misery of not setting the all-time box-office record for Transformers five-day opening weekend. (By the way, I blame each and every one of you, even those of you no longer working at Paramount—hi Jon and Brad, call me!—for not helping me take that record from The Dark Knight, which I’m not even sure is an actual movie due to the lack of giant f’ing robots.) But now I’m really upset. My assistant just delivered me the second weekend box office numbers (he is now dead, btw. OK, not dead, but the gaping head wound’s gonna make it hard to remember how he got tied up in the back of my tangerine Hummer), and I couldn’t believe my eyes. I see that something called Ice Age 3 has SOMEHOW TIED Transformers this weekend? That is posed as a question because this result cannot possibly be reflective of reality, as it’s just NOT POSSIBLE that a movie about a f*cking learning disabled elephant that sounds like Everybody Loves Raymond could even TIE one where a sh*tload of giant robots form a SUPER-GIANT ROBOT with enormous wrecking-ball testicles. That tie thing didn’t happen, right?
Accept [sic] it did. It happened because for all your talk about making this “an EVENT second weekend,” I see the same trailers, the same billboards, the same 30-second TV spots as we had last week, but maybe with some cheesy voiceover saying “The Number One movie in America,” and that’s it. The anticipation for our second weekend has not gotten to the public. I know this because just yesterday I was threatening to have a cabana boy castrated with hot BBQ tongs for taking FOREVER with my margarita, when he asked me, “Hey, is your movie even still in the theater?” I said back to him, EXACTLY. It is exactly the ignorance of this idiot kid that we find ourselves TIED with the cold, wooly elephant thing instead of enjoying the victory you could have delivered if you’d put in a proper push for TRANSFORMERS 2: THE GREATEST SECOND WEEKEND SUMMER MOVIE EVENT OF ALL-TIME. (The caps indicate I am shouting at you with my e-mail megaphone, because you are incompetent.)
"You all say the second weekend doesn’t matter. Everything matters."
You all say the second weekend doesn’t matter. Everything matters. The first time any studio said this very thing to me was on a commercial shoot for Crystal Pepsi (with Rachel Hunter, when she was still young and hot). We all know what happened to Crystal Pepsi, which SHOULD HAVE been the highest-grossing clear soft-drink ever.
Over the years Jerry Bruckheimer mentored me on Event Second Weekends - he had a mantra - “A studio that does not make it an event second weekend, will it into an event second weekend, thinks the audience will just show up a second weekend in a row, will always be boned in the ass.” Besides my good friend Steven, Jerry has made a lot more successful movies than all of us, accept [sic] for me.
And yes, I know that after they’re done counting the receipts tomorrow, we very may pull ahead of The Ice Ages by a few dollars, and this e-mail will seem unnecessary and hot-headed. Except it’s not, because if your studio had taken care of business, I would never have had Bad Boy clear my suite of all lingering Hungarian models because I was too agitated to enjoy their company. We would all be celebrating a HUGE second weekend, with about a $400 million domestic take, because that is twice as much as the opening. The math is undeniable. What is also undeniable is this sick feeling that won’t go away because I’ve had to share my throne with Ray Romano’s totally annoying, nasal voice for even one day.
I would really like us all to have a meeting about this so we can discuss and generate more ideas for the third weekend EVENT. Maybe we can have Optimus Prime host a day at the MTV Beach House? They still do that? Just spitballing, but that’s the kind of thing we should be kicking around together. Because I WILL NOT be beaten by the foreign gay with the lederhosen hot pants.
PS—Oh, congratulations to whoever’s in charge now. Goodman? Yeah, Goodman. That sounds right. Just remember what happened to the guys who didn’t listen to me last time. LOL.