Monday, August 15, 2011

Kevin Smith Making Epic Two-Part Four-Hour Hockey Comedy, Will Subsequently Retire

Of all the 90s-indie-kids-made-good filmmakers, the one I'd NEVER have expected to flame-out in a spectacular, slow-motion, ego-drive career collapse would've been Kevin Smith. But it's been happening, and now it appears to be reaching a crescendo: Slashfilm reports that Smith's much-ballyhooed "final film" before self-imposed retirement from directing, a comedy/drama about a hockey player called "Hit Somebody," has a script so long that Smith can't (or won't) find a way to compress it into one movie... so instead he's making two.

For those who'd stopped caring enough to follow the production of Kevin Smith movies (so, pretty-much everyone I imagine) "Hit Somebody" is about a lovable-bruiser of a "goon" hockey player whose employed by his team (and celebrated by the crowds) for his ability to bust heads for the cause of protecting the star players who score the big goals... but he's actually a nice guy, and has always dreamed of scoring one big goal himself. In case you're wondering - no, Smith didn't swipe the screenplay for an unproduced Adam Sandler vehicle; this is actually an adaptation of a Warren Zevon song written by Mitch Albom. You cannot make this shit up.

The song starts out in the character's childhood and follows him into the NHL, and that's more-or-less the way Smith says he'll split it - Part I being about the character growing up, the Pro-Hockey stuff in the Part II. Again, this is a comedy about a guy who starts hockey fights for a living.

Sean William Scott was originally supposed to play to lead, but bailed in favor of another hockey comedy called "Goon."

18 comments:

A. Ivan said...

Wat.

Neacail said...

..the Hell!?

Kyle said...

So where is that in relation to this article?

Also, is he bowing out before he does any big damage to his askewniverse? Are there other filmmakers we wish had sort of done that?

Kyle said...

The url html tag didn't work. This article: http://www.escapistmagazine.com/articles/view/columns/moviebob/8638-MovieBob-When-In-Rome

Just Gavin said...

Yeah, I started caring about Smith after watching Dogma and Clerks, it was kind of scary to see how crazy he's gone in recent times.

And honestly, two movies? For a comedy about a hockey player? Really?

Mads said...

He had hits and misses with his older movies too. For the most part, they captured the zeitgeist really well, and they have become cult classics for a reason.

But it seems like he just hasn't kept in touch with all the people who helped him make it in the first place. If I knew a lot of actors from the older films would pop in for a jabe and a joke - or if he had a chance to get good cameo's - but he doesn't.

Cop Out was horrific. Maybe some people had a few laughs, more power to them, but I could not for the life of me finish it, and that almost never happens.

So yeah, this is definitely one to avoid throwing money at.

DetectiveKen said...

Crazy career collapse?! The man is a GENIUS.

Take his next film, Red State. Self distributing because he refused to let another advertising campaign fail, as it does for all his movies, and now, 2 months before the movie comes out, he is already in profit.

And from the continuing money coming in, he's using it to fund the next (2 films now) himself. Instead of constantly getting stuck with budget cuts.

That and his sudden foray into TV and radio, if anything his career is picking up. Finally.

Ezenwa said...

Hmm...


He will always beat to his own drum, I guess.

Loved Clerks, didn't hate Mallrats, didn't bother with Chasing Amy or Dogma (can't stand him), didn't hate Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back, didn't see the need for Clerks 2, but, hey, that was that.

Now, as for his other forays....

Well, it feels after he wrote for Daredevil, things might have taken a turn for the worse. But, again, it is what it is.


I hope he really doesn't quit though. I know he has a cool movie idea that I'd like to see. Hey, Kevin, wanna blow people's minds? Direct a No More Heroes film! WIN! Hurry, before Edgar Wright beats you to it!

Adam said...

Actually NHL teams do sign "heavies" whose express purpose is to get in fights to protect the little guys. It's one of those weird scenarios that makes little to no sense for those on the outside looking in and for hardcore fans of the sport it's simply part of the game. Honestly I think you could make an interesting movie around that premise, but I don't really expect anyone to (including Kevin Smith).

Chris said...

I hate to be the one say this, largely because it means admitting to having seen this movie, but this premise is almost identical to the basis for Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson's character in "Tooth Fairy." And that....that's just sad.

MovieBob said...

@DetectiveKen,

He's a good - if unpleasantly cynical - businessman, not a "genius."

The routine he's pulling with "Red State" is not new, nor something of his own invention. It's called "four-walling," and indie filmmakers have been doing it for decades. And he's not even doing it all that legitimately, since he's basically just selling tickets to his proven-marketable Q&A appearances, showing a (reportedly awful) movie and calling it said movie's profit.

Look, I was the biggest defender in the WORLD of this guy - Clerks holds up. Mallrats has it's moments. Chasing Amy is naive but well-intentioned/written. Dogma is terrific. J&SBSB is hysterical. Jersey Girl was a good effort. Clerks II is 98% perfect on it's own terms. Zack & Miri is clever.

But something has CLEARLY gone haywire with Smith, and it's incredibly unpleasant to watch. I thought the ending and overall "theme" to Clerks II indicated a filmmaker who was finally comfortable with himself and his place... but instead he's bugging out.

Brandon Wright said...

My interest in this movie is directly proportional to how much Jason Mewes we see in it.

Reverend Allan Ironside said...

I think Smith has long since worn out his welcome as a director. Thank you, Mr. Smith, for Clerks, Dogma, Chasing Amy, and to be perfectly honest the wife and I DO enjoy Jersey girl, being parents ourselves (though in my wife's case, it's more because she's an Affleck fan).

Thank you for your sparse contributions to cinema, but after Cop Out, Red State, and the absolutely embarrassing personal meltdowns that have been going on forever now, please, please hangi t up and leave before you become the kind of Hollywood hack has-been that M. night Shamalan has become.

Fett101 said...

Don't mind one bit since that means he can focus more on his Podcasts, hopefully with another tour.

Sam Robards, Occasional Gamer said...

To throw my two cents into the ring, I think Kevin Smith peaked at Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back and has been dropping like a rock ever since.

The man's just not funny to me anymore, and it's not because I don't approve of dick/fart/stoner humor. Because Beavis and Butthead is still HILARIOUS.

Peace out!

CraftyAndy said...

Isn't he behind Red State? When does that movie come out?

Matt said...

I... I don't know about Kevin Smith anymore. I honestly thought Clerks II was great, and Zach and Miri had more laughs and more heart than most of his other movies combined... but there's just something about him now that I don't like. I never saw Cop Out, mainly because I thought it looked like shit and I really don't like Tracy Morgan. This Red State thing is nice and all, but it strikes me more as a political maneuver than a "fuck you" to critics. It's as if he thinks he should be more popular than he is. I don't know why he can't be happy making the movies he makes for his fans (a list where his name is right on top) without worrying so much about the business. I mean for Christ's sake, he sold a movie to producers based on its title alone, clearly the industry isn't treating him that bad.

Bobby said...

I saw "Red State" at Radio City Music Hall, and it was damn amazing. It's one of my favorite films of the year, to date.