GENERAL DISCUSSIONS

Does this Make Sense!?!?

POSTED BY: XANDERHARRIS
UPDATED: Sunday, October 9, 2005 03:25
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Friday, October 7, 2005 3:38 AM

XANDERHARRIS


'Serenity' is perhaps one of the best reviewed films of the year, i just read that 'Serenity' is one of the top Google searches. also the number 7 yahoo movie. Summer is on IMDB front page, I just heard a Serenity ad on the radio on my way to work.....twice. we browncoats tirelessly converted our friends, family and enemies. there are a number of crap movies out now......

SO WHAT'S THE DEAL!?!? why isn't anyone seeing our BDM? where is the disconnect? i realize it's a genre film, but c'mon. what is happening?

theories?

I saved Latin, what did you ever do?

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Friday, October 7, 2005 4:06 AM

JMB9039


A lot of how much a movie makes depends on factors other than the movie - such as weather (it was pretty nice that weekend and people don't go to movies when the weather is nice). Also, if you notice, no movie made a whole lot that weekend. So I'd say Serenity was pretty comprable. Hopefully it'll pick up... maybe we'll have a chilly, rainy weekend.

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Friday, October 7, 2005 4:08 AM

ROCKETJOCK


Serenity opened in second place, first for new releases, with a very good per-theater take; not a runaway hit, but very solid for an off-season release in a depressed movie-going market.

In the words of the Hitchhiker's Guide, Don't Panic!

"She's tore up plenty. But she'll fly true." -- Zoë Washburn

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Friday, October 7, 2005 4:15 AM

EMBERS


school has already started so fewer people go out,
although actually it was such a weak Summer for movie turnout that a lot of people also got out of the habit of going out...

there are no 'big name stars' to pull them into the theater (not that that helped War of the Worlds or The Brothers Grimm anyway...).

perhaps a lot of people think you can't get into the movie if you didn't see the TV show (did non-X-file fans go see the X-File movie?)



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Friday, October 7, 2005 4:24 AM

XANDERHARRIS


ok, valid points all, and you're right i shouldn't panic. i just can't help it. I WANT MY BDS!! (big damn sequel.) and i hear much bloviating (sp?)about this and that on this board and others, but i think i might get choked up if there's no sequel, i might even shed actual tears.


I saved Latin ,what did you ever do?

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Friday, October 7, 2005 4:36 AM

FIREFLYFAN278


Go ahead -- PANIC!

There are several reason why you should.

1. The first weekend's box office included the take from all of the preview screenings.

2. Due to that and the inevitable 2nd weekend drop-off, it will fall from the top 5 and lose over 50% this next weekend.

3. The next two reasons contain major plot spoilers:

Select to view spoiler:


Many people, myself included don't like the fact that an arbitrary decision was made to kill off one of the most likable characters from the TV show for no significant reason ie. self sacrifice to save the other or pivotal loss leads to long term gain, /spoiler]

4. spoiler

Select to view spoiler:


Probably just as many thought the ridiculous ending in which Mal made a conscious decision not to kill the man directly responsible for the death of Book and indirectly responsible for the death of Wash was out of character, our of context, our of this world and the director was out of his mind.


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Friday, October 7, 2005 4:54 AM

EMBERS


Quote:

Originally posted by fireflyfan278:

3. The next two reasons contain major plot spoilers:

Select to view spoiler:


Many people, myself included don't like the fact that an arbitrary decision was made to kill off one of the most likable characters from the TV show for no significant reason ie. self sacrifice to save the other or pivotal loss leads to long term gain, /spoiler]

4. spoiler

Select to view spoiler:


Probably just as many thought the ridiculous ending in which Mal made a conscious decision not to kill the man directly responsible for the death of Book and indirectly responsible for the death of Wash was out of character, our of context, our of this world and the director was out of his mind.




responding to spoilers
3.

Select to view spoiler:


nothing arbitary about it, it was done with a purpose, open your mind & heart and maybe you can 'get' it.


4.

Select to view spoiler:


any attempt on the Operative would have meant their immediate death, you DID notice that a large group of Alliance were holding guns on them right? Only the Operative stopped their deaths.



You really need to go to see 'Serenity' again,
because I really think you are missing the point.

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Friday, October 7, 2005 5:10 AM

XANDERHARRIS


i have to agree with embers on the spoiler stuff.


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Friday, October 7, 2005 5:10 AM

FIREFLYFAN278


First,

Select to view spoiler:


I saw no point to the death of Wash.


Second, if I missed the point, then I will have just missed it. I have a standard policy:

Select to view spoiler:


I hate movies that kill off the good guys and I never go see a movie again that I hated the first time. I see so many people on this site writing that they cried. I didn't. It pissed me off. I don't cry when I get angry. Enough tragedy happens in real life that I don't want it in my movies(and maybe I've had too much in mine to want more in my movies).



I've seen it once. I have no plans to see it again. I have no plans to buy or watch the DVD. I'm on my fourth viewing of the Firefly DVD's that I got about a month ago so I'm a big fan. But for me the Firefly series is the extent of the verse in which Serenity flies.

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Friday, October 7, 2005 5:40 AM

XANDERHARRIS


wow, i'm sorry you feel that way. i was very upset about said spoiler, but i didn't think it was pointless, i thought it added so much weight to the finale of the movie.

i would go into more detail but i dunno how to do that invisible typing thing....

I saved Latin, what did you ever do?

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Friday, October 7, 2005 6:15 AM

BROWNCOAT1

May have been the losing side. Still not convinced it was the wrong one.


Quote:

Originally posted by XanderHarris:
'Serenity' is perhaps one of the best reviewed films of the year, i just read that 'Serenity' is one of the top Google searches. also the number 7 yahoo movie. Summer is on IMDB front page, I just heard a Serenity ad on the radio on my way to work.....twice. we browncoats tirelessly converted our friends, family and enemies. there are a number of crap movies out now......

SO WHAT'S THE DEAL!?!? why isn't anyone seeing our BDM? where is the disconnect? i realize it's a genre film, but c'mon. what is happening?

theories?




Part of it is the # of theatres we opened in. 2188 theatres around the country is not a lot. Per theatre we did better than the movies we were up against, but overall the take was a bit low.

Secondly the viral marketing program targeted the fan base more so than the general population that you rely on to fill theatres. The viral marketing strategy was risky, and in this case it appears looking solely at the #s as they stand now, that it did not pay off as well as Universal may have hoped.

Thirdly, the opening weekend is one that is historically soft for box office sales. Few movies have broken the $15 million mark on the last weekend of September. Sure we had almost no real competition, but that made little difference in #s.

I think a last major factor is that many people, myself included amongst them, generally avoid opening weekend due to crowds. I normally wait at least a week, sometimes more, before I go to see a movie.

__________________________________________

"May have been the losing side. Still not convinced it was the wrong one."

Richmond, VA & surrounding area Firefly Fans:

http://tv.groups.yahoo.com/group/richmondbrowncoats/

http://www.richmondbrowncoats.org


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Friday, October 7, 2005 6:43 AM

BROWNCOATISH


I side with Embers on the spoiler stuff. It was tough, but to me made the story better and the final 20 minutes downright riveting.

But that's just me.

;)

As to why the reviews didn't help opening weekend, most of the reviews, and almost all of the highly respected reviews weren't available before opening weekend. Ebert and Roeper's two thumbs-up is a pretty big deal, but wasn't known until the Saturday of the opening weekend. You'll notice how Universal plastered it first on their follow-up marketing this week.

You should also notice that Universal sprung for some pretty expensive time slots for that follow-up marketing.

I disagree that Firefly will drop 50%. Most movies do, but not all, and with notable exceptions lately. The Wedding Crashers is one example of a movie that opened modestly and never had a stellar weekend, but became a big financial hit through sheer longevity. The same is true for 40 Year Old Virgin, which actually improved it's take from one weekend to the next.

The economy is not that great right now, especially in sci-fi fan circles (darned Nasdaq!). Lots of people are being more selective about their movie-going. Good critical reviews and word-of-mouth are important, and Firefly has both in spades.

...not to mention the 9 minute prologue being made available online which I thinks was a clever move.

I think Serenity has excellent chances for a strong 2nd weekend, and if it gets one, word of mouth will only get stronger. We just might have a late-breaking hit.

But, I also think it MUST have a strong 2nd weekend, or things will be quite bleak indeed.

So, we just keep doing what we're doing. See it again, bring friends, tell everyone how great it is. I'm pesonally responsible for at least 10 ticket sales from folks that had never heard of Serenity.

The gauntlet is thrown!

:)

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Friday, October 7, 2005 6:57 AM

HAKEN

Likes to mess with stuffs.


Here are a couple of factors that no one has brought up.

- Serenity didn't have a big name star. Flightplan had Jodie Foster. That name alone will bring in the numbers regardless of whether the movie was good or not. And from what I've read and heard, Flightplan isn't all that great of a movie. People just want to see Jodie Foster in a movie.

- Serenity didn't have a big name director. Sure, Joss Whedon is real big in fandom, but other than that, few have heard of him.

Hate to say this, but the "average" moviegoer usually decide on what to watch based on who made it and who is in it. That's why good movies that didn't do well at the theaters usually do very well on DVD.


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Friday, October 7, 2005 11:12 AM

LADYSHELLEY


Another possiblity may be that most of the reviews good and bad seem to emphasize that it's based on a "failed FOX television series" not the best lead-off statement.

1. People see 'failed TV show' and wonder why a movie would ever be made

2. Most general viewers think they have to know the show to get the film.

What I've been telling folks is Serenity is great sci-fi if you've never seen the show. If you have seen Firefly, it's great sci-fi with old friends.



Lady Shelley
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
http://www.redhawke.org

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Friday, October 7, 2005 12:10 PM

JAIF


Quote:

Originally posted by Haken:
- Serenity didn't have a big name star. Flightplan had Jodie Foster. That name alone will bring in the numbers regardless of whether the movie was good or not. And from what I've read and heard, Flightplan isn't all that great of a movie. People just want to see Jodie Foster in a movie.



I completely agree. Most people don't know firefly from beans. They look in the paper, see some movies, and say "Do we see the Jodie Foster one, the Violence one, or that sci-fi one?"

-Jeff

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Friday, October 7, 2005 4:05 PM

JASONZZZ


so, just going off on a tangent slightly as a meta-discussion... I don't think any of it is off the mark with regards to what "normal" people's decision process is... I mean we can surely extrapolate from "normal" people who selects their movie-viewing based on:

1) who is starring in it
2) who wrote and/or directed the film

aren't what people on this board doing the very same thing... Pretty much everyone has had their $80 ready for tickets even before the movie was even committed to paper. I think a lot of people justifiably use that same exact process.

If it works for us, why wouldn't it work for them?


I actually, in fact, do like Jodie Foster works. Both as an actress and as a director. I don't mean that she is the greatest, she certainly doesn't have a wide range (certainly not like Alfred Molina or even Gary Oldman - as counter examples for really versatile actors), but what she does, she carries it very well.


People in general don't usually jump at the chance to do anything out-of-this-world earth-shakingly unfamiliar to them. Granted, there are some who do, but they are a much much minority in comparison. Some people do venture just a tiny bit on the edge of the envelope. But by far, most of us, like to stay with the familiar - it's comforting, you already "know" what you are going to get... And it's not just a conscious choice either... Most of us are, in fact our pleasure centers are, wired for repeat stimulus... It feels good, keep doing the same, " Oh yeah!!! "... We constantly are in need, to self reinforce our little pleasure centers... That's just how we are...





Quote:

Originally posted by Haken:
Here are a couple of factors that no one has brought up.

- Serenity didn't have a big name star. Flightplan had Jodie Foster. That name alone will bring in the numbers regardless of whether the movie was good or not. And from what I've read and heard, Flightplan isn't all that great of a movie. People just want to see Jodie Foster in a movie.

- Serenity didn't have a big name director. Sure, Joss Whedon is real big in fandom, but other than that, few have heard of him.

Hate to say this, but the "average" moviegoer usually decide on what to watch based on who made it and who is in it. That's why good movies that didn't do well at the theaters usually do very well on DVD.




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Friday, October 7, 2005 5:44 PM

ROCKETJOCK


Historical points:

1. Adjusted for inflation, Star Wars made only $5 million on its first week of release.

2. Aside from Alec Guiness, none of the cast of Star Wars were well known at the time. (Peter Cushing was respected by genre fans, but the average man on the street didn't know him too well.) SW made Mark Hammil, Carrie Fisher, & Harrison Ford's careers. I'm hoping that Serenity will do the same for our Big Damn Cast.

3. George Lucas had only two professional directing credits at the time, and only one (American Grafitti) was successful.

So much for history; on to the spoilers:

Select to view spoiler:


In terms of the story, both deaths had a purpose: Book's showed The Operative's ruthlessness and galvanized Mal into agressive action. Wash's demonstrated to everyone, browncoat and newcomer alike, that this was real, that our heroes had no magic deus ex machina ability to defeat the odds forever.

As for Mal being out of character when he let The Operative live, hell no! He'd gotten the man's measure by then; letting him live to see what his dream of the future really led to was the cruelest thing Mal could have done! Watch the Operative's eyes as he views the recording -- he goes from disbelief, to horror, to deadness. This is a man whose soul has died, exactly the same way Mal's died in Serenity Valley.

He could have shut it all out just by closing his eyes, humming something to block out the sound. But the Operative's tragedy is that he is at once a monster, and an honest man.

As it turns out, that honesty was the factor that saved Serenity's surviving crew -- but Mal hadn't planned that. Truth is, he probably thought he was leaving The Operative behind, helplessly pinned with two dislocated shoulders, to face the reavers alone.

Yes, Joss took a big chance raising the stakes the way he did, and he may have alienated a lot of people for so doing. But I think, painful or not, that he made the right decision. And in the words of a wise man...




"If you can't do something smart, do something right." -- Shepherd Deria Book

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Friday, October 7, 2005 6:15 PM

JASONZZZ


Quote:

Originally posted by RocketJock:
Historical points:


3. George Lucas had only two professional directing credits at the time, and only one (American Grafitti) was successful.



"If you can't do something smart, do something right." -- Shepherd Deria Book



Good stuff, but I think some pretty important bits got left out... By the time when Lucas had "only two movies" under his belt, he already had pretty good clout. He jointly owned a movie company with Coppola. His two movies earned him a Golden Globe and 5 academy award nominations. He also started the 2 effects company ILM and Skywalker Sound (named something else at first) and invented technical innovations for movies during that time. I mean, people can argue whether Star Wars is a good/bad movie, but those are some really fantastic technical achievements that he came up with - for that time.





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Friday, October 7, 2005 7:12 PM

HAKEN

Likes to mess with stuffs.


It's interesting to note that although THX-1138 didn't do well at the box office, it was, imho, a great sci-fi movie when it was released. And it has held up very well over time, having seen it again recently.

Having said that, it does make me wonder why Lucas didn't direct more non-sci-fi movies like "American Grafitti." He certainly does have a feel for it. It might even have made him a better writer and director.

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Friday, October 7, 2005 7:25 PM

JASONZZZ


Quote:

Originally posted by Haken:
It's interesting to note that although THX-1138 didn't do well at the box office, it was, imho, a great sci-fi movie when it was released. And it has held up very well over time, having seen it again recently.

Having said that, it does make me wonder why Lucas didn't direct more non-sci-fi movies like "American Grafitti." He certainly does have a feel for it. It might even have made him a better writer and director.



3 words "3 Billion Dollars"... The entire Starwars franchise and all of the technology companies that he owns has him rolling in the dough... But seriously, just looking at all of the different technology and things that he owns - I'm going to take a wild stab that he likes to dabble in all of the little neat toys in the film making process and not just making the film. Besides, he doesn't really *have* to churn out any real film product. He has all the time in the world (and all of the $$$ ) to just play.



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Friday, October 7, 2005 7:47 PM

ROCKETJOCK


For the record, I'm not putting down Lucas, or Star Wars (The original trilogy, at any rate.) Just pointing out that Star Wars wasn't always the unstoppable behemoth it seems now in retrospect.

"It's not my fault." -- Han Solo

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Friday, October 7, 2005 7:54 PM

THECRAZYIVAN


time...we just need time...we just gotta hold as zoe would say. WE keep it in theatres and THEY will come.

~~~~~~~~~~
"There is a sense that this is still not over. It's hard to put a finger on what's so special about this project and about this group of people, but it's just one of those things you have to trust in, and relish. I am very, very proud."
---Jewel Staite on "Firefly" and "Serenity" in "Finding Serenity" (essay collection by Jane Espenson)

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Friday, October 7, 2005 8:02 PM

JASONZZZ


Quote:

Originally posted by RocketJock:
For the record, I'm not putting down Lucas, or Star Wars (The original trilogy, at any rate.) Just pointing out that Star Wars wasn't always the unstoppable behemoth it seems now in retrospect.

"It's not my fault." -- Han Solo




nah, nothing missed. I didn't want it to seem like Lucas was a no name small time potato when he made Star Wars either though. I mean the guy had pretty good studio clout and good awards under him plus mentorship from Coppola...

Either way, who can really predict the next thing is great or flop in the $$$ making biz or how the public will like it or hate it (or even notice it to begin with). If you look at the kind of crap that "the greats" crank out like DeNiro and Pacino... You gotta say "what?"... Then you look at Keanu Reeves being propelled into Pluto's orbit from being associated with stuff like "Bill + Ted" and Matrix... You'd just never know.

For me, Lucas is pretty ok, I don't worship the guy. He's done pretty good things with blending a bunch of different things and using the craft to help tell the story. But lots of behind the scenes stuff that you don't end up realizing first hand when you watch a film - is that good or bad. I don't know. He's rich, and for me, I don't really get to see too much of the stuff that he does to really get a feel for what I think or to really evaluate it...



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Saturday, October 8, 2005 3:00 AM

CHRISTHECYNIC


Ever seen The Princess Bride? I watched the writer's commentary on the DVD yesterday and it gave me a bad feeling about Serenity in theaters.

The movie had good reviews, the movie was the second best previewed movie, and the movie was loved by critics and viewers alike. If it were judged just by box office sales it wouldn’t be worthy of mention. No one knew how to sell it, is it a comedy, a love story, action, fantasy, satire, something else? They couldn’t figure out how to market a genre crossing film and as a result it didn’t do well in theaters.

People would go and see it, love it, and then try to tell their friends, but fail. Instead they would have people saying, “I’ll watch it when it comes out on cassette.” It was only the VHS sales that stopped it from being considered a flop.

With Serenity people say, “I’ll watch it when it comes out on DVD,” but the result is the same. People don’t want to risk going to see a funny but serious sci-fi drama action flick with western elements in theaters. You say sci-fi you drive away people who would love it, you talk about characters you drive away people who would love it, you say action you drive away people who would love it, it goes on like that. It seems like the best I can do is get people to say, “I’ll check it out on DVD.”

That’s not necessarily a bad thing, DVD and VHS sales are important, but Serenity is genre crossing which means no matter what you say about it you will convince some people not to watch it in spite of the fact they would love it if they only saw it. After that bias creeps in a lot of the time the best you can do is get them to watch it when they can rent it.

This isn’t some excuse here; it’s just the way it works.

Sad really, anything that isn’t in some easy to categorize rigidly defined box seems to be doomed for immediately failure, the best you can hope for is a rebound after theaters.

I mean look at Flightplan, whether you liked it or not you have to admit that it isn’t exactly complex. Since I have no plans to see it I asked someone who did see it to tell me what happened. She told me the plot in as much detail as she could remember and sure enough every twist she could think of, every "surprise" was something I knew from watching the preview. I'm not special, these were things everyone knew from watching the preview. Who was good and bad, what was real and wasn’t, the driving force behind the plot, the exciting conclusion, all of this was immediately obvious from a standard length preview.

Maybe that’s what people want, something you can predict, something that won’t surprise you. Something that deviates from the expected only in details that don’t effect the plot.

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Saturday, October 8, 2005 3:11 AM

CHRISTHECYNIC


Quote:

Originally posted by Haken:
Hate to say this, but the "average" moviegoer usually decide on what to watch based on who made it and who is in it.


My mother is like that, if you put a star she likes in the movie she'll go, she doesn't even try to figure out if it will be good or not.

Two For the Money is an example, she's not even really sure what it is about but she's all ready to see it. All that she really knows about the movie is who is in it, and while that isn't enough to make her buy it later on it is all that it takes to get her in the theater.

A lot of people are like her.

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Saturday, October 8, 2005 4:14 AM

HAZE


I think this quote taken from the end of the review on UKs Channel 4s teletext says a lot about the viewing public “Apart from Glau’s gymnastic exploits, it’s one for the sci-fi geeks only”.

Hmmm

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Saturday, October 8, 2005 4:30 AM

CHRISTHECYNIC


Quote:

Originally posted by Haze:
I think this quote taken from the end of the review on UKs Channel 4s teletext says a lot about the viewing public “Apart from Glau’s gymnastic exploits, it’s one for the sci-fi geeks only”.

Hmmm


I don't think that tells you about the viewing public at all, because it isn't true. A lot of people who don't like sci-fi at all love it. What it tells you about is the reviewers, and the problem is that the veiwing puclic will listen to them.

Saying, "For sci-fi only," will drive a lot of people away. The fact that it isn't true won't bring those people back because they'll assume anyone who tells them it isn't is really a just sci-fi fan pretending to be objective.

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Saturday, October 8, 2005 5:19 AM

GGREEN29


Quote:

Originally posted by christhecynic:
Sad really, anything that isn’t in some easy to categorize rigidly defined box seems to be doomed for immediately failure, the best you can hope for is a rebound after theaters...



You should change your name to ChristheLucid, because I think you've identified the major problem with the marketing. They market it as a standard sci-fi show, when I think the characterization and relationships put it well ahead of that, even for the newbies.

There should be a series of ads focussing on the various relationships, emphasizing to the non-scifi crowd that this is first and foremost a story about interesting and appealing people.

I also think it was a big mistake not to have the BDHs on the talk show circuit. From the interviews I've seen and read the actors are engaging and funny people, expecially when paired up. They should've been scattered across the afternoon and nighttime shows. That alone would have had people say "these are funny and nice people, let's go see their BDM."

While I appreciate the daring-do of a viral marketing scheme, there should have been a plan B.

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Saturday, October 8, 2005 5:25 AM

GGREEN29


Quote:

Originally posted by RocketJock:
He could have shut it all out just by closing his eyes, humming something to block out the sound.



If I start to hear word that there's no sequel that is what I'll be doing. I'll live in my imaginary world where the BDS comes out two years from now, and I'll be sitting in a theatre watching a Tim Burton or Jodie Foster movie, yelling "Yeah Jayne, go tussle.""Mal you're our Big Damn Hero!""Whoohoo, you can't take the sky from me!"

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Saturday, October 8, 2005 6:52 AM

JASONZZZ


Quote:

Originally posted by christhecynic:
Ever seen The Princess Bride? I watched the writer's commentary on the DVD yesterday and it gave me a bad feeling about Serenity in theaters.

The movie had good reviews, the movie was the second best previewed movie, and the movie was loved by critics and viewers alike. If it were judged just by box office sales it wouldn’t be worthy of mention. No one knew how to sell it, is it a comedy, a love story, action, fantasy, satire, something else? They couldn’t figure out how to market a genre crossing film and as a result it didn’t do well in theaters.




Wonderful funnny movie... It's success? lots of quotables... People associate with those tag lines at the watercooler and reinforces the in-factor... Same thing like "Office Space"... how many of you actually painted in SwingLine red before they even atually started selling it?

Quote:

Originally posted by christhecynic:


People would go and see it, love it, and then try to tell their friends, but fail. Instead they would have people saying, “I’ll watch it when it comes out on cassette.” It was only the VHS sales that stopped it from being considered a flop.

With Serenity people say, “I’ll watch it when it comes out on DVD,” but the result is the same. People don’t want to risk going to see a funny but serious sci-fi drama action flick with western elements in theaters. You say sci-fi you drive away people who would love it, you talk about characters you drive away people who would love it, you say action you drive away people who would love it, it goes on like that. It seems like the best I can do is get people to say, “I’ll check it out on DVD.”




It might be good if people actually wanted to "buy" the cassette or DVD, but what a lot of people mean is they might look for it in the 99cent bin at the blockbuster.

Quote:

Originally posted by christhecynic:



That’s not necessarily a bad thing, DVD and VHS sales are important, but Serenity is genre crossing which means no matter what you say about it you will convince some people not to watch it in spite of the fact they would love it if they only saw it. After that bias creeps in a lot of the time the best you can do is get them to watch it when they can rent it.

This isn’t some excuse here; it’s just the way it works.

Sad really, anything that isn’t in some easy to categorize rigidly defined box seems to be doomed for immediately failure, the best you can hope for is a rebound after theaters.

I mean look at Flightplan, whether you liked it or not you have to admit that it isn’t exactly complex. Since I have no plans to see it I asked someone who did see it to tell me what happened. She told me the plot in as much detail as she could remember and sure enough every twist she could think of, every "surprise" was something I knew from watching the preview. I'm not special, these were things everyone knew from watching the preview. Who was good and bad, what was real and wasn’t, the driving force behind the plot, the exciting conclusion, all of this was immediately obvious from a standard length preview.

Maybe that’s what people want, something you can predict, something that won’t surprise you. Something that deviates from the expected only in details that don’t effect the plot.



Eh, sometimes you just want to watch a story. Not so much anything intelligent, emotionally uplifting, or culturally significant... It's like potato crisps, you know what it does to your body, it's not healthfood by any definition, but sometimes you just wanna sit down and run thru a bag of it.



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Saturday, October 8, 2005 6:52 AM

JASONZZZ


Quote:

Originally posted by christhecynic:
Quote:

Originally posted by Haken:
Hate to say this, but the "average" moviegoer usually decide on what to watch based on who made it and who is in it.


My mother is like that, if you put a star she likes in the movie she'll go, she doesn't even try to figure out if it will be good or not.

Two For the Money is an example, she's not even really sure what it is about but she's all ready to see it. All that she really knows about the movie is who is in it, and while that isn't enough to make her buy it later on it is all that it takes to get her in the theater.

A lot of people are like her.



but didn't practically everyone on this board decided that Serenity would be worth watching simply because of the actors in it, who directed it, and what "genre" it's in? (I realize that it's not easily categorizable, but eventhough there isn't a Hollywood name for this sort of movie, we can all agree on "the bucket" that it goes into - sort of)

all before the pen was lifted to putthe script onto paper?

I guess the question is, how's that different from
"your mom" or the average joe/jane using - to me - the very same decision process.



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Saturday, October 8, 2005 7:01 AM

CHRISTHECYNIC


Quote:

Originally posted by Jasonzzz:
I guess the question is, how's that different from "your mom" or the average joe/jane using - to me - the very same decision process.


She only knows the actors in the movie and makes a decision based on that. Before Serenity existed, before it had a name or a studio, I knew not just the actors, but also the characters, the setting, the style, the director, and the writer.

Would I have gone to the movie if I just knew the actors? No. Hell no. Even if every actor from every episode of Firefly appeared in a movie I wouldn't go to it if that was all I knew about the movie.

I need more information than that. Great actors create crap movies all the time.

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Saturday, October 8, 2005 7:55 AM

JASONZZZ



Yes, but you had as much real knowledge of the final product as she would on any given movie. You assumed that it would be the same based on what you think *might* come out... She might have based her decision on some spurious other set of assumptions of the premise, the color of the posters, the trailer... The truth of it is probably none of us really get to make those kinds of decision on facts, evaluations of the product, or some sort of objective internal barometer/gauge .
We really just base it on assumptions, feelings, and star power.

Yeah, great actors get into bad movies all the time. If people only know that there are only about 2 or 3 actors who actually get to *use* their craft. The rest of them are just doing the jobs the director and scripts would have them do - they just somehow come out looking great in some of these movies. We fall in love with them all anyways... At the end of it all, it's usually the editor/director teams that you ought to be making your decision with.

So, I am not saying that it might absolutely drive you insane to *not* go see another movie if you see Nathan, or Summer, or anyone else in the show. But think about this hypothetical situation, you see 2 movies coming out this summer, one some droopy comedy-drama with the standard Hollywood cast, and another not-quite-exactly-what genre, maybe comedy, maybe drama movie but with either Nath, Summer, or Gina, or whomever from the cast. You are telling me that it wouldn't weight as a factor in influencing your decision to which movie you would pick? Or when JW comes out with Wonderwoman, you are telling me that you wouldn't be influenced to watch it - even without knowing anything about the rest of how the characters are developed or what plot is going to be foisted on you, that the simple fact that JW has something to do with it (that's whethher you worship him or not) that you wouldn't be more willing to catch that flick?

I am not saying that you don't take out the Christ -the-completely-objective-measuring-stick-to-moviedom every single time you need to watch a movie. I'm just saying I think pretty much everyone use that same internal gauge in most instances or another. Using some small bit of relatively minor information (actor, or director, genre, poster color, trailer they've seen) - some bit of information that they feel they "know" about and assume that it will be exactly the way to their liking in this movie as well - to gauge their decision on rather then objectively weighing the final product for its ultimate worth.


I think you are saying that you've made an objective decision based on a set of well known criteria and very good first hand information as compared to just knowing the actor's name or the director's name (for instance, I might place a higher consideration in watching a "Ridley Scott" flick), or a particular setting, or type of story line.

I question that if that isn't pretty much the same type of evaluation process.


Quote:

Originally posted by christhecynic:
Quote:

Originally posted by Jasonzzz:
I guess the question is, how's that different from "your mom" or the average joe/jane using - to me - the very same decision process.


She only knows the actors in the movie and makes a decision based on that. Before Serenity existed, before it had a name or a studio, I knew not just the actors, but also the characters, the setting, the style, the director, and the writer.

Would I have gone to the movie if I just knew the actors? No. Hell no. Even if every actor from every episode of Firefly appeared in a movie I wouldn't go to it if that was all I knew about the movie.

I need more information than that. Great actors create crap movies all the time.



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Saturday, October 8, 2005 8:39 AM

CHRISTHECYNIC


You’re making too many assumptions, I said she only knew the actors and I meant it, this is a person I know, she is my mother after all, and I have this information because she told me. Could she have lied to me? Sure. But I think it is more likely that when she said all she knew about the movie in question, Two For the Money, was the actors in it I believed her. When she has told me the same about movies before I believed her.

As for the information I had, I think you can say that I had a fair amount more. If you want to really get into it the information I had was the same amount I had about the Borne Supremacy having seen the Borne Identity, which is a hell of a lot more than I knew about the movie Laserhawk after going to see the movie Star Wars.

Knowing the characters, how the actors play the characters, the setting and the basic style are important things, and these I knew before Serenity. How did I know it? The same way I knew how Harrison Ford would play Han Solo in The Empire Strikes Back after seeing Star Wars.

You say that I didn’t have any information going in, but I did, and you know it.

-

Of course who is in a movie, and who is making it effects my decision, but it doesn’t make my decision. An example is Wonderwoman.

I can honestly say that I like or love every single thing Joss has done that I have seen, but that does not make me want to go see Wonderwoman in the least. In fact I don’t even plan to find out more about it.

If I wanted to see the movie Joss being involved would make me want to see it more, and if I were on the fence Joss’ involvement would probably be enough to push me to watch it, but Joss’s involvement alone I nowhere near enough.

I’m not saying that I’m objective. I’m remotely not objective. I am saying that there is a difference between letting who is involved in a movie influence your decision and letting it make your decision. I’m also saying that it seems like many people, perhaps most, let such things make the decision, and that makes it difficult for things like Serenity.

I'm not even saying that my way is the right way, I'm just saying that the way many others do it makes things harder for us.

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Saturday, October 8, 2005 8:49 AM

REALLYKAYLEE


it's been raining non-stop for two days on the east coast!

shakespeare: more words than God.

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Saturday, October 8, 2005 8:55 AM

GGIII


Okay... So I don't post often. I mostly read the boards...

That being said, I'm sick of hearing people say that the way Wash died was pointless.

Wash had no real combat skills. Any death where he did not die at the helm would indeed be pointless, since piloting is his only real ability.

If he had died in a firefight it would have seemed like lack of skill, rather than a dignified death.

I thought that the way Wash died was brilliant. It was the only way that Wash could ever have a meaningful death.

You can't take the sky from me.

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Saturday, October 8, 2005 9:03 AM

INEVITABLEBETRAYAL


What I find funny about this (somewhat like finding the video of the guy getting hit in the crotch with a football: painful+funny) is the way the Browncoat community got it's hopes WAY too high on this one. Can't even tell you how many times I heard "It'll be the next Star Wars" (or the even more ridiculous, "It'll be even BIGGER than Star Wars!"). I tried to keep my hopes modest--moderate success, but enough for a franchise. And I'm not even seeing that. I've been snippy with my wife for about 10 days, and couldn't figure it out. I finally realized that I'm so disappointed by how the numbers are coming out that I'm taking that disappointment out on her (bad on me, yeah). But god--it feels like there's been a death in the family.

_______________________________________________
I wish I had a magical wish-granting plank.

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Saturday, October 8, 2005 9:43 AM

TJACK


I'm going to say some unpopular things, unfortunatly they're also true.
Though I loved the movie, if you aren't a fan of the show you don't have the emotional connection to the characters to give a damn what happens to them.
Even worse, nowadays Box Office numbers are generated by teenagers seeing the same movie over and over again(i.e. Titanic) and Serenity is too tough(well written) for the average teen to understand.
In short ...We're Doomed.

No matter what happens, they can't take this away from us.

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Saturday, October 8, 2005 9:52 AM

JASONZZZ




Well, all things being equal... All I'm saying is , there is no difference to me between the two processes. At the end, it's making decisions based on what you assume and interpret to be sufficient information.

If all you know are the actors, then what's the difference in making the decision based on what you know (well, "think" you know anyways) and having the decision made for you or being "influenced" by it?

You are saying that the difference is:
1) knowing just one piece of information (your mom only knowing the actor for example) is merely being influenced by it.
2) and implying that perhaps finding out more or "knowing" more can help her make the decision.

The assumption being that the *is* in fact a lot of difference between simply being influenced into a decision and making a decision on your own. She made a decision either way - no one "forced" her, right? It *is* her decision to make.

There is also an assumption that should she have *more information*, perhaps she would make the "right" decision. Implying that she would likely made a less worthy decision or worse - a wrong decision...

My point is this:

Even having slightly more information to which you assume you possessed does not a better or more worthy decision it make. The thing is, it's all flawed data based on assumptions and interpretations. You equate a dozen different things that you assumpted would be the same in the movie without knowing really what the movie is. Average joe/jane (or your mom) maybe use 1 or 2 of these types of assumptions for data points (Oh, I liked how Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt in that other movie, maybe they'll bring the same type of emotional portrayal..)... Well, what's the difference?

It doesn't matter if you have one piece of flawed data or 12 million pieces of it. Any decisions based on them would end up more or less being no better than not having any information - in most cases, likely worse. Unless if you do in fact possess actual knowledge of the final product - that's real data based on real evaluations of the real product; it *is* all flawed data. All things being equal, my recommendation is that decisions based on even more flawed data point takes it even further away from the random decision based on throwing darts at a board. At the end, there is this complete set of assumptions of what the outcome might be that likely isn't going to match up with reality...

That being said, this is all very completely different from valid regression analysis.






Quote:

Originally posted by christhecynic:
You’re making too many assumptions, I said she only knew the actors and I meant it, this is a person I know, she is my mother after all, and I have this information because she told me. Could she have lied to me? Sure. But I think it is more likely that when she said all she knew about the movie in question, Two For the Money, was the actors in it I believed her. When she has told me the same about movies before I believed her.

As for the information I had, I think you can say that I had a fair amount more. If you want to really get into it the information I had was the same amount I had about the Borne Supremacy having seen the Borne Identity, which is a hell of a lot more than I knew about the movie Laserhawk after going to see the movie Star Wars.

Knowing the characters, how the actors play the characters, the setting and the basic style are important things, and these I knew before Serenity. How did I know it? The same way I knew how Harrison Ford would play Han Solo in The Empire Strikes Back after seeing Star Wars.

You say that I didn’t have any information going in, but I did, and you know it.

-

Of course who is in a movie, and who is making it effects my decision, but it doesn’t make my decision. An example is Wonderwoman.

I can honestly say that I like or love every single thing Joss has done that I have seen, but that does not make me want to go see Wonderwoman in the least. In fact I don’t even plan to find out more about it.

If I wanted to see the movie Joss being involved would make me want to see it more, and if I were on the fence Joss’ involvement would probably be enough to push me to watch it, but Joss’s involvement alone I nowhere near enough.

I’m not saying that I’m objective. I’m remotely not objective. I am saying that there is a difference between letting who is involved in a movie influence your decision and letting it make your decision. I’m also saying that it seems like many people, perhaps most, let such things make the decision, and that makes it difficult for things like Serenity.

I'm not even saying that my way is the right way, I'm just saying that the way many others do it makes things harder for us.



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Saturday, October 8, 2005 9:55 AM

JASONZZZ


Quote:

Originally posted by reallykaylee:
it's been raining non-stop for two days on the east coast!

shakespeare: more words than God.



That's right, the entire eastern seaboard is socked... Does that usually keep folks away from the cinemas there?



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Saturday, October 8, 2005 10:00 AM

REALLYKAYLEE


nope! it sends 'em running!! bro and me going tonight and my entire family tomorrow (they say they're going to see wallace and gromit- but i'm sure as anything not! )

guys i love you all! i heart wallace and gromit sooo much- i want you to know the kind of dedication that this takes! but then who couldn't resist some more nathan and adam and sean and well you get the point!

ps- at fandango it says nothing about firefly in the review. good. also has us as #2 at the moment.

shakespeare: more words than God.

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Saturday, October 8, 2005 2:18 PM

CHRISTHECYNIC


Quote:

Originally posted by Jasonzzz:
You are saying that the difference is:
1) knowing just one piece of information (your mom only knowing the actor for example) is merely being influenced by it.
2) and implying that perhaps finding out more or "knowing" more can help her make the decision.


No, that is not at all what I'm saying. In terms of terminology that is the exact opposite of what I am saying, when it comes to actual meaning it’s a bit harder to tell exactly how far off you are.

But I have given up, I’ve said everything as simply as I can and that’s obviously not good enough. I am sorry I totally failed to communicate what I meant, but I’m not going to try again.

Since that is the heart of the matter responding to the rest of what you said is basically pointless

However, I would like to point out the following anyway:
Quote:

Even having slightly more information to which you assume you possessed does not a better or more worthy decision it make.
I said that, you can go and check if you like.

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Saturday, October 8, 2005 4:29 PM

REALLYKAYLEE


good news: theatre packed at my showing despite huge crowds for wallace and gromit. and i sat in front of the people who i sat behind last week! we're becoming fast friends!

bad news: there are bigger problems than wash dying. like, oh say, real people with cancer who are this '-' close to dying.


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Saturday, October 8, 2005 4:33 PM

CHRISTHECYNIC


Quote:

Originally posted by reallykaylee:
bad news: there are bigger problems than wash dying. like, oh say, real people with cancer who are this '-' close to dying.


I doubt anyone here hasn't lost at least one loved on in a traumatic way, but just because it hurts more to lose a real flesh and blood person doesn't mean it does not hurt to lose someone who was made real in your imagination.

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Saturday, October 8, 2005 4:49 PM

MALI


1. I don't think it's fair to fault the marketing team--I think they did pretty well with the budget they had, and they tried some new and daring strategies.

2. One of the most important things I'm taking away from this is that we on the Internet tend to overestimate our importance. I love the communicative possibilities of the net, but there's a big world out there, where most people live.

3. Serenity is an excellent film, with terrific reviews--regardless of box office data. I want it to do well too, but if it doesn't--well, it's still an excellent film that Joss should be proud of. And don't forget the Rocky Horror factor ($112 million to date) -- who knows how long Serenity will be selling....

m.

~ Scootch over, Wash! ~

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Saturday, October 8, 2005 6:18 PM

RODASH


I agree with you Fireflyfan278.

Select to view spoiler:


The decision to kill Wash ended the series for me as well. I did not like it, I did not agree with it, and I will not be seeing the movie again because of it






Hope is the best and last of all things. Without it there is only time......and death is the only escape of time.

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Sunday, October 9, 2005 2:40 AM

REALLYKAYLEE


Quote:

Originally posted by christhecynic:
Quote:

Originally posted by reallykaylee:
bad news: there are bigger problems than wash dying. like, oh say, real people with cancer who are this '-' close to dying.


I doubt anyone here hasn't lost at least one loved on in a traumatic way, but just because it hurts more to lose a real flesh and blood person doesn't mean it does not hurt to lose someone who was made real in your imagination.



chris- i won't even begin to tell you about my late afternoon before i went to the show . . .
it makes it embarassing to think of how i first mourned wash.

shakespeare: more words than God.

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Sunday, October 9, 2005 2:55 AM

CHRISTHECYNIC


Quote:

Originally posted by mali:
1. I don't think it's fair to fault the marketing team--I think they did pretty well with the budget they had, and they tried some new and daring strategies.

I agree, with Fox you can really get justifiably pissed off at the advertising, not so much with Universal. The strategy looked good, and with this kind of a movie it’s hard to sell with a trailer, word of mouth is the best bet.

I’m pissed off that the experiment failed, and I wish they’d just gone with traditional and just taken the risk because now that we see what the daring strategy achieved that seems preferable.

That doesn’t make me pissed at the marketing team, they did what they thought would work and they actually had good reason to think it would work. It seemed like we were spreading like a plague.

Quote:

2. One of the most important things I'm taking away from this is that we on the Internet tend to overestimate our importance. I love the communicative possibilities of the net, but there's a big world out there, where most people live.
Quote:

That really is true, and it’s bad thing. We got a lot of active people on the net, we tend to think there is a larger silent crowd out there that may or may not exist, and we forget that not everyone reads the reviews of Serenity.

Sure people say great things that might make a lot of people go if they read them, but just because we read those reviews doesn’t mean others will.

Quote:

3. Serenity is an excellent film, with terrific reviews--regardless of box office data. I want it to do well too, but if it doesn't--well, it's still an excellent film that Joss should be proud of. And don't forget the Rocky Horror factor ($112 million to date) -- who knows how long Serenity will be selling....
I really think we should think about the present for the moment and not a hopeful future. Keep on trying to get people to go, the worst that can happen is that they don’t, and that would happen anyway.

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Sunday, October 9, 2005 2:57 AM

BROWNCOAT1

May have been the losing side. Still not convinced it was the wrong one.


Quote:

Originally posted by Haken:
Here are a couple of factors that no one has brought up.

- Serenity didn't have a big name star. Flightplan had Jodie Foster. That name alone will bring in the numbers regardless of whether the movie was good or not. And from what I've read and heard, Flightplan isn't all that great of a movie. People just want to see Jodie Foster in a movie.

- Serenity didn't have a big name director. Sure, Joss Whedon is real big in fandom, but other than that, few have heard of him.

Hate to say this, but the "average" moviegoer usually decide on what to watch based on who made it and who is in it. That's why good movies that didn't do well at the theaters usually do very well on DVD.





Excellent points Haken. Both are very true & are probably lending to the less than stellar showings at the box office.

__________________________________________

"May have been the losing side. Still not convinced it was the wrong one."

Richmond, VA & surrounding area Firefly Fans:

http://tv.groups.yahoo.com/group/richmondbrowncoats/

http://www.richmondbrowncoats.org


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Sunday, October 9, 2005 3:18 AM

FUTANTS


Quote:

Originally posted by fireflyfan278:
First,

Select to view spoiler:


I saw no point to the death of Wash.


Second, if I missed the point, then I will have just missed it. I have a standard policy:

Select to view spoiler:


I hate movies that kill off the good guys and I never go see a movie again that I hated the first time. I see so many people on this site writing that they cried. I didn't. It pissed me off. I don't cry when I get angry. Enough tragedy happens in real life that I don't want it in my movies(and maybe I've had too much in mine to want more in my movies).



I've seen it once. I have no plans to see it again. I have no plans to buy or watch the DVD. I'm on my fourth viewing of the Firefly DVD's that I got about a month ago so I'm a big fan. But for me the Firefly series is the extent of the verse in which Serenity flies.




it seems you are new to Joss Whedon
he doesn't cater to simple fans and fans that can't deal w/ when his material reflects reality

if you want that crap, go watch your average Hollywood action movie.I find it amusing that you'll continue to watch Firefly on dvd,meanwhile being the exact opposite of what a Whedon fan should be like.To continue to watch Firefly, as if what happened in Serenity never happened is asinine, and you're placing yourself in a state of denial.

Keeping things "safe" and blocking characters from realistic danger is the exact opposite of what Joss is, and has always been about, so to whine about what happened in Serenity is also asinine....since you should've prepared yourself for that reality!



and to reply to your first spoiler, here's the answer...

it was an accident lol so how was there no point? That's like saying there was no point to any accident that's ever happened on film.

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