The director of a depressing movie blames the ELO song in the trailer for the movie tanking at the box office.
"When you hear an ELO song in the trailer, it means that the movie is quirky, funny, and hip," said director, Sam Rutger. "Why they chose to promote my movie, "A Long, Slow, Painful Death," with Mr. Blue Sky by ELO, I'll never know," added Rutger.
His film, "A Long, Slow, Painful Death," is a four-hour epic detailing the final days of a dying man as his body and mind wither away and ultimately breakdown. There was nothing quirky about it.
But the director thinks people's opinions of the movie were swayed by the trailer.
"People go to movies based on the type of song that is played during the trailer. The song tells them what kind of movie it is. Katrina and the Waves’ Walking on Sunshine means it’s a family comedy. Let My Love Open the Door by Pete Townsend means it’s a romantic comedy; Born to Be Wild by Steppenwolf is a buddy pic; and Mr. Blue Sky by ELO says quirky. It’s as simple as that.”
“For the record,” said Rutger, “I wanted to go with Solsbury Hill by Peter Gabriel. That means it’s a melancholy movie with a sad but uplifting ending.”
Film-goer Jefferson Jeffries said he went to the movie based on the trailer, which featured Mr. Blue Sky playing over scenes of the old man sitting in a hospital bed with tubes out of his nose and mouth.
"I saw the ad, and while it didn't look quirky, I thought, maybe they’re just not showing the quirky parts in the trailer,” said Jeffries. “The movie has to be quirky – it just has to be, I thought. Boy, was I wrong! What a rip off."
Fans like Jeffries, who were fooled into attending based on the song, quickly spread the word that the movie was NOT quirky. Once word got out, box office receipts tanked and the film bombed.
Rutger is hoping for better results with his next movie, the light-hearted kids romp, “Harry Hinklehoffer and the Giant Dancing Toad of East Nebraska.” He already has his song picked out, ABC, by the Jackson 5. “Nothing says family fun like ABC,” said Rutger.