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But more often than not, audience pre-knowledge of production issues seems to become a hindrance. John Carter was far from a perfect film, but it's unquestionable that nearly a year of embarrassing studio "leaks" about a problematic script, infighting between the producers and director, title changes and breathless reporting about excessive spending created a negative view of the film so pervasive that it poisoned the entire rollout. It certainly colored the initial reviews, with "Was this worth the fortune they spent?" often being a more prominent question than "Is the movie any good?".
Meanwhile, Sony is marketing The Amazing Spider-Man as though it were a sequel instead of a reboot of the franchise (its new tagline is "The untold story!"), and you kind of have to extrapolate that they're trying to dissuade mainstream audiences from fixating on the infamy of its production and the perceived "screwing-over" of previous series-helmer Sam Raimi like the fanboy press and film journos thus far have. Even surefire blockbusters like The Dark Knight Rises aren't immune - it's a virtual certainty that, however successful the film is artistically or commercially, the mainstream entertainment press will be less concerned with Batman's defeat of Bane than they are with whether or not he can beat The Avengers' record-breaking box office.
It also seems to be effecting the way movies get made. Just last week, Paramount Pictures set off an industry-wide earthquake when it yanked the heavily-promoted sequel G.I. Joe: Retaliation from its summer schedule a mere five weeks before release (tickets were already being sold!) allegedly to "post-convert it into 3D" for a new fall release date. Film reporters smelled a rat in that explanation, and now the "truth" begins to look like the new film had apparently been plotted largely around fixing/apologizing to fans for the most commonly vocalized complaints about the first film (see: Cobra Commander in his proper uniform, the presence of more traditional action stars like The Rock and Bruce Willis), a setup whose chore list was alleged to have included writing Channing Tatum's "Duke" out of the series. (Tatum having been resting on the "handsome actors male film geeks feel obligated to despise" list at the time of the original film.)
But a funny thing happened on the way to the sequel: In between wrapping the first G.I. Joe and shooting his (supposed) farewell cameo in the sequel, Tatum went and earned himself box office clout with The Vow and a fresh acceptance by finicky film geeks via 21 Jump Street. With his stock expected to rise even further with the release of Steven Soderberg's male stripper movie Magic Mike, it's now widely believed that Paramount - having axed him for the series in response to hype - is now re-shooting parts of the film in order to bring him back in response to new hype.
It's entirely possible that there's no going back from here - that we're stuck with the foreknowledge of production woes being an omnipresent part of the movie-going narrative from here on out. Maybe that's not a big deal, but I can't help but feel like a certain amount of focus is being lost in gaining all that perspective.