Disney’s John Carter (of Mars); It’s not over yet
You don’t have to be a sci-fi nerd or an Edgar Rice Burroughs scholar to appreciate this detailed analysis of a business venture gone wrong. If you’re a fan of Disney’s John Carter, you’ll enjoy Seller’s meticulous research that chronicles what went awry with this movie and how sequels could still be made. If you’re interested in Hollywood behind the scenes stories or have ever worked in corporate America, you’ll find this book an entertaining read that’s complete with Hollywood big egos, ignorant executives and corporate back stabbing.
After one read through, there was just one question that I felt was left unanswered – who on the Disney team decided that the JC marketing campaign would make no clear connection or use of the ERB name and the 100 year old origin and influence of the original books? I thought this omission was the biggest marketing blunder of all. If I missed that answer in the main part of the book, I didn’t see it covered in the “Accountability: What Were they Thinking?” chapter.
Written by a film industry insider, this is a book that should appeal to anyone with an interest in how movies are (or should be) marketed. Michael D. Sellers’ treatise covers behind-the-scenes aspects that the typical moviegoer likely has never considered. Sellers writes authoritatively and makes a strong case that Hollywood should not dismiss the possibility of returning again to Edgar Rice Burroughs’ source novels about Mars. While Disney’s “John Carter” may have had storytelling deficiencies, Sellers’ work shines as an example of eloquent writing backed by solid research.