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Steven Spielberg Says ‘Lincoln’ Was Almost An HBO Project, Warns Of Film Industry “Implosion”

Steven Spielberg Says 'Lincoln' Was Almost An HBO Project, Warns Of Film Industry "Implosion"

It’s becoming pretty obvious what the trend of 2013 is, at least in the film world. That trend would be filmmakers sharing their opinions on the current state of cinema and their predictions for what the future of cinema could entail. This time around, it’s George Lucas and Steven Spielberg. They recently visited the USC School of Cinematic Arts to help tout the opening of their new Interactive Media Building. While there, they spoke of the current state of cinema, with Spielberg predicting that a sea of change in the film industry is simply inevitable… we’re sure the film students in the audience were just thrilled to hear that. Sorry kids.

Spielberg elaborates further. “There’s eventually going to be an implosion — or a big meltdown. There’s going to be an implosion where three or four or maybe even a half-dozen megabudget movies are going to go crashing into the ground, and that’s going to change the paradigm.” He then predicts that blockbuster and franchise movies will command premiere ticket prices (get ready to pay $25 for stuff like “Man Of Steel“), while smaller scale dramas will become rarer and rarer. “I think eventually the ‘Lincoln‘s will go away and they’re going to be on television,” George Lucas chimed in. “As mine almost was,” Spielberg interjected. “This close — ask HBO — this close.”

Lucas also added that he thinks film exhibition could soon wind up having a Broadway play model, with fewer films released and staying in theaters for longer periods of time, and ticket prices becoming much higher. He also talked of the difficulty these days for filmmakers to get their films into theaters. “We’re talking ‘Lincoln’ and ‘Red Tails‘ — we barely got them into theaters. You’re talking about Steven Spielberg and George Lucas can’t get their movie into a theater,” Lucas said. “The pathway to get into theaters is really getting smaller and smaller.”

Lucas also echoed the sentiments of other filmmakers, claiming that cable television is “much more adventurous” than film nowadays. While all these thoughts and concerns certainly hold water, it’s got to be a bummer for a film student to hear two of the most financially successful filmmakers of all time speak so bleakly about the direction cinema is going into. Perhaps it’s time to turn that script you’ve been working on into a mini-series or a TV show. [THR]

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Gary Ash

But it doesn't tell us WHY this is going to happen. "There's going to be an implosion where maybe half-dozen megabudget movies are going to go crashing into the ground"
What kind of implosion? bought on by what?


I wonder if Transformers 8 will be a part of that implosion, hey steven?


Lol at Lucas trying to include Red Tails in the same sentence as Lincoln.


How much did it costs to make ''Silver Linings Playbook''? compare that to the cost of Lincoln?!?Either way, I too LOVE going to the movies, even though I'm Disabled I try to save money to go see at least one 1st run Movie, i.e. last month it was Star Trek, which I Loved! But when I can't go right away, I go to the $1 movie theater! & Still get butter on my popcorn! Now, who can get me 7minutes w/Mr.Spielberg &/or Mr.Lucas, Its ALL I NEED to EARN just enough to get Off Disability!! REALLY, I'm telling the truth, just 7minutes! Blessings to All!


Good god, these two seems to have absolutely no awareness that they were the filmmakers responsible for the blockbuster model. Jaws and Star Wars changed everything.


There's something so unrewarding about making a movie and your audience is ONLY going to be a bunch of people looking for some time to kill on the couch after getting home from work. Entertainment is entertainment, but it feels more fun if the audience actually left their house to go see your movie.

Seeing the kinds of people who binge-watched Arrested Development for 7 straight hours on Memorial Day made me such a sad panda. Same with the people who watch a season and a half of Breaking Bad in a day. Sad fucking panda.


"Happens every ten years or so… Gets rid of the bad blood."


"three or four or maybe even a half-dozen megabudget movies are going to go crashing into the ground"

How will this happen? Even when they suck, they never seem to go "crashing into the ground".

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