Deadline just reported that Elvis Mitchell has been fired as Movieline.com’s Chief Film Critic, after just over 3 months on the job. Mitchell was hired as Movieline’s Chief Film Critic on January 12th of this year.
So why was he fired? Mitchell’s recent review of Source Code which reportedly contained reference to an item that was in an early draft of the film’s script, but not in the final film Mitchell saw.
Here’s Nikke Finke’s explanation: “A Summit rep tells me that Mitchell was shown a final cut of the film Source Code on February 24th in NYC. His review of the movie appeared on Movieline.com on March 31st. That same day, the pic’s director Duncan Jones tweeted, “Find it odd Movieline choose to complain about Jeffrey Wright smoking a pipe, something in an old draft of the script thats not in the film.” The reference was to what Mitchell had written in his review: “It’s up to Jeffrey Wright, as the administrator supervising the Source Code — the machine that keeps firing Colter back, back, back to the recent past — and his eccentric brio to keep the silliness from piling up like ash from his pipe. That’s how you know this film is science fiction — someone is smoking indoors in the United States — and that Wright is a martinet whose malevolence must be checked.””
So… apparently, Mitchell didn’t even watch the film that he reviewed, and instead reviewed it from an early draft of the script he read???
Movieline of course got a hold of Duncan Jones’ tweet, and questioned Mitchell about it; Mitchell responded, stating that he was at the screening, and that there was a misunderstanding. However, soon after that, Mitchell was terminated, followed by Deadline’s announcement.
Does any of this make any sense? Something’s amiss, and I don’t think we’re getting the full story here. Why would he review a film he hadn’t seen? And what happened between the time he replied to Movieline’s query, saying there was a misunderstanding, and them firing him?
It hasn’t been a good last 5 months for Mitchell has it? Recall, in December, he was dropped from Roger Ebert’s new half-hour At The Movies film review program, which he was supposed to co-host. And I don’t remember if the reasons there were ever publicly detailed, where they?