Warner Brothers and Tarzan have just taken a significant hit in the first battle to establish a favorable narrative for Tarzan 2016. Establishing a favorable narrative is hugely important; we all know what happened when the negativity for John Carter took over and created a toxic atmosphere for the release. The same thing just started for Tarzan. Interested parties can help WB do “reputation management” for Tarzan by joining the discussion and commenting on the various articles that are comig out. Read on if you’re inclined to help.
It started with this negative Hollywood Reporter piece by Kim Masters and continued with all the links below, which picked up on the Masters piece and amplified it. The comments to these articles are a battlegraound for the buzz, positive or negative, for the movie. At the moment it’s skewing heavily negative. A few hundred or even a few dozen committed fans can make a difference by commenting intelligently on these articles to counteract the impact of a lot of the negative comments. Here is a selection of the negative comments that need to be countered — these are just from Cinemablend and IGN, the first two links on the list below: “I didn’t even know this film was in the works. Not that I cared, there are like seven thousand Tarzan movies and maybe like a dozen of them are any good, but still, you’d think if they have an arguably famous franchise as this one you’d think they’d consider promoting it.” “180 million dollars for Tarzan?! WTF?! C’mon Warner Bros.! NOBODY cares about Tarzan anymore!!!! Save that big budget money for my DC movies!” “making a new tarzan movie was just a bad idea” IGN: “Cancel Tarzan, those movies always suck…the dude was popular in the 30s, no one cares anymore.” “Does anybody give a sh!t?” “Hollywood seems determined to revive these old school properties. (Pan, Lone Ranger, John Connor) Can anyone think of a successful one? I’m trying but failing. Maybe Sherlock Holmes?” “Is anyone wanting new Tarzan? Between Greystoke and Disney’s Tarzan, it seems like the property’s been well covered. “”Do we need another Tarzan movie? Not really imo. Hope to see the other movie do well, my wife loves the writers work (ie: Harry Potter & everything else).” “Literally no one wants a Tarzan movie, stupidest story” “Disney covered the fun side, and Greystoke covered the dramatic side of Tarzan. Highly doubtful they’ll do it better.”
So … I’m just saying. These early articles, and the comments that accompany them, are what sets the tone of good buzz or bad buzz for this or any movie. If you read the comments and are satisfied with what’s being said — no need to say anything. If you feel that what’s being said isn’t on target — then join the discussion. As it is now, the “Tarzan is a dumb idea” crowd has the upper hand and that’s the narrative that’s getting established.
One final disclaimer. JCF isn’t affiliated with WB or, for that matter, Edgar Rice Burroughs, Inc or anything like that. So in suggesting that fans comment — this isn’t studio trolling. In fact implicit in this call to action is criticism of the studio for a) letting this happen (it was forseeable) and b) doing nothing about it. So, just keep that in mind. That said — we are a friend of the project, a friend of the Edgar Rice Burroughs fan community and a friend of ERB Inc and the Burroughs family. We want the film to succeed and are rooting it on — but also holding the studio accountable when necessary, just as was attempted, unsuccessfully, with John Carter.
So go to these links and comment if you feel compelled to so. Just say what you think (and be positive — don’t get drawn into ‘hater’ exchanges).