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Hollywood now views action movies stars as disposable (New York Times)

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SwiftDeath

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Failed? Seems more like a feature than a bug. With increasingly rare exceptions, the studios don't want to pay an actor eight figures per film.

They want name recognition, they want to be able to put random guy A in a picture and sell the movie on his name.

What modern actors have the kind of sway that throwing some of the big actors back in the day into a movie did?
 

inm8num2

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I guess you could say they're...Expendable...

 

ivysaur12

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It may be a bit early to say that.

He's had a pretty great television career already for someone his age. He's extremely attractive and has a good screen presence. Not to mention he'll end up headlining a long-running television series. No question he's set.
 

Father_Brain

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They want name recognition, they want to be able to put random guy A in a picture and sell the movie on his name.

What modern actors have the kind of sway that throwing some of the big actors back in the day into a movie did?

That primarily applies to blockbusters that aren't based on existing IP, and while such films won't completely disappear anytime soon, they're much rarer than they were 15 or 20 years ago.
 

Rookje

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All of those movies/tv shows are basically glorified alpha male worship. All brawn and no substance. I'm a huge marvel fan, but the only movie I really liked was Iron Man. Mostly cause of RDJ's personality. Hemsworth is great, but Thor is just kind of uninteresting. He's a God.

GAF doesn't exactly help, they always analyze the size of the actor's biceps than the plot. "He doesn't look big enough" I've seen numerous times in superhero movie threads.
 

demon

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I'm not big on the action movies, but I get the sense that Hollywood has been trying to create action stars by taking a handsome face and pumping him full of steroids and chicken breast and throwing him in a stupid comic book movie, and then they wonder why nobody gives a shit about him. Charisma is more important than looks/muscles, as well as actually having good roles/movies.
 

SwiftDeath

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That primarily applies to blockbusters that aren't based on existing IP, and while such films won't completely disappear anytime soon, they're much rarer than they were 15 or 20 years ago.

Hollywood is still using the same playbook but instead of trying to make it work on actors names, they upsell the directors and often even do voodoo with the executive producers being someone "interesting" simply because the actors of modern times don't carry the same weight as the older generations did.
 

UrokeJoe

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I'm not big on the action movies, but I get the sense that Hollywood has been trying to create action stars by taking a handsome face and pumping him full of steroids and chicken breast and throwing him in a stupid comic book movie, and then they wonder why nobody gives a shit about him. Charisma is more important than looks/muscles, as well as actually having good roles/movies.

If only we could inject charisma.
 

mr2xxx

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30 lbs of muscle in 6 weeks lol. Not even with steroids would that be possible.
 

Father_Brain

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They're disposable because a memorable action star hasn't come along in years


I mean the biggest action star in Hollywood is 60 year old Liam Nielsen

And the two Taken films had budgets of $25m and $45m, respectively. Not blockbusters by any means, at least not in the sense that this article is about.
 
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That's unfortunate.

The best action stars are still those of the 80's and 90's.

Like I pretty much will watch anything with Arnold or stalone or willis
 

fertygo

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And Dwayne Johnson still one of biggest star right now, these mediocre guys just don't have charisma.
 

ZeroGravity

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All of those movies/tv shows are basically glorified alpha male worship. All brawn and no substance. I'm a huge marvel fan, but the only movie I really liked was Iron Man. Mostly cause of RDJ's personality. Hemsworth is great, but Thor is just kind of uninteresting. He's a God.

GAF doesn't exactly help, they always analyze the size of the actor's biceps than the plot. "He doesn't look big enough" I've seen numerous times in superhero movie threads.
If you're playing an existing, pre-established character, you should probably look at least somewhat like that character, including their build.
 

BadAss2961

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And Dwayne Johnson still one of biggest star right now, these mediocre guys just don't have charisma.
I see potential in Momoa. Not Arnold or Stallone type potential, but his look stands out and he has a lot of charisma in interviews. He's not a forgettable baby face like the many others.

He just hasn't landed that right part yet. Maybe one of the rumored DC roles could be it.
 

Sesha

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I would have loved to see Jared Padalecki as Conan. Could you imagine him running around in a loincloth, wielding a big-ass sword, and shouting "You took my father's sword!", at the top of his voice?
 

Warm Machine

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I think we find that good action stars have to first appear in good movies. It took The Terminator to make Arnie not typecast as a barbarian and Stallone had to write Rocky himself. Bruce Willis would have gone back to TV if not for Die Hard making his film career. Kurt Russel needed a bunch of tough guy who doesn't give a shit roles to make him a non Disney actor. After that a handful of good action directors more or less dictated who became stars by their investments in the material.

Never have breakout action stars appeared without at least a decent film to back them up. The last Conan was terrible. Why was Conan a nice guy hanging out with some modern woman?
 

Ridley327

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Are we sure it's not because these guys are just not that memorable?

I think that is more Hollywood's problem than theirs. You look at that side column of the stars they talk about, and they could be the same person. I'm surprised they aren't, really.
 

FairyD

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Somewhere out there a studio executive is dreaming of the day when actors/actresses are as disposable as McDonald workers.
 
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Too much of the same thing. That's the problem with Hollywood. You might say, variety, I'd say lack of quality and maybe most importantly in this instance: their individuality. At one time there were a dependable crop of male and female actors that you could go to delivery the goods. The differences were discernible. They had also done things on the screen or played characters that you can hang on to. Nowadays, anyone, no matter what is thrust into the spotlight because attention spans are short and the next big thing is needed. I'm not going to slight the list of guys drawn for this article for what they can or can't do in front of the camera, but come on, you can swap most of them out and not even notice. The field is completely diluted with a lot of sameness these days. These producers have a one-track mind and keep hitting on the same look hoping for different outcomes. Actor #1 didn't work? get their clone who can do relatively the same thing.
 

teruterubozu

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Whose name can sell a movie nowadays anyway? Downey Jr? Cruise?

RDJ sells only as Iron Man. His last movie, Due Date, with Zach Galafianakis didn't do squat. Another Sherlock is supposedly coming but, come on, Cumberbatch is Sherlock at this point.
 

Sean

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I don't know why Hollywood insists on casting 'young muscular football player types' for all of these action roles.

Bruce Willis looked like your normal everyday guy in Die Hard. Kiefer Sutherland doesn't seem all that intimidating physically but when he snaps into Jack Bauer mode you feel like he could take on anyone. Liam Neeson is friggen 61 years old and probably the most badass action star today.

I realize those examples are all older guys and hollywood execs want younger dudes to lead their big new franchise, but still... I'd like to see these casting directors think outside of the box a little.
 

UrbanRats

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I guess mostof these lack charisma.

I mean i'd rather pay cash to see amovie starring a "nobody" like Yayan Ruhian, than Chris Hemsworth, unless you pay to see him shirtless, but that's a whole other story.
With the former i feel like i'm getting my money worth of talent.
 

ArjanN

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Somewhere out there a studio executive is dreaming of the day when actors/actresses are as disposable as McDonald workers.

Kinda this. It's probably cheaper for them to get a new batch of generic dudes who look the part who they only have to pay a fraction of the money.

Then use the director or the IP as the draw of the movie instead of the stars.
 

Calabi

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Sounds like there trying to increase profit margins. There unable to increase profits externally through prices or more customers so there going for the internal margins. Being careful not to make too big of stars, not giving them many or decent roles and not paying them well. I bet Arnold would have no chance of getting through now. I wouldnt be surprised if this was an offical unwritten strategy through all the studios, similar to the deals in the tech industry where they did a deal not to poach each others staff. Instead they have a list or something of generic throw away people they pick from.
 

NoTacos

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................. Stephen Amell is 32??!? Good lord he ages well. Amell Don't crack.
 

DarkFlow

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Considering the amount of money the Thor films and Avengers pull in, paying Hemsworth $500,000 is a "pittance" when you're talking about that scale of blockbuster money. RDJ is allegedly the only member of the Avengers cast who was paid over a million (and estimates place his total pay for it at around $70 million, because he negotiated an amazing deal after the success of the first Iron Man), and it's said that Evans and Hemsworth were only paid around $250,000 for Avengers, and it took RDJ throwing some weight around to even get Marvel to up their pay beyond that after the movie made a billion dollars.

Yeah, on one hand there's an aspect of "suck it up, you make ten times what we make" with this, but on the other, being Thor is very much a 24/7 job for Hemsworth, because he has to look like Thor. If a series is doing phenomenally well, that should be reflected in the stars' salaries in a proper ratio. The actors are where the proverbial rubber meets the road, after all.
I think that has more to do with Marvel being super cheap.
 

Tragicomedy

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When the producers finally settled on Momoa in 2010, he threw himself into the role, embarking on an intensive six-week training regimen, working out six hours a day — including two hours of samurai sword practice. He ate a boiled chicken breast every two hours or so, roughly 56 per week, and packed on an additional 30 pounds of muscle to his already brawny frame.

So...he used steroids.
 

Booty Patrol

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Well the majority of recent Hollywood action films are disposable, so I suppose the actors in these films also being disposable isn't a surprise.
 

Dr.Acula

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I don't know why Hollywood insists on casting 'young muscular football player types' for all of these action roles.

Bruce Willis looked like your normal everyday guy in Die Hard. Kiefer Sutherland doesn't seem all that intimidating physically but when he snaps into Jack Bauer mode you feel like he could take on anyone. Liam Neeson is friggen 61 years old and probably the most badass action star today.

I realize those examples are all older guys and hollywood execs want younger dudes to lead their big new franchise, but still... I'd like to see these casting directors think outside of the box a little.

Like the article in the op says, any actor can "bulk up" if sufficiently motivated, look at Christian Bale. Trying to scout high school athletes and saying they'll be movie stars just because they're ripped is pretty backwards. You can look like the Rock, but if you've got the charisma of John Cena, you're going nowhere. That's why Willis and Neeson are so great. Any big dude can convince you he's big, but it's something else entirely to convince you he's got a particular set of skills, so yippee-ki-yay motherfucker.
 

Tragicomedy

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Why do you say that?

After seeing the 300 regimen I can't doubt numbers like that.

You don't doubt that an already muscular man can put on 30 pounds of muscle in 6 weeks? Based on a crossfit-like 300 workout where all the guys were using gear, and they had makeup applied to accentuate their abs in the film?

The McDonald Model (the dude coaches bodybuilders for a living) says that an average beginner can max out at roughly 25 pounds of muscle gain in a year. We're supposed to believe an already accomplished bodybuilder naturally put on more than that in 6 weeks?!?

Even using steroids, I find the claim extremely dubious.
 

FStop7

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I've seen Momoa in two roles:

Stargate: Atlantis. Brooding rageaholic badass dude who grouses about everything.

Game of Thrones: Brooding rageaholic badass dude who rapes his child bride until she loves him and then dies.

Not exactly dynamic characters. Seems like a totally cool dude IRL though!
 

Decado

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I see potential in Momoa. Not Arnold or Stallone type potential, but his look stands out and he has a lot of charisma in interviews. He's not a forgettable baby face like the many others.

He just hasn't landed that right part yet. Maybe one of the rumored DC roles could be it.

Conan should have been it, but Lionsgate spent a ton of money yet failed to spend where it really counts: on the director and screen writer. So they wound up with a shit script and a shit director and low-and-behold, a poor film. I don't blame Momoa for a weak performance...it's likely a result of the direction, as is often the case, I suspect.
 
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