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Wednesday, July 6, 2022

Tom Cruise, Harrison Ford… Hollywood trusts its stars. But how many do you have left?

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The first time we saw Tom Cruise fly an F-18 fighter on the big screen was 36 years ago. Almost three decades have passed since doctors Alan Grant (Sam Neill), Ellie Sattler (Laura Dern) and Ian Malcolm (Jeff Goldblum) discovered the charms – and dangers – of Jurassic Parkand more than four leads Jamie Lee Curtis on the run from the Michael Myers menace in the saga Halloween. Ewan McGregor also pulls out the lightsaber after 20 years (between The Phantom Menace and the current series Obi Wan) Patrick Stewart is captain of the business (in the last picard, after the eighties Star Trek: The Next Generation) and Tobey Maguire regains his spider sense (in Spider-Man: No Way Home 19 years after his spider-man). It shouldn’t come as a surprise, then, that next summer Harrison Ford and Michael Keaton are once again attempting to win over the public by dusting off the costumes of Indiana Jones and Batman, respectively. Cruise will not miss the appointment with the seventh part either Impossible Mission and the well-deserved streak of campaigning for the return of classic Hollywood stars. Exactly when the industry needed it most.

With more than 700 million euros raised worldwide – and counting -, Top Gun: Maverick Not only has it become the most successful film of Tom Cruise’s four-decade career, it’s also a rare one to warn that turned the foundations of the Mecca of cinema upside down. In an industry dominated by superhero franchises and fantasy sagas, fueled by the push of the stream and the impact of a pandemic whose impact continues to weigh on seat sales, the global success of this sequel justifies a way of making and promoting films that seemed doomed to extinction.

rated from Unicorn, He is the only one of the big names who continues to refuse to star in a film set to be released on digital platforms first. Nor has he succumbed to the rise of the series or millionaire checks from Marvel, he devotes his efforts to filming increasingly risky action scenes and travels the world (from Mexico to Japan to Cannes or an aircraft carrier in California) touting the enthusiasm a newcomer, his latest release. “Eat, sleep and dream this job,” a former Paramount executive said of him.

Tom Cruise at the Japan premiere of Top Gun: MaverickKen Ishii (Getty Images for Paramount Pictures)

“The Tom Cruise case is special because he is someone who is very popular with the media, who cares about him and whose career is highly valued by the public. He is very involved in both the shooting and the promotion and all this leaves an impression on the viewer,” confirms Fernando Lobo, Promoter of Embajadores Cinemas. At the helm of one of the youngest theaters in Madrid, the exhibitor assures that the success of films such as Top Gun: Maverick depends on the recovery of the film industry as a whole. “For the humble cinemas to work first, the big Hollywood films that move en masse millions of people have to do it first. Once they get a taste for the space again, they’ll turn to other cinematic alternatives. The veteran public in Spain continues to be the most reluctant to return.” Precisely one of the film’s biggest milestones about US Navy aviators is its premiere coverage of viewers over the age of 35 (up to 55% of the total), a demographic stratum which is still struggling to return to its place after the pandemic.

Since its premiere in late May, it’s the only film to end Cruise’s dominance at the box office Jurassic World: Dominion. The umpteenth part of the saga also contributes to the nostalgic factor: almost 30 years after the premiere, it finds the original main trio again as conspicuous supporting characters. The formula seems to have worked for him. It was the best opening weekend for a non-superhero film since the pandemic shut down theaters around the world. “Stars breathe new life into well-known franchises and give audiences a familiar and reassuring presence,” says Gregg Goldstein, a journalist for magazines such as diversitywho thinks that like sam neill is coming back Jurassic world “It allows different generations of the same family to watch the sequel together.”

The attempt a Déjà-vu among viewers is an unrelenting target among studios. Disney lined their pockets with the return of Luke, Leia, and Han Solo Star Wars: The Force Awakens (2015). And in recent months we’ve seen the resurgence of the original cast of legendary franchises such as Ghostbusters, Matrix, Scream either Donkey. A subgenre in her own right, Sandra Bullock made a triumphant return to adventure comedy this year The Lost City. This week we saw a dramatic split from toy story with the precursor light yearthe same path that Universal will take in a few weeks Minions: The Origin of Gru.

Sandra Bullock and Channing Tatum star in The Lost City.
Sandra Bullock and Channing Tatum star in The Lost City.

lack of ideas? Show of force in the face of the onslaught of stream? For film critic Tim Grierson, the motivation for this trend is Hollywood’s relentless commitment to continuing its successful franchises. “People want to see actors repeat their roles, even when they’re older,” he argues. In his opinion, the characters weigh more than the actors themselves, with Tom Cruise and Sandra Bullock being honorable exceptions to the rule: “They came from a time when the industry cared more about its stars than about brands. People go to the movies for the love of movies, but often the franchise itself is more important than who is in it. They are an anomaly,” he adds to this medium.

The influence of Top Gun: Maverick led to the publication of dozens of articles and even polls asking the same question: “Is Tom Cruise the last great movie star?” The actor’s record over the past few decades speaks for itself, despite his controversial affiliation with the Church of Scientology, but also hints at a possible lack of generational renewal. Names like Tom Holland, Zendaya, Dwayne Johnson, Margot Robbie or Robert Pattinson have enjoyed undeniable success in recent years, but most have relied on million-dollar franchises rather than original stories driven by the appeal of their protagonists were reinforced. The actor donning the superhero cape in front of a green screen seems to mean little, and to imagine the current crop reaping historic blockbusters like Cruise 36 years from now seems utopian.

Goldstein claims that given the current cultural context, there is no other way out for new talent: “Younger actors need to join these projects to become famous.” Grierson agrees – “that’s the only way they’ll be giants” – citing as evidence the recent example of Rachel Zegler or Ariana DeBose, two revelation actresses of the make new from Westside Story who have signed The hunger Games Y Kraven the Hunter (Marvel). For his part, Fernando Lobo focuses on the media paradigm shift that the stars of tomorrow are experiencing: “With artists like Tom Holland or Zendaya, thanks to their social networks, you can now check what they are doing at any time. In the past, you either saw them in the cinema or you didn’t. That mysterious halo is gone.

Cruise, who subscribes to absolute opacity regarding his life off the sets, is also the exception in this area and limits his Instagram account to it marketing stricter. All we know about him is that he can climb the wing of an airplane, fly a fighter jet or hang himself from a prominent skyscraper; anything to keep us entertained when the lights go down.

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Source elpais.com

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