Actor Ben Affleck just hinted that “The Last Duel” may become his last theatrical release.
The Ridley Scott-directed medieval piece packed some serious star power with Matt Damon, Adam Driver, and Jodie Comer leading the cast, but the film was a box office flop, only making a mere $10 million on a $100 million budget.
Scott blamed “apathetic millennials” for the box office bomb when he appeared on the WTF podcast, saying, “I think what it boils down to — what we’ve got today [are] the audiences who were brought up on these f—ing cellphones. The millennian [sic] do not ever want to be taught anything unless you’re told it on a cellphone.”
Affleck defended Scott’s remarks, including the time he told a reporter to “go f— yourself, sir,” at a press junket.
Ben Affleck Defends Ridley Scott’s Criticism Of Younger Audiences
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Affleck laughed off the harsh telling-off that Scott gave the reporter by telling The Hollywood Reporter, “I mean, let’s be honest, who hasn’t wanted to say that in a press junket?”
In terms of Scott’s criticism of millennials, Affleck defended the director by saying, “Ridley is at the stage in his career, where, obviously, he’s completely unencumbered by concerns about what people think.”
However, he does think that some criticism of “The Last Duel” is unwarranted.
“This movie, ‘The Last Duel,’ I really like,” Affleck continued. “It’s good and it plays — I saw it play with audiences and now it’s playing well on streaming. It wasn’t one of those films that you say, ‘Oh boy, I wish my movie had worked.’ Instead, this is more due to a seismic shift that I’m seeing, and I’m having this conversation with every single person I know. Though there are various iterations, the conversation is the same: How is [the movie business] changing?”
Ben Affleck Reveals ‘The Last Duel’ Might Be His Last Theatrical Release
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Affleck said that the box office flop made him think “Well, that’s probably the last theatrical release I’ll have” as audiences shy away from theaters to stream new releases at home, according to The Playlist.
He added, “One of the fundamental ways it’s changing is that the people who want to see complicated, adult, non-IP dramas are the same people who are saying to themselves, ‘You know what? I don’t need to go out to a movie theater because I’d like to pause it, go to the bathroom, finish it tomorrow.’ It’s that, along with the fact that you can watch with good quality at home.”
“The theatrical experience is great, I love the theatrical experience, but the business has changed over time,” he continued. “First it was Vaudeville, and then silent pictures, and then the talkies, and then color, and the radio came out and everybody said it was going to kill movies. TV came out and everybody said it would kill movies. Every time it’s the same, people watch stories that move them in different ways [on different platforms]. I think that’s okay.”