Buscemi's Pros and Cons Part 3: October 2009

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Buscemi's Pros and Cons Part 3: October 2009

Post by Buscemi on Mon Sep 28, 2009 10:40 am

This is the third part of the Pros and Cons series. This time, I will focus on titles opening in October 2009. This time looks surprisingly sparse compared to the last two Octobers (this is mainly due to the delay of Shutter Island and shortage of product caused by the 2007/2008 WGA strike) but some do expect a decent October. I don't really know especially due to the disappointing September that we had but we'll see.

October 2nd

Zombieland
Pros: a decent amount of advertising so far, the film will be getting advertised midnight shows on Thursday night
Cons: horror comedy is box office poison
Box Office: 14/40

Whip It
Pros: Ellen Page, Drew Barrymore
Cons: both the concept of Drew Barrymore directing and roller derby are untested at the box office
Box Office: 10/28

The Invention Of Lying
Pros: Ricky Gervais is considered one of the funniest men on the planet, his co-stars are also well-known
Cons: the film has been delayed since March, the plot/style look similar to the star's previous Ghost Town
Box Office: 5/14

Toy Story Double Feature
Pros: the Toy Story films are classics of the animation genre
Cons: the films are widely available on DVD, a three hour 3-D double feature may not be of interest to families
Box Office: 4/7

October 9th

Couples Retreat
Pros: it is the only film opening that week, the ad campaign seems to be in full force
Cons: will audiences think of it as basically a PG-13 ensemble version of Forgetting Sarah Marshall?
Box Office: 26/85

October 16th

Law Abiding Citizen
Pros: Jamie Foxx and Gerard Butler in familiar territory, the plot looks like a higher-class version of Saw
Cons: the two leads are in a mini-slump at the moment, Overture has had only one film gross over $40 million
Box Office: 25/70

Where The Wild Things Are
Pros: it is based on one of the most acclaimed children's book of all-time, adults seem to be showing interest
Cons: the film has been on the shelf over a year, test screenings were negative and the studio didn't get the reshoots that they wanted, not much interest seems to be coming from children
Box Office: 14/42

The Stepfather
Pros: from the writer and director of the Prom Night remake (a hit from last Spring), it is PG-13 so it could bring in the tweens and younger teens
Cons: horror remakes haven't been faring well lately (Halloween II, Sorority Row)
Box Office: 16/40

October 23rd

Astro Boy
Pros: it's the only truly kid-oriented film of October, the cast has quite a few names in it
Cons: American adaptations of animes haven't fared well at the box office (Speed Racer, Dragonball: Evolution)
Box Office: 18/50

Saw VI
Pros: it's a Saw movie
Cons: Saw is a sinking ship and people simply want the the series to die
Box Office: 17/34

Amelia
Pros: Hilary Swank and Richard Gere have their share of fans, the concept of Amelia Earhart's disappearance is prime film material
Cons: Oscar bait can go either way
Box Office: 11/34

Cirque du Freak: The Vampire's Assistant
Pros: it's based on a best-selling fantasy novel
Cons: this looks like another Seeker debacle where the movie is nothing more than a cash-in
Box Office: 5/12

The Nightmare Before Christmas 3-D
Pros: the Tim Burton minions will probably show up
Cons: they have been reissuing this every year since 2006 and no one showed up last year
Box Office: 1/2

October 28th

Michael Jackson's This Is It

Pros: it's Michael Jackson in a 3-D concert film from the director of the High School Musical movies, early footage looks fantastic
Cons: this seems more like U2 3D than Hannah Montana
Box Office: 11/20

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Re: Buscemi's Pros and Cons Part 3: October 2009

Post by BanksIsDaFuture on Mon Sep 28, 2009 11:42 am

I agree with you on just about everything, except for This Is It, Saw VI, and Where The Wild Things Are.

On Whip It, I think 10/40 is hopeful, at best.

I would flip flop the numbers for Law Abiding Citizen and Where The Wild Things Are...

I won't bet against Saw until it shows some sort of fatigue at the BO. Consistently has a $30M OW, why not now?
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Re: Buscemi's Pros and Cons Part 3: October 2009

Post by Buscemi on Mon Sep 28, 2009 12:00 pm

Saw is a sinking ship. The box office has been down since Saw III. And the series has seemingly run its course with Saw V. Saw VI basically looks like an attempt for money and I think the gambit will fail. Also, other sixth installments of horror films (Friday the 13th Part VI, Halloween 6) had disappointing box office numbers when they opened.

I still think that the whole "Where The Wild Things Are is too scary for small children" thing will end up hurting its numbers along with the indie movie-esque ad campaign. The film will do fine with older audiences, it's just that small children either won't see it or they will be too scared to enjoy it. The parents will kill it, not the reviews.

And the thing with This Is It is the fact that a lot of people don't seem to care about Michael Jackson. When he died, I seemed to hear more people against him than for him. But then again, those people were white people who think that Nickelback is a great band. And the film reminds me more of U2 3D because it is not a ready-made film for a certain audience like Hannah Montana was. U2 3D was an experimental concert film made solely for U2 fans. This Is It is a 3-D concert film feature an famed eccentric musician made solely for Michael Jackson fans. Another similar film would be Shine A Light. That was an IMAX concert film made with fans of The Rolling Stones in mind. And that film flopped as well.

So what I'm saying is that if you are a real musician in a concert film, then it will probably flop. Just ask U2, The Rolling Stones, Prince, The Beastie Boys, Snoop Dogg (in those rap documentaries he did in the 1990's) or AC/DC. The one exception in the last thirty years (besides the manufactured Hannah Montana) is probably Madonna.

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Re: Buscemi's Pros and Cons Part 3: October 2009

Post by transformers2 on Mon Sep 28, 2009 7:51 pm

I think Where The Wild Things Are will do pretty well its a legendary book and it will do some business.

I agree that Saw is a sinking ship but i dont think the numbers will be that bad. I am thinking 55-60 Mill for Saw VI
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Re: Buscemi's Pros and Cons Part 3: October 2009

Post by geezer9687 on Mon Sep 28, 2009 10:48 pm

Buscemi wrote:This is the third part of the Pros and Cons series. This time, I will focus on titles opening in October 2009. This time looks surprisingly sparse compared to the last two Octobers (this is mainly due to the delay of Shutter Island and shortage of product caused by the 2007/2008 WGA strike) but some do expect a decent October. I don't really know especially due to the disappointing September that we had but we'll see.

October 2nd

Zombieland
Pros: a decent amount of advertising so far, the film will be getting advertised midnight shows on Thursday night
Cons: horror comedy is box office poison
Box Office: 14/40

Whip It
Pros: Ellen Page, Drew Barrymore
Cons: both the concept of Drew Barrymore directing and roller derby are untested at the box office
Box Office: 10/28

The Invention Of Lying
Pros: Ricky Gervais is considered one of the funniest men on the planet, his co-stars are also well-known
Cons: the film has been delayed since March, the plot/style look similar to the star's previous Ghost Town
Box Office: 5/14

Toy Story Double Feature
Pros: the Toy Story films are classics of the animation genre
Cons: the films are widely available on DVD, a three hour 3-D double feature may not be of interest to families
Box Office: 4/7

October 9th

Couples Retreat
Pros: it is the only film opening that week, the ad campaign seems to be in full force
Cons: will audiences think of it as basically a PG-13 ensemble version of Forgetting Sarah Marshall?
Box Office: 26/85

October 16th

Law Abiding Citizen
Pros: Jamie Foxx and Gerard Butler in familiar territory, the plot looks like a higher-class version of Saw
Cons: the two leads are in a mini-slump at the moment, Overture has had only one film gross over $40 million
Box Office: 25/70

Where The Wild Things Are
Pros: it is based on one of the most acclaimed children's book of all-time, adults seem to be showing interest
Cons: the film has been on the shelf over a year, test screenings were negative and the studio didn't get the reshoots that they wanted, not much interest seems to be coming from children
Box Office: 14/42

The Stepfather
Pros: from the writer and director of the Prom Night remake (a hit from last Spring), it is PG-13 so it could bring in the tweens and younger teens
Cons: horror remakes haven't been faring well lately (Halloween II, Sorority Row)
Box Office: 16/40

October 23rd

Astro Boy
Pros: it's the only truly kid-oriented film of October, the cast has quite a few names in it
Cons: American adaptations of animes haven't fared well at the box office (Speed Racer, Dragonball: Evolution)
Box Office: 18/50

Saw VI
Pros: it's a Saw movie
Cons: Saw is a sinking ship and people simply want the the series to die
Box Office: 17/34

Amelia
Pros: Hilary Swank and Richard Gere have their share of fans, the concept of Amelia Earhart's disappearance is prime film material
Cons: Oscar bait can go either way
Box Office: 11/34

Cirque du Freak: The Vampire's Assistant
Pros: it's based on a best-selling fantasy novel
Cons: this looks like another Seeker debacle where the movie is nothing more than a cash-in
Box Office: 5/12

The Nightmare Before Christmas 3-D
Pros: the Tim Burton minions will probably show up
Cons: they have been reissuing this every year since 2006 and no one showed up last year
Box Office: 1/2

October 28th

Michael Jackson's This Is It

Pros: it's Michael Jackson in a 3-D concert film from the director of the High School Musical movies, early footage looks fantastic
Cons: this seems more like U2 3D than Hannah Montana
Box Office: 11/20

I think Zombieland does better than that. I know horror comedy doesn't tend to do well, but there has never been a horror comedy that has the mass appeal that Zombieland has.

Toy Story is going to do way better than that. The 3D aspect will greatly help bring people in.

Law Abiding Citizen will not do anywhere close to 70 million. It'll end up somewhere between 50 million and Gamer.

WTWTA will do way better than 42. It won't go crazy, but 42 is such a lowball for that type of film. What kids do you know that you are polling interest?

40 million for the stepfather but 34 for Saw? Laughable. Utterly laughable. A lot of people said the exact same things about Saw 5 that you are saying for Saw 6. It still did fine. It will bring in less, but not that much less. The death of the Saw series will be slow, not swift, as people keep predicting.

This Is It will be so much bigger than that. You are nuts if you think the reaction to Michael Jackson's death was negative. The reaction was basically an exoneration for everything he ever did. Death is incredible for business. Did you see the sales his material generated after he died? It was through the roof. I see no reason not to expect the same type of sales for this concert movie. If it is advertised well, it will sell out constantly.

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Re: Buscemi's Pros and Cons Part 3: October 2009

Post by numbersix_99 on Mon Sep 28, 2009 11:10 pm

With Jennifer's Body failing it really does seem comedy horror has a limit, and despite the marketing I'd be surprised if Zombieland opened with much beyond 10 mil.

And The Stepfather, which has very little to market besides being another horror flick, won't be making 16 mil on its opening week. Again it'll be around 10 mil.

After watching the trailer for Where the Wild Things Are, I can safely say it's not scary at all, at least no more scarier than Corpse Bride or Coraline or Spiderwick Chronicles. Plus, the trailer certainly emphasises a very hopeful tone. I could see it beating Law Abiding Citizen but how far it gets is anyone's call. Since it'll be the first child-accessible flick in October I'd say it'll open from 15-25 mil and finish anywhere from 50-80 mil
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Re: Buscemi's Pros and Cons Part 3: October 2009

Post by Donte77 on Tue Sep 29, 2009 1:11 am

I thing to keep in mind about This Is It is the albums have been selling millions of copies since his death. If even 10-20% of his fans go to this movie you are looking at a 30 Mil OW. Whether that will happen is hard to say but entirely possible.
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Re: Buscemi's Pros and Cons Part 3: October 2009

Post by geezer9687 on Tue Sep 29, 2009 1:55 am

But 6, Jennifer's Body wasn't marketed as horror comedy. It was marketed as horror-half-naked-megan-fox. There was nothing funny about its trailer. The Zombieland trailer is completely hilarious. I don't think they are comparable. Plus, its getting by far the widest release of the week.

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Re: Buscemi's Pros and Cons Part 3: October 2009

Post by numbersix_99 on Tue Sep 29, 2009 3:25 am

That's a fair point Geez, I hadn't seen the Jennifer's Body promos and just assumed because it was Diablo Cody that they'd go the horror-com route.

I'm still doubtful about Zombieland. While it is probably the widest released horror comedy to date, it still seems like a niche market, and certainly not big enough to storm the box office. The trailer may seem good, but I think the mainstream has a resistance to this type of comedy in general (again, I'm making assumptions here and if you guys have seen mainstream audiences respond well to the trailers, then I may be mistaken), and of course the film lacks star appeal.

Oh yeah, and This is It is going to be huge. My country almost went into national mourning when MJ died, and then every nightclub for every weekend since has played a few of his songs each night! Suddenly everyone loves him again and people will indeed flock to see the film. The metalheads may not care, but everyone else seems to.
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Re: Buscemi's Pros and Cons Part 3: October 2009

Post by Buscemi on Tue Sep 29, 2009 5:24 am

I heard a lot of support for Michael Jackson when he died (from adults) but when it came to the main audience for movies (young men), it was more of "Why are we supporting this guy?" rather than "This guy was a great musician who died a horrible death and deserves our support".

Quite sad actually.

Also, I have The Stepfather opening well because of how Prom Night opened and because it is the only PG-13 rated horror film in October. Also, a lot of younger audiences may buy tickets to The Stepfather while sneaking into Saw VI. This would be good for The Stepfather but not Saw VI.

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Re: Buscemi's Pros and Cons Part 3: October 2009

Post by BanksIsDaFuture on Tue Sep 29, 2009 8:28 am

Buscemi wrote:I heard a lot of support for Michael Jackson when he died (from adults) but when it came to the main audience for movies (young men), it was more of "Why are we supporting this guy?" rather than "This guy was a great musician who died a horrible death and deserves our support".

Well, this is true. But this movie will be for his fans, not the typical movie people. People who only go to the movies 2-3 times a year might get out and see it, just because of Michael Jackson.
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Re: Buscemi's Pros and Cons Part 3: October 2009

Post by geezer9687 on Tue Sep 29, 2009 8:41 am

This will be big because all the fake ass people that came out of the woodwork that never cared about Michael Jackson and probably condemned him when he was alive but then when he died were like "oh my god what a tragedy, its so sad, he was like, the king of pop" will see this, just because they want to be cool and feel like they are experiencing a part of history, that was so far before their time they weren't even born yet, but will still want to see it because loving MJ is so in right now.

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Re: Buscemi's Pros and Cons Part 3: October 2009

Post by IPKI$$ on Tue Sep 29, 2009 8:51 am

Completely agree, geez. Couldn't have said it better myself.
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Re: Buscemi's Pros and Cons Part 3: October 2009

Post by numbersix_99 on Wed Sep 30, 2009 3:02 am

geezer9687 wrote:This will be big because all the fake ass people that came out of the woodwork that never cared about Michael Jackson and probably condemned him when he was alive but then when he died were like "oh my god what a tragedy, its so sad, he was like, the king of pop" will see this, just because they want to be cool and feel like they are experiencing a part of history, that was so far before their time they weren't even born yet, but will still want to see it because loving MJ is so in right now.

EXACTLY. Plus, I think all advance tickets are already sold out, which I believe is unprecedented?
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Re: Buscemi's Pros and Cons Part 3: October 2009

Post by transformers2 on Wed Sep 30, 2009 3:16 am

geez you hit the nail right on the head with the assesment of This Is It. Also the fact that its already selling out is kind mind-blowing.
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Re: Buscemi's Pros and Cons Part 3: October 2009

Post by IPKI$$ on Wed Sep 30, 2009 4:23 am

At my most recent place of emloyment, I worked at an office with 10 35+yo women and a creepy 45yo guy who still lives with his mom and none of them could shut up about him all day everyday after he died and when I told them about the movie everyone said they would take their families to go see it. I think most of them prebought their tickets too actually. It's crazy.
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Re: Buscemi's Pros and Cons Part 3: October 2009

Post by johnErle on Wed Sep 30, 2009 4:31 pm

geezer9687 wrote:This will be big because all the fake ass people that came out of the woodwork that never cared about Michael Jackson and probably condemned him when he was alive but then when he died were like "oh my god what a tragedy, its so sad, he was like, the king of pop" will see this, just because they want to be cool and feel like they are experiencing a part of history, that was so far before their time they weren't even born yet, but will still want to see it because loving MJ is so in right now.

Are these the same fake-ass people who flocked to see The Dark Knight even though they never gave a crap about Heath Ledger when he was alive?
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Re: Buscemi's Pros and Cons Part 3: October 2009

Post by BanksIsDaFuture on Wed Sep 30, 2009 7:43 pm

geezer9687 wrote:This will be big because all the fake ass people that came out of the woodwork that never cared about Michael Jackson and probably condemned him when he was alive but then when he died were like "oh my god what a tragedy, its so sad, he was like, the king of pop" will see this, just because they want to be cool and feel like they are experiencing a part of history, that was so far before their time they weren't even born yet, but will still want to see it because loving MJ is so in right now.

Why do they have to be fake? I know a lot of people our age that really only knew of Michael Jackson for his child-molesting charges and maybe "Thriller", but when he died, everybody began playing his music again (radio stations, stores, etc) and a lot of people discovered his music for the first time. I know my best friend never even spoke of Micheal Jackson, but a couple of days after he died, he purchased a 3-Disc Best of Michael JAckson Collector's Set. He wasn't being fake, he just never had a reason to try and seek out MJ's music before.

I think there's a whole new crop of fans popping up because his music was played ad nausem after he died. I wouldn't call them fake...like I said, they'd just never been really exposed to alot of his songs, other than Thriller and Beat It.
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Re: Buscemi's Pros and Cons Part 3: October 2009

Post by Donte77 on Wed Sep 30, 2009 8:31 pm

Banks has a pretty good point. Being in my 30's (ugh) I grew up with Michael Jackson's music. The Thriller video was an EVENT when it was released. There is no demographic information but I bet there are a lot of younger people buying his music. I can't stand him and I think he is beyond creepy but his early music was excellent. If these kids didn't know much about him and then they played his early stuff on EVERY radio station for 3 weeks, that could influence them to buy it. He may or may not have been a child molester, a bestiality freak, a white or a black man, but he was definitely a talented performer in the 80's and 90's.

Now as to whether there are fake people who are jumping on the bandwagon, no one can really know for sure. We all know I don't think much of american society in general and people like this are a big reason for that. I think the movie will do well because of both of these aspects and real and fake fan alike will see it. The hollywood bloodsuckers know this which is why it was rushed out so quickly.
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Re: Buscemi's Pros and Cons Part 3: October 2009

Post by geezer9687 on Wed Sep 30, 2009 8:40 pm

johnErle wrote:
geezer9687 wrote:This will be big because all the fake ass people that came out of the woodwork that never cared about Michael Jackson and probably condemned him when he was alive but then when he died were like "oh my god what a tragedy, its so sad, he was like, the king of pop" will see this, just because they want to be cool and feel like they are experiencing a part of history, that was so far before their time they weren't even born yet, but will still want to see it because loving MJ is so in right now.

Are these the same fake-ass people who flocked to see The Dark Knight even though they never gave a crap about Heath Ledger when he was alive?

No... and I realy don't see how that is comparable. First of all TDK was a huge summer blockbuster, and was going to be the biggest movie of the summer regardless of Heath's death. Second of all, it was driven by quality, not by his death. I'm not saying it didn't help, because I'm sure it did, just like it will help The Imaginarium of Dr. Parnassus, but the reason The Dark Knight was so huge was because it was an outstanding film. The legs were ridiculous. If it was about Heath's death, people would have seen it once and been done with it. They wouldn't have rushed out to see it again, and again, and again. If you think that This Is It will be some great feat of cinema, then I guess I can see the comparison. However, I think its just another concert movie that wouldn't have made anything if MJ didn't die.

BanksIsDaFuture wrote:
Why do they have to be fake? I know a lot of people our age that really only knew of Michael Jackson for his child-molesting charges and maybe "Thriller", but when he died, everybody began playing his music again (radio stations, stores, etc) and a lot of people discovered his music for the first time. I know my best friend never even spoke of Micheal Jackson, but a couple of days after he died, he purchased a 3-Disc Best of Michael JAckson Collector's Set. He wasn't being fake, he just never had a reason to try and seek out MJ's music before.

I think there's a whole new crop of fans popping up because his music was played ad nausem after he died. I wouldn't call them fake...like I said, they'd just never been really exposed to alot of his songs, other than Thriller and Beat It.

Well Banks, I just don't buy it. How can someone not be exposed to Michael Jackson in this day and age? With the advent of the internet it is not hard to find absolutely anything you want to listen to. If they were actually interested in listening to Michael Jackson prior to his death, they could have. They got into his music after he died because all of a sudden he became outrageously popular and like I said, he became "in" again. It was cool to like Michael Jackson again. They weren't thinking for themselves, they were letting pop radio stations, stores, etc drive their decisions about what they are going to listen to. And when this "Michael Jackson died, what a tragedy, lets all listen to his music" fad is over, they will stop listening to it, because if the only reason you decide to start listening to someone is because they died, I don't see that lasting in your rotation for too long. Why should someone have to have "a reason" to seek out someone's music? If they are really a fan of music they will already be seeking out as much diverse music as possible, and someone as universally popular as Michael Jackson was never a hard person to find.

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Re: Buscemi's Pros and Cons Part 3: October 2009

Post by W on Wed Sep 30, 2009 10:45 pm

I would say that Ledger's death in and of itself effected the gross of TDK some, but I would say that the extra free advertisement it created along with the extra talk put more butts in the seats to begin with. Also, I think the multiplier would have been about the same. So, all in all, the free advertisement could have counted for $50-100 M of the gross (probably on the low end of that). But can we really be sure? No. His death did help it become a cultural phenomenon, so added gross has to be there.

I wouldn't say that the internet makes people aware of everything. If that were true, we would all know everything...

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Re: Buscemi's Pros and Cons Part 3: October 2009

Post by geezer9687 on Wed Sep 30, 2009 11:27 pm

I wasn't saying it makes people aware of things necessarily, just that it makes things much easier to access. Its not like there were people that were not aware of Michael Jackson's existence were there?

And is the difference between 480 million dollars and 533 million dollars all that big in the grand scheme. It helped, but the Dark Knight was going to be massive regardless. This Is It will make at least 3 times as much as it would have without Jackson's death, and that could be seriously lowballing. If MJ is still alive, I couldn't see it making more than 15 million. As is, I can't see it making less than 60.

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Re: Buscemi's Pros and Cons Part 3: October 2009

Post by W on Wed Sep 30, 2009 11:37 pm

Yeah, just saying that it would be improper to write off his death as a wash.

I wasn't saying that they didn't know who Michael Jackson was, just that they may not have heard some of his stuff until it was played on the radio or that his death may have made people research him or that his death may have made some people talk to younger ones about "the good old days" then the younger ones listened to it.

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Re: Buscemi's Pros and Cons Part 3: October 2009

Post by Donte77 on Wed Sep 30, 2009 11:38 pm

True, I love music but can't spend hours a day combing internet sites for new bands. I have gotten a few new bands I love from this site that I would have never heard of by going to pandora or whatever.

I think it is possible for a person to not have heard his music if all they ever knew was the creepy stick on nose and the molestation charges.

I had never heard of Paramore until my bosses daughter and son played "That's What You Get" onstage at the rockband tour. (They won the contest/tournament and played live onstage in front of 10K people) Apparently they are a huge band with young kids and I never knew who they were. It is possible.

I think that it is also sometimes harder to hear new bands with the prevalence of internet and satellite radio. It is very easy to not hear music because there is so much out there as opposed to when I was 10-12 and I was restricted to 1 channel of MTV (that played music) and the local pop/rock station.
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Re: Buscemi's Pros and Cons Part 3: October 2009

Post by geezer9687 on Wed Sep 30, 2009 11:44 pm

Michael Jackson isn't exactly some new Indie band just trying to break out. His songs have been used in movies, TV, video games, commercials, he is everywhere. I can't stand his music but I've heard a ton of it without ever trying to find it. I just find it hard to believe that people weren't exposed to him prior to his death. They were most likely repulsed by his appearance and allegations of child molestation and if that made them stay away from his music then that is fine. But why does it make it ok now to love him now that he is dead? Its like "Oh he was a freak when he was alive, but now that he's gone lets all go listen to his records." Really people?

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Re: Buscemi's Pros and Cons Part 3: October 2009

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