Hollywood Undeterred by Economic Apocalypse

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Andrew Bird and — wow! — Franz Ferdinand. Photo: Getty Images

Despite the uncertain economy, a possible actors' strike, and the fact that nearly all experts agree that real-life America will look exactly like the fictional one in The Road by February, Hollywood has not been discouraged! According to Variety, studios are scheduled to begin production on around 40 large-budget new movies (including Tron 2, Darren Aronofsky's RoboCop, and a host of remakes, sequels, and reboots even less imaginative than those two) between next spring and summer.

Though the Screen Actors Guild's contract with producers expired in June, movies like Terminator Salvation and Judd Apatow's Funny People, which started lensing after that, have been protected by strike insurance and contingency plans. But next year's batch of green-lit films won't have that luxury; if a strike is called, studios are more or less screwed. Still, thanks to a tanking economy, Hollywood is betting its actors — most of them ill-prepared for lives without gold-plated caviar and personal Chihuahua stylists — will stay off the picket lines.

But who will actually go see these movies when they're released in 2010 and 2011, long after the last of our worthless dollars have already been spent on condiments to improve the flavor of shoe leather? Says Variety, "There's clear evidence that audiences will continue to come to theaters, even if the economy remains in the toilet by the time these films are released." We suppose that makes sense; people have to go someplace after the banks foreclose on their homes.

Studios prep major film production [Variety]