“Men In Black 3″ Overcame Script Problems and Will Smith To Be Made [VIDEO]
After 10 years since the last "Men In Black" film, it took a lot to get the new MIB off the ground. Obviously, Sony pictures will deny that there were any problems with the production in the first place, though they did admit that there was a lot of tension on the set towards the end of the end of principle filming.
Movie website The Wrap received reports from insiders on the production that filming was becoming incredibly stressful due to having to shut down major streets in New York City to film chase scenes, and alleged demands from star Will Smith. According to the sources, Smith demanded several sets to be destroyed and rebuilt because "it wasn't right" and Smith wanted to improvise during scenes. Other demands from Smith included a $9,000-a-month, 53-foot trailer that made headlines. The New York Post wrote,
“the monstrosity was choking business revenues and filling the streets with exhaust fumes. … Now the ‘I Am Legend’ actor will have to trek to the trailer to get his makeup done, confer with his personal writers and lounge in his marble-floored, 100-inch-screen film room – or walk less than a mile to his own $25,000-a-month Bond Street apartment.”
Smith also had a "must hire" list for Sony that included more than a dozen people including bodyguards and members of Smith's entourage. This, however, is something that is common for many stars to do with almost every film they do. Smith has been known for throwing his weight around on sets before, with rumors that Smith demanded the firing of Janet Hubert, the original "Aunt Viv", halfway through the run of "The Fresh Prince of Bel Air".
Aside for Smith's alleged demands, the script also proved to be a serious problem. The movie's filming schedule was broken up to not only take advantage of tax breaks in Manhattan, but to also allow time for the script to be finalized. The script writing duties went through several different writers, doing rewrites and punch ups, ending with "Fresh Prince of Bel Air" writer Michael Soccio, who was brought in at the request of Will Smith. By the time the script was completed, production costs were rumored to be over $200 million, almost twice the budget of "MIB 2". Director Barry Sonnenfeld admitted to Empire magazine that starting production without a full script may have been a terrible idea,
"We knew starting the movie that we didn't have a finished second or third act. Was it responsible? The answer is, if this movie does as well as I think it will, it was genius. If it's a total failure, then it was a really stupid idea."
Special Effects Make-Up genius Rick Baker also noted that a writer was on set, writing the dialogue just moments before it was it to be filmed. Though Baker felt that's not a constructive way to make a movie, he had said that the early cut of the film is very good.
Though I enjoy the "Men in Black" films, Will Smith is my least favorite part. I don't think he does a bad job, but its just another movie like "Independence Day", "Bad Boys", and "Wild Wild West" where Smith is playing the exact same character, just under a different name. Call me a purist, but I think that people who are paid to be "actors" should do something called "acting". Smith just seems to play himself in the same movies over and over again, making millions in the process. He's not the only one doing it (Vince Vaughn, Seth Rogan, Michael Cera, etc), he's just the most successful. Having said all that, I will probably see this in the theater, but just to see Josh Brolin doing a Tommy Lee Jones impression for two hours.
via Indie Wire