I was checking out the Los Angeles Times, and came across “‘Hulk’s’ biggest obstacle: Ang Lee’s version.” Ang Lee is of course the Oscar winning director of Brokeback Mountain. I’ve enjoyed many of Lee’s films, including The Wedding Banquet, Eat, Drink, Man, Woman, Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon (where I first came across and fell in love with Zhang Ziyi), Brokeback Mountain, and most recently, Lust, Caution. Well, one Ang Lee film I was not a huge fan of, was The Hulk. It was okay, at best, and I agree with the LA Times article that the new Hulk movie coming out this summer will have to overcome a lot of the ill will the first film generated:
“”The biggest challenge on ‘The Incredible Hulk’ was Ang Lee’s ‘Hulk’ in 2003,” says Kevin Feige, president of Marvel Studios… In absolute and relative terms, director Lee’s superhero movie opened fantastically, grossing $62.1 million in its first weekend… But “Hulk’s” real (and crushing) story unfolded over its second weekend, where middling reviews and corrosive word-of-mouth pushed its grosses down a staggering 70%. In deciding to return to the property after such a brief hiatus, Marvel and Universal tried to figure out what went wrong on the first film and how they could better capture the enduring appeal of one of Marvel’s most popular creations. They also realized they would have to cut through a wall of disbelievers. “We knew people would be out there saying, ‘Why are you doing it again?’ ” says Adam Fogelson, Universal’s marketing chief.”
I agree – why did Marvel make and is going to release another Hulk film? And only 5 years from Ang Lee’s version? Does Marvel really think it can overcome the negative perception of the first film?