David Fincher and Brad Pitt discuss the premiere of Se7en in New York and the difficulties of Hollywood marketing.
I can’t imagine seeing Se7en for the first time and not knowing anything about it. When I rented it from Blockbuster, I got almost all the big twists and turns from the internet and friends.
But imagine the first audience ever … well, you don’t have to think too long because in the director’s comment, Fincher and Pitt tell us what it was like to show the movie to the public for the first time.
Listen and let’s talk afterwards.
As you know, in Hollywood we test movies with the audience to see their reactions. And Se7en was no different. The studio is going to put a lot of people in a theater, turn the lights down and have the movie play.
This was the first cut the film ends in when Pitt’s character shoots John Doe, and we just cut to black. Really bleak. So you’re in New York with the preview and after the shot the lights go on.
People are stunned. And one woman immediately responds and says, “The people who made this film should be killed.”
Pitt and Fincher say this was likely due to advertisements targeting the test audience: “A new movie from the stars of Legends of Passion and Drive Miss Daisy. ”
While this was technically true, it prepared the audience for something they weren’t prepared for.
The most interesting part of this clip for me was Fincher and Pitt’s conversation about fighting with marketing departments. They talk about how marketing is all the time and how much Pitt and Fincher always rebel against them. Fincher believes Marketing is obsessed with wanting to save the movie. He thinks it’s unlike marketing to say, “That’s great,” because if the film fails, the studio will blame the marketing department.
Too much money is at stake because they are never risky with what they sell.
In any case, this conversation really opened my eyes to how Hollywood sells a movie.
Let me know what you think in the comments.