Special Edition Podcast

Special Edition – Scott Pilgrim vs. The World

Show Notes

Look out all you evil exes! Scott Pilgrim vs. The World finally blasts its way into theaters!

Josh Flanagan, Ron Richards, and Conor Kilpatrick talk about pre-release jitters, problems with marketing, Edgar Wright’s track record, box office predictions, the future of unknown property comic book movies, and oh yeah, Scott Pilgrim vs. The World.

Running Time: 00:34:59

Are you going to see it? Of course you are! So let’s talk about it!

As always, from here on out, in the podcast and comments, you have been spoiler-warned.

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  1. I really really hope that this makes some money.  Did get a rave in the ny times though…..

  2. According to wikipedia (eh…) the budget was $60 million.  

  3. (the seinfeld scene was my favorite too)

  4. @TheNextChampion Edgar Wright said that it was about 4 times what Hot Fuzz’s was, which was 8 million pounds which is about 12 ana half million dollars, so that would be like 50 million

  5. @gabe: Hmm. Well I guess it could be either/or, in the middle too.

    All I know is that the trend of Wright’s films have gone up in terms of box office revenue. He has yet to hit $100 million with his releases…..But I’ll be optimistic and think he’ll reach that with this film, but only slightly over. 

  6. "If-an-boy." Heh.

  7. @TheNextChampion Eh, Box Office Mojo is also saying 60 million, so I think you’re right.

  8. I will say that as much as I loved the movie, I do sorta wish they had found a way to give closure to both Scott and Kim and Scott and Envy.  Especially Scott and Envy, I mean, he exploded her boyfriend, and then sorta dissapeared…

  9. Boy, did this movie rock my face off! Can’t wait to listen to the podcast.

  10. It was pretty great, it stays very faithful to the books without being a slave to it like Watchmen. 

  11. I absolutely enjoyed this movie.  Just saw a midnight showing, and I actually spent the whole day before the movie reading books 2-6 to finish the series.  My excitement for this has been unbridled, so I’m glad the movie did not disappoint.

  12. It’s Moviefone.com’s "Best Bet" over Expendables and Eat, Pray, Love, right there on the front page! Good sign, yes?

  13. The Vegan Police scene with Thomas Jane and Clifton Collins Jr. was AWESOME!  Also, Envy singing Metric’s Black Sheep was AMAZING!

  14. Bumping spoiler off the main page.

  15. Mostly brilliant. It definitely kicked Kick-Ass’s ass.

  16. Fun fact: In that scene where Scott’s making his brunch plans, they’re talking about a real brunch restaurant in Toronto. It’s called Saving Grace, and that French toast is an EPIC OF EPIC DELICIOUSNESS.

  17. I think this may be the best adaptation of a comic book movie ever.  The only other one I ever was so into and just taken by was the first Spiderman (especially when he is first swinging thru NY.)

    It is defintly in my top 3 movies of the year.  I want to put it number 1, but the emotional response I got while watching Toy Story 3 is hard to overcome and Inception was just an amazing piece of film-making.

    I think I also went with very low expectations.  I did not like the trailers.  But all of the reviews were just over-glowing. 

  18. One of the rare movies where I enjoyed the movie more than the book(s).  Don’t get me wrong, I loved the books, but there were a couple of subplots near the end that kind of dragged for me, and they weren’t in the movie at all.


    Congrats to everyone involved with this movie.  I’m going to go see it again tonight.

  19. Nigel Godrich also produced a lot of Beck’s recent work, so that’s more of a direct relationship to the music for the film than Radiohead. It’s just a perk.

  20. Also, don’t forget "Hellboy". That has been a moderately successful indie-comic film franchise.

  21. @kingdomofevan Damn I wish Saving Grace was closer to the convention center.  I’d go before Fanexpo on Sunday 🙂

  22. Wow…all I could say is just wow & why wasn’t this released in 3-D? It would have been even more amazing in 3-D! Still this movie was so Awesome!!!

  23. Does anybody remember which scene in the movie the song by Sex Bobomb "Summertime" and "Garbarge Truck" was played? Thanks!

  24. Too bad it bombed today. It’s Kick Ass, Losers, and Serenity all over again.

  25. It’s had MUCH stronger reviews than any of those movies so I’m hoping it’ll get some good word of mouth.

    I can’t find any numbers yet, where are you seeing that it bombed tonight?

  26. @gobo: The Friday numbers are out in a few hours, but early word is $5 million for Friday, which is about what I feared.

  27. @gobo/conor: Only $5 million!?

    I think I’m gonna be sick… 

  28. Not really surprised, but that sucks.

  29. Can anyone post these findings? Cause I can’t find them anywhere.

  30. @TNC: If I’m still awake when the official Friday numbers are released, I’ll post them. If not, I’ll do it tomorrow if no one else has.

  31. There was only about 10 people in my theater when I saw it, still hope it does okay though. I loved this movie though.


    1. THE EXPENDABLES – $13 M
    2. EAT PRAY LOVE – $9.8 M
    3. THE OTHER GUYS – $5.5M
    5. INCEPTION – $3.4 M

    Source: Deadline

  33. Official numbers in the morning.

  34. It couldn’t even get into the top 3!!!

    It lost to a Mark Whalberg film!! 

  35. My theater was pretty full and everybody loved it.  There is hope.  There is hope…

  36. While everyone in my theater seemed to have loved it, there wasn’t that many people there. It was only a quarter full at a 9:50 P.M. showing. I only hope that happened in my town. People need to see this movie.

  37. I went to the 7:55 showing and the theater was about 75% full.  I got there early and was able to see the people exiting and it was about half full.  My girlfriend and I loved the movie, but somehow we got the showing with three kinds of distinct annoying laughter sitting to the left, right and behind us.  It got about half the theater applauding at the credits. 

  38. I remember Kevin Smith going crazy depressed when Zack & Miri opened at $15 million, calling it a failure of his.  Looks like this is estimated worse at $11 million.

    This film was excellent, mostly due to the fight scenes.  Excellent script and directing.  Michael Cera is still miscast though, as well as Ramona, Knives, & Kim.  Could have been better cast for sure.  But it was still good enough.  Leaving out Michael Cera would have only hurt the box office more, but it would have been better.  The casting of the villains and side characters however was excellent.

    My theater was half empty, and not many theaters carried it.

  39. Avatar photo Paul Montgomery (@fuzzytypewriter) says:

    Knives and Kim certainly weren’t miscast. They were spot on. 

  40. @jackietam “Garbage Truck” followed Crash and the Boys’ “We Hate You Please Die”. “Summertime” (Sex Bob-Omb’s BEST song) played at the start of the end credits.

  41. I could understand Eat Pray Love beating Scott Pilgrim b/c Julia Roberts is a box office mega star, but what I don’t understand is the Expendables, there was no word of hype for that movie, absolutely no one was singing praise of it & it just looked plain stupid. While Scott Pilgrim when it was first revied was almost nothing but positive reviews from critics. So wtf America? WTF!

  42. Saw it twice yesterday, and while neither show was full, both audiences had a blast.

    Eh, whatever. They already got to make a fantastic movie, and it’s not like there was gonna be a sequel. Let the numbers be what they will. We’ll always have the movie, it’ll gain a great following on DVD, and it’s not like Edgar Wright is going anywhere. FLAWLESS VICTORY!

  43. @marcushill – "Threshold" is a pretty fantastic song, too. Easily my favorite scene in the movie.

  44. 4.7 million for friday. The real problem is it cost 60 million to make and 30 million in marketing in North America alone. They’re going to have to sell a crazy amount of DVDs. I fear for Edgar Wright’s Ant-Man.

  45. I preferred the movie’s ending over the book, honestly.

  46. If you went to my area of the woods, it’s airing at almost all the theaters around me. That’s like…..5 I think?

    So South Jersey really wanted to see this film. 

  47. The theater I went to is only showing this on one of their 16 screens. They definitely didn’t expect it to do very well.


    1. THE EXPENDABLES – $13.2M
    2. EAT PRAY LOVE – $8.5M
    3. THE OTHER GUYS – $5.4M
    5. INCEPTION – $3.4M

    Source: Deadline

  49. @ CaseyJustice – I have spent the last 48 hours listening to both the "Soundtrack" and "Score" CD’s.    Nidel Godrich, Beck and Co. have perhaps put together one of best albums of 2010!  "Death To All Hipsters" currently hasa play count of 28!  AWESOMENESS ALL ‘ROUND!

  50. bomb :/

  51. I’m dreading the inevitable "Box Office Bob-omb" headlines.

  52. @jackietam – you can hear the first few notes of Summertime when the band is practicing and Scott bails as soon as Ramona gets there (that’s my fave SBO song too)

  53. Ok here’s how I see it:

    – it opened on about 400 screens less than The Expendables, so there’s a bit of a factor

    – The Expendables is a huge action movie with Stallone etc, Other Guys is Will Ferrell "safe" comedy", Eat Pray Love is Julia frickin Roberts – while the studio and Wright were probably hopeful for a big weekend – I don’t think anyone expected Iron Man numbers 

    – I do think they over marketed the movie, which is a shame

    – If the budget is 60 million, the chance of it breaking even in theaters is probably slim, but we don’t know for sure what it is and it’s probably going to make a lot of it internationally (still curious to see what the UK box office looks like) and in DVD sales (going to have a long life on DVD)

    But that said, here’s the half empty look: 

    "Expendables beat Scott Pilgrim huh? Well so much for "the age of the geek" – clearly the jocks won this weekend"  sigh

    whatever – I loved the movie, it was fun – I’d even go see it a third time. 


  54. Saw the movie. Pretty much loved most about it. Obviously wasnt going to be able to be as awesome as the books. But it was about as good as could be. The action scenes were awesome. And all the comic book/video game effects were some of the best I’ve seen on film.

    The cast was great. The girl they got for Knives was the epitome of the character. As the guys said in the podcast, they had to have created her for this movie. Ramona was great and really captured the essence of the character IMO. She was quiet and brooding, but attractive and magnetic at the same time. Cera wasn’t quite the Scott Pilgrim I read, but he wasn’t bad either. What he did worked.

    Really the only casting choice that I wasn’t a fan of was Kim Pine. Kim for me, when I read the books, was a lot cuter of a character. Yeah, she was dry and sarcastic. But she was still a pretty girl that I totally bought Scott possibly being into. She wasn’t quite the dream girl that Ramona was. But she wasn’t too far behind. Had Scott realized that he’d loved Kim all along and got back with her, I’d have bought it. There’s the part in the books where he spends the night at her place, and you think they might hook up. But the actress they got, and the look they gave her was much rougher than the Kim Pine in my head. The movie Kim Pine was too butch IMO. I can see how it’s a matter of how you read the books. But if you put cartoon Kim next to Ramona, there isn’t this huge difference. Where as in the movie, Romana is the hottie and Kim the scruffy freakled red head no guy pays attention to. Didn’t ruin the movie by any means. But it was a jarring difference for me. And pretty much the only one.

  55. @ron Scott made slightly more per theater than The Other Guys, so there’s that at least.

  56. Comparing this movie’s box office with The Expendables is kinda ridiculous, guys. It isn’t a matter of geeks vs jocks (which is beyond lame and cliche). It’s not a matter of comic books being taking seriously. It’s the simple fact that people go see stupid movies. The American masses flock to the most generic, familiar, and safe forms of entertainment. The same discussion has been made a million times on the internet. 2 and a Half Men dominates tv ratings. Arrested Development, Party Down, and Pushing Daisies were not able to find even small audiences. The average person doesn’t want smart, inventive, difference, unique. They want the oposite of those things. And "Sylvester Stallone beats people up: Part 25" is just that.

    Also, think about it for a moment. Even the biggest Scott Pilgrim fan knows just how narrow the target audience is for this film. It has a very specific age range and cultural segment. Outside of that, it just doesn’t appeal. Forget ‘geek’ or jock’. Think of the average adult who isn’t aware of comic book properties (pretty much all of them). What avg adult is going to go, "Hey, check out that ultra cute, quirky, hipster, kid movie with all the bright colors and flashy effects! Let’s go see that!"? Then think how many would say, "Hey, let’s check out the new Stallone movie." Not even close. And we’re not even factoring the #1 biggest box office driving segment of the population. FAMILIES. There may be a few families who have kids who read the books who will want to see it. But not a ton. And not too many families of 5 with a bunch of little kids are going to pick this out over Despicable Me, Toy Story 3, or Cats and Dogs.

    Come on guys. We all knew this was an extremely specified movie property. How many people here had a hard time convincing friends that the books were good, and not just silly manga looking kid stuff? This movie was never going to do gangbusters. No non-Marvel/DC comic properties are ever going to. And yeah, it’s going to mean less will get made. But it’s not like this hasn’t been the trend for some time now. Your average non-movie buff audience member who doesn’t go spend $10-15 on something they aren’t already familiar with. It’s the EXACT reason we have so many terrible sequels, adapted tv shows, and in the coming years multiple adapted board games (SIGH). Never underestimate the average movie goer or tv viewer’s obsession with what is familiar.

  57. Look at this this way. We should be much more concerned with what the general consensus among critics and movie people is, and what the overall opinion of the film is with movie people online. So far, it’s been good. It currently has an 80% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. And for the most part, most people on movie sites I’ve seen online have dug the film.

    And real quick back to my "America flocks to simple and familiar, not quality" point. So Conor says that Scott Pilgrim made $4.5 million on it’s opening day. Well I’m guessing it’s going to go a bit beyond just that. Let’s quickly compare this with Edgar Wright’s other films. I don’t have opening day numbers. But I do have US box office totals:

    Hot Fuzz: $23.6 million TOTAL.

    Shaun of the Dead: $13.5 million TOTAL.

    Now most of us all agree that those are pretty great films. As do pretty much most people in the film community. And both films have gone on to become cult classics. Shaun of the Dead even appearing on a very high number of ‘best of the decade’ lists. Now look how they did in theaters. And lets compare that with the 219.3 million that Alvin & the Chipmunks: The Sqeuakquel made. EXACTLY.

  58. One final thing, I promise. This isn’t a phenomenon facing comic books movies. It’s a phenomenon facing the entire film industry. If it’s not a big summer blockbuster or family movie or super familiar adapted property, most movies do not make much box office. If you listen to any film podcasts or read any sites, this is a big topic now days. That the middle ground of film budgets is being obliterated. Studios are losing so much money and on such shakey ground that they are only sinking money in what they feel are sure things. Thus you end up with Ouija Board and Magic 8 Ball the movie. Movies with less mainstream audiences are all having to become nearly independent films. It’s just the way the business is. Unknown comic book properties with ultra narrow target audiences are no different.

  59. For the record, I do think the marketing of this movie was fairly terrible…

  60. Here’s a problem I noticed with the marketing.

    Craig Ferguson had Anna Kendrick (who play’s Scott sister) on Friday night. They got into the discussion on graphic novels and what that even means for Scott Pilgrim. (Since, like mostly everyone on the planet, he had no idea what that term meant). Then Kendrick tried to explain the graphic novels of Scott Pilgrim to Ferguson and eventually he got so confused with it he thought it was a video game and not even a comic book. Kendrick wasn’t really helping as it really sounded like she had no idea what she was talking about in the first place.

    So two things here:

    A) Trying to explain graphic novels to average people is too confusing. The audience totally snoozed out of this discussion and Ferguson quickly changed the subject because they were going no where.

    B) Kendrick seems to have no idea what she was talking about and only had the basics to explain Scott Pilgrim in layman terms.

    Now that doesn’t really help when you have the stars themselves get confused on the subject matter of the film….doesn’t it? 

  61. man at my screening only a little more than half the seats were filled. Good for me cause I got there a little late but it was kinda sad. The people there though had a good time, laughing, cheering and even clapped when scott/sex bob ombs defeated the twins.  

  62. Agreeing that it was a great film for the inner geek in everyone. but in the end not every one is a geek and the reason you needed all the pre screens and advance viewings was edgar and the crew was probably hoping for alot of word of mouth. but here runs into two problems.

    1: it doesnt appease to the common person ( so they sought no interest at comic con )

    2: the people who saw it before opening night. was geek to geek talk. the geek inside you didnt try to tell the outside world well cause frankly they wouldnt get it.

    all in all i tried to explain to as many people as possible that it was a love comedy action film that had heavy video game infulence. thats the most dumbed down way i could of explained a movie. 


    on a side note: yes even thought i was a pre screener i still dished out my 10 bucks this weekend to see it twice.

  63. I loved it, never read the book, but now I want to. This is up there with Inception and Kick-Ass as my top three movies of the year.

  64. Ouch. The numbers keep getting worse.


    1. THE EXPENDABLES – $11.86M
    2. EAT PRAY LOVE – $8.1M
    3. THE OTHER GUYS – $6.82M
    4. INCEPTION – $4.58M

    Source: Box Office Mojo

    Doesn’t look like word of mouth did anything for Saturday.


    2. EAT PRAY LOVE – $23.7M
    3. THE OTHER GUYS – $18M
    4. INCEPTION – $11.8M

    Source: Deadline

    Final weekend numbers on Monday.

  65. Looking for Scott Pilgrim Advice: I haven’t read the books yet and I’ve done a perfect job of avoiding spoilers etc. while waiting for the last one to come out (all I know is that he lives in Toronto and has to fight his lady’s exes).  I was planning on reading them over the next few months and then checking the movie out on DVD.  Hearing about the box office (and being a HUGE Edgar Wright fan) I was thinking about going to see it in the theater before reading it (I know it’s just a little support, but it’s support nonetheless).  So here’s the question, would it be a terrible idea to see the movie before I read the books?

  66. I’m sorry but….wow.

    It lost to Inception? I can see it losing to The Other Guys to be 4th but…..A five week old movie did much better then this?

    There is no way on Earth this film will get it’s budget back, even with DVD sales. This sucks because it’ll probably make Marvel re-think of letting Wright do the Ant-Man film. I have no doubt it will be good, but this will be the third time an Edgar Wright movie did horrible at the box office.

  67. I think it should make its money back on dvd…

  68. Maybe if we get Oprah on board…

  69. How about this folks, for the next two weeks tell everyone you know that no matter what they see in the theater they should buy tickets for scott pilgrim. is your mom going to see that new julia roberts flick, tell her to buy tickets to pilgrim and sneak into the roberts movie. damn the man

  70. Been doing my best to hype people up for this movie, but I’ve really had to grok the fact that this movie is totally and entirely NOT for everyone. If John Q. Humanguy came out of the theater confused and a little angry, I’d totally understand. For me, however, this is the anthem of my generation.

    Saw it three times, twice on friday, and still got chills every time Sex Bob-omb went up against the Katayanagi Bros. Threshold, indeed.

  71. I agree with Demented. Great movie, but it is not for everyone. You look at movies like Eat, Pray, Love or The Expendables and they are made for a specific audience and their audience is HUGE. We may not like it, but their audience is bigger then the audience for Scott Pilgrim. I thought the marketing was just fine. It wasn 19t too much or too little. I feel this is a case of putting a quality movie out on weekend where it will get hammered by the competition. Chuck D. said it the best. You need to give the people what they need instead of what they want. Scott Pilgrim is the movie that people need, but The Expendable is the movie that people want. I can see this movie doing way better in dvd/blu ray sales.

  72. it seems like one of those movies that people say "oh that looks cool!" when they see the trailer, but when it comes time to plunk down that $40 bucks for an evening at the movies, people balk and say "lets wait for it on netflix".

    And lets not forget that A LOT of seasoned movie goers know better than to try and see a comic book movie on opening weekend…they enjoy hearing all the dialog. 

  73. Something else to consider is it has yet to open in the UK, where Wright’s movies have made the lion’s share of their take. This is decidedly un-British, but maybe we’ll see enough of a boost to push the earnings into throwing distance of "profitable." There might also be a lot of "either/or" movie goers who decided to catch Expendables this weekend and Scott Pilgrim the next? Maybe Oprah will pick it up? I dunno. 

  74. Hot Fuzz only made $5 mil the opening weekend and was #6 overall, so, y’know, Wright is slowly working his way up the American Box Office.

  75. Well all I got to say is, I saw Scott Pilgrim it was amazing. Next week I’m going to see the Expendables, but I’m buying a Scott Pilgrim ticket and sliding into the wrong theater. Maybe word of mouth will help, I posted that I liked it on FB and some friends said they’re seeing it Tuesday so hopefully it’ll make more money long haul and internationally. 

  76. Sigh. Still can’t find the Scott Pilgrim release date for Taiwan.

  77. The thing about Hot Fuzz and Shaun of the Dead is they were cheap they made there money back easily in the UK alone the US box office was just gravy

  78. This movie kinda broke my mind…in a good way

    The music was all awesome mainly the Metric song.

  79. On the topic of the box office, I wouldn’t worry about too much about it.  This movie will make money internationally easily.  The DVD sales coupled with time on TV and word of mouth in high schools and college campuses will guarantee a long shelf life for it.

    I saw it yesterday with my wife.  We had a couple older couples in the theater that ended up walking out on the movie.  Most people in our age range that was there had a good time.

    I really enjoyed the movie.  I felt that the previews did a great job getting me into the theater (even though I loved the books and would have gone anyway), but I felt like all the best jokes were in the previews.  I didn’t find myself laughing as much as I would have thought.  My only other complaint is that when there wasn’t fighting or bands playing, the movie was very quiet.  I kind of prefer for there to be some subtle music in the background while things are going on.  

    I still enjoyed the movie as a whole though, and it’s definitely the strongest comic book movie I’ve seen this year.  My nitpicks are specifc to me, so I would definitley recommend it to friends and such.


    1. THE EXPENDABLES – $34,825,135
    2. EAT PRAY LOVE – $23,104,523
    3. THE OTHER GUYS – $17,408,501
    4. INCEPTION – $11,285,051
    5. SCOTT PILGRIM VS. THE WORLD – $10,609,795

    Source: Box Office Mojo

    Assuming that the production budget was $60M and the ad budget was $30M… it’s going to be a long, long road to profitability for this one.

    Who knows, maybe a miracle will happen next weekend.

  81. maybe it’ll be like kick-ass and good word of mouth will carry it 

  82. @Gramercy: …. but that didn’t happen with KICK-ASS…

  83. Saw it. Love it. Recommend it. Go see it.

  84. Who cares how well it does? Great movie, cult classic (already!), and Edgar Wright already has Ant-Man going on.

  85. Scott Pilgrim rocks, very very good movie, lots of innovative techniques and great performances, saw it twice. Of course I also saw Expendables twice, very awesome exploding people with classic machismo killfest with heart by my main man Stallone.

    It is odd they put these movies out the same week, but hey, I say see ’em both.

  86. One factor I don’t hear discussed but I think contributed greatly is that the target audience for Scott Pilgrim is also exactly the same that’s most knowledgeable and comfortable with BitTorrenting pirated movies. A significant chunk of the "fans" stole it.

  87. Just had a chance to see Scott Pilgrim. A really great movie that really seems like it will go down as one of the definitive pop culture movies of this era. So much nonstop fun, I can’t wait to get it on Blu ray. 

    As Aries mentioned, i wonder how much of its target pirated the movie…that would just be the ultimate in irony. 

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