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Monday, April 16, 2012

"'The Dark Knight Rises' or 'The Avengers'"?




The sun rises in the east.
We need air, water and food to live.
‘The Dark Knight Rises’ is gonna be the world’s biggest hit this year. (No, not Avengers! J)
There are some things in life that you know with absolute certainty, absolutely. J
And it’s almost definite that the Dark Knight is gonna be one of this year’s biggest blockbusters but this blog goes a step further and says that it will turn out to be this year’s biggest world hit!



And now that the Avengers will be out in India next week (a week ahead of its US release), the movie is coming across as a pucca paisa vasool big budget superfun extravaganza; in sharp contrast to the dark and somber mood of the 'Dark Knight Rises' and hence its only natural that the big question on a lot of minds is - is it gonna be 'The Avengers' or 'The Dark Knight Rises' this year?
And this post seeks to answer that. J Well, first the facts -




[The Incredible Build Up]




The most gigantic reason to the amazing build up of ‘The Dark Knight Rises’ is still the first movie. ‘The Dark Knight’s viral campaign in 2008 is considered to be a text book case study in marketing and was themed around building buzz around the villains, especially the Joker with the hugely popular ‘Why so serious’ and Harvey Dent’s “I believe in Harvey Dent”– but what unexpectedly changed it all was Heath Ledger’s unfortunate death (RIP Heath Ledger, but seriously, what a way to go!)  Now, ‘The Dark Knight Rises’ follows a similar but much more subdued approach- the viral started with the website that had the now famous Chanting (hear the awesome chanting here – incidentally, it means “He Rises, He Rises” in Moroccan), which when encrypted, links to the movie’s official twitter account; for every comment, a pixel was removed from the website, and it ultimately released the first image of the arch villain, Bane.

A few months later, the first trailer was out which was honestly, quite disappointing – it used too much footage from the older movies and a lot of Bane’s and Gordon’s dialogues were not clear. But fans only had to wait for a lil bit longer when the second trailer came out (above) and it was nothing short of spectacular!!! And it maintained that deep, dark and intense flavor that we’ve always associated with Nolan’s Bat. Continuing with its marketing, there are also the leaked “CIA memos” of a missing Russian nuclear official, obviously a key character in the movie. Later, when the movie MI:4 was released, it had a 6 minute prologue that glimpsed upon the madman that was Bane (see it here). Fans were bowled over by the amazing footage and we now know that the Bat has got one hell of a worthy adversary in Bane. However, the subsequent marketing has been pretty silent of late (as compared to Prometheus or Hunger Games), however very few movies have such intense build up as The Dark Knight Rises has and a lot of the feverish excitement is still due to sheer awesomeness of the first movie.



Now contrast this to the ‘Avengers’ marketing – the Avengers, as an idea, is sheer genius: having many super heroes in one movie instead of just one. And it’s been well planned out as they first had the Iron Man movies, followed by the successful launches of two new franchisees in both Thor and Captain America. And now, they’re combining these successful characters with an old friend, The Hulk and added in few more characters like Black Widow, Hawkeye, Nick Fury and others. But the Avengers’ marketing has not been top notch – it comes across as very comic book and very US centric. Sure they came up with two trailers – the first which focused on the assembling while the second one above (which will blow your mind away) is on the actual fight. But yet the point is that there are still more people who don’t know Avengers than the Bat. The latest news on the Avengers premiere is that the initial reviews for the movie have been extremely positive with people calling the movie as ‘Epic’ and that the Hulk really rocked!!! (see Avengers initial movie reviews here)

Yet, in comparison to the Bat, marketing impact of the Avengers is still way off the mark – like I said, too US centric and too comic book focussed.

Build up and marketing: Dark Knight scores!

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[The Nolan factor]

I’ve a big IMDB follower and any movie with an IMDB rating of above 7 is considered to be real good. Above 8, and you have an outstanding piece of work and above 8.5, well, that’s Christopher Nolan. J
Nolan’s last few movies of Inception, Dark Knight, The Prestige and Batman Begins were all above 8-ers and his highest rated movie till date is the Dark Knight – people say that the only person who can top Nolan’s enviable record is Nolan himself and some say he will do that with TDKR. And even if he averages it out at 8, 8 is still a great movie. Chances that he’ll go below 8 is very unlikely.

Contrast this to the Avenger’s director, Joss Whedon, whose directorial attempts - Serenity and Thor - were well received nevertheless however were still rated below 8.
But one argument doing the rounds is that Nolan’s work have all been serious stuff – he’s never really known for doing the light hearted– I mean, if Nolan had directed Iron Man, I’m not sure if we’d have loved it for the reason that we do. And considering that summer movies are known for kids and families, some say that Nolan’s direction totally keeps this group away from his work.
But well, my take is : a good movie is a good movie is a good movie is a good movie. And yes, this is the end of probably the best possible trilogy that Hollywood has ever created. Ever. So that itself will bring in crowds just to see 'the legend end'.

Director credibility: Dark Knight scores!

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[The legacy of the Bat]


Let’s face it – even though the Avengers is an assembly of superheroes, the real stars are only two - Iron Man and the Hulk; we never really cared who Thor or Captain America were till about last year – in fact, I’m not sure if we still care! J Sure there is a niche set of fans who followed the comics and know who Black Widow and Hawkeye are; but to most of us, it’s only Robert Downey Jr and the green monster and I’m pretty sure that to most people, its, “ OK… Nick Fury who ??? ”
But the Bat has been a part of our collective conscious for over half a century – also, with various stars from Keaton, Clooney and now Bale donning the black suit and with an even impressive set of actors (Jack Nicholson, Halle Berry, Arnold, Jin Carrey….) having played the villains over the last few decades, the Batman has successfully carved a place in our minds. And yes, our hearts too.

So when you bring in the legacy aspect, the Dark Knight is someone my dad may have liked too when he was a kid. This is important as today, it’s the international market that brings in more money, as was seen in case of movies like the last Pirates or Tin Tin, or even Johnny English, and hence it’s important to have an international appeal, for which requires legacy, which the Bat has oodles of, over the likes of Nick Fury, Black Widow, Thor or Captain or ….
.
Legacy: Dark Knight scores! And how!

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[Bane.]

So did you see the 6 minute prologue, the link which I shared above? You still haven’t!?.... What’s wrong with you??? J
People who’ve seen the prologue will agree that Bane is one mean bad ass villain – he’s meaner, smarter, has got a plan and just plain evil. In fact, comic book fans will remember Bane as the guy who broke Batman’s back! Never before has Batman faced a villain who is as physically awesome as Bane. If you remember Joker or Ra Gul, they’re not physically impressive – in fact, the Joker is just puny in front of the Bat – I mean, we knew that if the Bat were to physically fight out the Joker, Batman could make salad of the funny man. Even for Ra Gul, he actually trains the Bat so the Bat becomes as good as the Ra, if not better. But with Bane, it’s a whole different game - Bane brings in that strong physicality and brute force that was missing in the earlier villains and to top it off, he’s smart as hell. If you see the footage, Bane’s followers are willing to risk their lives for him, a trait the Joker’s followers never had, adding to the Bat's troubles.
Yes there is an argument that Bane is not exactly a household name as the Joker or even, Catwoman but strictly speaking, me thinks Bane is a whole lot level darker than the Avenger’s bad man, Loki.

Of course, Avengers has its strengths – in fact, its your perfect pop corn movie – blasts, babes, one liners, more superheroes and a whole lot better trailer. Also, there is the strong prospect of cameos from Marvel's huge universe, like Spider Woman, Ant Man, or who knows, even Spider Man!!! J

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So how does all this translate into the big money that this blog forecasts ‘The Dark Knight Rises’ to be? Well simply put, almost everyone will watch both the movies (Avengers could maybe even turn out to be bigger than the Bat in the US) but more people in the international markets will see the Bat than the Avengers due to its wider appeal and it’s the international market that’ll do the trick for the Bat. In fact this blog goes on to say that the Dark Knight will become the third biggest money spinner ever, after Avatar and Titanic, both $2Bn babies. I’m putting the Dark Knight Rises’ gross to be in the region of $1.5Bn (the first one grossed around $1Bn).
So, besides a natural calamity, what else can upset this blog's forecast? Well, if the rest of the year springs up a surprise hit ( like Hunger Games, that blew away the US box office or Titanic 3D that’s re-rocking the international box) or if Avengers becomes that phenomenal a movie, then well, maybe.... But considering that Nolan has still another three months to go, I'm sure he'll be taking the marketing to a whole new level.

But my bet is – it’s gonna be 'the Dark Knight Rises' all the way!

What do you think???

J


research n pics: google

[May 30th update - Avengers opened to extremely positive reviews (IMDB score of 8.7), a record breaking $207mill and became the fastest movie to hit a billion!  As we speak, the Avengers' worldwide gross stands at around $1.3Billion.  One way to look at it is that everyone who has seen Avengers is most likely to have seen the awesome third DKR trailer (below), thereby expanding its appeal.  Sure, since DKR is shot in IMAX and not in 3D, it's unlikely to break the 207mill weekend record but I'm still holding on to my prediction of $1.5Billion cume for Dark Knight Rises and of it becoming the third biggest grosser ever, after the Cameron twins. Why, you ask?  Well , cos the Dark Knight has not given us everything.... not yet....   J]




42 comments:

  1. Hmmm I will have to see it to comment here , although I have seen lately that movies which spend so much on Ad's and publicity generally dont do good :)

    you have done a good reasearch I am looking forward to the avengers , lot of my child hood heroes are in it ..

    Bikram's

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    1. My good friend Biks, long time yaar..:) Been a while since I dropped by ur blog too due to the wordpress thingie .. hope all is well on ur side Biks :)

      The Avengers' reviews seem to quite good n the buzz is expectin a huge openin, possible the best till date this year, for next week's opening; lets see how it goes... fr the record, Dark Knight's third n final trailer will be also attached to before the Avenger's movie :)

      Same here man, I'll be catchin up with both n hope my blog prediction come true :)

      Do drop by more often dear friend :)

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  2. R-A-J, my bets are on Bats. Just don't mention Clooney wearing that tight suit! It's such a haunting image. I wonder if Pfeiffer's Catwoman will ever be surpassed. Meow!

    P.S. But the Bats doesn't offer us this free song.

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    1. Aah, fellow Bat betting-man :)

      Ya that was somethin.. ooh, Pfeiffer ws H-O-T as the cat, lets see of Anne can sizzle as well.. not sure she can though :)

      Thnx fr droppin by RCB.. do drop by more often :)

      a fellow Bat betting-man :)

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  3. oh man...i havent read such a detailed analysis of any movie so far...kudos to you...
    and of course am waiting for the bat and i will watch avengers too...only for scarlett ;););)

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    1. Hey Hari, thnx fr ur very kind words man :)

      Hahaha.. same here bro..same here.. apparently the first reviews fr Avengers r supposedly great :)

      Do drop by more often Hari.. nice to see u here :)

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    2. I pinned your blog to my favs list...so will keep visiting more often :)
      http://harivatsava.blogspot.in/

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    3. Thanks so much bro.. much honored n humbled :)

      Thanks so much Hari :)

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  4. P.S. THIS is my most favorite Batman ever.

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    1. LOL!!! Sooperb.. shared it on fb.. awesum one!!! Loved it to bits!!! :)

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  5. Someone likes his superhero flicks.. :P
    True, Heath Ledger would not have been so awesome but for his last role. He made me fall in love with the Joker, more than Batman!
    Brilliantly researched. :D But I think it'll be Avengers: most people only look for paisa vasool. Nolan's craft, I think, lies in how he turns a superhero story into something more, it engages you: and I don't think that's stuff everybody understands.
    I'll be back here after the release: for the mandatory "I told you so" :P

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    1. Hahaha.. looks like Avengers is expectin a huge openin n some great reviews n the final Dark Knight trailer with it to boot... oooh, I loved the Joker.. Heath Ledger was God in tht role....

      thnx a lot fr droppin by Revacious n thnx fr ur very kind words.. I do agree with ur perspective but me thinks tht the int'l markets will give DKR a bigger $$$ thn Avengers n tht'll make the cut :)

      pls do come back after the release so tht I cud do my mandatory "I told you so" :D

      do drop by more often Revz.. great to hv u onboard :

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    2. Gosh I needed this.. I actually have a HUGE grin on my face knowing I could predict superheroes' fates (even if only in movies) :D
      I TOLD YOU SO! :P

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    3. Jahapanaa, tussi great ho! tohfa kabool karo :)
      \m/

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  6. geez. you are a BIG fan.
    i havent seen much movies of late. i should really add some action movies into my life right now. i think i'm getting boring. urghhh. i bet movies are cheaper than LV bags :) and a host of other things that i'd been spending on.
    been such a biatch this month! yikes.

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    1. Hey Jaya, ooohh yesss, big movies, big fan! :)

      Aah, u're in the right time of the year fr action movies.. with the summer just startin, Avengers is just only the start :)

      Haha, yup, anyday cheaper thn the LVs :)

      Nahhh, me dnt think so but really... why, may I ask?? :)

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    2. maybe mid-life crisis ? hahaha.
      no, just been a little stressed. work and life in general.
      :)

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    3. Aaah.. nothin that chilled beer, grilled chicken with mayo n a movie can solve, I guess :)

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  7. phew! extensive! lotta research indeed. shows your passion too

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    1. Hey Sujatha, welcum back to my blog!! Long time yaar n congrats on completin two years of bloggin n on ur hundredth post :)

      Yap, yap.. big fan :) happy tht u took the time n effort to go thru it all :D

      Do drop by more often Sujatha.. lovely to hv u here :)

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  8. `Raj,
    Since when did u become a movie blogger/addict yaar?
    I miss ur funny posts.

    Anyway I will take Christopher Nolan any day.

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    1. Bro Sai, welcum back man!!! Long time, eh??? So did u finally manage to get with Evam?

      Hahaha, when I try to be serious, ppl think I'm funny n vice versa .. but hopefully next post shud b serious :)

      From one Nolan fan to another, glad tht u feel tht way :)

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  9. you are saying "we never really cared who Thor or Captain America were till about last year – in fact, I’m not sure if we still care!".. dumbest thing i have ever heard..and this "we" indicates indian audience i think.. dark knight is gonna score..but lets face it..its not a comic book movie.. if we are talking about comic book movies then avengers scores all the way up// its like seeing those comic book pages adapted for screen..nolan is gonna score..but avengers is gonna set new standards in terms of comic book movie.. and i wont be surprised if avengers make more money than TDKR...bcus face it..hardcore nolan fans are like hardcore twilight fans..Avengers is THE new gold standard in adventure films!! avengers and dark knight are completely different films.. avengers ia a total comic book movie. Dark knight rises is not a complete comic book film..its just inspired from batman comics.. rest is created by nolan.

    Avengers is all about mocking, joking and assembling and being true to fanboys..
    Dark knight Rises is all about dramatic arc , joseph Campbell's structure and winning the Oscars..

    its like comparing indiana jones with Chinatown

    i am gonna watch both films.. bcus these two are great in their respective manner..

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    1. If u think this is the dumbest, u hvnt read the rest of my blog.. :D

      Hey Hitesh, oh! I knoww u're a fan!! Good 2 hv u here man.. I always hv a thing fr ppl who disagree with me :D

      really respect ur views man.. well, actually Batman was comics-book-like too once upon a time too (recall Batman Forever/ Batman n Robin n the like), but Nolan changed it to giv it its dark essence n the fact tht u dont call it a comics book movie nw inspite of it being DC Comics' biggest property, is truly Nolan's awesum talent.. moreover, Batman, as a comic, has tht dark quality to it just like the Avengers has its fun-cowboy aspect to it.. so me thinks both movie r faithful to their fanboys :)

      I agree tht both movies hv different flavors bt I'm speakin more wrt box office potential of the movies by takin into account what methinks goes into it - the marketing, the direction n the like...

      Me still thinks tht DKNR'll rule the box office this year n be a bigger hit thn TA sheerly on the back of the int'l (non-US) markets..n now with DKR's final trailer attached to TA, everyone seeing TA will be exposed to the DKR trailer, thereby improving its visibility n thus box office potential :)

      Thnx fr droppi by Hitesh.. glad to hv ur views.. do drop by more often man... :)

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  10. Must have taken you ages to write this whole thing :P
    I'm waiting for The Dark Knight Rises :D

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    1. Thanks for reading PhilO.. it must take ages fr ppl to read this one too.. so really grateful tht u did :)

      Yippee, another DK fan :)

      Glad tht u dropped by PhilO.. do drop by more often :)

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  11. Dude...Quite detailed... I had been waiting for TDKR since TDK released back in 2008... 4 years of wait ends in August...Good/Bad i will see the movie at least 2-3 times... While i think $1.5Bn is a little higher number, but it will possibly top the bar set by TDK... With the TDKR final trailer coming out with Avengers, we are set for good times ahead... :)... I agree on the fact that TDKR will be year's biggest hit...

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    1. Bro, thnx man.. I'm thinkin if 1.5B wud b less :D

      Avengers is rocking the global markets as we speak.. this wud be an interesting fight n a solid great year fr us movie fans :)

      Thnx fr droppin by bro... cheers to $1.5B :)

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    1. Thanks city.. my pleasure n thanx fr reading :)

      do drop by more often, City :)

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  13. My God! You live in a multiplex or something! Dude you are good at this!! (and partial - but thats a different story) :-) .... anyways... here is a contest for you http://lafemmenirvana.blogspot.in/2012/04/how-you-doin-and-book-to-win.html?showComment=1335512837951

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    1. Nirvana, how I sooo wish!!! :)

      Thanks Nirvana for ur very kind words n am so glad to see u back here yaar :) Congrats on gettin ur second work published.. u truly rock, Nirvana!!!

      Yup, checkin ur site now.. I'm gettin interested.... :)

      Glad to see u back Nirvana.. do drop by more often :)

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  14. Damn, that's a lot of research o_O

    Dark Knight promises to be more like one of those movies which stay on in our heads for years to come while Avengers I want to watch because I'm in love with Thor :P

    Like I said on your update, I vote both :D

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    1. Hey PeeVee, glad to see u here yaar!! Long time :)

      I totally agree.. very recently I was seeing 'Batman Begins' n like u said here, it just stuck to my mind n I simply can't get over how awesome he made the Bat to be.. :)

      I hope u watched Avengers.. Thor does well though I'm a Hulk fan now - Hulk Smash! :)

      Do drop by more often Pee Vee.. always glad to see u here :)

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  15. watched Avengers, it sucked big time and where was the goddamm 3D! the movie did seem, like you had mentioned, very comic book style
    now must catch the Dark knight

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    1. Hey Sujatha... aah, yes, I heard a few people who really didn't like the movie.. yup, comic book like.. but the news is its already made half a billion $ WW by now :)

      Oh yes, the third trailer of DK is so damn good... totally, totally roxx.. am thinkin of catchin DK on imax at Hyd when its out :)

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  16. well, after watching the movie, Im pretty sure what the answer to your post is. Its dark knight rises anyday. I shouldnt have doubted it. Its gonna be crazy awesome and will have way better script and direction than the avengers. I have my finger crossed for dark knight. *excitement*

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    1. I hear u bro!!! :)

      Man, the last DK trailer just blew me away.. I was like so WOW n felt so touched by the Bat.. n re-watched the trailer some 30 times after that :)

      To the Dark Knight and his $1.5B :)

      Thnx fr droppin by man.. been a while.. hope allz well on ur side... :)

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  17. Hmmm interesting post. I wish for DK too however we have to wait and see. I'm sure Nolan would've done his best to make this film the biggest hit of the year. I'm going to patiently wait :)

    Here's my site, check out sometime - http://movieroundup.in/

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    1. Hey Hari, thnx fr droppin by my friend.. sorry was late with my comment :)

      DKR is trending to have the biggest opening for a 2D movie, lets see how to goes.. I really hope Nolan gives us a killer of a movie :)

      I'm checkin ur site right now :)

      thnx fr droppin by Hari :)

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  18. :D Loved the post with the plus side of me being a movie buff! Dark knight rises is something that is not disconnected from reality or u might say it is a symbolism of reality! It won over every kind of audience. And avengers on the other side is all about good dialogues and one time excitement and ofcourse, The iron man (This hulk is good enough but it never gave us that ONE face to look up to..)

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