At the UK premiere of his epic film of Alexander, Oliver Stone last night blamed "raging fundamentalism in morality" for the film's US box office failure.
"Sexuality is a large issue in America right now, but it isn't so much in other countries," the Oscar-winning director explained yesterday. "There's a raging fundamentalism in morality in the United States. From day one audiences didn't show up. They didn't even read the reviews in the [American] south because the media was using the words: 'Alex is Gay'."
I wonder what Stone will use as an excuse when the movie flops outside of the U.S., but for now, he's got to grasp at the straws that are within range. You're so much better than those Americans, now, aren't you?
The movie's star Colin Farrell has a more downbeat explanation:
"The film is a draining experience to watch. It's loaded with mythology, icons, symbolism and destiny. My friends have watched the film and said: 'Jesus Christ it's not exactly Gladiator.'"
Come on, Colin. You could easily have punched that up into a challenge for the European moviegoers: The Americans, being simple-minded folk, were not up to the difficult comprehension of mythology, icons, symbolism and destiny. Surely, Europeans will get the allusions and revel in the complexity. But, no. He admits his friends have already razzed him about what a bad movie he made. Still, I think Farrell is probably wise to distance himself from Stone and reclaim his once-cool image.