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Despite Michael Chabon Script Work, ‘John Carter’ Flops

Disney’s John Carter has bombed at the box office, a blow for novelist Michael Chabon. The Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist had co-written the script for the film, achieving a 17-year-old dream to make a movie script about Mars.

We’ve embedded the trailer above–did you see the film? The New York Times compared the failure to the most famous movie flop in recent history, Ishtar.

Check it out: “John Carter, which cost an estimated $350 million to make and market, and was directed by Mr. Stanton, took in about $30.6 million at the North American box office, according to Rentrak, which compiles box-office data. That result is so poor that analysts estimate that Disney will be forced to take a quarterly write-down of $100 million to $165 million.”

Over at her popular Facebook page, novelist Anne Rice generated hundreds of responses when she wrote: “I’m wondering. Did people like the film? Might word of mouth save it still? What about all the John Carter fans? Thoughts, anyone?”

In an excellent interview with io9, Chabon explained how he tackled the tough dialogue for the movie: “We want these people to sound like they’re speaking naturally — but at the same time, we’re dealing with kings and princesses and warriors and evil entities with mysterious agendas. There is a kind of required or expected way for those people to speak, and you want to meet that expectation without going overboard, and you still want to make it sound fresh and natural. I put a lot of effort into that.”

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