Eric D. Snider

Eric D. Snider's Blog

Archive for August 1st, 2007

Fox to start being nicer to online film critics

Wednesday, August 1st, 2007
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We have good news to report on the subject of movie studios interacting with online film critics!

I mentioned last week how Fox has been particularly gun-shy lately, inviting print press to early screenings while making onliners wait until the night before a movie opens to see it. Reports among my colleagues across the nation were that the studio was leery of reviews being posted early, which some online critics are notorious for.

I neglected to mention, however, that the Chicago Film Critics Association, tired of the second-class treatment and fed up with being ignored whenever they tried to have a discussion with Fox, recently staged a bit of a protest. They announced that while they would continue to review Fox’s movies, they would not do any other Fox-related articles like interviews or feature stories. Studios count on those stories for extra publicity, and since they’re almost always positive (or at least neutral), they’re less risky than reviews.

Well, Fox blinked and said they’d start being nicer to the Chicago Film Critics Association. (If you’re wondering, Roger Ebert is not a member of that group. He don’t need no group to have clout.) [Edit: The source I read that said that was wrong. Ebert is a member of the group. He still don’t need no group to have clout, though.] The CFCA, for its part, wrote into its bylaws that any CFCA member who violates the no-early-reviews rule is subject to discipline. So now everybody’s happy, sort of.

But there was still the ongoing concern that online critics in general were getting shafted.

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‘Snide Remarks’ Classic: ‘Thinking Outside the Box’

Wednesday, August 1st, 2007

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We’re commemorating the 10th anniversary of “Snide Remarks” by highlighting an oldie-but-goodie every Wednesday in 2007. This week’s choice is a lighthearted tale called “Thinking Outside the Box,” in which we planned a special birthday surprise for my mom and in so doing almost made her wet her pants. It’s column #347, and it was published Feb. 23, 2003.

The reason I wanted to fly home for Mom’s birthday was that it was her 50th. I didn’t mention that in the column because in those days Daily Herald readers (being bastards) liked to complain that I was “too young.” If they disagreed with a movie review I wrote, it’s because I was too young to understand the world. If I made a joke they didn’t like, it’s because I was just a kid. Because of this, I was always careful not to mention my actual age, as it would have fueled the fire — and revealing that my mother was a mere 50 would have let the cat out of the bag that I was most likely only in my mid-20s myself.

Mom was actually 21 when she bore me (and quite married, thank you), and I was 28 when this column was published. But when the average age of your readers is 60, even 28 is “too young.” I suspect that even if I were writing for the Herald today, well into my 30s, most of the Herald’s ancient, fussy readership would consider me but a child.

Anyway, just because I can never get enough of it, here’s a picture of my mom with her favorite chihuahua poking his head out from betwixt her bosoms.

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