Actor Zachary Levi, who recently starred in the box office bomb Shazam! Fury of the Gods, shared his thoughts that Hollywood studios are constantly churning out “garbage” because they simply “don’t care.”

Zachary Levi speaking at the 2018 San Diego Comic Con International, for “Shazam!”, at the San Diego Convention Center in San Diego, California. Photo Credit: Gage Skidmore, CC BY-SA 2.0 <https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0>, via Wikimedia Commons

As reported by Entertainment Weekly, Levi made an appearance at Fan Expo Chicago on Saturday, where he shared, “I personally feel like the amount of content that comes out of Hollywood that is garbage — they don’t care enough to actually make it great for you guys. They don’t.”

He elaborated, “How many times do you watch a trailer and go, ‘Oh my god, this looks so cool!’ Then you go to the movie and it’s like, ‘This was what I get?’ They know that once you’ve already bought the ticket and you’re in the seat, they’ve got your money.”

Zachary Levi as Shazam in Shazam! (2019), Warner Bros. Pictures

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As for how to change this, Levi posited, “And the only way for us to change any of it is to not go to the garbage.”

He added, “We have to actively not choose the garbage. It’ll help. It’ll help a lot.”

achary Levi speaking at the 2018 San Diego Comic Con International, for “Shazam!”, at the San Diego Convention Center in San Diego, California. Photo Credit: Gage Skidmore, CC BY-SA 2.0 <https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0>, via Wikimedia Commons

Levi’s assessment of the situation appears to be a surface-level analysis of the problem that has been plaguing Hollywood for years.

Combat Frame XSeed and Soul Cycle novelist Brian Niemeier assessed back in 2016 that the primary reason Hollywood is churning out garbage is because “Hollywood hates its own audience.”

Combat Frame XSeed (2019)

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After noting that “one of the key societal functions that storytelling serves is explaining a culture to itself,” Niemeier points out that American culture has fragmented into two distinct classes: the common underclass and the ruling elite. Niemeier posits Hollywood is “firmly in the latter camp.”

Given American culture has fragmented, Hollywood is no longer able to tell stories that explain the culture of the common underclass because they are no longer part of it, but rather they are the ruling elite.

Thus, this ruling elite resorts to pushing propaganda through their films in an attempt to indoctrinate moviegoers to their worldview.

Daisy Ridley as Rey in The Force Awakens (2015), Lucasfilm

To illustrate these points, Niemeier points to J.J. Abrams’ Undercovers television show and how the director approached the casting of the show that he relayed to Jeff Garlin on the By The Way podcast back in 2013.

Abrams stated, “We wrote these characters but when we went to cast it, one of the things I had felt, having been to the Emmys a couple times — you look around that room and you see the whitest f***ing room in the history of time. Its just unbelievably white.”

“And I just thought, we’re casting this show and we have an opportunity to do anything we want, why not cast the show with actors of color? Like not for sure, and if we can’t find the actors who are great, we shouldn’t, but why don’t we make that effort because it wasn’t written that way and isn’t that the cooler version of doing this as opposed to saying ‘this is an urban show’. It f***ing kills me when they call something ‘an urban movie’ like its a separate thing, like ‘its that thing over there,'” Abrams explained.

TOKYO, JAPAN – DECEMBER 11: Director J.J. Abrams attends the special fan event for ‘Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker’ at Roppongi Hills on December 11, 2019 in Tokyo, Japan. (Photo by Christopher Jue/Getty Images for Disney)

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There are obviously way more examples now. One need only look at how Rachel Zegler discusses the original Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs animated film as she promotes the upcoming live-action one. She describes the Prince as a stalker. Reveals the live-action is not about a love story, but is more focused on Snow White’s “inner journey that she goes on to find her true self.”

The film also appears to eschew the moral lesson vanity in favor of a lecture about what it means to be fair in terms of justice.

NEW YORK, NEW YORK – NOVEMBER 29: Rachel Zegler attends the New York premiere of West Side Story on November 29, 2021 in New York City. (Photo by Bennett Raglin/Getty Images for 20th Century Studios)

Hollywood, especially The Walt Disney Company, also has a penchant of raising up female characters at the expense of male characters. The male characters like Luke Skywalker, Han Solo, Arnold Schwarzenegger’s Terminator, John Connor, Nick Fury, and others are poorly depicted as deadbeats, losers, and failures. In the case of John Connor they are murdered.

In their place are female characters like Rey, Grace, Dani Ramos, G’iah, and Sonya Falsworth who are depicted as heroes, saviors, and successes.

Natalia Reyes, right, and Mackenzie Davis star in Skydance Productions and Paramount Pictures’ “TERMINATOR: DARK FATE.”

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Most recently they did this with Indiana Jones, showing him as someone who had given up even to the point that he did not want to return to his own timelines despite the risks to reality. In Disney fashion, they had Phoebe Waller-Bridge’s character punch him in the face, knock him out, and drag him back to the original timeline.

Indiana Jones had to be knocked out by a woman in order for reality to be saved.

Helena (Phoebe Waller-Bridge) in Lucasfilm’s INDIANA JONES AND THE DIAL OF DESTINY. ©2023 Lucasfilm Ltd. & TM. All Rights Reserved.

And if the film’s alone weren’t obvious in how much Hollywood hates moviegoers, one need only look at the comments from many of the people who are making the films.

Rian Johnson infamously described critics of his The Last Jedi as “manbabies.”

Rian Johnson Twitter

James Gunn accused one fan of having “racist presumptions” for disliking race replacements such as the one in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 with the High Evolutionary.

James Gunn Instagram

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Brie Larson infamously said she was uninterested in the opinions of 40-year-old white men.

She said, “I don’t need a 40-year-old white dude to tell me what didn’t work for him about A Wrinkle Time. It wasn’t made for him. I want to know what that film meant to women in color, to biracial women, to teen women of color, to teens that are biracial.”

“And for the third time, I don’t hate white dudes,” she said. “These are just facts. These are not my feelings.” Larson went on to advocate for inclusion riders in film contracts.

What do you make of Levi’s comments?

NEXT: ‘Shazam! Fury Of The Gods’ Star Zachary Levi Clarifies That He Supports SAG-AFTRA Strike After Slamming Rules Against Self-Promotion As “Dumb”

 

 

 

 

 

 

  • About The Author

    John F. Trent
    Founder and Editor-in-Chief

    John is the Editor-in-Chief here at Bounding Into Comics. He is a massive Washington Capitals fan, lover of history, and likes to dabble in economics and philosophy.