Shia LaBeouf regrets Spielberg dig, quits blockbusters

News Simon Brew 20 Aug 2012 - 07:13
Shia LaBeouf cutting a dash, a safe 25 years before the creation of The Village People.

On the eve of Lawless, Shia LaBeouf expresses regrets over his Crystal Skulls comments, and reveals that he's done with the Hollywood studio system...

While he's hardly likely to commandeer awards attention for it, Shia LaBeouf's performance in the upcoming Lawless is nonetheless likely to be a surprise to those who'd written him off based on his work in the Transformers movies, and Indiana Jones And The Kingdom Of The Crystal Skull. And Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps.

In an interview ahead of the release of Lawless, a movie that apparently LaBeouf was pivotal in getting made, he's first of all revealed that he "regrets" the comments he made in the aftermath of Crystal Skull. The actor said back in 2010 that "there was a reason it wasn't universally accepted", amongst other things, and as a consequence of that, his relationship with director Steven Spielberg was, inevitably, damaged.

Harrison Ford was critical of LaBeouf in the aftermath of his comments, but now we hear that Spielberg apparently added that "there's a time to be a human and have an opinion, and there's a time to sell cars". LaBeouf's thoughts on all of this? "It brought me freedom, but it also killed my spirits because this was a dude I looked up to like a sensei".

In the same interview, Shia LaBeouf says that he's "done" with the Hollywood studio system. Instead, it's indie films for the foreseeable future. His next project will be Lars von Trier's Nymphomaniac, which will be released with two cuts, one of which will be far more sexually explicit.

Meanwhile, if Indiana Jones 5 ever happens, it looks like Shia LaBeouf is less likely to be involved...

The Hollywood Reporter.

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"There's a time to be a human and have an opinion, and there's a time to sell cars."

What's Spielberg implying here? Obviously I can understand not being thrilled to have your movie criticized by one of the stars, but that kind of 'shut up and sell the movie' attitude really blows.

Part of the contract of being an actor on a blockbuster is exactly that, "shut up and sell the movie", surely? May not be healthy, but it's the way it's been since the 50's or earlier? If, while employed by a company, you stand in front of the press and bad-mouth them, it's not likely to go well.

it could be because I'm tried, or that I'm trying to do filing whilst reading this, but the first paragraph seemed to have the classic movie title Indiana Jones and the Monkeys Never Sleep. In hindsight, that may be a more pertinent title for the last one...

That would make sense if he said it in 2008, when they were selling the movie. He said it in 2010. Surely that's acceptable? Or is the statute of limitations on bad mouthing your movies longer than that? Bob Hoskins has said things about the Mario Bros. movie ; what, did he have to wait 20 years. I digress. In 2010 the 'selling' stage was over. Your point would be more salient if we were talking about Bradd Pit with The Devils Own -- now that WAS imprudent timing. "This in not the movie I wanted to make"....... (although I thought that showed balls).

Whilst his honesty is refreshing, he hasn't earned the right to criticise any project he has worked on, and whilst he is clearly trying to come across as wise beyond his years with some of his musings and self-efficacy, he just comes across as conceited and quite simply annoying. Once he has produced a truly great performance (whether it is awarded or not) which has a lasting impact on cinema, then he will be taken a bit more seriously. Kudos for publicly saying he regretted his comments, but it remains to be seen whether he actually apologised, either publicly or personally.

I think that's the thing about him that grates so much isn't it?

He's obviously got a lot of self-confidence but it turns into arrogance whenever he opens his mouth. He place a lot of value in his own opinion to the detriment of any opposing opinion.

If he can capture that swagger and channel it into an iconic movie role, no doubt he'd have it made, however none of his roles thus far have been anything but popcorn (from what I've seen).

Maybe doing indie work will allow him to leave all that behind (after pocketing the paychecks) and actually find his level as an actor.

I recall him criticising Transformers 2...during the promotion of Transformers 3 which was, apparently, "so much better", so quite why anyone should take a blind bit of notice of anything he has to say is beyond me.

He comes across as a petulant little boy. I'm not a huge fan of Speilberg (or Crystal Skull), but he did essentially shove LaBoeuf in our faces and try and convince us he was a star. You'd think LaBoeuf would have a bit more respect for someone who, misguidedly, made him world-famous and gave him lots of money.

Maybe its a dig at his transformers career? Or maybe it was done when TF3 was coming out?

Spielberg has had such an incredible career and made some of my favourite films, such as Jaws, Indiana Jones and Schindler's List and he was the most dominate director in the 80s and 90s. So it must have been annoying to have some young actor criticise him. However I could help but agree with you that the selling cars thing seems very cold, and you are right, what is Spielberg implying? I can't help but get the feeling that Spielberg is more interested in making money now rather than make a movie his audience can connect with and I feel that it's very sad. I also have to give credit to Shia for turning his back on the big blockbusters and turning to indie films. I feel it's the right move for him. Johnny Depp and joseph gordon-levitt both improved as actors by doing indie films. I'm saying that Shia will be as good as either of them but I have heard he is a very hard worker and maybe there is more to see from him. Spielberg will always be remembered as a great director but I have my doubts that he will direct something really great in the future. War Horse and Crystal Skulls weren't that bad but neither of them were up to Spielberg's usual standards.

It sounded almost like a threat to me. Lord knows I hate Spielberg. No fan of Shia either, but the last Indiana Jones movie was horrible, so I agree with him there.

I don't think it's arrogance at all that pushes him to say these things. I think it's more insecurity. From everything I've read about him, including statements made by the actor hismelf, he's desperate to be liked, and when he gets involved in projects that are critically- and audience-disliked, his knee-jerk reaction is to side with the audience and say "You guys are so right, this could have been better".

I've always held a belief that LaBeouf was talented but was taking the wrong roles, looks like I'm about to find out if that's true or not.
I know he annoys alot of people and I can see why, and whilst he's no de niro, I think the kid's got a few really good performances in him if he gets the right director. He needs a few roles where he's not the smart talking cocky kid. Good luck to him.

Everyone else moans about IJ&TCS and nothing, this guy moans about it and everyone moans about him in turn? Hmpf.

I was under the impression the comments were made during a promotional tour of the film. If not, then LaBeouf should have felt free to speak his mind, absolutely. It wasn't, obviously, politically wise regardless.

I'm not saying that selling the product isn't part of an actors job, but Spielberg's response seemed to have nothing to do with addressing the criticism and everything to do with "shut your mouth, we're here to make money!"

Surely Transformers was the time to sell cars. It's a giant General Motors advert.

I don't get it. One: the comments never seemed particularly aimed at Spielberg. Wasn't it basically along the lines of "we dropped the ball on that one"? Two: Spielberg joked recently about the prospect of Indy V, saying, "Didn't we burn all our bridges with the last one?" I don't see how there's much difference...

What do you mean his attitude blows? It's a movie BUSINESS. Especially Hollywood studio films. The amount of money they throw into the production AND the actors wage, they need to earn that back. Half of what actors are paid for is to be interviewed and to sing the praises of the film they are in.

There is a reason it's called the Movie Business. If you think otherwise you are very sheltered!!! If you've ever spent time around actors you will realise how very "lovie" it all is and how they (next to) never criticize each other or a movie as they never know where their next paycheque is coming from.

Don't get me wrong, I am very sympathetic to directors as I know they are primary employed to make money but personally I feel if you are just in it to make money than you end up with films like Transformers, with over the top CGI and no heart. I personally believe that directors also need to care about the films as well as acting like sales men. I just got the impression from what Spielberg said that he's only interested in the latter rather than thee former.

Spielberg made a bad film, and trying to stop people criticising it won't make it a good film. Instead of whining about his stars trashing his bad films, he should just go and make a good one.

That doesn't make what he said not dickish. Put it this way - I used to wait tables. By your logic, it'd be just fine if somebody asked for a refill on their coffee and I responded "Yeah OK, but you're going to leave me a big tip, right? This is a business transaction, buddy. I get the joe, you leave the cash."

The thing is, The Kingdom of the Crystal Skull was not a bad film. Its just as "bad" as the previous two sequels. Which were terrible compared to the original film. Temple of Doom was disappointing in that it tried too hard to be funny. Every scene had some sort of gag in them. It was full of ridiculous stereotypes and a cartoony plot-line. The Last Crusade was a big bore that recycled a lot of stuff from the earlier films and the only thing that saved it was Sean Connery. If any of the sequels had come out today for the first time, they would've gotten the same reaction as KotCS.

But the fact is, Kingdom of the Crystal Skull was a hit at the box office (made more money than TLotR: Fellowship of the Ring). With critics, even with all the hate, it still managed to get above the 75% "freshness" scores/ratings at rottentomatoes. So sorry, but those achievements are not even close to branding this one as a "bad" film. The numbers just don't reflect the tastes of the HIPSTERS and the haters who are obviously the outspoken minority.

And I am not trying to defend the film. Because in my opinion, the film is just as "bad" as the other sequels. Raider's of the Lost Ark is my only favorite Indy movie. And I can pretty much live without the other ones. But that doesn't mean that I will join the bandwaggon and hate on the 4th film just to look cool and hip.

You HATE Spielberg? Good lord... you must be one of those hipsters that believes Spielberg rape their childhood.

Seriously, I don't think you could even rationalize hating someone, unless they came to your town, killed all your loved ones and took off with your children.

The man makes an average quality film and suddenly he's right up there with AlQaeda, Hitler and Herpes. Things we could agree need some sort of hating. Sheesh!

in terms of the shutting up and selling cars comment i assume most of us have jobs and like it or lump it we sometime have to shut up and tow the company line. in regards to the comments made i believe it was the timing of them not so much what he said. please correct me if im wrong but they came out either before or during its run at cinemas so shia showed an incrediable lack of tact by saying what he said. very naieve

I tried my best to care, but my best wasn't good enough.

Ingrate. You do not bite the hand that feeds you even on your way out. Don't burn bridges. Even if you don't like the movie your in, you don't bash it once your paid your portion faggot.

he's right about the blockbuster movies.. 95 percent of them is forgettable and brings nothing new to the screen

Otherwise you might end up like Johnny Depp at the end of his teen-heartthrob days when he criticised 21 Jump Street, half the directors he's worked with and all of the studios that employed him. That sure stuffed up his career...

Guy coulda actually done something in film and be the next Indiana Jones. Instead he's a colossal douche.

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