When you think about it, the mere idea that Gravity managed to hit theaters in its current form is something of a miracle. The film faced many difficulties in its long, six year voyage to the big screen, from being dropped by Universal when they got skittish about its box office prospects, to losing the main female lead multiple times in the negotiation process, and having its release date shifted around even after the film was done shooting. But all those things mean little, as now Gravity is a highly rated box office blockbuster that’s one of the big frontrunners of this Oscar season. But if Warner Bros. got its way and changed some pivotal plotlines like they wanted to, things could have been much, much different. Check out why after the jump.
Director Alfonso Cuaron was speaking with i09 when he discussed the WB feedback, which borders on…well, no, it’s all pretty terible. According to him:
“[They said] you need to cut to Houston, and see how the rescue mission goes. And there is a ticking clock with the rescue mission. You have to do flashbacks with the backstory.” But we were very clear that this was the film that we wanted to make. [They wanted ] the whole thing of the flashbacks. A whole thing with… a romantic relationship with the Mission Control Commander, who is in love with her. All of that kind of stuff. What else? To finish with a whole rescue helicopter, that would come and rescue her. Stuff like that.”
How frustrating is all that, huh? One of the joys of Gravity is the fact that it avoids all of those terrible things, and instead focuses its attention on creating a tense, breathless space adventure. It’s refreshing, and clearly Warner Bros. wanted to get rid of that. But in what possible universe does adding a really stupid romantic subplot between two people who aren’t on screen at the same time constitute as a good idea? And throughout the entire film the radio’s were down; if they weren’t, they would have certainly sent up a rescue vehicle or communicated more with Bullock’s character. And if she was constantly being assisted the whole way through, what would the fucking point even be of seeing her struggle to survive? I’m glad Cuaron stuck to his ground with these and refused to be swayed by the studio execs…as it’s clear to see from this, we ultimately got a better film out of it.
Gravity is currently in theaters right now, and thankfully doesn’t contain points when they cut to Houston working on a rescue plan. BECAUSE THAT WOULD HAVE ACCOMPLISHED NOTHING!