9 + Nine = Oops

9 + Nine = Oops

If you listen closely, you can hear Harvey Weinstein screaming in the distance.

See that movie poster on the left? That one is for “9” … a very cool-looking animated action/adventure film produced by goth-cinema icon Tim Burton.

And the movie poster on the right? That one is for “Nine,” which Weinstein’s production company describes as “a vibrant and provocative musical that follows the life of world famous film director Guido Contini (Daniel Day-Lewis) as he reaches a creative and personal crisis of epic proportion.”

There are several reasons why Harvey is screaming like that—I mean, aside from the fact that he has a notoriously bad temper.

For starters, “9” (not to be confused soon to be confused with “Nine”) opens on 9/9/09. “Nine,” meanwhile, doesn’t open until 11/25/09. So, in addition to having a way more apropos premiere date, “9” also has a big leap on “Nine.”

There’s a pretty good chance that Burton’s highly marketable, uber-cool-looking “9” is going to make a noticeable splash at the box office … and, when the decidedly less-marketable “Nine” opens two-and-a-half months later, I’m guessing it will suffer for it.

“Hey, that movie ‘Nine’ comes out this weekend.”


“Yeah, ‘Nine.'”

“Didn’t that come out, like, two-and-a-half months ago?”

“Jeez, I don’t think so. Did it?”

“I’m pretty sure it did.”

“Well, either way: wanna go check it out?”


From there, things can only get worse.

“Hi. Two tickets for ‘Nine,’ please.”

“OK, two tickets for ‘9.’ That’ll be $[way too much money]. Thank you. Here are your tickets. You’re going to theater six, on the left.”

The two friends enter theater six. One of them is surprised by the crowd—both its average age, and its general incongruity with his vision of the demographic most likely to attend “a vibrant and provocative musical.” He is pleased to see the youth of America taking in some high culture.

The houselights dim. The previews begin to run. The aforementioned friend’s confusion about demographics continues. He did not expect to see previews for “Iron Man 2” and “The Mummy 17” at a Daniel Day Lewis musical.

Finally, the feature film begins. Though both “vibrant” and “provocative,” the movie does not look anything like this:


It does, however, look a whole lot like this:


Fortunately, as long as the theaters have the movie posters prominently displayed, patrons will be able to easily distinguish one film from the other. Oh, wait …

Scream, Harvey. Scream.

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