Nick Swardson has the unfortunate distinction being the star of the worst reviewed film of 2011 to date – the critically drubbed Bucky Larson: Born to be a Star. With 32 reviews tallied so far, the film – which finds Swardson playing a goofy young man who follows his parents into the porn biz, despite his lack of “size” – is still sitting at 0% on aggregator site RottenTomatoes.
Website Splitsider recently caught up with Swardson, and during the course of their discussion things naturally gravitated toward the film. Swardson had a lot to say about Bucky Larson – and the people who savaged it. Here are the highlights.
When asked if the experience would make him shy away from big movie roles or change the way he approaches his craft, Swardson is philosophical.
“Bucky Larson was a very interesting experience because it was a small movie, it was small budget for Sony/Columbia, and, you know, it was out there. It was a character nobody knew. It wasn't a character from a show or from Saturday Night Live, you know what I mean? It was one of those things where I was like, either people are going to buy this or not. It's going to hit or miss, and it didn't really hit.”
He then places a lot of blame on the film’s inability to resonate with audiences on the marketing campaign, saying that the film was a tough sell given the subject matter and R-rating.
“To promote an R-rated movie, with commercials, with this character, it was just really, really hard. It was hard to get the movie across to people. The trailer in theaters was really tame because we couldn't show any of the insanity, and even if we did it, it wouldn't hit because it had no context. It was just really frustrating.”
He goes on to add that he thinks the film will find an appreciative audience when it hits DVD. He could be right.
With that out of the way, Swardson decides it’s time to talk about the critics who didn’t like his film. He gets off on a bit of a rant about it, actually.
“I knew the critics were going to bury us. It was a softball. They were waiting, waiting to hate that movie. It's kind of funny that they get their rocks off on reviews like that. They review The King's Speech, then they review Bucky Larson.”
“It's [making a funny comedy] a lot of work and a lot of reviewers aren't going into that movie to like it. They don't want to like it. None of those reviewers was psyched to see Bucky Larson and laugh. They go in with the mentality, ‘f*ck these guys for making another movie.’ They go in there to kind of headhunt. It makes me laugh because it's just so embarrassing. It makes them look like such morons. You can't review Avatar then review Bucky Larson. Comedy is so subjective, you know what I mean? To sit there and technically pick it apart is so stupid. We've never made movies for critics, so we could give a f*ck.”
We can understand that Swardson was probably really disappointed about the reviews his film received – and we can support him blowing off a little steam about it, but suggesting that a critic can’t review Avatar and then review Bucky Larson seems patently absurd. We’re not entirely clear on what Swardson’s getting at here, but if he’s suggesting that critics shouldn’t watch one movie after another, we can’t help but feel he’s completely off base. Better luck next time, Nick.