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Zachary Levi and Charlie Kaufman Agree that Hollywood Only Makes 'Garbage' Now

By Dustin Rowles | Celebrity | August 14, 2023 |

By Dustin Rowles | Celebrity | August 14, 2023 |


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Here’s an odd pairing: Thirsty, problematic anti-vaxxer Zachary Levi and Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind and Being John Malkovich screenwriter share the exact same opinion about the state of Hollywood: It’s “garbage.”

“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,” Zachary Levi said at the Chicago Fan Expo, where he probably shouldn’t have been during the strikes, although his comments were allegedly in support of the strike.

“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. And the only way for us to change any of it is to not go to the garbage. We have to actively not choose the garbage. It’ll help. It’ll help a lot.”

I’d joke that Zachary Levi is talking about his own movies, but let’s be honest: No one was even excited about the trailer for Shazam! Fury of the Gods. If we agree not to choose garbage, will Zachary Levi agree to stop making it? “It’ll help. It’ll help a lot.”

Interestingly, a writer/director on the opposite side of the talent spectrum, Charlie Kaufman, echoed the comments of Levi while speaking during a masterclass at the Bosnian Cultural Center at the Sarajevo Film Festival.

“At this point, the only thing that makes money is garbage. It’s just fascinating. It makes a fortune, and that’s the bottom line,” Kaufman said. “It’s very seductive to the studios but also to the people who engage and become the makers of that garbage, especially if they’re lauded for the garbage because they don’t have to look inward or think long about what they’re doing.”

The difference between Levi and Kaufman’s statements, however, is that Levi’s were ostensibly in support of the SAG and WGA strike while Kaufman is basically arguing that the writers are complicit. He said that “writers have been trained to eat and make the garbage too,” and “as long as they are in that arena making that shit, then you might as well have AI do it.”

However, Kaufman did voice strong opposition to AI. “Once you give that up and allow the studios to use AI to write their screenplays, there’s no going back,” he said. “Then there’s no hope because AI can’t create a moment of humanity. As long as people are doing it and there’s that struggle, then there’s always a chance that something will come out of it that will be worth something to human beings.”

Sources: EW, Deadline