Are Women Watching the ‘Watchmen’?

by Jenni Miller

Courtesy of Warner Bros.

Variety is reporting that Twentieth Century Fox is pushing back the release date of the Sandra Bullock flick All About Steve so it wouldn’t go up against Warner Bros.’ super-hyped comic book movie Watchmen. Of course, things get complicated when you add in the legal tug of war between Twentieth Century Fox and Warner Bros. over Watchmen rights, which resulted in Fox now ‘having a stake’ in Watchmen and essentially competing against itself. Fox is also claiming it doesn’t want to ‘risk saturating the market with too many femme-driven pics.’

Granted, Confessions of a Shopaholic was spanked at the box office by He’s Just Not That Into You, but in this economy, do you really want to see an obsessive shopper magically fall into a sweet job and then meet a rich dude to solve all her problems? Personally, I’d take two hours of Drew Barrymore over that. To say that the market is saturated with movies targeted towards women is somewhat disingenuous.

According to Hollywood thinking, the two movies have totally different target audiences. Wouldn’t execs expect women to flock to a rom-com while their menfolk are off watching a comic book movie?

Not necessarily. While comic book stores were once the domain of nerds like that dude in The Simpsons, more and more women are seen snapping up graphic novels and hitting the huge comic book conventions in NYC and San Diego. Watchmen was included in Time Magazine’s Top 100 Novels of All Time, and comic books are the source material du jour for movies.

In fact, X-Men Origins: Wolverine (starring Hugh Jackman and his abs, and costarring Ryan Reynolds and Liev Schreiber) is going up against the Jennifer Garner and Matthew McConaughey vehicle The Ghosts of Girlfriends Past in May. I dunno, which would you choose?

So, ladies — have you read Watchmen? Do you think it’s just a matter of Fox wanting to double its box office pleasure, or is Watchmen a real threat because it’s smart, chewy entertainment that just might appeal to women as well?

— Jenni Miller

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