Rotten Tomatoes is making some changes, and with some users saying it is because of pressure from Disney in regards to Captain Marvel, they are clearing the air.
Captain Marvel is the latest movie to come under the scrutiny of trolls who seek to disparage it by review bombing the film before it even releases, giving it a low score artificially. This is not the first time it's happened with a Marvel film (similar trolls did the same thing with Black Panther), but Fandango president Paul Yanover explained in a recent interview that this has nothing to do with being paid off by Disney, but is rather a change long in coming.
"(The changes) are not simply a reaction to, 'Oh, gee, there's some noise created around (certain movies),'" Yanover told CNET. He said that some adjustments are looking to be "noise reduction," especially in regard to high profile projects like Star Wars and Captain Marvel, which bring more trolls with them by nature, but that this is part of a long-term site strategy.
Since the changes were announced, Yanover has heard the claims that Fandango, who owns Rotten Tomatoes, has cut a deal with Disney to be nicer to its films. "None of (the site is) owned by Disney," Yanover said, adding that the idea of "some predestined arrangement between ourselves and Disney is completely untrue."
As for the changes themselves, one of them is to disable comment functions prior to a film's release date according to the official blog. "Unfortunately, we have seen an uptick in non-constructive input, sometimes bordering on trolling, which we believe is a disservice to our general readership. We have decided that turning off this feature for now is the best course of action."
"When the movie's available, (reviewers) can write," Yanover said. "We don't want people to use this as a political platform."
"This is not the end, this is the beginning," Yanover said. "We know that (Rotten Tomatoes) is a highly visible product, and we're committed to being really good stewards."
For Captain Marvel, much of the hate stems from Brie Larson's previous comments about having a more inclusive media presence for the film and pointing out the skewed ration of white male critics to those of women and people of color at interviews, set visits, and other press events. Some aren't happy with that and have taken to finding any way possible to bring the movie down. It didn't work for Black Panther or Star Wars, and it's not going to work with Captain Marvel either.
Captain Marvel stars Academy Award® winner Brie Larson (Carol Danvers/Captain Marvel), Samuel L. Jackson (Nick Fury), Ben Mendelsohn, Djimon Hounsou (Korath), Lee Pace (Ronan), Lashana Lynch, Gemma Chan (Minn-Erva), Algenis Perez Soto, Rune Temte, McKenna Grace, Kenneth Mitchell (Joseph Danvers), with Clark Gregg (Phil Coulson), and Jude Law.
Captain Marvel hits theaters on March 8th.
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