Filmmaker Kevin Smith is no stranger to getting hostile feedback from fans on the internet -- hell, he is respsonsible for the authorship of one of the most popular descriptions of the internet in film, from his 2001 movie Jay & Silent Bob Strike Back:
"The Internet is a communication tool used the world over where people can come together to bitch about movies and share pornography with one another," explains Holden McNeil (Ben Affleck) in that film.
It should be no surprise, then, that when an estranged fan came at him on Twitter with the accusation that he "used to make great movies," Smith had a pitch-perfect response:
No I didn’t: the films were (and remain) merely good enough. I never aspired to greatness - but I stuck the landing on good enough-ness. If my flicks aren’t good enough for you any longer, I’m sorry. But nothing has changed: they’ve always been just good enough for me. And TO me. https://t.co/pbjzmHvUSv— KevinSmith (@ThatKevinSmith) December 28, 2017
Smith was one of the darlings of the '90s indie film movement, creating a huge splash with his micro-budget debut feature Clerks in 1994. The next four films he made -- Mallrats, Chasing Amy, Dogma, and Jay & Silent Bob Strike Back -- all shared a universe with Clerks.
After Dogma was a big commercial success, Miramax rolled a dice and spent significantly more money on Jay & Silent Bob Strike Back, only to have it earn roughly the same amount of money at the box office as Dogma had. When Smith followed it up with the less-raunchy Jersey Girl, which was a stand-alone movie and a more serious drama with few of Smith's familiar recurring actors in it, he earned slightly less than Dogma had, and it soon seemed that no matter the subject matter, Smith's films would make right around the same amount of money -- between $25 and $35 million.
He has since settled into making a number of self-financed, smaller projects and taking them on the road to screen for his die-hard fan base, rather than hoping to find distribution that will inevitably earn more or less the same amount. While his more recent films like Tusk and Yoga Hosers have taken a turn for the decidedly more bizarre, his own fans seem to have stuck by him regardless of whether he is making raunchy comedies, horror films, or dramas.
Smith's next project is, depending on when you hear from him, either Jay and Silent Bob: Reboot, which lampoons Hollywood's current obsession with sequels, reboots, and reimaginings, or Sam & Twitch, a TV series for BBC America set in the world of Todd McFarlane's Spawn.