All that said, after watching the REPO MEN trailer, I feel that while the two films share a premise, there appears to be little else in common. REPO! exists as a whacky art film, a sliver of cult cinema. REPO MEN looks like a gigantically-budgeted Hollywood blockbuster. And REPO MEN is NOT an opera.Right after I got off the phone with Garcia, I noticed a talkback from "tensticks", which asserts that Garcia "was a regular audience member" at the live REPO! shows. So I called him right back. "Wholesale fiction," said Garcia. "I have not seen their show." As for the allegation that the novel and screenplay of REPOSSESSION MAMBO/REPO MEN was "developed in the very same building [REPO! THE GENETIC OPERA] was edited..." Garcia disputes this on the basis that the novel and screenplay were developed in his house, where, to the best of his knowledge, REPO! THE GENETIC OPERA was not edited. What's unfortunate is that, at the end of the day, it seems like everyone got what they wanted: Bousman and Zdunich got to make their rock opera (which is now something of a cult phenomenon), while Garcia and Lerner are the sole credited writers on a major Hollywood film. There's just no real conflict here, guys. Everything's good. Nothing was stolen. End of story.
I just read the update to your post - I hadn't when I initially responded to you. Thanks for citing my blog, btw. In terms of REPO! vs Repo Man: I know that Darren Bousman has some stories to share about odd coincidences involving our two studios, so I've cc'd him here. But from my end, as the co-creator of REPO!, all I can comment on is REPO!'s well documented history as a stageplay. You've read my blog, so you've seen some of the physical evidence for this in the form of promotional flyers and such. While I agree with the basic sentiment of your follow-up article - which is a sort of 'who cares?' to the bickering over who came up with the idea of organ repossession first - I think that fans of the two films do care. Their impassioned comments are evidence of this. I know that when REPO! was green-lit as a film, and Repossession Mambo was brought up to our producers, legal teams were paid a lot of money to research the very same question that fans are now asking. To my knowledge, no evidence of Eric Garcia's short story came up during this search. As a writer, I know that just because something isn't published doesn't mean that it doesn't exist, but Darren Smith (REPO!'s co-author) and I were forced to meticulously demonstrate the history of REPO! to our legal teams, which we did. Honestly, I think that "The Telltale Pancreas" is an awesome title, and I would very much love to read the work if it ever becomes available for public consumption. Bottom-line: as underdogs in the big world of Hollywood, REPO! fans can rest easy knowing that REPO!'s long-standing history is transparent and readily available to anyone who's interested in doing just a little research. Thanks again for shining a spotlight on our film, and for wanting to hear all sides of the argument. Best, ~Terrance
Jan. 14, 2010, 2:42 a.m. CST
So no one is going to mention at all how this film is basically a non-opera version of that film? Fucking head-in-the-sand douchebags.
Jan. 14, 2010, 2:58 a.m. CST
We'll no doubt get the usual "But Repo! TGO didn't do so well, so who cares that this film stole the entire premise?" B.S. from folk who didn't like TGO...
Jan. 14, 2010, 3:11 a.m. CST
Nothing with a similar title will be better than Alex Cox's masterpiece.
Jan. 14, 2010, 3:50 a.m. CST
No, because some of us have longer memories than that. Pick up some old issues of 2000AD from the early '80s or something.
Jan. 14, 2010, 5:59 a.m. CST
Last time there was a REPO thread, I got into a fruitless debate with the REPO MEN trolls, doing my utmost to explain the true history of these two projects, how interrelated they are, and how utterly wrong this is. This time, I'm going to save myself the time and typing, and refer you to a blog on the subject by my friend Mr. Terrance Zdunich, writer/creator (with Darren Smith) and star of REPO! THE GENETIC OPERA. He spells it all out here, for any of you who want to take the time to bother to rad it; and with this, I leave the subject be. http://www.terrancezdunich.com/blog/?p=2804
Jan. 14, 2010, 6:01 a.m. CST
SHOULD sue, because he was indeed there first, and the original REPO MAN from 84 is one of the greatest films of all time. BTW should have been *read, not *rad, above.
Jan. 14, 2010, 6:28 a.m. CST
1. You can't even edit your own writing (which in all fairness, no one on this site seems to know how to do that) 2. You thought Bring it On and Anchorman was two of the best films of the past ten years.
Jan. 14, 2010, 6:39 a.m. CST
by wampa 1
...that came up with this one?
Jan. 14, 2010, 7:02 a.m. CST
by dr sauch
Really, Quint is the best interviewer on this site. Beaks is likely tied for best reviewer with Massawyrm. Harry is just a fat trademark.
Jan. 14, 2010, 7:29 a.m. CST
You don't even mention the similarities between the two movies? Amazing how you could completely ignore that there already was a movie with almost the exact same plot, which was pitched to the makers of this film.<BR><BR>I don't think anything on this site has ever actually infuriated me before. I am glad to see that you endorse plagiarism.
Jan. 14, 2010, 7:39 a.m. CST
WTF is with the "(Laughs)" shit?
Jan. 14, 2010, 7:41 a.m. CST
it's coming.....and the endless arguement will continue until it veers off onto some small point someone made and then will be talked about until everyone loses interest. Still think this looks worth a watch though. Even if you can't mime to the songs.
Jan. 14, 2010, 7:47 a.m. CST
with your whining about that wannabe Whedon musical and its lack of success. This is obviously something tonally different: more like a cross between Minority Report, a Cronenberg body horror movie and one of those strange 2000 AD strips. And unless there's a sideplot where Jude Law repossesses someone's car by dint of payment, Alex Cox suing the producers of this movie would be ridiculous. It's a different title. If all the movies released recently with "9" in the title managed to happily co-exist, surely Alex Cox, The Whedon Horror Show and this movie can all get along, too.
Jan. 14, 2010, 7:50 a.m. CST
But somehow my best buddy in the world Forrest Whitaker doesn't have my ENGLISH ACCENT. Yours sincerely, Jude Law.
Jan. 14, 2010, 7:51 a.m. CST
Lions Gate gave Repo! The Genetic Opera ZERO marketing or promotions budget. That equals no money for Harry in return for promotion on this site. This other work of CLEAR PLAGIARISM is being released by Universal Pictures who are giving it a bit of a push and hence... coverage on this site with ZERO mention of Repo! The Genetic Opera. In fact it wouldn't surprise me in the least if one of the stipulations of Beaks getting that interview was that he not bring up The Genetic Opera in the course of his questions. It's either that or Beaks is just a really terrible "journalist". That topic is open for debate. So... "Bring It On." ;)
Jan. 14, 2010, 8:10 a.m. CST
writing for this site? All you guys have to go on is the fact that you don't agree with his Top 100 of the decade. Try coming up with one yourself, and I'll guarantee it'll either be an utterly homogenized waste of both yours and my time, or it'll be littered full of left-field choices with which most people will disagree.<p> Now, s'far as his actual intros to news items go, he's the only one on the team at the moment who voices opinions informed both on fact and passion for the subjects at hand (like, say, a cross between Harry's writing and that of a broadsheet).<p> So he didn't mention your middling musical? If that's really the worst thing this site has ever done, then AICN really IS a bastion of journalistic integrity.
Jan. 14, 2010, 8:20 a.m. CST
I don't think he owns anything related to Repo Man. In fact, I believe Universal is trying to stop him from releasing his own upcoming film, Repo Chick. Please someone correct me if I'm mistaken.
Jan. 14, 2010, 8:21 a.m. CST
Maybe the guy should try writing an actual tune next time. Or telling a coherent, straightforward story.
Jan. 14, 2010, 8:24 a.m. CST
NO ONE CARES!!!!
Jan. 14, 2010, 8:26 a.m. CST
and he also comes across as a patronising arse kisser know it all as well. usually he tries to reference some obscure movie to show how clever he is to the person he's interviewing.
Jan. 14, 2010, 8:27 a.m. CST
like he probably will with most these responses. i will say i liked this interview though.
Jan. 14, 2010, 8:50 a.m. CST
but this is fucking bullshit. One of the most blatant ripoffs I've ever seen, and Beaks didn't even have the mind (or the balls) to make the connection and put the "screenwriter" to task. So much for journalistic integrity.
Jan. 14, 2010, 9 a.m. CST
I can't say I've been following his every move closely enough to say too much about him. He seems OK to me, though...<p> I will say one thing, however: I reckon half of this Genetic Opera bitching is just tensticks on different accounts. He kind of proved his...erm...fervour about the subject that last talkback when he personally responded to EVERY OTHER talkbacker in the talkback.<p> My opinion on that movie's about the same as skarekroe's. It doesn't take much to go to the shower and hum yourself a memorable enough tune. But Repo: TGO decided to go more the warble the script route. It's the same thing that made Sweeney Todd pretty forgettable: no matter how gory or morbid you make the subject matter, if the thing you're making's a musical you better hope the music's worth a damn.
Jan. 14, 2010, 9:10 a.m. CST
by dr sauch
Yes, they're the same. This is an action movie, it looks good, stop all the BAAAAWWWWW-ing.
Jan. 14, 2010, 9:42 a.m. CST
Jan. 14, 2010, 9:43 a.m. CST
tagline "She wants your organ" I'm looking forward to the sequel "Repo Chicks"
Jan. 14, 2010, 10:03 a.m. CST
Why not champion the underdog instead?<p>And while they're at it, why not throw out some coverage on The Wicker Tree, another followup to a cult classic that's having a hard time seeing the light of day?
Jan. 14, 2010, 10:10 a.m. CST
when most of them involve deleting my accounts lol
Jan. 14, 2010, 10:16 a.m. CST
People without the ability to argue properly falling back on "Goths mime to Repo!TGO, therefore it must be rubbish, and the fact that this plot is stolen therefore doesn't matter." So what if some of the fans like to do the "shadowcast" thing? Rocky Horror fans have been doing it for far far longer, and it's fun for those that attend those shows. And it's not like attendance is mandatory, so if you don't like it - DON'T GO! As for the music - I'm a fan of Skinny Puppy and Rob Zombie, so I like quite a few of the tracks on there. Some are of questionable quality, but that's just my opinion and if others dig the tunes, then good for them. The fact remains that there's been some foul play - And while Repo Men does look like a very entertaining film, the makers should be taken to task for their plagiarism.
Jan. 14, 2010, 10:24 a.m. CST
I swear Hunter S Thompson put a hex on Alex Cox during that scene in Breakfast With Hunter where Cox suggested making the "high water mark" scene animated. His career's gone to shit since then. I guess Sid & Nancy and Repo Man were his only classics, but most of his films have shit to recommend them: Joe Strummer and Elvis Costello in a punk-Western? Nice.<p> Here's hoping Repo Chick gets a proper release.
Jan. 14, 2010, 10:26 a.m. CST
were the only ones I liked).<p>
Jan. 14, 2010, 10:27 a.m. CST
no mention of REPO! THE GENETIC OPERA at all. All bullshit aside, it would have been a fair enough question.
Jan. 14, 2010, 10:28 a.m. CST
Don't go for the bait my friend. It was going to happen here whether I said that or not. Ok, I won't go. I was planning to take a week off work to celebrate my attendance to see people standing miming to songs in front of a movie screen but I have decided against it now. I'll have to find some other treat for myself before the cancer finally get me.
Jan. 14, 2010, 12:13 p.m. CST
by Pvt. Noguchi
Was Deep Impact plagiarizing Armageddon? Was Brazil, or V for Vendetta, or Equilibrium plagiarizing 1984 or a Brave New World? Hell, was Repo TGO plagiarizing AD2000 or (and here my geek really shows) the RIFTS RPG? NO! because you can't plagiarize a fucking idea! (obviously IP is a bit different). They could make Repo Men into a fucking musical and it still wouldn't be plagiarism. There are only so many plots, ideas, and story lines out there kids, and they've all been used in some form or another. Its how you put the story together, and the dialog you write, that counts. You can't copy write a fucking plot. <br> Also, if you want REPO TGO to be memorable, maybe you shouldn't have made it suck so much.
Jan. 14, 2010, 12:14 p.m. CST
by Pvt. Noguchi
fucking lack of edit button.
Jan. 14, 2010, 2:14 p.m. CST
Calls of plagiarism seem ridiculous. If this movie stole from Repo:TGO, than you have to decry TGO for stealing from other sources. This has been a SF concept in many stories running back decades.<p> It's as stupid and shallow as thinking Avatar stole from Dances with Wolves. Really? Your knowledge of literature and film only goes back that far?
Jan. 14, 2010, 2:50 p.m. CST
Hardly surprising that two writers came up with (slightly) similar spins on the organ harvesting subgenre. Timing may be curious, but, as Pvt. Noguchi pointed out, these coincidences happen frequently in Hollywood (e.g. age-swapping, killer meteors, underwater ALIENS rip-offs, etc.) Keep in mind that Garcia began writing this screenplay with Garrett Lerner in 2002 - and that it's a sci-fi action film. Hard to see how this project would diminish the impact/profitability of a cult horror musical that was *never* aimed at the mainstream. You want to bitch at someone? Go after Lionsgate for barely releasing REPO! (Although I don't fault them at all for being iffy on the commercial appeal Bousman's film.) <br><br>And I'm sorry for mentioning such "obscure" movies as ROBOCOP and YOJIMBO in my last two interviews. Total reach on my part.
Jan. 14, 2010, 3:41 p.m. CST
Neither one of these films can say they came up with an original idea. But it's a pretty serious omission not even address R:TGO with the writer of this new film.
Jan. 14, 2010, 3:55 p.m. CST
To the above criticism that I have multiple accounts, no, I have only this one. I'm simply not the only one who feels passionately about this. That's why in this case I let the writer of REPO speak for himself, for any of you who bother to actually READ his blog. (And Beaks, I'm sorry, but it's right there in black & white that RTGO predates this project by years.) The part that he left OUT of his blog is that Garcia was a regular audience member at their live shows, and that the Repo script/novel was developed in the very same building where TGO was edited! Is Lionsgate to blame for not supporting their film? Absolutely. But don't get made at its creators and fans doing what the studio failed/refused to do. In any case, REPO MEN has been in the can for a couple years already, and they're burying it in the slowest time of the year. I don't expect it to be a hit in any case, much less a potential franchise. But so be it. Just wanted to set the rest of the record straight.
Jan. 14, 2010, 3:56 p.m. CST
Jan. 14, 2010, 4:25 p.m. CST
... a) it doesn't interest me, and b) I'm familiar with the story, and from what I've heard, *at most* Universal wanted to make an organ repossession film after dinging REPO!, so they found one. If true (and I don't think it is), this happens all the time in Hollywood. Sucks for Bousman and company that they couldn't get a major studio to back their rock opera, but I'm pretty sure rock operas were as anathema in 2002 as they are in 2010. Also, they did get to make their film on their own terms (without heavy studio interference), and now have a cult phenom that will be loved by its fans for years to come. In the end, everyone pretty much got what they wanted (save for a wide release, but that was probably never in the cards for something as niche as REPO!). So what's the controversy again?<br><br>In any event, I got further comment from Garcia, and will update ASAP. This should put the "controversy" to bed.
Jan. 14, 2010, 5:41 p.m. CST
by frank cotton
sold me. BRAZIL IS THE GREATEST FILM OF ALL TIME. and i really liked REPO! - films are often made into musicals; why not the reverse?
Jan. 14, 2010, 5:44 p.m. CST
Repo Man's ALWAYS Intense!
Jan. 14, 2010, 5:52 p.m. CST
If you sought comment from Garcia... Why not seek comment from Bousman, Zdunich or Smith?
Jan. 14, 2010, 6:31 p.m. CST
"The life of a repo man is always intense." <p> But there's only one true Repo Man movie and it stars the other Sheen kid.
Jan. 14, 2010, 6:37 p.m. CST
I'm prepared to stand corrected on those of my assertions that have been disputed by Mr. Garcia, and I'm happy to let Mr. Zdunich's comments stand in regard to the history of his project and his view on the relationship of the two films. As to any other dealings, known, or unknown, well....that's showbiz, kid. Letting the matter rest, as of now.
Jan. 14, 2010, 6:39 p.m. CST
Jan. 14, 2010, 8:11 p.m. CST
The guy who spends half the interview asking the talent if they've seen whatever random movie just popped in his head, and the other half name-dropping? His interviews read like Eli "I'm friends with Quentin!" Roth penning Chris Farley's talk show sketch from SNL. Beaks' interviews are the only ones here with any respectability. And the fact that he did a bunch of legwork just to appease a few talkbacker's claims shows more effort than anyone else on this site can muster.
Jan. 14, 2010, 11:53 p.m. CST
goes the extra mile. Quint has better people skills when he interviews people, maybe, but Beaks has more thought out, geektastic questions that get the subjects to think a little.
Jan. 15, 2010, 1:27 a.m. CST
Jan. 15, 2010, 1:28 a.m. CST
movie? I mean we fucking pay for your life support dude?
Jan. 15, 2010, 2:37 a.m. CST
repo! the genetic opera was there first and will be superior to this jude law exhibition of douchebaggery.
Jan. 15, 2010, 4 a.m. CST
So I won't be seeing this Hollywoodized version of the same premise.
Jan. 15, 2010, 4:07 a.m. CST
Objectivity is satisfied, and both sides have had their say :)
Jan. 15, 2010, 5:36 a.m. CST
Who'd've figured AICN had its own Woodward and Bernstein rolled into one? Game. Set. & Match.
Jan. 15, 2010, 8:23 a.m. CST
"But I'm still using it." Both these productions fail to mention (that I've seen) the influence of "Monty Pythons the Meaning of Life." Anyone who has seen that movie will forever remember the organ doner scene. Ah, the blood, the screaming, the horror of removing a liver from a live and, very, unwilling person. I'm giggling just remembering it. ??Pseudo?? out.
Jan. 15, 2010, 9:11 a.m. CST
Cyberpunk books and various sci-fi RPGs like RIFTS have had chop shops for years. People getting killed and their bionic appendages being removed. Plus Monty Python as Pseudo mentioned. Neither are completely original ideas. Repo! has held no interest for me, largely b/c I have some friends who really browncoated it. Just would not shut up about it. I like Jude Law and Forrest Whitaker and Liev Schreiber tho.
Jan. 15, 2010, 9:44 a.m. CST
to the songs. Becuase they were quite awful. When a movie is an opera and the music fails the movie fails
Jan. 15, 2010, 9:59 a.m. CST
Looks kind of fun,at least its R.
Jan. 15, 2010, 10:31 a.m. CST
so repo men is a buddy cop version of the liver reposession sketgh from monty python?Maybe THEY should sue?
Jan. 15, 2010, 12:55 p.m. CST
...because AICN needs more of it. But who really cares? Or if you do, why does it matter? It's not like every movie ever made in Hollywood isn't immediately aped in some way by a producer/writer/director for ANOTHER movie. It's an ever perpetuating cycle. So two movies with a similar premise were released close together? How is this such a big deal? Is anybody REALLY under the impression that studios don't look to other films for ideas? This hullabaloo just seems a bit made up on this one.
Jan. 15, 2010, 1:20 p.m. CST
has been a popular Urban Legend since at least the early 90's. I bought one of the Urban Legend books just to convince a co-worker that it wasn't actually happening when he kept telling people "The Guy goes to Vegas and wakes up in a bathtub with a kidney missing Story" as something that had really happened to the friend of somebody he met in a bar!<br /><br />I would imagine horror and science fiction writers have been playing around with the story possibilities since organ transplants or organ donation became possible in the first place. Examining current fears or issues through the allegory of Science Fiction is a longstanding practice. Some other posters have mentioned 2000 AD or cyberpunk variations, but I'm sure the idea has been around WAY longer than that. <br /><br />The Monty Python bit is based on the reason people often give for not wanting to sign an organ donor card: their fear that if they're in an accident the hospital would rather let them die so they can harvest their organs than save them. Having them show up to harvest them while you're still alive is the logical satiric extrapolation of that fear.<br /><br />I haven't seen REPO! TGO but I did read the blog referenced above and the fact that one of the writers would delude himself to think that his Organ Repossession in a Futuristic Setting idea was an original one in the first place is laughable. Hell FARSCAPE did an episode about Organ Harvesting. And what about "Spock's Brain" back in the 60's? It's an OLD Sci-Fi Trope. They just put a new spin on it and had people singing. Way to Go.
Jan. 15, 2010, 1:40 p.m. CST
and these opera! fan losers just got REPOWNED
Jan. 15, 2010, 5:04 p.m. CST
is just the divisive, lying troll he appeared on the surface. FU, jackass. <P> I remember reading, in one of the "Dangerous Visions" anthologies, I think, a story called "Caught in the Organ Draft." It was just a sketch, but the concept was that certain crimes led to execution and organ harvest (not unlike in China today, supposedly). The kicker was that as demand grew for organs among the rich and elderly, more and more crimes were penalized by death and organ harvest. The poor - young and very healthy - protagonist winds up being sentenced to death for speeding tickets or some such. Robert Silverberg wrote the story.
Jan. 15, 2010, 5:24 p.m. CST
Remember that, when everyone accused "The Island" of stealing it's idea from "Parts: The Clonus Horror" (the masterpiece that ended up on MST3K). And even those were about harvesting organs! And what they all seem to have in common is lazy writing and sloppy execution. We got spoiled last year with more good sci-fi in one year than in the past decade ("Moon," "District 9," "Star Trek," "Avatar") and only one of them was a reboot ("District 9" was an adaptation of a short film, but since it's the same director and an original concept, it gets a pass).
Jan. 15, 2010, 5:39 p.m. CST
Now they want the other one too!" That's a tagline from The Harvest, which came out in 1992, and was HARDLY original for the time. (Although it does feature George Clooney in one of his first roles: 'Lip Synching Tranvsestite' - I am not making this up.) Are we really saying there's a huge leap from the concept of organ harvesting to the concept of organ repo-ing? That seems silly to me. Plus, a friend of mine wrote a story in the sixth grade, (1986), called "Organ Bounty Hunters", which is essentially the same idea. I guess it's just the rabid fanbase of the musical that refuses to believe it's possible anybody else came up with this idea. Seems petty to me, but hey, I'm just a guy that likes movies. Even if they've already been done. I suppose if Fritz Lang was still alive, he'd have a shitload of people to sue after he made Metropolis. (Or Thea von Harbou.)
Jan. 16, 2010, 12:49 p.m. CST
Would have been a better title and a change they will regret making just cos a few stupid execs. Trailer looks great and I saw an extended version by Miguel that looks even better. Could be a new Bladerunner... "could"...
Jan. 16, 2010, 3:04 p.m. CST
Whatever. I've been on this site, under this name and no other, for over ten years. I rarely bother to put myself in the "Jay & Silent Bob Strikes Back" mode and post ANYTHING unless I'm either passionate or knowledgeable about the subject. In this case, both. Otherwise, flame wars with the ignorant are not worth my time. Which is why with the updates from Garcia and Terrance, I said I'd let the matter rest, and I have. I've been vindicated both publicly and personally, and that's enough for me. Peace.
Jan. 17, 2010, 12:54 a.m. CST
TGO is so good it makes me cut myself. I hate my dad. boo hoo hoo. Now back to miming along with Coraline.
Jan. 18, 2010, 9:14 a.m. CST
Whether it's a "non-issue" or not, ignoring what is unarguably the biggest story regarding this film- it's similarities to Repo: The Genetic Opera- was a BIG mistake. You can't expect pple to learn the truth nor can you expect them to understand what came first by not addressing the issue. Beaks would have better served the author and the film by bringing the subject up early and gettig it out of the way to focus on the more important aspects of the interview.
Jan. 18, 2010, 9:22 a.m. CST
I think the reason the talkback was "derailed" is bc it's such an interesting coincidence and as fanboys we want to get to the truth of such matters. It's like Zdunich said: fans do care. It's important to them.
Jan. 18, 2010, 10:31 a.m. CST
This movie will tank anyway, while REPO! will live on as a cult movie. Can't believe people are blindly defending REPO MEN anyway, are you a bunch of Universal Pictures interns?
Jan. 18, 2010, 10:32 a.m. CST
That the novel that REPO MEN is based on was published at the same time the movie is more or less out. 2001 (movie) this ain't.
Jan. 18, 2010, 11:34 a.m. CST
by THE TRUE PINBACK
...and I am looking forward to viewing this film...even though an actor I can-t stand-Forrest WHitaker-is in it.
Feb. 15, 2010, 1:53 a.m. CST
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Feb. 15, 2010, 1:53 a.m. CST
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