Tag Archives: Willem Dafoe

A Look at the Extended John Carter Super Bowl Spot


The Super Bowl; which features two teams of athletic and over muscular men battling one another in an arena; helped Walt Disney Pictures debut a new spot for the upcoming John Carter movie. While there are parallels to draw from this, there are instead more braincells to kill with visual explosions by watching the new trailer below.

Having covered some of the John Carter media push, I’ve had this to say.

“Almost a hundred years in the making, the theatrical adaptation of Edgar Rice Burroughs classic sci-fi novel is due to hit theaters March 9. Originally penned by Burroughs in 1913; when the public obsessed over the planet mars as if it were a sparkling bloodsucker and many pieces of fiction churned out as much life on mars paraphernalia as possible; the Barsoom series which it was originally called, has been retold and remade many times over.”

“The movie version which is directed by Academy Award winning filmmaker Andrew Stanton is still a Walt Disney Pictures venture and will abide by the very safe standards set by Princesses Jasmine and Ariel. The film will feature a cast starring Taylor Kitsch as John Carter, Willem Dafoe as Tars Tarkas and Lynn Collins as the Princess Dejah Thoris.”

Lynn Collins as the Princess Dejah Thoris

The movie which will open in 3D, 2D and IMAX 3D on March 9 had it’s trailer extended, featuring a montage of superhuman on alien violence, mosaic use of imagery to dull my short attention span and a heart felt inspirational speech made to the alien equivalent of medieval Scots a la Braveheart; I swear I saw blue face paint on John Carter’s face during that speech!

 “Carter finds himself dragged into another war zone, only to discover that as the alien from another planet; Earth; he has superpowers here on Mars. The power set is thanks to the 62% less gravity that he’s used to; pretend that you’ve had weights and restraints you’ve been wearing all your life taken off. We’d get to keep our milk money for once.”

Upon examination, it’s wasn’t paint, it was blue colored blood from a xenomorph Carter probably killed in the arena. Aside from comparing scenes to Braveheart 1995, the plot begins to sound more like Avatar. So like Avatar, a wounded military officer; haunted instead of maimed; goes to an alien planet, befriends the natives of the land, then leads the natives to battle for their freedom while rediscovering himself.

So this begins to make me think of this as a koan. Which came first? I know that Warlord of Mars, the novel that John Carter is adapted from that was written nearly a hundred years ago. I also know that the film adaptation does not reflect the whole Barsoom series, so it must have been condensed or adapted so the story will fit modern day attention spans and big screen releases. I also know that Avatar was released in 2009 but essentially mimics the novel. So who copied who? Was it Avatar that drew from the 100 year old novel, or was it John Carter the movie that drew from Avatar?

John Carter: Extended Super Bowl Ad: