Bad news for anyone curious to see Channing Tatum and Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson finally settle the question, “Which thick-necked actor is the least expressive?”: G.I. Joe: Retaliation has been delayed from June 29, 2012 to March 29, 2013. Paramount has already spent millions of dollars promoting the film, including $3.5 million for a 30 second Super Bowl spot and who-knows-how-much for its high profile CinemaCon showcase. The reason for the delay? Paramount wants to convert the movie to 3D. Which raises the question: Someone at Paramount actually thought it would be a good idea to release a $200 million CGI extravaganza in the year 2012 in 2D only? How adorably quaint.
The news comes just days after Battleship, Hasbro’s $209 million board game adaptation, bombed at the North American box office after making $215 million overseas. The lesson that Paramount seems to have (rightly) taken away from this is that while North American audiences have grown sick of bloated blockbusters with weak stories and endless special effects, foreigners have much lower standards. Since foreign audiences still seem to like 3D, the 3D conversion makes perfect sense. (Encouragingly, North American audiences seem to be getting sick of 3D too.)
Here’s that 30 second Super Bowl spot that set Paramount back $3.5 mil: