A write-up in The New York Times has some insight:
Warner’s main studio operation is bringing nothing. Ditto Disney and DreamWorks. The Weinstein Company, a perennial presence, will also sit this one out. Even Marvel Entertainment, whose panel for “The Avengers” was a highlight of Comic-Con 2010, is on the fence about whether it will mount a major presentation.
Comic-Con, as a growing number of movie marketers are realizing, has turned into a treacherous place. Studios come seeking buzz, but the Comic-Con effect can be more negative than positive.
The reason is that there was a LOT of buzz around many films at SDCC that studios liked; but when those films got released, box office for those films was mostly average to poor. “Tron: Legacy” “Sucker Punch” and “Scott Pilgrim” are some of the examples given. But it should be said that while some presentations were inventive (such as ‘Buried’) and good…look, I LOVED Tron Legacy. Others didn’t. I know a lot of people who LOVED Scott Pilgrim Vs. The World. I didn’t. Point is, some of the films that get a great word of mouth at SDCC are from presentations and panels only. If a mainstream audience doesn’t quite grasp “Scott Pilgrim” or “Sucker Punch”, (ie the general folks who don’t make it to SDCC for varied reasons, “average citizens”, if you will) then it is reasonable (and heartbreaking to some) that these films don’t do as well.
The article mentions Marvel is 50/50 on bringing Avengers news; but that does not rule out studios who have Marvel properties, specifically Sony (with the upcoming Spider-Man and Ghost Rider films) will sit out. And with some studios sitting out, others can fill in the spots. But Warners passing, it IS a bit of a blow (please reconsider) due to Dark Knight Rises and Man Of Steel – but perhaps there isn’t mnuch to make a presentation on just yet.
The main concern is putting in a lot of money and effort into marketing and getting to believe the excitement means people want to it…and then don’t show up.
What do you think int’friends? What seems to be the problem?