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This weekend, actor Jesse Eisenberg, who plays Lex Luthor in next year’s Batman Vs. Superman: Dawn of Justice, was seen at the premiere of The End of the Tour, a film about the release of David Foster Wallace’s 20th century existential tomb of a novel, Infinite Jest.  In an interview with the Associated Press, Eisenberg was asked about what he thought of his first comic con experience, to which he replied:

“It is like being screamed at by thousands of people. I don’t know what the experience is throughout history, probably some kind of genocide. I can’t think of anything that’s equivalent.”

“I can’t think of anything that’s equivalent,” he says, as he stands in line being screamed at by fans and paparazzi, berated eternally by the strobe of 200 watt light bulb flashes.  I understand that comic con is a stressful experience for all parties, especially the talent, but come on.  Eisenberg’s statement sounds like slight hyperbole for an A-List actor– not to mention the fact that it’s an offensive statement to make in the first place.

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12 COMMENTS

  1. I watched the video of this, because I assumed this must’ve been like a joke gone wrong, so I was giving him the benefit of the doubt. However, after watching it twice it looks pretty clear that he made the statement seriously — unless he’s one of those types who makes dark humor jokes with a straight face that is hard to read. I dunno.

    In light of that… it’s not the wisest thing to say, and I agree… downright offensive to those who truly have suffered true genocide. As the famous Princess Bride quote goes, “That word you keep using. I don’t think it means what you think it means.”

  2. I think people/comiccon attendees are so used now to having their asses kissed by actors trying to sell their blockbusters that someone speaking frankly about what it comes across especially badly.

  3. If trade paper VARIETY is any indication, some Hollywood elite are finding SDCC quite tiresome. Veteran reporter Michael Fleming chimed in on last weeks festivities:

    “…TV takes a bigger part of the stage each year. I wonder if Michael Douglas and Dustin Hoffman would even get recognized by the stampede of costumed festgoers who actually line up at a “weapons check” booth to have their hardware inspected and tagged so they can lug it around to events and the flea market that happens on the convention floor. You’ve got to see it to believe it. I watched one lavishly costumed and sword-wielding guy pose for pictures with the crowd, and when one asked what he thought of the Con, he confided he didn’t have a ticket and was content to preen around the perimeter. Unlike the smelly costumed Elmos and Spider-Men all over Times Square who pose with kids and then get hostile and shake down tourists for tips, these heroes seem to want nothing more than attention.”

    And then:

    “…you wouldn’t be caught dead mixing with this Hoi Polloi, but you’ve got to see this to believe it….”

    And after that:

    “…The panels are so hyped and choreographed, they are like theme park attractions…. “

  4. Do we care if the Hollywood Elite don’t like it? I’d be less concerned if people recognize Dustin Hoffman and more concerned if they can recognize Grant Morrison.

  5. Variety: “…you wouldn’t be caught dead mixing with this Hoi Polloi…”
    (Geeez!)

    Wiki:
    Hoi polloi (Ancient Greek: οἱ πολλοί, hoi polloi, “the many”), …Synonyms for hoi polloi, which also express the same or similar distaste for the common people felt by those who believe themselves to be superior, include “the great unwashed”, “the plebeians” or “plebs”, “the rabble”, “the dregs of society”, “riffraff”, “the herd”, “the proles” (proletariat) and “peons”.

  6. “David Foster Wallace’s 20th century existential tomb of a novel, Infinite Jest.”

    Likening a novel to a tomb is kinda an offensive statement to make. There is a considerable number of dead people living in tombs, you know?

  7. Eisenberg has done some very delicate work in terrific little character films that have gone completely without notice (at least by the “Hoi Polloi”) : Rodger Dodger, The Education of Charlie Banks , Solitary Man. 20 or 30 years ago I would have heard at least some people commenting about films as good as these but in this era it is as if the work did not exist. Maybe that has something to do with Eisenberg’s (overt) cynicism/disdain for hype festival SDCC.

  8. Eisenberg might also have a point or at least be somewhat prescient in that thoughtful minds may look back of this era’s merging of pop-culture and corporatism as something like a “genocide” on the uniquely American creative spirit.

  9. Quite a stretch to call this guy an A lister. Honestly, if they don’t like comic cons, then don’t come. I hate seeing celebrities feign interest in what we love. The ones that do love it aren’t complaining.

  10. No, Eisenberg is not an A lister. He’s a character actor who plays supporting parts. His best shot at stardom, the excellent SOCIAL NETWORK, was not a big hit. He was very well cast as a motor-mouthed jerk.

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