The primary goal of a movie critic is not to sell movies, but to review them. Which seems like a simple enough idea, right? Apparently not simple enough for Scott Rudin and his fellow producers behind Inside Llewyn Davis, who not only took one of New York Times critic A.O. Scott’s tweets and turned it into an ad (which ran in the NYT itself), but edited out any mention of competing movies in doing so. Oof.
Boing Boing explains that it’s not just sort of twee and precious to run an ad featuring the tweet, which ran as a full page and was presented as a tweet from Tony “A.O.” Scott reading: “I’m gonna listen to the Llewyn Davis album again. Fare thee well, my honeys.” And that was all there was to it.
But it’s that there was more to the tweet, specifically, mention of other movies currently in the theaters. Scott’s original tweet:
You all keep fighting about Wolf of Wall St. and Am Hustle. I'm gonna listen to the Llewyn Davis album again. Fare thee well, my honeys.—
a. o. scott (@aoscott) December 31, 2013
Oh, we see what you did there. Not only that, but as the Times’ Public Editor Mary Sullivan explains in addressing the controversy, Rudin asked Scott if the producers could run the tweet and was roundly denied permission. Scott reportedly told Rudin in his response:
Well this is a new one. I’d prefer though that my tweets not be used in advertisements. That seems like a slippery slope and contrary to the ad hoc and informal nature of the medium.
And changing the tweet is basically manufacturing a quote, something I avoid.
So I’m afraid the answer is no.
It’s also confusing because did Rudin et al really think no one would go on the Internet and find the original tweet? There’s no possibility of covering your tracks in this case.
Edited tweet used in ad [Boing Boing]