How the failure of Zoolander 2 was a lifesaver for Ben Stiller

“It wasn’t really a great experience…” recalls the director, back these days with the excellent Severance on Apple TV+.

In recent years, it has been mainly on television that Ben Stiller made his butter. After the box of Escape at Dannemoramany times rewarded, he returns these days with Severanceanother serial gem to discover on Apple TV+.

Two important works in the career of the director, who admits today that the failure of Zoolander 2 opened these doors to him. Because with 50 million dollars in box office receipts and murderous reviews, this sequel was a monumental flop. And in a review at Esquire he returns to this bitter failure:

“It wasn’t really a great experience… But at the same time, if Zoolander 2 had been a huge hit, people would definitely have been asking for a Zoolander 3! People would have said to me: you have to make this film! And that might have taken me away from the possibility of having the space to work on the development of a series. As was the case with Dannemora…”

Benedict Cumberbatch regrets his non-binary role in Zoolander 2

Ben Stiller goes further in its a posteriori analysis: “Yes Zoolander 2 had been a huge success, I might have been distracted by other shiny and flashy cinematic objects. But instead, this flop paved the way, showing me that I could just do what I had wanted to do for years: just achieve something, honestly! To be able to say: I’m just going to work on this project because I want to devote myself to it. I take time to move my project forward and I stick to it, otherwise it never happens…”

I have to say that Zoolander 2 was born under very bad auspices. Ben Stiller had a tradition of gathering its cast and crew before the start of each shoot, stepping on a glass bottle to bring good luck to the film, in reference to a tradition of Jewish weddings. Except that by making his lucky gesture for Zoolander 2a piece of glass went through the sole of his shoe and sliced ​​the heel of Ben Stiller. “It was a harbinger, foreshadowing of the evil that was to come to this film.” smiles the director today… who has since stopped this custom.

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