According to Adam Devine, the comedy genre’s decline can be attributed to the meteoric rise of superhero movies in the cinematic landscape.
In a conversation with Theo Von to promote his Netflix action-comedy “The Out-Laws,” Devine expressed his lament over comedy films’ weakening popularity and profitability. He believes this shift is directly linked to the overwhelming success of superhero blockbusters.
Devine, known for his role in “Workaholics,” elaborated on his theory during the interview. He pointed out that the escalating budgets of superhero flicks have given audiences a choice between visually spectacular epics and traditional, straightforward comedies.
Despite both types of movies commanding similar ticket prices, Devine believes the allure of high-budget visual extravaganzas often convinces audiences, leading them to perceive more excellent value in their cinematic experience.
He explained, “My theory is I think Marvel ruined it, I feel like superhero movies kind of ruined comedies, because you go to the theater, and you expect to watch something that cost $200 million to make. And comedy movies aren’t that. So, you’re like, ‘Well, why would I spend the same amount of money to go watch a little comedy in the theater, if I could spend the same amount of money and go see something that is worth $200 million?'”
While Devine acknowledged that superhero films often incorporate comedic elements, he underscored that they don’t align with the essence of actual comedy. He expressed frustration with the contemporary trend of injecting moral messages into comedy movies, longing for the days when filmmakers crafted comedies purely for laughter.
“Then they still make those movies kind of funny. I mean, they’re not comedies, but they’re like, ‘Oh my god, is that raccoon talking? That’s hilarious!’ Which, it is. But, it’s not a real comedy,” Devine says. “Nowadays, you get to the end of what you think is a comedy, and you’re like, ‘Was that about global warming? Was there some deep-seated message that I’m supposed to recycle more?'”
Devine recounted that he’s continually pitching comedic ideas to Hollywood executives, only to receive the recurring response questioning the urgency of making pure comedy.
He shared his encounters, saying, “I’m pitching a lot, so I’ll pitch movies, and every executive is like, ‘Yeah, but why should we make this movie now?’ And you’re like, ‘Because it’s funny. ‘Cause it’s funny, bitch! What do you mean?’ Whatever happened to just, we wanna make people laugh?”