Somewhere right now, Adam Sandler is very happy. His films have made a combined total of $3 billion, with his last, the execrable Pixels pulling in $230m on a scanty $70m budget. Adding to his bulging pile of happiness is the news that Netflix, obviously over the moon with the success of future classics The Ridiculous 6, The Do-Over and the upcoming Sandy Wexler are going to pay him to make a further four films for them.
Ted Sarandos, Netflix’s Chief Content Officer, said the following about the deal in a statement released earlier today:
“Adam Sandler is one of the leading comedians in the film world, and his movies have proven to be extremely successful with our subscribers around the world. We are thrilled at the opportunity to extend our partnership with Adam and his entire team at Happy Madison and keep the world laughing.”
Apparently, Sandler’s films for Netflix have given them their most watched self-produced releases, though they don’t provide exact viewing numbers. I once figured that people treat Sandler films like porn – they might not watch them in public, but with the curtains drawn and in the privacy of their own homes? Why not go nuts? Punching a hole in that is the continued success of Sandler in the cinema and the fact that unlike Adam Sandler films, porn is occasionally fun to watch.
You do wonder who’s watching this rubbish, though. Who are all these people that pop themselves down at the end of a hard day and, faced with the largest library of cinematic classics ever available to an individual in human history, plump for a film that features this? Faced with a world with a Sandler ascendant you feel like you’re slipping into a John Carpenter-esque They Live dystopia – each person around you gradually replaced with a gurgling Sandler-bot.
It’s tempting to wonder what the point of criticizing Sandler even is. He’s an unstoppable cultural juggernaut that flattens everything in his path regardless of how many waspy comments we make about him. Sometimes I worry that I’m going to end up like Winston Smith in 1984, sipping gin and gazing up at Sandler’s enormous face on a billboard.
Forty years it had taken me to learn what kind of smile was etched on his rubbery features. O cruel, needless misunderstanding! O stubborn, self-willed exile from the loving breast! Two gin-scented tears trickle down the side of my nose. But it was all right, everything was all right, the struggle is finished. I had won the victory over myself. I love Adam Sandler.