You have a strong cast of actors like Michael Fassbender, Rebecca Ferguson and J.K. Simmons. You have well-regarded source material from popular writer Jo Nesbo. Most importantly though, you have director Tomas Alfredson coming off two stone cold classics with “Let the Right One In” and “Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy”.
So why in the world has this week’s “The Snowman” been thoroughly panned by critics? Scoring just 34/100 on Metacritic and a 26% (3.8/10) score on Rotten Tomatoes, the film is without a doubt one of the worst reviewed films out there in cinemas now. In recent weeks, there have also been rumors about it being a heavily compromised production.
Now, in an interview with Norwegian Broadcasting Corporation NRK (via Indiewire), Alfredson explains why the movie ended up being a misfire with a lot of it having to do with him being brought onto the project late in the game, and the film itself being rushed too fast into production.
Martin Scorsese was originally slated to direct the film but stepped back into an executive producing role. Though it had been in development for some time, once Alfredson came on board things suddenly started moving too fast with the director left scrambling to catch up:
“It happened very abruptly. Suddenly we got notice that we had the money and could start the shoot in London. Our shoot time in Norway was way too short, we didn’t get the whole story with us and when we started cutting we discovered that a lot was missing.”
He goes on to say around 10-15% of the movie’s screenplay was not filmed during production, that left huge story gaps that needed to be filled in the editing room: “It’s like when you’re making a big jigsaw puzzle and a few pieces are missing so you don’t see the whole picture.”
“The Snowman” opens in U.S. theaters this Friday.