Since advance screening of Martin Scorsese's The Wolf of Wall Street began, it has been both heralded as the best film of the year and admonished as one of the worst ever made. And if the Academy's response at a recent screening is any indicator, it might be leaning toward the latter.
Following a screening for the Academy over the weekend, actress Hope Holiday, 75, posted a message to her Facebook page giving a rundown of the response the film elicited:
"last night was torture at the Academy--"The Wolf Of Wall Street"---three hours of torture--same disgusting crap over and over again---after the film they had a discussion which a lot of us did not stay for--the elevator doors opened and Leonardo D. Martin S. and a few others got out then a screen writer ran over to them and started screaming--shame on you --disgusting—"
Holiday also went on to say that she also personally confronted Scorsese in a similar vein, but left before the situation escalated. Paramount studio reps, for their part, denied any yelling screenwriter, but did say that one person offered a "negative comment" to Scorsese.
As screenings go, this isn't exactly new to Scorsese, especially for a film called "thumpingly stupid" in New York Magazine. No stranger to controversy, Scorsese's last big bout with audience backlash was over 1998's The Last Temptation of Christ, and with Casino before that in 1995.
Both films, you might note, went on to be considered modern day classics, with or without the blessing of the Academy. But, then, Holiday's musings in the comment section of her Facebook post do betray a bit of explanation to why that blessing might be missing:
"Are there really any good films any more? Maybe it's just me."
A tough question, but we'll find out soon enough. The Wolf of Wall Street comes out tomorrow.