Seth Rogen made an open plea to critics, asking for leniency. As an artist, he didn’t like hearing from professionals that his works didn’t communicate what he intended:
“I think if most critics knew how much it hurt the people that made the things that they are writing about, they would second guess the way they write these things. […] It’s devastating. I know people who never recover from it. Honestly, years, decades of being hurt by [film reviews]. It’s very personal. […] It is devastating when you are being institutionally told that your personal expression was bad. That’s something that people carry with them, literally, their entire lives and I get why. It f***ing sucks.”
Rogen admitted that bad reviews for “The Green Hornet” were easier to stomach than those for “The Interview,” as the former was a mere studio genre picture, and the latter was more of his own personal vision. Rogen could also take comfort in the fact that “Hornet” opened to a respectable sum for the type of movie it was. That took the edge off a little:
“People just kind of hated it. It seemed like a thing people were taking joy in disliking a lot. But it opened to, like, $35 million, which was the biggest opening weekend I’d ever been associated with at that point. It did pretty well. That’s what’s nice sometimes. You can grasp for some sense of success at times.”
The opening was closer to $33 million, but Rogen’s point remains. Also, “The Interview,” in being shunted to streaming, lost a lot of money as a result, leaving Rogen with no box office to look to. It was, it seems, just not a success by any measure.