I Could Never Be Your Woman
|Budget: $24 million||Financed by: Bauer Martinez Studios|
|Domestic Gross: $0||Domestic Distributor: The Weinstein Company|
|Overseas Gross: $9,576,495||
Directed by: Amy Heckerling
Produced by: Philippe Martinez
I Could Never Be Your Woman was first being developed at Paramount, but the studio put the project into turnaround. It then found financing by Philippe Martinez for $24 million, who had more ego than understanding of the film business. Martinez arrived in Hollywood in 2005, fresh off a six month vacation in a French jail for fraud and set to revolutionize independent film and claimed Bauer Martinez Studios would be larger than Lionsgate in a years time. Unsurprisingly, the would-be mogul found his production shingle wiped out in in 2009. I Could Never Be Your Woman was director Amy Heckerling’s followup to the 2000 dud Loser, which landed her in director’s jail with the major studios and unfortunately led her to get financing from this clown.
I Could Never Be Your Woman was filmed back in 2005 and Martinez partnered with MGM to distribute five of his pictures, with P&A costs covered by Martinez. This was to supposed to be the first movie released in that deal. Martinez gave actress Michelle Pfeiffer 15% of first-dollar gross receipts in her contract and when he inked the MGM deal, the studio would receive their distribution fee first — which was at odds with Pfeiffer’s gross points. The film was shelved when Martinez tried to renegotiate her contract and instead he released the cheap box office dud Harsh Times and Van Wilder 2 through MGM. MGM severed their contract after Martinez left MGM with the P&A bill for Harsh Times and when Van Wilder 2 flopped. I Could Never Be Your Woman was left without a distributor and in the hands of a foolish producer buried in debt.
While trying to get Pfeiffer to change her contract, Martinez inexplicably sold off the foreign rights and then made a US home video deal with The Weinstein Company. With foreign markets taken and domestic ancillary sold to TWC, all the studios passed on the project again when it was still being shopped for a theatrical release. I Could Never Be Your Woman was the victim of its foolish producer and went straight to video in the US.
Overseas, the film pulled in weak numbers, but at least found a release through numerous distributors for a $9.5 million total. It went straight to video in key markets, UK, Germany, Australia and Italy. Another Martinez production, the more expensive Richard Gere vehicle The Flock saw a similar straight to video fate.
Amy Heckerling said of the miserable experience on this film outside of the studio system: “If this is independence, I’d rather go back to what they call “the devil you know.“