After a lengthy career of cranking out comedies (with a few prestige dramas peppered in), Adam Sandler doesn’t seem like the type of guy who gives a crap about critics. He makes movies with his longtime buddies, and the Saturday Night Live alum is keenly aware of his target audience. However, that wasn’t always the case. When his first lead comedy role in Billy Madison hit theaters, Sandler and co-writer Tim Herlihy were giddy to find out that New York papers were actually going to write about their goofball film. Unfortunately, that excitement didn’t last very long.
During a conversation with Netflix to promote Sandler’s new film, Hustle, the prolific comedy star opened up about his brief dalliance into reading reviews. Via Entertainment Weekly:
“When Billy Madison came out, me and my friend who wrote it,” he explained, “we were just like, ‘Oh yeah, they’re going to write about this in New York!’ We grew up reading the papers, we were going to NYU. And then we read the first one and we were like, ‘Oh my god, what happened? They hate us.’ And then we were like, ‘It must have been this paper,’ but then 90 percent of the papers are going ‘This is garbage.'”
While Sandler admitted that the bad reviews for Billy Madison “stung,” he was mostly worried about his grandmother or his family members reading them and being forced to defend his films. After that experience, he stopped reading reviews altogether, and he’s completely zen about the whole thing.
“It’s okay, I get it. Critics aren’t going to connect with certain stuff and what they want to see,” Sandler said. “I understand that it’s not clicking with them.”
(Via Entertainment Weekly)