Despite favorable reviews and word-of-mouth, Tom Cruise’s sci-fi action flick ‘Edge of Tomorrow’ underperformed at the box office this summer. Seemingly to fool viewers into thinking that it’s a different movie now, the studio has given the film a brand new title for the upcoming Blu-ray release. Are you more or less likely to buy ‘Live Die Repeat’?
Although this is certainly not the first time that a movie has been retitled for a re-release or home video, it is (to my knowledge) the first time that has happened for a big-budget, major studio tentpole production that’s barely out of theaters. Considering all the money that Warner Bros. spent on advertising and promotion for the movie as ‘Edge of Tomorrow’, won’t changing the title now just serve to confuse everyone?
Nonetheless, cover artwork for the October 7th Blu-ray and Blu-ray 3D editions of the film prominently display its title as ‘Live Die Repeat’ in giant letters, with only a small acknowledgement that this is indeed the same movie as ‘Edge of Tomorrow’ obscured at the bottom in far smaller text after the actor credits.
All of this stems back to a general inability to find a good title for the movie in the first place. Based on a Japanese novel, the project originally retained the book title ‘All You Need Is Kill’, which sounds exactly like what it was: the mangled bastardization of a popular British song (the Beatles’ “All You Need Is Love”) that was translated from English to Japanese and back to English again by a foreign author. When that didn’t test well with American focus groups, the studio tried an even worse working title of ‘We Mortals Are’ for a time before settling on the too-generic ‘Edge of Tomorrow’. During its theatrical release, the film was promoted with the advertising tagline “Live. Die. Repeat.” Minus the punctuation, that’s now the new title.
Unclear at this time is whether the opening and end credits to the film itself have been modified, or if this change is just something that will appear on the video packaging.
Personally, I don’t think that any of these titles is very good, but changing it now seems like a really bad idea to me. For clarity sake if nothing else, I would prefer that that Blu-ray were still called ‘Edge of Tomorrow’.