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By Aaron Hendren | January 2, 2005

A potential market for gamblers and movie fans has been created with the recent trend of crossover movies.

Last summer there was a lot of interest in the horror crossover movie Freddy Vs. Jason. There was enough fanfare and money made from the concept that rumors abound of a continuation, combining the “A Nightmare on Elm Street” and “Friday the 13th” franchise with the protagonist from the “Evil Dead” movies. Freddie, Jason and Ash will fight it out for the moviegoer’s pleasure.


The crossover trend in movies is, of course, being continued this summer with Alien Vs. Predator. With any of the movies in this genre, speculation arises before the movie’s release as to which entity will be victorious. After the movie’s release, fans will debate as to whether or not the correct entity won.

To many fans of horror movies, the outcome of “Freddy Vs. Jason” was obvious. According to the storylines of each franchise, Jason is real, whereas Freddy exists only in dreams. Reality should prevail over synapses. In “Freddy Vs. Jason,” or the potential “Jason Vs. Schizophrenia” or “Jason Vs. Santa Claus,” Jason should prevail simply because he exists. Schizophrenia and Santa Claus are products of the mind and imagination, respectively. Jason Voorhees lives and breathes on celluloid – sometimes more often than he ought to.

It is more difficult to call the most likely to succeed in science fiction movies such as “Alien Vs. Predator” because each party has an equal shot. If it were “Alien Vs. Predator Vs. Arnold Schwarzenegger Vs. Ripley,” a wise better would put his or her money on Ripley. She always beats the Aliens, whereas Arnold’s character got lucky and covered in mud. Danny Glover picked up where Arnold’s character left off in the “Predator” series, but without Mel Gibson, Danny Glover is just Danny Glover. Consequently, he would be completely out of the running in that contest.

Remember seeing Danny Glover’s a*s in “Beloved?” That movie could have been called “Nightmare on My Street.” “Freddy Vs. Danny Glover’s A*s” would be a worthy contest.

To better serve the gambler/movie fan, this article will serve as a guide in predicting winners of future crossover battles in film.

In the potential feature “JD Vs. Tyler Durden,” (Brad Pitt’s characters from “Thelma and Louise” and “Fight Club”) any reasonable gambler would rightfully place their money on Tyler Durden. Tyler Durden was hardcore where JD was a wussie man. To even the score, it must be assumed that JD has the help of the recently reanimated Louise and Thelma. Should this be the case, odds will still favor Tyler Durden unless the feature is a made-for-TV movie to be aired on one of the Woman’s cable channels. Gamblers should almost always place their bets on Tyler Durden unless Louise and Thelma are revealed to have superzombie powers, or in the unlikely exception that JD has another female partner such as Ripley from the “Alien” series.

Some movies or franchises would never work as a crossover. For instance, “Jaws Vs. Titanic” has the potential to be entertaining, but without a fight, there would be no story. The reason that there would be no fight or conflict is that the shark is going to win. The boat will sink, and Jaws will eat the people in the water. No reasonable gambler/movie fan would ever put their money on the doomed ship, even if it were carrying Thelma and Louise as zombies.

In the gambling world, money is wagered on card games and sporting events and the like for a number of rationales. Some gamblers go on the gut feeling while others take a more scientific approach. Other gamblers make wagers based on mathematical formulas that contain words like “probability” and “odds.” When wagering on which character or entity will prevail in a movie crossover, neither of these approaches will help the successful gambler. When taking the movie crossover bet, the smart money should go to the side with the smartest or most likeable character.

Should the crossover “Mystery Science Theater 3000 Vs. Citizen Kane” be made, the wise gambler will consider many variables before placing any bets. The strength of “Mystery Science Theater 3000” comes from the weaknesses of other movies. The strength of Orson Welles’s movie is that in many circles, “Citizen Kane” is the best movie ever made. This would be a fair fight. Though it would seem that the smart bet would be on Orson Welles, caution should be advised to the quick-betting gambler who has not thought this through. MST3K has robots, and in the crossover medium, a robot movie will always beat a non-robot movie.

Rosebud was the sled.

Despite these incredibly useful tips, the gambler movie fan will probably always bet on whichever character or franchise they prefer. There is some recently liberated woman out there who will root for JD and the zombie women over any character from “Fight Club.” Similarly, there is some film elitist who will place a bet on “Citizen Kane,” against all better judgment, and in spite of the Robot Rule. There is even some psycho out there who would wager that the love story aboard the Titanic could overcome a man-eating shark.

The main thing that a gambler/movie fan should keep in mind when watching any crossover film is that these movies are made to entertain the masses. Movies and the characters that warm the movie lover’s heart should not be taken too seriously. Any personal connection to fictional characters and plots should be kept in check.

And always bet on the robot.

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