I know Max Landis, but I don’t know him.

I know him like many people do. I’ve seen his work: Chronicle (good), American Ultra (good), and Victor Frankenstein (okay). I’ve seen the short films that he worked on and his Superman and Wrestling projects. He hasn’t made the greatest film in history, no one has, but I definitely don’t think he’s made the worst movie either. He seems like someone who still has his best work ahead of him. I follow him on Twitter, because I’ve always found his thoughts on Superman to be compelling. The way he talks about Superman makes me feel like maybe there’s still some hope for the character in an age that wants to make him irrelevant.

I think he’s funny and I like the way he tells story, but I don’t know him personally. Probably never will, I’m not trying to write a screenplay at the moment and I don’t live in LA, or anywhere close. All I know him from is what he puts out in his public life.

I don’t really see anything to hate. Yet somehow, people just can’t seem to stand him.

And I guess I can see why. Sorry Max, but you’re easy to hate. You’re passionate about your work and you’re vocal about your opinions, and on the Internet, that shit can never fly. I think people get the wrong idea about Max, seeing him living some great life as a writer for films with a lot of money, having a lot of fun. Maybe the vitriol comes from a place of jealousy, but not all of it. It’s just really easy to hate someone who has opinions on the Internet, even if those opinions are well founded.

I can’t stop people from hating him, that’s fair. It’s the Internet in America, you can say anything you want for the most part. But I can say this.

I think we have the wrong idea about the guy.

It’s something that I hear him echo on his Twitter a lot. There’s some understanding for the hate, but on the other hand, he’s just a guy trying to live his life doing what he does. It’s a business that’s totally unreliable and there are no rules about how to conduct yourself or make sure you can sell what you write. Yet he’s managed to carve out a niche, and that’s the part of his life that I feel most people get to see.

But we don’t seem him writing on his own, trying to come up with ideas. We don’t see him driving to studios or places to get some work done, staying up to all hours to get a few more words down. We don’t see him dealing with people he’s close to, the friends that also have problems, a bad break up, trying to make new connections. There’s a side that isn’t shown to the public, one that’s closer to who he really is than what we see.

When I see his public presence, I get the sense of someone who speaks loudly and feels very deeply. For all that he says, there’s a good majority of things I’m sure he doesn’t say, things that he keeps to himself. He might have come from some money, but he’s continuously showed that he had to make his own way in the world, and he’s a supporter of the things most people our age support. He supports women’s rights, diverse characters in media, all of the banners we millennials wave these days. And yet people seem to focus on his hair or his movies because it’s something easy and lazy to attack. I don’t claims to have any knowledge about how he leads his life, but I do have enough empathy to imagine myself trying to follow my passions and see people trying to take me down just because they have nothing better to do. It’s a little pathetic. And Max certainly doesn’t need a someone to speak for him, he’s a grown man who can take care of himself. But I’ll stand in his corner, as at least one person who won’t throw mud at him on the Internet for being a person with creativity.

I don’t know Max Landis, and I don’t ever plan to. I can’t stop all of the Internet hate that comes his way, but I will lend my voice to stand against it. I don’t think it’s warranted and find the thought of people trying to tear a guy down just for trying to his life sad and appalling. I can’t stand by on a good conscience while someone gets dragged for nothing. We’re all friends here, so let’s be cool, okay?

Everyone needs to take a breath and try to imagine themselves in someone else’s shoes. Hell, the guy just started releasing American Alien, some of the best Superman stories yet written.

Why would you want to hate on that?

Advertisements