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Kevin Smith

 

Smith is the owner of Jay and Silent Bob's Secret Stash, a comic book store in Red Bank, New Jersey that is the subject of the reality-television show Comic Book Men (20122018). He also hosts the movie-review television show Spoilers. As a podcaster, Smith co-hosts several shows on his own SModcast Podcast Network, including SModcast, Fatman Beyond, and the live show Hollywood Babble-On. Smith is well known for participating in long, humorous Q&A sessions that are often filmed for DVD release, beginning with An Evening with Kevin Smith.
Widely hailed as Smith's best film, 1997's Chasing Amy marked what Quentin Tarantino called "a quantum leap forward" for Smith. Starring Mallrats alumni Jason Lee, Joey Lauren Adams and Ben Affleck, the $250,000 film earned $12 million at the box office wound up on a number of critics' year-end best lists, and won two Independent Spirit Awards (for Screenplay and Supporting Actor for Lee). The film received some criticism from some members of the lesbian community, who felt that it reinforced the perception that all lesbians merely needed to find the right man. Smith, whose brother Donald Smith, Jr. is gay, found this accusation frustrating, as he has endeavored to be an LGBT-conscious filmmaker, believing that sexuality is more fluid, with social taboos, and not sexual desire, preventing more people from expressing bisexuality.
In 2013 Smith directed a horror film called Tusk, which was inspired by a story Smith and Scott Mosier read about a Gumtree ad for a man who rents out a room in his house for free, on the condition that the respondent dresses as a walrus for two hours per day. The project began pre-production in September 2013. Shooting began on November 4, 2013, and wrapped on November 22, 2013. The film was released on September 19, 2014. It has received mixed reviews.
In 2010 Smith subsequently wrote a six-issue Batman mini-series called The Widening Gyre for DC drawn by Walt Flanagan. The series was initially planned as 12 issues, with a long break planned between issues six and seven. After issue six was published, Smith and Flanagan's work on their reality show, Comic Book Men, extended this planned break further than expected. It was decided in the interim to release the remaining issues as a separate series to be called Batman: Bellicosity, scheduled for 2016 but as of February 2019, remains unpublished.
In 1996, Smith worked on a script for a planned Superman film tentatively titled Superman Lives. He wrote several drafts but was dropped from the project when Tim Burton was hired to direct and brought his own team to write the script. (Burton's attempt was later abandoned as well.) Smith publicly discussed his experience working on the script at a Q&A session at Clark University shown in the 2002 DVD An Evening with Kevin Smith. In the Q&A, he said that the experience was a positive one overall, since he loves the character of Superman and was paid well. However, he listed a number of unusual demands that producer Jon Peters, who was in charge of the project, made, including that Superman not be shown flying or wearing tights, and that he should battle a giant spider at the end of the film. Smith then noted that he went to see the 1999 film Wild Wild West, which Peters produced, and was surprised to see a giant mechanical spider at the end of the film, presumably Peters' handiwork. Smith's description of his experience gained a life of its own, with film critic A.O. Scott of The New York Times calling it "extraordinary" in 2011. In the 2007 direct-to-DVD animated film Superman: Doomsday, Smith has a cameo as an onlooker in a crowd which alludes to this anecdote: after Superman defeats The Toyman's giant mechanical robot, Smith scoffs, "Yeah, like we really needed him to defeat that giant spider. Heh. Lame!
On June 4, 2012, Smith premiered his Hulu-exclusive weekly series Spoilers, described as an "anti-movie review" series, where Smith takes a group of people to a new movie and has them comment on what they've seen. Other segments on the show include interviews with celebrities, and the "Criterion Lounge", where Smith discusses a Criterion Collection movie available on DVD and the Hulu Plus service.