Battlefield Earth (film)
Theatrical release poster
|Directed by||Roger Christian|
|Based on||Battlefield Earth|
by L. Ron Hubbard
|Music by||Elia Cmiral|
|Edited by||Robin Russelle|
|Distributed by||Warner Bros. Pictures|
|Box office||$29.7 million|
Battlefield Earth (also referred to as Battlefield Earth: A Saga of the Year 3000) is a 2000 American science fiction action film based on the 1982 novel of the same name by L. Ron Hubbard. It was directed by Roger Christian and stars John Travolta, Barry Pepper and Forest Whitaker; the film follows a rebellion against the alien Psychlos, who have ruled Earth for 1,000 years.
Travolta, a Scientologist, had sought for years to make a film of the novel by Hubbard, the founder of Scientology, he was unable to obtain major studio funding due to concerns about the script and its connections to Scientology. In 1998, it was picked up by independent production company Franchise Pictures, which specialized in rescuing stars' pet projects. Production began in 1999, largely funded by the German distribution company Intertainment AG. Travolta, as co-producer, also contributed millions of dollars; he envisioned Battlefield Earth as the first in a two-part adaptation of the book, as it only covers the first half of the novel's story.
Battlefield Earth was a critical and commercial failure, frequently described as one of the worst films of all time. Reviewers criticized virtually every aspect of the movie, including the acting, cinematography, script, special effects, and art direction. Audiences were reported to have ridiculed early screenings and stayed away from the film after its opening weekend, it received nine Golden Raspberry Awards, which until 2012 was the most Razzie Awards given to a single film, and won Worst Picture of the Decade in 2010. Franchise was later sued by its investors and went bankrupt in 2004 after it emerged that it had fraudulently overstated the film's budget by $31 million; this, coupled with its poor reception, ended Travolta's plans for a sequel.
- 1 Plot
- 2 Cast
- 3 Production
- 4 Release
- 5 Reception
- 6 Fraud by Franchise Pictures
- 7 Cancelled follow-ups and sequels
- 8 See also
- 9 References
- 10 External links
In 3000, Earth is a desolate wasteland; the Psychlos, a brutal race of giant humanoid aliens, have ruled the planet for 1,000 years, and use human slave labor to strip its minerals and other resources. A few primitive hunter-gatherer tribes of humans live in freedom in remote, hidden areas, but after ten centuries of Psychlo oppression they have abandoned any hope of regaining control of their planet. Jonnie Goodboy Tyler (Barry Pepper) rejects this universal hopelessness and leaves his tribe in the Rocky Mountains on a journey of exploration with a nomad hunter named Carlo (Kim Coates). Both are captured by a Psychlo raiding party and transported to a slave camp in the ruins of Denver, Colorado, the Psychlos' principal base of operations. A massive dome over the base protects the Psychlos from Earth's atmosphere, which is toxic to them.
At the camp, they meet Terl (John Travolta), the Psychlo security chief, and his deputy, Ker (Forest Whitaker). Terl is stranded permanently at his remote Earth outpost due to an unexplained incident involving "the Senator's daughter", he plans to bribe his way back to the Psychlo home planet by illegally mining gold in areas of high radioactivity. Psychlos avoid such areas because radiation reacts explosively with the gas mixture that they breathe. Terl selects Jonnie to lead the mining operation. Jonnie acquires a comprehensive knowledge of human history and literature in a Psychlo rapid-learning machine, he defiantly declares that one day, humans will overthrow the Psychlos and retake their planet. An amused Terl shows Jonnie the ruins of Denver and its public library and boasts that the Psychlos conquered all of Earth in only nine minutes during the 21st century. Jonnie spends time in the library and is particularly inspired by the Declaration of Independence. Terl gives Jonnie a party of slaves and a Psychlo flying shuttle and orders him to find gold.
Jonnie locates a plentiful supply at the long-abandoned Fort Knox, he also discovers an abandoned underground military base with working Harrier jump-jets, weapons, and fuel. While they are supposed to be laboring in the mines, Jonnie and his followers plot a revolution, and use the military base's flight simulators to train themselves in aerial combat.
After a week of training, the rebels launch their attack. In a suicide mission, Carlo flies his Psychlo flying shuttle into the Denver dome, destroying it and suffocating the Psychlos inside. Jonnie captures a teleportation device and uses it to teleport a dirty bomb to the Psychlo home world; when it detonates, the radiation it releases reacts catastrophically with the Psychlo atmosphere, destroying all life on the planet. The humans have retaken Earth, but face an uncertain future; the sole Psychlo survivors are Terl, who is imprisoned inside Fort Knox in a makeshift cell of gold bars; and Ker, who joins the victorious humans in their challenging project to rebuild their civilization.
- John Travolta as Terl
- Barry Pepper as Jonnie Goodboy Tyler
- Forest Whitaker as Ker
- Kim Coates as Carlo
- Sabine Karsenti as Chrissy
- Richard Tyson as Robert the Fox
- Kelly Preston as Chirk
- Michael MacRae as District Manager Zete
- Shaun Austin-Olsen as Planetship Numph
- Tim Post as the Assistant Planetship
- Michael Byrne as Parson staffer
- Christian Tessier as Mickey
- Sylvain Landry as Sammy
- Earl Pastko as the Bartender
- Noël Burton as the Clinko Learning instructor
After Battlefield Earth was published in 1982, L. Ron Hubbard suggested that a film version of the book was in the works. He gave an interview in February 1983 to the Rocky Mountain News in which he told the reporter, "I've recently written three screenplays, and some interest has been expressed in Battlefield Earth, so I suppose I'll be right back in Hollywood one of these days and probably on location in the Denver area for Battlefield Earth when they film it."
Hubbard's comments suggest that he saw himself being directly involved in the film's production; author Stewart Lamont suggests that Hubbard may even have envisioned directing it, having previously helmed Scientology training films. In October 1983, the film rights were sold by the Church of Scientology's in-house literary agency, Author Services Inc., to Salem Productions of Los Angeles. Two films were envisaged, each covering half of the book and tentatively budgeted at $15 million each. William Immerman was set as the producer for the film. Veteran screenwriter Abraham Polonsky and British director Ken Annakin were hired to produce a film breakdown, with production scheduled to begin in 1985. In November 1984, Santa Monica public relations firm Dateline Communications announced a nationwide contest to promote the film. First- and second-place prizes were an all-expense-paid trip to the film's production location and a paid walk-on part in the film, and other announced prizes included a trip to Los Angeles for the world premiere, records, cassettes, and hardcover and paperback copies of the novel. A 30-foot (10 m) high inflatable figure of the film's villain, Terl, was erected by Scientology officials on Hollywood Boulevard in 1984 in an effort to promote the production, and auditions were held in Denver; the low-budget project soon collapsed, and Hubbard died soon afterwards, in 1986.
Travolta had converted to Scientology in 1975 and subsequently became one of the Church of Scientology's most prominent supporters. Hubbard sent him an autographed copy of Battlefield Earth when the book was first published in 1982; he reportedly hoped that Travolta would turn the book into a film "in the vein of Star Wars and Close Encounters of the Third Kind". While Travolta was interested, his influence in Hollywood at the time was at a low after participating in a series of flops, he gained renewed influence with the success of the 1994 film Pulp Fiction, which garnered Travolta an Academy Award nomination for Best Actor. He had not forgotten Hubbard's wishes to see the book on the big screen and took on the task of making Battlefield Earth into a movie. Travolta described the book in interviews as "like Pulp Fiction for the year 3000" and "like Star Wars, only better", he lobbied influential figures in Hollywood to fund the project and was reported to have recruited the aid of fellow Scientologists in promoting it. According to Bill Mechanic, the former head of 20th Century Fox, "John wanted me to make Battlefield Earth, he had Scientologists all over me. They come up to you and they know who you are, and they go, 'We're really excited about Battlefield Earth.'" This did not impress Mechanic: "Do you think in any way, shape, or form that weirding me out is going to make me want to make this movie?"
Travolta's involvement in Battlefield Earth was first publicized in late 1995, he told the New York Daily News that "Battlefield Earth is the pinnacle of using my power for something. I told my manager, 'If we can't do the things now that we want to do, what good is the power? Let's test it and try to get the things done that we believe in.'" It was assumed from the start that Travolta would star in and produce the film, which would be distributed by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer; J. D. Shapiro was to write the screenplay. Shapiro was eventually fired because he refused to accept some suggestions from the studio producers that changed the tone of his script, including removing key scenes and characters. In 1997, Travolta's long-time manager, Jonathan Krane, signed a two-year deal with Twentieth Century Fox under which that studio would release Battlefield Earth instead of MGM, but the deal with Fox also fell through. James Robert Parish, author of Fiasco: A History of Hollywood's Iconic Flops, comments that both MGM and Fox regarded the project as too risky on several grounds: Its heavy reliance on special effects would be very expensive, pushing the budget up to as much as $100 million; Hubbard's narrative was seen as naïve and outdated; and the "Scientology factor" could work against the film, negating Travolta's star power; as one studio executive put it, "On any film there are ten variables that can kill you. On this film there was an eleventh: Scientology, it just wasn't something anyone really wanted to get involved with."
In 1998, the project was taken over by Franchise Pictures, a recently established company whose head, Elie Samaha, a former dry cleaning mogul turned nightclub owner, specialized in rescuing stars' pet projects. Franchise sought out stars whose projects were stalled at the major studios, bringing them aboard at reduced salaries. Samaha's approach made waves in Hollywood, earning him a reputation of being able to produce star vehicles more cheaply than the larger studios, his unorthodox deals raised eyebrows and the entertainment industry magazine Variety commented that they were "often so complex and variable as to leave outsiders scratching their heads". As Samaha put it, "I said, 'If John wants to make this movie, what does he want to get paid?' ... Because I do not pay anybody what they make; that is not my business plan.'" He learned of Battlefield Earth from Cassian Elwes, an agent at the theatrical agency William Morris, and approached Travolta. A deal was soon struck and financing was arranged; Travolta significantly reduced his normal fee of $20 million, lowering the film's cost from the $100 million that had previously been forecast, and costs were reduced further by using Canadian locations and facilities.
The film was set up as an independent production for Morgan Creek Productions which would release the film through Warner Bros. in the United States under an existing distribution agreement. Travolta's company JTP Films was also involved, and Travolta invested $5 million of his own money in the production. Warner Bros. allocated $20 million for the film's marketing and distribution. Franchise retained the foreign rights, licensing the European distribution rights to the German group Intertainment AG in exchange for 47% of the production costs which were set at $75 million; the Intertainment deal later became the focus of a legal action that bankrupted Franchise. Samaha forecast that the film would be a hit: "My projected numbers on Battlefield Earth are really conservative. I'm already covered internationally, and there's no way I'm going to lose if the movie does $35 million domestically, and Travolta has never had an action movie do under $35 million."
According to Samaha, he got around the "negative factor" of the Scientology connection by the simple expedient of "yell[ing] at everyone, 'This is a science-fiction film starring John Travolta!' again and again". Samaha acknowledged that "everyone thought I was crazy or mentally retarded" for taking on the project, but pitched the film as "Planet of the Apes starring John Travolta". Others in Hollywood were still skeptical; an unnamed producer was quoted by the Los Angeles Daily News as saying that "Battlefield Earth has the stench of death, it should never have been made. It's an $80 million vanity project for Travolta." Travolta's theatrical agency William Morris was also said to be unenthusiastic, reportedly leading to Travolta threatening to leave them if they did not help him to set up the film. Fellow Scientologist Tom Cruise was said to have warned Warner Bros. that he thought the movie was a bad idea. Cruise's spokesperson later denied this.
Author Services Inc. and Church of Scientology
In 1999, Author Services Inc. said that it was "donating its share of the profits from the film to charitable organizations that direct drug education and drug rehabilitation programs around the world". It was reported that the merchandising revenues would be passed on to the Scientology-linked groups Narconon, a drug rehabilitation program, and Applied Scholastics, which promotes Hubbard's Study tech, with movie-related sales of the book funding the marketing of Hubbard's fiction books and the L. Ron Hubbard Writers of the Future contest; the size of the revenue deal was not disclosed by the parties; Trendmasters, the makers of the Battlefield Earth line of toys, stated that its deal was strictly with Franchise Pictures, which declined to comment, and Warner Bros. stated that its role was limited to distribution and had nothing to do with the associated merchandising deals.
In February 2000, Church of Scientology spokesman Mike Rinder told Tribune Media Services that any spinoff deals based on Hubbard's novel would benefit Author Services Inc.; another Church spokesman, Aron Mason, stated, "The church has no financial interest in Battlefield Earth. Author Services is not part of the Church of Scientology, they are a literary agency without any connection to the church."
Travolta's manager Jonathan Krane denied that the Church of Scientology was playing any part in the production: "I've never even dealt with or talked to the church on this; this is an action-adventure, science-fiction story. Period; the movie has nothing to do with Scientology." Krane stated that the film had been financed "without a dollar coming from the Scientologists." Some people in Hollywood feared that Travolta was using his box office draw to promote Scientology teachings, and one film producer stated, "This film could encourage kids to embrace the whole strange world of Scientology." Travolta stated, "I'm doing it because it's a great piece of science fiction; this is not about Hubbard. I'm very interested in Scientology, but that's personal; this is different." In a separate interview Travolta commented on the perceived similarities between Battlefield Earth and Scientology: "Well, they are kind of synonymous ... L. Ron Hubbard is very famous for Scientology and Dianetics. On the other hand, he's equally as famous in the science fiction world. So for people to think that ... look, I don't want everybody to try Scientology. I don't really care if somebody thinks that. I'm not worried about it. You can't be; the truth of why I'm doing it is because it's a great piece of science fiction. I'm going to be the wickedest 9-foot alien you've ever seen in your life."
Travolta and his manager, Jonathan Krane, took the lead in hiring the on-set personnel, they initially approached Quentin Tarantino to direct the film. When Tarantino declined, Roger Christian, a protégé of George Lucas, was recruited as the director on the advice of Lucas. Christian had most recently been the second unit director on Lucas' Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace. Patrick Tatopoulos was signed to develop the production design and costumes, including the design of the alien Psychlos, and Czech-American composer Elia Cmiral was signed to provide the film's score. Travolta and Krane also signed cinematographer Giles Nuttgens and most of the principal actors. Corey Mandell, a screenwriter who had previously worked with Ridley Scott on Blade Runner, signed on to write the script for the film, which had previously gone through 10 revisions. Mandell stated in an interview, "I am not a Scientologist ... I came on board because John asked me to read the book and said, 'It's not a religious book. It's a science-fiction story. There's nothing sacred about the story, nothing of the religious philosophy. I was given this to read purely as science fiction – to see whether it was intriguing as a movie, and it was."
Filmed in Canada, principal photography took place in Montreal, Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu, and several other Quebec locations during the summer and autumn of 1999. In January 1999, Travolta flew his private Boeing 727 on a secret visit to Montreal to scout out locations for shooting; the film was reported to have been the most expensive production shot in Canada up to that point. It was also reported that the production costs would have been twice as high had the film been shot in the United States. Almost every shot in the film is at a Dutch angle, because, according to Roger Christian, he wanted the film to look like a comic book.
Travolta's wife Kelly Preston also appeared in one scene, playing Terl's "baldish Psychlo girlfriend" Chirk. Travolta originally saw himself in the role of Jonnie, but by the time the movie was actually made, Travolta felt he was too old to play the role, and took the role of the main villain instead. Travolta's role in the film required what he described as an amazing physical transformation: "I wear a tall head apparatus with strange hair. I have amber eyes and talons for hands. It's quite remarkable ... I'm on 4-foot stilts." To star in the film, Travolta turned down the movie The Shipping News and postponed production on Standing Room Only.
The film was "plagued by bad buzz" before release with the media speculating about the possible influence of Scientology and commenting on the production's tight security; as the film was entering post-production, the alternative newspaper Mean Magazine obtained a copy of the screenplay. Mean's staffers changed the script's title to "Dark Forces", re-attributed it to "Desmond Finch", and circulated it to readers at major Hollywood film production companies. The comments that came back were unfavorable: "a thoroughly silly plotline is made all the more ludicrous by its hamfisted dialog and ridiculously shallow characterizations", "a completely predictable story that just isn't written well enough to make up for its lack of originality". One reviewer labeled the screenplay "as entertaining as watching a fly breathe".
Battlefield Earth was released on May 12, 2000, three days after the 50th anniversary of the publication of Hubbard's book Dianetics: The Modern Science of Mental Health, a date celebrated by Scientologists worldwide as a major Scientology holiday, its premiere was held on May 10, 2000 at Grauman's Chinese Theatre on Hollywood Boulevard in Los Angeles.
The film's scathingly bad reviews and poor word-of-mouth led to a precipitous falling-off in its grosses. Having earned $11,548,898 from 3,307 screens on its opening weekend, its take collapsed by 67 percent to $3,924,921 the following weekend, giving an average take of $1,158 per screen; the film made 85 percent of its entire domestic gross in its first 10 days and flatlined thereafter, with earnings dropping a further 75 percent by the end of its third week to $1 million. The following week, facing earnings of just $205,745, Warner Bros. attempted to cut its losses by slashing the number of screens at which the film was being shown. The number was reduced from 2,587 to 641. By its sixth weekend on release, the film was showing on 95 screens and had made $18,993 in a week – less than $200 per screen.
The film ultimately earned $21,471,685 in the United States and Canada and $8,253,978 internationally for a total of $29,725,663 worldwide, falling well short of its reported $73 million production budget and $20 million in estimated marketing costs. Financially, it is regarded as one of the most expensive box office bombs in film history.
A limited range of merchandising was produced for the film, including posters, a soundtrack CD by Elia Cmíral recorded by the Seattle Symphony, and a re-released version of the novel with a new cover based on the film's poster. Trendmasters also produced a range of action figures of the main characters, including an 11-inch (280 mm) figure of Travolta as Terl voicing lines from the film such as "Exterminate all man-animals at will!", "You wouldn't last one day at the academy", "Man is an endangered species", and "Rat-brain". Despite pre-release reports that the toy spoke the phrase "ratbastard", a line not present in the novel or film, the retail version does not.
A special edition DVD was released in 2001, deleting one scene and including two additional scenes which added two minutes to the film's running time; the DVD includes commentary tracks with director Roger Christian and production, costume and creature designer Patrick Tatopoulos, as well as special features including John Travolta's alien makeup test. Jeff Berkwits of Sci Fi Weekly wrote that "... the Battlefield Earth Special Edition DVD is packed with information, offering an enlightening glimpse into the creative process behind this imperfect but entertaining picture". Randy Salas of the Star Tribune described it as the "Best DVD for a bad movie." A review of the DVD release in the Los Angeles Times was more critical: "A dated visual style, patched-together special effects and ludicrous dialogue combine in a film that is a wholly miserable experience."
Battlefield Earth is often considered to be one of the worst films ever made. On Rotten Tomatoes, the film has a "rotten" score of 3% based on 148 reviews with an average rating of 2.29/10. The critical consensus states: "Ugly, campy and poorly acted, Battlefield Earth is a stunningly misguided, aggressively bad sci-fi folly." On Metacritic, the film had an average score of 9 out of 100, based on 33 critics indicating "Overwhelming dislike." Audiences polled by CinemaScore gave the film a grade of D+ on an A to F scale.
The film was greeted with widespread derision in preview screenings. An audience of Los Angeles entertainment journalists, critics, and others greeted the film with guffaws and hoots at a screening in Century City while other viewers in Washington, D.C., and Baltimore responded with derisive laughter or simply walked out. At a post-launch publicity event, Travolta, on asking assembled journalists if they had enjoyed it, received no reply, he later asserted that other filmmakers had enjoyed the movie: "When I felt better about everything was when George Lucas and Quentin Tarantino, and a lot of people that I felt knew what they were doing, saw it and thought it was a great piece of science fiction." Christian also spoke of an initially positive reception, mentioning an enthusiastic response from both the audience and Tarantino.
Chicago Sun-Times film critic Roger Ebert gave the film the rating of half a star out of four, and compared his screening to "taking a bus trip with someone who has needed a bath for a long time. It's not merely bad; it's unpleasant in a hostile way ... I watched it in mounting gloom, realizing I was witnessing something historic, a film that for decades to come will be the punch line of jokes about bad movies." Leonard Maltin rated the film a "BOMB" in his book Leonard Maltin's Movie Guide, writing: "Clumsy plot, misplaced satire, unbelievable coincidences, and a leaden pace trample Travolta's weird but amusing performance." David Bleiler gave the film one star out of four in the TLA Video & DVD Guide, writing: "This is disjointed, tedious, and every bit as bad as its reputation." Jon Stewart mocked the film on his television program The Daily Show, describing it as "a cross between Star Wars and the smell of ass."
Rita Kempley of The Washington Post commented: "A million monkeys with a million crayons would be hard-pressed in a million years to create anything as cretinous as Battlefield Earth; this film version of L. Ron Hubbard's futuristic novel is so breathtakingly awful in concept and execution, it wouldn't tax the smarts of a troglodyte." Elvis Mitchell of The New York Times wrote: "It may be a bit early to make such judgments, but Battlefield Earth may well turn out to be the worst movie of this century" and called it "Plan 9 from Outer Space for a new generation." The British film critic Jonathan Ross said: "Everything about Battlefield Earth sucks. Everything; the over-the-top music, the unbelievable sets, the terrible dialogue, the hammy acting, the lousy special effects, the beginning, the middle and especially the end." The Hollywood Reporter summarized the film as being "a flat-out mess, by golly, with massive narrative sinkholes, leading to moments of outstanding disbelief in the muddled writing and shockingly chaotic mise en scène that's accompanied by ear-pummeling sound and bombastic music."
Many critics singled out the excessive use of angled camera shots. "The director, Roger Christian, has learned from better films that directors sometimes tilt their cameras," wrote Ebert, "but he has not learned why." Derivative special effects and illogical plotting were also widely criticized; the Providence Journal highlighted the film's unusual color scheme: "Battlefield Earth's primary colors are blue and gray, adding to the misery. Whenever we glimpse sunlight, the screen goes all stale yellow, as though someone had urinated on the print. This, by the way, is not such a bad idea."
J.D. Shapiro, who wrote the original screenplay, was critical of the film as well. In a 2010 letter to The New York Post, he asserted that his draft bore little resemblance to the final script; the result, he said, was embarrassing: "The only time I saw the movie was at the premiere, which was one too many times." In Better Living Through Bad Movies, Scott Clevenger and Sheri Zollinger wrote, "So what new truths have we gleaned from Battlefield Earth? First, we have learned that spirituality is a fine thing, but it's probably best to avoid joining denominations that make action movies."
Responding to the criticism, one of the film's producers, Elie Samaha, complained: "[The] critics were waiting for us to ... chop our heads off. Everybody hated Scientology for some reason. I didn't know people were so prejudiced." Ebert noted, however, that the film "contains no evidence of Scientology, or any other system of thought."
The reviews were not uniformly negative. Bob Graham of the San Francisco Chronicle wrote that the film "effectively presented" the "wary, uncomprehending relationship" between the humans and the Psychlos. A review at JoBlo's Movie Reviews was also positive; Berge Garabedian wrote, "Despite starting off like a bad Star Trek episode, this film eventually graduates to a higher level with great special effects, some really slick bad-ass aliens, an intriguing premise, and a good flow of loud, campy fun." Luke Thompson of New Times LA wrote: "Think Independence Day without the ponderous build-up or self-importance. Imagine how much more enjoyable the other blockbuster-of-the-moment, Gladiator, might have been if Joaquin Phoenix had addressed every one of his rivals as 'Rat brain.'" Sean Axmaker of the Seattle Post-Intelligencer wrote positively of the interaction between Travolta and Whitaker in the film, comparing them to Abbott and Costello. Axmaker wrote that they provide "... much-needed comic relief in an otherwise humorless paean to freedom." Axmaker also wrote positively of the production design used in the film, commenting that the director had created "a world of crumbling dead cities and empty malls turned into human hunting grounds ..." Hap Erstein of The Palm Beach Post commented: "...production designer Patrick Tatopoulos contributes some good work, imagining the ruins of Denver and Washington, D.C., with echoes of Planet of the Apes." In her book I Love Geeks: The Official Handbook, Carrie Tucker lists Battlefield Earth as a cult classic in the "so bad, it's good" genre.
Battlefield Earth frequently appears on worst film lists, and is included on Rotten Tomatoes' "100 Worst of the Worst Movies" list. Rotten Tomatoes ranked the film 27th in the 100 worst reviewed films of the first decade of the 21st century. The Arizona Republic listed it as the worst film of 2000, and called it a "monumentally bad sci-fi flick." Richard Roeper placed the film at number five on his list of "40 movies that linger in the back chambers of my memory vault like a plate of cheese left behind a radiator in a fleabag hotel." In 2001 the film received the "Worst Picture" award from the Dallas-Fort Worth Film Critics Association. James Franklin of McClatchy-Tribune News Service put the film as the worst of his "summer blockbuster bombs" list, giving it a rating of four stars for "traumatic" on his scale of how the films "generate a perverse sense of nostalgia." Christopher Null of Filmcritic.com listed the film's villain Terl at number 8 of his "10 Least Effective Movie Villains", writing: "we still can't imagine how anyone would go face to face with one of these creatures and react with anything other than simple laughter."
South Park parodied the film at the 2000 MTV Movie Awards; the MTV short was the first time South Park had satirized Scientology, in a piece titled "The Gauntlet". The short was primarily a Gladiator parody, with the characters fighting Russell Crowe in the Roman Colosseum; it included "John Travolta and the Church of Scientology" arriving in a spaceship to defeat Crowe and attempting to recruit the boys into Scientology. Travolta, along with his fellow Scientologists, was depicted as a Psychlo, as he appeared in the film.
Battlefield Earth swept the 2000 Golden Raspberry Awards and received seven "Razzies", including Worst Picture, Worst Actor (Travolta), Worst Supporting Actor (Pepper), Worst Supporting Actress (Preston), Worst Director (Christian), Worst Screenplay (Mandell and Shapiro) and Worst Screen Couple (Travolta and "anyone sharing the screen with him"); this tied for the highest number of Razzies won by a single film at that time, with Showgirls achieving seven wins in 1995. Battlefield Earth was later awarded an eighth Razzie for "Worst Drama of Our First 25 Years". In 2010, the film received an award for "Worst Picture of the Decade", bringing its total number of Razzie Awards to nine and consequently setting a record for the most Razzies won by a single film; that record was surpassed in 2012 when Jack and Jill won ten awards.
As Travolta did not attend to collect his trophies, an action figure of Terl, his character, accepted them in his place. Travolta responded a week later to the awards: "I didn't even know there were such awards. I have people around me whose job it is to not tell me about such things. They're obviously doing their job. Not every film can be a critical and box office success, it would have been awful only if Battlefield Earth was neither. That's not the case, it is edging toward the $100m mark which means it has found an audience even if it didn't impress critics. I'd rather my films connect with audiences than with critics because it gives you more longevity as a performer." He later insisted that he still felt "really good about it. Here I was taking big chances, breaking a new genre."
Pepper said that he regretted not having been invited to the Razzies and blamed the film's failure on "a weak script and poor production values". Writer J. D. Shapiro received his Worst Screenplay award from Razzies founder John J. B. Wilson during a radio program; he commented that Travolta had called the script "the Schindler's List of science fiction". Shapiro also made an appearance to pick up the Worst Picture of the Decade award at the 30th Golden Raspberry Awards, giving a speech quoting negative reviews, and thanking both the studio for firing him and Corey Mandell for "rewriting my script in a way I never, ever, ever — could have imagined or conceived of myself."
The film's producer, Elie Samaha, declared that he welcomed the "free publicity", as "the more the critics hit Battlefield Earth, the more DVDs it sells, it is the kind of film that makes a movie legend and we feel we have enough staying power to last long after the critics have quieted down."
At the 2000 Stinkers Bad Movie Awards, the film received individual nominations in nine categories and won in eight of them: Worst Picture, Worst Director (Christian), Worst Actor (Travolta, also for Lucky Numbers), Worst On-Screen Couple (Travolta and anyone in the entire galaxy), Worst On-Screen Group (The Psychlos and Man-Animals), Most Unintentionally Funny Movie, Worst On-Screen Hairstyle (Travolta and Whitaker), and Least "Special" Special Effects, it also received a nomination for Worst Supporting Actor (Pepper) but lost to Tom Green for Road Trip and Charlie's Angels. The Stinkers later unveiled their "100 Years, 100 Stinkers" list in which people voted for the 100 worst movies of the 20th century. Battlefield Earth not only made the final ballot; it took home the top prize for Worst Film of the Century; the provided commentary is listed on the side.
—The Stinkers"The 100 Worst Films of the 20th Century". The Stinkers. Retrieved September 18, 2019.
|2001||Razzie Award||Worst Picture||Warner Bros.||Won|
|Worst Director||Roger Christian||Won|
|Worst Screenplay||Corey Mandell and J. D. Shapiro,
based on the novel by L. Ron Hubbard
|Worst Actor||John Travolta||Won|
|Worst Supporting Actor||Barry Pepper||Won|
|Worst Supporting Actress||Kelly Preston||Won|
|Worst Screen Couple||John Travolta and anyone sharing the screen with him||Won|
|2005||Worst "Drama" of Our First 25 Years||Battlefield Earth||Won|
|2010||Worst Actor of the Decade||John Travolta||Nominated|
|Worst Picture of the Decade||Battlefield Earth||Won|
|2001||Stinkers Bad Movie Awards||Worst Picture||Warner Bros.||Won|
|Most Unintentionally Funny Movie||Won|
|Least "Special" Special Effects||Won|
|Worst Director||Roger Christian||Won|
|Worst Actor||John Travolta||Won|
|Worst Supporting Actor||Barry Pepper||Nominated|
|Worst On-Screen Couple||John Travolta and anyone in the entire galaxy!||Won|
|Worst On-Screen Group||The Psychlos and Man-Animals||Won|
|Worst On-Screen Hairstyle||John Travolta and Forest Whitaker||Won|
Fears of Scientology influence
Stacy Brooks, then-president of the Lisa McPherson Trust, stated: "There's no way that this movie would be happening without Scientology's backing ... This is one example of how Scientology insinuates itself in various aspects of the culture." Mark Bunker characterized the film as a recruitment tactic for the Church of Scientology, stating, "It's designed to introduce L. Ron Hubbard to a whole new generation of kids. It's there to plant a favorable seed in children's minds." Bunker criticized the promotional methods of the film—instead of granting interviews about the film to the press, John Travolta went on a book tour and signed copies of L. Ron Hubbard's novel. Bunker stated, "When Michael Caine goes around to promote The Cider House Rules, he doesn't tour bookstores and sign copies of John Irving's novel ... Through the movie tie-in with the book, kids will send in the card to get their free poster, and eventually be introduced to Dianetics." Scientologist Nancy O'Meara, at the time treasurer of the Foundation for Religious Freedom and currently treasurer of the Scientology-run New Cult Awareness Network, responded to Bunker's statement: "Gimme a break ... That's like saying people are going to go see Gladiator and then suddenly find themselves wanting to explore Christianity."
Before the film was released, rumors and allegations began to circulate that Battlefield Earth contained subliminal messages promoting Scientology. Former Scientologist Lawrence Wollersheim, in a press release issued by his group Fight Against Coercive Tactics Network, said that the Church of Scientology "has placed highly advanced subliminal messages in the Battlefield Earth film master to surreptitiously recruit new members from the movie audience and to get the audience to develop a revulsion for psychiatry and current mental health organizations and practices". Other critics said that the film "is a veiled attempt to gain converts and influence", and that writers were gagged from making connections between Scientology and the film with threats of lawsuits. Warner Bros. dismissed the claims as "silly nonsense", the Church of Scientology denounced them as "hogwash" and the media reacted with skepticism; as the Scottish journalist Duncan Campbell put it, "the only subliminal voice I could detect came about 10 minutes into this 121-minute film and it seemed to be saying Leeeaaave thisssss cinemmmaaa nooow". When asked about the similarities between the film and Scientology beliefs in intergalactic travel and aliens, church spokesman Aron Mason stated, "That's a pretty crude parallel ... You'd have to make some serious leaps of logic to make that comparison." John Travolta also stated that the film was not inspired by Scientology tenets.
Hugh Urban of Ohio State University notes a number of connections between Scientology and Battlefield Earth in his 2011 book The Church of Scientology: A History of a New Religion. Not only was the film released only three days after the 50th anniversary of the publication of Hubbard's book Dianetics: The Modern Science of Mental Health, but the villainous Psychlos have been interpreted by many observers as an obvious allusion to Scientology's bête noire, psychiatry; the conflict between the Psychlos and the free humans can be seen as a reflection of Scientology's own conception of itself as fighting on behalf of humanity against the forces of psychiatry. The "space opera" genre of the book and film manifests itself in numerous places in Scientology itself, most famously in OT III (the Xenu story). Travolta's own commitment to such a disastrous project as the film version of Battlefield Earth is, in Urban's estimation, indicative of his "unusual dedication" to Scientology.
Fraud by Franchise Pictures
Following the failure of Battlefield Earth and other films independently produced by Franchise Pictures, The Wall Street Journal reported that the FBI was probing "the question of whether some independent motion picture companies have vastly inflated the budget of films in an effort to scam investors". In December 2000 the German-based Intertainment AG filed a lawsuit alleging that Franchise Pictures had fraudulently inflated budgets in films including Battlefield Earth, which Intertainment had helped to finance. Intertainment had agreed to pay 47% of the production costs of several films in exchange for European distribution rights, but ended up paying for between 60 and 90% of the costs instead; the company alleged that Franchise had defrauded it to the tune of over $75 million by systematically submitting "grossly fraudulent and inflated budgets".
The case was heard before a jury in a Los Angeles federal courtroom in May–June 2004; the court heard testimony from Intertainment that according to Franchise's bank records the real cost of Battlefield Earth was $44 million, not the $75 million declared by Franchise. The remaining $31 million had been fraudulent "padding". Intertainment's head Barry Baeres told the court that he had only funded Battlefield Earth because it was packaged as a slate that included two more commercially attractive films, the Wesley Snipes vehicle The Art of War and the Bruce Willis comedy The Whole Nine Yards. Baeres testified that "Mr. Samaha said, 'If you want the other two pictures, you have to take Battlefield Earth — it's called packaging'". Baeres commented: "We would have been quite happy if he had killed [Battlefield Earth]".
Intertainment won the case and was awarded $121.7 million in damages. Samaha himself was declared by the court to be personally liable for $77 million in damages; the jury rejected Intertainment's claims under the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO) statute, which would have tripled the damages if Franchise had been convicted on that charge. The judgment forced Franchise into bankruptcy a few months later; the failure of the film was also reported to have led in 2002 to Travolta firing his manager Jonathan Krane, who had set up the deal with Franchise in the first place.
Cancelled follow-ups and sequels
Battlefield Earth is significantly shorter than its source novel, covering only the first 436 pages of the 1,050-page book. A sequel covering the remainder of the book was originally planned at the outset; when asked during promotion of the film if there would be a Battlefield Earth 2, Travolta responded, "Sure. Yeah." Travolta asserted that the first film would become a cult classic, stating that there were already fan websites dedicated to the film. Corey Mandell, the scriptwriter for the first film, was commissioned to deliver the script for the sequel, and Travolta, Pepper and producer Krane were all signed up to the sequel in their contracts for the first film. Christian and Whitaker were approached to reprise their respective roles, and the producers planned for a 2003 release date so as not to compete with George Lucas' Star Wars: Episode II – Attack of the Clones.
Despite Travolta's earlier statements, plans for a sequel never came to fruition. According to James Robert Parish's Fiasco: A History of Hollywood's Iconic Flops, the disastrous performance of Battlefield Earth and the collapse of Franchise Pictures made it very unlikely that a live-action sequel will be made. In a 2001 interview, Travolta stated that a sequel was not planned: "Ultimately the movie did $100 million when you count box office, DVD sales, video, and pay per view ... But I don't know what kind of number it would have to do to justify filming the second part of the book, and I don't want to push any buttons in the press and stir anybody up about it now." Author Services announced in 2001 that Pine Com International, a Tokyo-based animation studio, would produce 13 one-hour animated television segments based on the book and rendered in a manga style; the plans appear to have fallen through, and according to Parish, "little has been heard of the series since."
- Battlefield Earth at the American Film Institute Catalog
- "BATTLEFIELD EARTH (12) (CUT)". British Board of Film Classification. May 17, 2000. Retrieved March 31, 2015.
- Battlefield Earth at Box Office Mojo. Retrieved 2008-01-13.
- Staff (May 2000). "Battlefield Earth". Sight & Sound. British Film Institute.
- Campbell, Duncan (May 31, 2000). "Cult classic: Does John Travolta's Battlefield Earth contain subliminal messages recruiting Scientologists? Amid a flurry of bizarre claims and counterclaims, only one thing is certain: it is one of the worst movies ever made". The Guardian. Guardian News and Media Limited. Archived from the original on December 19, 2007. Retrieved January 20, 2008.
- Farache, Emily (October 18, 2000). "Travolta Sets Sights on "Battlefield Earth 2"". E! Online. Archived from the original on July 21, 2007. Retrieved March 26, 2007.
- Staff. "Battlefield Earth (2000)". Rotten Tomatoes. Fandango Media. Archived from the original on February 8, 2008. Retrieved July 8, 2019.
- Jeff Giles and Alex Vo. "Moldy Tomatoes: The 10 Worst Movies of the Last 10 Years". Rotten Tomatoes. Flixster, Inc. Retrieved April 22, 2013.
- Parish, James Robert (2007). Fiasco: A History of Hollywood's Iconic Flops. Wiley. pp. 275–291. ISBN 0-470-09829-5.
- Lamont, Stewart (1986). Religion Inc. London: Harrap. p. 156. ISBN 0-245-54334-1.
- Author Services Inc. (October 14, 1983). "Press Release". Business Wire.
- Blowen, Michael (November 27, 1984). "Welles Returns to Direct". Boston Globe. Globe Newspaper Company. p. 69.
- Author Services Inc. (April 18, 1984). "Press Release". Business Wire.
- Whipp, Glenn (May 12, 2000). "The Battle For 'Earth': Travolta's Scientology Ties Raise Controversy Over New Film". Los Angeles Daily News.
- Staff (April 12, 2006). "Science Friction". Herald Sun. Australia.
- Burger, Mark (June 18, 1999). "Since Pulp Fiction, Travolta Has Been Flying Steady Course". Winston-Salem Journal. p. 1.
- Hernandez, Greg (December 6, 2007). "Travolta in a Fever Once Again". Daily News of Los Angeles. p. A2.
- Pearlman, Cindy (May 7, 2000). "Travolta Wins His Fight To Film 'Battlefield Earth'". The Plain Dealer.
- Lee, Patrick (May 15, 2000). "Uphill Battlefield for John Travolta and Roger Christian". Sci Fi Weekly. SciFi.com. Archived from the original on June 10, 2008. Retrieved June 14, 2010.
- Morris, Mark (May 28, 2000). "You're so vain ..." The Observer. Retrieved November 11, 2009.
- Masters, Kim (September 2005). "The passion of Tom Cruise". Radar magazine.
- Hirschberg, Lynn (May 14, 2000). "The Samaha Formula for Hollywood Success". New York Times. Retrieved January 19, 2008.
- Staff (November 19, 1995). "Travolta in line to rewrite superstar salary scale". Variety.
- Author Services Inc. (April 25, 1996). "Hubbard's sci-fi epic "Battlefield Earth" set as a major MGM movie to star John Travolta". Press Release. Business Wire.
- Shapiro, J.D. (March 28, 2010). "I penned the suckiest movie ever – sorry!". The New York Post. Archived from the original on March 31, 2010. Retrieved March 28, 2010.
- Fleming, Michael (May 15, 1997). "Krane takes Bull by the horns: Krane shoots Bull, keeps Travolta busy". Variety.
- Dixon, Wheeler Winston (2003). Visions of the Apocalypse: Spectacles of Destruction in American Cinema. Wallflower Press. pp. 115–116. ISBN 1-903364-74-4.
- Shprintz, Janet (July 31, 2009). "Legal eagle says Elie fudged budgets". Variety.
- Bing, Jonathan (June 9, 2003). "The Samaha Syndrome". Variety.
- Staff (January 14, 1999). "Christian to direct Travolta in 'Earth'". Variety.
- Schneller, Johanna (October 13, 2000). "Vanity projects are like land mines. They blow up". Globe and Mail. Toronto.
- Waxman, Sharon (June 2, 2000). "Silly 'Earth' loses the battle at the box office". Chicago Sun-Times.
- Tobin, Thomas C. (May 12, 1999). "Battlefield of dreams". St Petersburg Times. Archived from the original on December 15, 2008. Retrieved October 16, 2007.
- Di Matteo, Enzo (August 5, 1999). "Battlefield Travolta". Now Magazine. Cite journal requires
- Staff (February 16, 2000). "Scientology to get 'Earth' toy money". The Times of India.
- Tribune Media Services (February 25, 2000). "Battlefield May Be Over Profit". South Florida Sun-Sentinel. Sun-Sentinel Company. p. 32.
- Negress, Jeffrey (December 28, 1998). "Movies". TIME. Time Warner. Archived from the original on March 7, 2008. Retrieved January 30, 2008.
- Graham, Caroline (February 6, 2000). "How Travolta's repaying an old debt". The Sunday Telegraph. p. 48.
- Rodriguez, Rene (Knight Ridder) (June 27, 1999). "John Travolta Crafts His Career Carefully". The Buffalo News. p. F3.
- Brew, Simon (October 22, 2008). "The Den Of Geek interview: Roger Christian [part 3]". Den of Geek. denofgeek.com. Retrieved January 31, 2011.
- Staff (June 18, 1999). "Self-Assured Travolta Chooses Carefully". Detroit Free Press. p. 6D.
- Staff. "Roger Christian". Internet Movie Database. Retrieved January 20, 2008.
- Peterson, Robert (May 11, 2000). "'Battlefield' Director: Pulp Sci-Fi or Modern Myth?". Space.com. Imaginova Corp. Archived from the original on November 25, 2006. Retrieved February 1, 2008.
- Leiby, Richard (November 28, 1999). "John Travolta's Alien Notion; He Plays a Strange Creature In a New Sci-Fi Film, but That's Not the Only Curious Thing About This Project". The Washington Post. Retrieved February 1, 2008.
- Denerstein, Robert (June 20, 1999). "Travolta's On Roll of a Lifetime". Rocky Mountain News. p. 6D.
- Staff. "Battlefield Earth – The Movie". Official website. Author Services Inc. Archived from the original on February 9, 2008. Retrieved January 20, 2008.
- Canadian Press (January 28, 1999). "Travolta eyes Montreal for film location". The Record (Ontario, Canada). p. D19.
- Magder, Ted; Burston, Jonathan (2001). "Whose Hollywood? Changing Forms and Relations inside the North American Entertainment Economy". In Mosco, Vincent; Schiller, Dan (eds.). Continental Order?: Integrating North America for Cybercapitalism. Rowman & Lifflefield. p. 217. ISBN 0-7425-0953-2.
- Battlefield Earth, 2000 DVD Commentary.
- Graham, Bob (January 19, 2001). "Travolta's Demolition Derby: Comic-book nuttiness lifts 'Battlefield Earth'". San Francisco Chronicle. Hearst Communications Inc. Archived from the original on June 11, 2008. Retrieved June 12, 2008.
- Peterson, Robert (May 3, 2000). "John Travolta on 'Battlefield', NASA". Space.com. Imaginova Corp. Archived from the original on November 25, 2006. Retrieved February 1, 2008.
- Pearlman, Cindy (March 2, 2000). "Big hairy deal: Travolta as alien Terl". Chicago Sun-Times. Chicago Sun-Times, Inc. p. 39.
- Garner, Jack (June 18, 1999). "To stay on top, Travolta seeks one substantial movie each year". Rochester Democrat and Chronicle. p. 3C.
- Lyman, Rick (May 11, 2000). "'Battlefield Earth': Film Dogged by Links to Scientology Founder". The New York Times. Retrieved January 12, 2008.
- Ebner, Mark (September–December 1999). "John Travolta: The Star Who Ate Hollywood". Mean Magazine. p. Vol. 1 Issue 5.
- "Scientology 101: Definitions and Facts About Scientology". ABC News. American Broadcasting Company. August 23, 2006. Archived from the original on August 29, 2006. Retrieved September 4, 2006.
- Staff (May 9, 2000). "Hollywood Celebrities Turn Out for World Premiere of Sci-Fi Adventure 'Battlefield Earth'". Press Release. Warner Bros.
- Staff (May 23, 2000). "Nothing says disaster like 'labour of love'". National Post. Canada.
- Lyons, Charles; Dana Harris (June 12, 2000). "Samaha ducking the bullets on 'Battlefield'". Variety.
- Staff. "Business Data for Battlefield Earth: A Saga of the Year 3000". Internet Movie Database. Retrieved January 20, 2008.
- Associated Press (February 12, 2001). "Battlefield Earth Tops Razzies, Box Office Bomb Picks Up 8 Nominations: Box Office Bomb Picks Up 8 Nominations". CBS News. cbsnews.com. Archived from the original on May 14, 2008. Retrieved May 7, 2008.
- Maynard, John (July 7, 2001). "Saturday". The Washington Post. The Washington Post Company.
- Eller, Claudia (January 15, 2014). "The costliest box office flops of all time". Los Angeles Times.
- Giantis, Kat (2006). "Bombs Away! – The top 10 biggest box office failures". MSN Movies. movies.msn.com. Retrieved October 31, 2009.
- Olson, Catherine Applefeld (May 21, 2000). "'Earth' To Elia". Billboard.
- "'Battlefield Earth' Movie Tie-In Edition Unveiled by Stars of Film in New York". Press Release. Bridge Publications. February 17, 2000.
- Finnigan, David; Scott Hettrick (February 15, 2000). "Travolta faces off with self on toy 'Battlefield'". Hollywood Reporter.
- Terl Speaks – via YouTube.
- Ealy, Charles (The Dallas Morning News) (March 13, 2000). "Battlefield's Travolta Doll Swears Like a Trooper". Sun-Sentinel. p. 1D.
- Berkwits, Jeff (February 5, 2001). "Battlefield Earth Special Edition DVD". Sci Fi Weekly. SciFi.com. Archived from the original on June 10, 2008. Retrieved June 14, 2010.
- Salas, Randy A. (January 1, 2002). "DVD Views: DVDs prove they're here to stay and have plenty to offer". Star Tribune.
- Staff (January 18, 2001). "Video News; What's New". Los Angeles Times. p. F.24.
- Staff (May 26, 2000). "John Travolta Battlefield Earth". Entertainment Weekly. p. 9, Issue 542.
- "The 50 Worst Movies Ever | 2. Battlefield Earth | Empire". www.empireonline.com. Retrieved August 9, 2014.
- "Battlefield Earth (2008): Reviews". Metacritic. Retrieved February 3, 2008.
- "CinemaScore". CinemaScore. Archived from the original on July 22, 2018. Retrieved November 9, 2018.
- Waxman, Sharon (May 12, 2000). "The Launch of a Star Vehicle That Explodes in Laughter". The Washington Post. The Washington Post Company.
- Staff (October 19, 2000). "Earth under threat again as Travolta hints at sci-fi sequel". The Guardian. Retrieved January 20, 2008.
- Ebert, Roger (May 12, 2000). "Battlefield Earth". Chicago Sun-Times. Archived from the original on August 7, 2006. Retrieved July 29, 2006.
- Maltin, Leonard (August 2003). Cathleen Anderson (ed.). Leonard Maltin's Movie Guide 2004 Edition. Penguin Group (USA) Inc. pp. 91, "Battlefield Earth (2000) C–117. BOMB". ISBN 0-451-20940-0.
- Bleiler, David (2004). TLA Video & DVD Guide: The Discerning Film Lover's Guide. St. Martin's Griffin. p. 48. ISBN 0-312-31690-9.
- "Episode #6003: July 11, 2001-James Woods". Comedy Central. July 11, 2001. Retrieved March 17, 2008.
- Kempley, Rita (May 12, 2000). "'Battlefield Earth': A Vain Search for Terrestrial Intelligence". Washington Post. Retrieved September 6, 2006.
- Mitchell, Elvis (May 12, 2000). "Film Review; Earth Capitulates in 9 Minutes to Mean Entrepreneurs From Space". The New York Times. Retrieved January 29, 2008.
- Ross, Jonathan (June 2, 2000). "What does Travolta think he's doing? He looks like an over-stuffed, dreadlocked, Cabbage Patch Doll". Daily Mirror.
- Hunter, David (May 12, 2000). "'Battlefield Earth". The Hollywood Reporter.
- Persall, Steve (May 12, 2000). "Space aliens without a clue". St. Petersburg Times. Archived from the original on May 25, 2006. Retrieved July 30, 2006.
- Graham, Bob (April 30, 2000). "What on Earth Are These Guys Doing? Roger Christian directs Travolta in sci-fi tale about humans fighting mineral-sucking giants from outer space". San Francisco Chronicle. p. PK-54. Retrieved July 30, 2006.
- Christian, Roger; Tatopoulos, Patrick (January 16, 2001). Battlefield Earth (commentary) (DVD). United States: Warner Home Video.
- Staff (May 20, 2000). "Earth to John Travolta ...". The Providence Journal.
- Clevenger, Scott; Zollinger, Sheri (2006). Better Living Through Bad Movies. iUniverse. p. 27. ISBN 0-595-40023-X.
- Powell, Betsy (July 16, 2000). "Power Producer All Fired Up". Toronto Star.
- Garabedian, Berge (May 1, 2000). "JoBlo's Movie Review of Battlefield Earth". JoBlo's Movie Reviews. JoBlo Media Inc. Archived from the original on June 10, 2008. Retrieved February 3, 2008.
- Thompson, Luke Y. (May 9, 2000). "Review: Battlefield Earth". New Times LA.
- Axmaker, Sean (May 12, 2000). "Logic is the big loser as humans fight for freedom in 'Battlefield Earth'". Seattle Post-Intelligencer. Hearst Newspapers. Archived from the original on January 25, 2013. Retrieved February 3, 2008.
- Erstein, Hap (May 12, 2000). "Scientology? Sci Fi? Space Opus Presto Stinko". The Palm Beach Post. p. 1E.
- Tucker, Carrie. "I Love Geeks: The Official Handbook". Adams Media. p. 156. Retrieved January 13, 2016.
- Staff (October 20, 2000). "Travolta warns of possible sequel". Houston Chronicle. p. A2.
- Simens, Dov S-S (2003). From Reel to Deal. Warner Books. p. 123. ISBN 0-446-67462-1.
- Hinson, Mark (December 29, 2000). "The Worst Movies of 2000". Tallahassee Democrat. p. G3.
- Saltzman, Marc (2003). DVD Confidential 2: The Sequel. McGraw-Hill Professional. p. 47. ISBN 0-07-222986-1.
- "The Worst of the Worst Pictures: The 100 Worst-Reviewed Films of All Time". Rotten Tomatoes. IGN Entertainment, Inc. January 20, 2008. Archived from the original on January 18, 2008. Retrieved January 20, 2008.
- "Worst of the Worst". Rotten Tomatoes. Archived from the original on February 10, 2010. Retrieved July 7, 2010.
- Muller, Bill (December 31, 2000). "Heavenly Films, Down to 'Earth'". The Arizona Republic. p. E1.
- Roeper, Richard (2003). 10 Sure Signs a Movie Character is Doomed, and Other Surprising Movie Lists. Hyperion. p. 62. ISBN 0-7868-8830-X.
- Grant, John (2006). Sci-Fi Movies: Facts, Figures & Fun. Sterling Publishing Company, Inc. p. 87. ISBN 1-904332-35-8.
- Franklin, James (McClatchy-Tribune News Service) (June 12, 2008). "Looking back at summer blockbuster bombs". The Dallas Morning News; the Dallas Morning News, Inc. Archived from the original on July 29, 2012. Retrieved June 12, 2008.
- Null, Christopher (May 13, 2008). "The 10 Least Effective Movie Villains". AMC Blog. Archived from the original on August 7, 2012. Retrieved 2012-09-19.
- Ortega, Tony (September 27, 2001). "Sympathy For The Devil: Tory Bezazian was a veteran Scientologist who loved going after church critics. Until she met the darkest detractor of all". New Times Los Angeles.
- South Park (June 8, 2000). "Battlefield Earth Spoof – "The Gauntlet"". MTV Movie Awards. MTV, Comedy Central. Archived from the original on March 8, 2008. Retrieved June 14, 2010.
- Staff (March 24, 2001). "It's Official: 'Battlefield Earth' Is Tied With 'Showgirls' as Razzies' All-Time Worst!". Golden Raspberry Award Foundation. Archived from the original on January 3, 2008. Retrieved January 20, 2008.
- Staff (December 26, 2001). "All-Time Razzie Champions: As of 25th Annual RAZZIE Awards/2–26–05". Golden Raspberry Award Foundation. Archived from the original on January 3, 2008. Retrieved January 20, 2008.
- O'Neil, Tom (March 6, 2010). "Sandra Bullock wins TWO Razzie Awards; 'Transformers 2' nabs THREE". Los Angeles Times. goldderby.latimes.com. Archived from the original on March 9, 2010. Retrieved March 7, 2010.
- Staff (April 3, 2001). "Travolta reacts to Raspberry awards win". The Guardian. Retrieved January 20, 2008.
- Staff (March 30, 2001). "Barry Pepper amused by his worst supporting actor award for Battlefield Earth". The Canadian Press.
- Staff (March 26, 2001). "'Battlefield Earth' Scribe Personally Accepts Razzie Award for Worst Screenplay During a Live Talk Radio Show on Comedy World". Business Wire. Archived from the original on February 16, 2010. Retrieved December 30, 2009.
- Finke, Nikki (March 28, 2010). "'Battlefield Earth' Scripter Pens Apology". Deadline. Archived from the original on March 30, 2010. Retrieved March 28, 2010.
- Sinclair, Keith (March 26, 2001). "Battlefield Earth gets record seven Golden Raspberries; Travolta voted the worst actor of the year". Glasgow Herald.
- "Past Winners Database". The Envelope at LA Times. Retrieved September 18, 2019.
- "The 100 Worst Films of the 20th Century". The Stinkers. Retrieved September 18, 2019.
- "The Top 10 [sic] Worst Films of All Time". The Stinkers. Retrieved September 18, 2019.
- Wilson, John (2005). The Official Razzie Movie Guide. Warner Books. pp. 299–301, 356–357. ISBN 0-446-69334-0. OCLC 56033390.
- "30th Annual Razzie Award, Worst Picture of the Decade, (Three Special 30th Razzie-Versary Awardz), (Special Category!)". RAZZIE Awards. razzies.com. February 3, 2010. Archived from the original on February 4, 2010. Retrieved February 4, 2010.
- Lattin, Don (May 15, 2000). "Travolta's Religious Battlefield: Critics say movie bolsters Scientology". San Francisco Chronicle. Archived from the original on January 31, 2008. Retrieved February 2, 2008.
- O.Meara, Nancy. "Who We Are". Cult Awareness Network. cultawarenessnetwork.org. Archived from the original on April 15, 2008. Retrieved May 16, 2008.
- Whipp, Glenn (Los Angeles Daily News) (May 12, 2000). "'Battlefield' Mirth: Hubbard Hubbub Hush-Hushed". The Stuart News. p. D3.
- "Battlefield Earth + Government Intervention". Fight Against Coercive Tactics Network. Archived from the original on December 7, 2006. Retrieved 2007-02-01.
- Hoberman, J. (May 16, 2000). "The Vulgar Classes". The Village Voice. Village Voice Media. Archived from the original on January 17, 2009. Retrieved 2008-06-10.
- Wollersheim, Lawrence (April 14, 2000). "4/14/00 Update on Subliminal Advertising". Fight Against Coercive Tactics Network. Archived from the original on December 7, 2006. Retrieved 2007-02-01.
- Mallia, Joseph (February 5, 1998). "Inside the Church of Scientology – Church wields celebrity clout". Boston Herald. p. 30.
- Wigmore, Barry (July 24, 1999). "Trav in movie outcry". The Sun. News Group Newspapers Limited. p. 17.
- Bradberry, Grace (February 19, 2000). "Travolta's faith in the movies – America". The Times. Times Newspapers Limited.
- Urban, Hugh B. (2011). The Church of Scientology: A History of a New Religion. Princeton University Press. p. 145. ISBN 0-691-14608-X.
- Staff (June 6, 2002). "FBI Probes Big Indie Budgets". Internet Movie Database. pp. StudioBriefing. Archived from the original on December 16, 2008. Retrieved January 20, 2008.
- Randall, Laura (December 22, 2000). "Franchise, Intertainment duel; Countersuits ask $75 million-plus each in film licensing dispute". The Hollywood Reporter.
- Staff (January 19, 2001). "$75M Battlefield Over Film Flops". New York Post.
- Hiestand, Jesse (May 10, 2004). "Baeres: No secret budget deal". Hollywood Reporter.
- Shprintz, Janet (June 20, 2004). "Intertainment's attempt to collect". Variety. Retrieved July 2, 2008.
- Shprintz, Janet (June 16, 2004). "Samaha Slammed". Variety. Retrieved July 2, 2008.
- Staff (April 2, 2002). "Krane Gives John No Lift". Daily Mirror.
- Kit, Zorianna (January 6, 2000). "'Earth' Is Bound For 2nd Chapter". Hollywood Reporter. Archived from the original on March 12, 2014. Retrieved January 20, 2008.
- Staff (October 19, 2000). "Earth under threat again as Travolta hints at sci-fi sequel". The Guardian. Guardian News and Media Limited. Retrieved February 2, 2008.
- Staff (January 8, 2000). "'Earth' Gets Sequel Before First Release". The Journal Gazette. p. 1D.
- Pearlman, Cindy (June 15, 2001). "We're safe: Travolta promises no 'Battlefield' sequel". Post-Tribune. p. A2.
- Staff. "Battlefield Earth Soon To Become An Animated TV Series". Battlefieldearth.com. Author Services Inc. Archived from the original on June 10, 2008. Retrieved June 14, 2010.
- Further reading
- Parish, James Robert (2006). Fiasco: A History of Hollywood's Iconic Flops. Hoboken, New Jersey: John Wiley & Sons. pp. 270–292. ISBN 978-0-471-69159-4.
- Wilson, John (2005). The Official Razzie Movie Guide: Enjoying the Best of Hollywood's Worst. Warner Books. pp. 299–301, 356–357. ISBN 0-446-69334-0.
|Wikiquote has quotations related to: Battlefield Earth|
- Battlefield Earth on IMDb
- Battlefield Earth at the TCM Movie Database
- Battlefield Earth at AllMovie
- Battlefield Earth at the American Film Institute Catalog
- Battlefield Earth at Box Office Mojo
- Battlefield Earth at Rotten Tomatoes
- Battlefield Earth at Metacritic
Wild Wild West
| Golden Raspberry Award for Worst Picture
21st Golden Raspberry Awards
Freddy Got Fingered