Martin laughs off criticism of "Pink Panther 2"

Fri Feb 13, 2009 8:23pm EST
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By Dave Graham

BERLIN (Reuters) - Actor Steve Martin on Friday dismissed poor reviews of the latest Pink Panther movie saying critics are always snobs when it comes to comedy.

"I have received bad reviews my whole life," Martin said as he presented "Pink Panther 2" at the Berlin film festival, his second turn as bungling French detective Inspector Jacques Clouseau, a role made famous by Peter Sellers.

"I received bad reviews when I started with my stand-up act. 'The Jerk', one of my most enduring comedy films, was universally panned in America. And comedies always have to overcome critical snobbery," said Martin, 63.

"It's just the way it is. And so you go, oh, well, okay, why are these movies that you've criticized so archly still around 10 years later, 15 years later, 20 years later. It's because comedy is not a critics' medium. It just isn't."

The film took a mere $12 million at its opening weekend in the United States -- down 40 percent on Martin's first outing as Clouseau in 2006.

The Washington Post said "Pink Panther 2" was "clawless" and Martin "clueless" as Clouseau. In Britain, The Times described the movie as "a tedious string of pratfalls."


Martin was asked in Berlin how he felt the Pope would respond to a scene in which Clouseau impersonates the Pontiff.   Continued...

<p>Actor Steve Martin poses with a person wearing a pink panther costume during a photocall to promote the movie "Pink Panther 2" at the 59th Berlinale film festival in Berlin, February 13, 2009. REUTERS/Johannes Eisele</p>