Michael Jackson was a grown man who loved children...especially when they were 'allegedly' hammered on Cabernet...
It's kind of a werid weekend. Seems everyone was/is afraid of Michael Jackson. And, for good reason. Especially if I were a twelve year old who loved ferris wheels. Also, Paranormal Activity goes wide this weekend. So... that explains why the rest of the films you see below are... well... not exactly awe inspiring. This Is It will probably make enough money to make a Royal Saudi envious. I wonder if Macaulay Culkin is going to go see it. You know, on the 'ol IMAX. Instead of naked in the shower with him. Or, not. Maybe they were just buds. I have friends like that. Only they're straight chicks with self esteem issues. Not dudes who own monkeys and name their kid blanket.
This Is It (Michael Jackson): A compilation of interviews, rehearsals and backstage footage of Michael Jackson as he prepared for his series of sold-out shows in London.
Gentlemen Broncos (Michael Angarano, Jemaine Clement, Mike White): Soon after his latest work is published, science-fiction author Ronald Chevalier (Clement) faces charges of plagiarism from aspiring teenage writer Benjamin Purvis (Angarano).
The Boondock Saints II: All Saints Day (Sean Patrick Flanery, Norman Reedus, Billy Connolly): The MacManus brothers, who are living a quiet life on the family farm in Ireland, return to Boston to exact their unique form of revenge on the mob forces who have framed the brothers for the murder of a local priest.
The House of the Devil (Jocelin Donahue, Tom Noonan, Mary Woronov): A broke college student (Donahue) is lured to a Victorian mansion deep in the woods for what she thinks is a lucrative babysitting job, though she soon realizes her creepy clients have nightmarish plans for her.
--Posted by Casey, Oct. 30--
TRAILER FOR 'BOURNE GREEN ZONE IDENTITY' OUT
At least Damon will remember who he is in this one...
I really like Matt Damon as an actor, so this critique of the trailer for his upcoming film, Green Zone (directed by Bourne Identity helmer Paul Greengrass) is more about my dislike of him trying to do a Bourne impersonation, rather than the film itself. I mean, the trailer looks a lot like a decent action film trailer. Blatant declarations of purpose ("I'm here to collect weapons and find people!"). Foul play. Who can he trust (apparently not Greg Kinnear)? Will he have a steamy love scene with the woman (is that the girl from Two Guys, a Girl, and a Pizza Place?) who's on his side?. That whole thing. It just comes off as...wanna be Bourne Ultimatum...but not. And, Damon is not Stallone or Ahnuld circa 80s and 90's. Why does he need to do this? Does he owe a film exec a favor? I know I don't. Film executives never ask me for anything except to stop sending them unsolicited specs.
Anyway, here's the link to the trailer. Judge for yourself. It was just 'eh' for me.
--Posted by Gary, Oct. 28--
SANDLER TO PLAY JACK AND JILL IN FILM, WILL LIKELY BE UGLIEST JEWISH CHICK YOU HAVE EVER SEEN
I have never even considered messing with the Zohan...
So, not really sure what this upcoming Adam Sandler comedy based on some annoying kid song Jack and Jill going up a hill, or whatever, but I'm pretty sure there is going to be zero chance of me boning out while he's dressed up as a chick. I've never been crazy about movies where dudes dress in drag anyway, like Tootsie, or Mrs. Doubtfire, or Too Wong Foo (Swayze's trough from his Roadhouse peak). I like Sandler movies. Don't get me wrong. But, couldn't they have gotten someone hot to play his sister. Like, a "why is your sister so hot with a giant rack and you turned out like this?" That sort of thing. Like his sister is Jennifer Connelly in Opportunity Knocks, only 40.
The film is set to be released in 2011. That's two whole years for Sandler to get uglier.
--Posted by Casey, Oct. 28--
RICKY GERVAIS TO HOST THE GOLDEN GLOBES
The David Brent School of Management is in session. Lesson one: use of the double finger point and lower lip bite to signal a job well done...
Seems like an interesting move hiring a saucy Brit to host an awards show presented by the Hollywood Foreign Press. And, why not? It's an awards show for Americans, the winners being determined by foreigners.
A lot of people rip on the Golden Globes as completely meaningless, but tell that to all of the actors who show up for a free dinner and drinks and actually win something for once (like Jim Carrey who's won, like 14 Golden Globes and never gets a sniff from Oscar). I think the Golden Globes is, almost always, better than the Oscars. It finishes on time, and gives out awards you actually give a rats about.
Maybe this is a tune up for Gervais hosting the Oscars at some point. In the meantime, we'll start working on tasteless Meryl Streep jokes for him.
--Posted by Todd, Oct. 24--
WEEKEND BOX OFFICE
Proven horror film fact: chicks are much hotter when they're scared and wearing a white tank top...
Okay, so I guess Paranormal Activity is going to make a gazillion dollars because it raked in another 22 mil this weekend. Yeesh. And, we (meaning Gary) thought Saw VI was going to win it all. Guess we (meaning Gary) were wrong. Again. The way things are looking, Paranormal Activity, a film that cost 11 grand (seriously, 11 friickin' grand) should easily break 100 mil. Pretty amazing, if you ask me. By the way, if you haven't seen this film, you will absolutely freak out. It's creepy as hell. I went to see it with my Uncle Barry, and he was squirming in a his seat like a dude with crabs. I don't believe in ghosts, so it didn't scare me at all. But, I might have slept with the bathroom light on and clutched my rosary so tight I had a dent in my hand. But, like I said, I don't believe in ghosts, so... whatevs Paranormal Activity.
1 Paranormal Activity $22M $62.5M
2 Saw VI $14.8M $14.8M
3 Where the Wild Things Are $14.4M $54M
4 Law Abiding Citizen $12.7M $40.3M
5 Couples Retreat $11.1M $78.2M
6 Astro Boy $7.02M $7.02M
7 The Stepfather $6.5M $20.4M
8 Cirque du Freak: The Vampire's Asst. $6.35M $6.35M
9 Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs $5.6M $115M
10 Zombieland (2009) $4.3M $67.3M
--Posted by Casey, Oct. 23--
Possibility for erection... neutralized...
We're terrible at making predictions (and, by we, I mean me), so we'll just refrain form trying to pick a winner. It wouldn't be a lot of fun anyway. Okay, screw it, I'll do it anyway. Saw VI will win. There. I just can't help myself.
Cirque du Freak: The Vampire's Assistant (Chris Massoglia, John C. Reilly, Salma Hayek): A traveling freak show's most mysterious attraction recruits teenager Darren Shan as his assistant, though the young man soon finds himself used as a pawn in a battle between vampires and their deadlier counterparts. We haven't heard much about this film, an adaptation of the novel by Darren Shan, but it definitely gets the award for worst title of the century. Is this film a combination of the first two books, or what? We're too lazy to investigate, since we have zero interest in seeing it in the theater. Oh, did we mention Salma Hayek has a beard in this? Um...yeah. Kind of seriously ruins it. PASS
Amelia (Hilary Swank, Richard Gere, Ewan McGregor): A look at the life of Amelia Earhart (Swank), the American pilot who disappeared while flying over the Pacific Ocean in 1937 on her history-making flight around the world. We're guessing Hilary Swank will be Hilary Swank in this. There will be breathtaking cinematography. And, Amelia Earhart has an amazing story. It's just...we can't quite put our finger on it...oh, yeah, Richard Gere is totally annoying. NETFLIX
Saw VI (Tobin Bell, Costas Mandylor, Mark Rolston): Special Agent Strahm is dead, and Detective Hoffman has emerged as the unchallenged successor to Jigsaw's legacy. However, when the FBI draws closer to Hoffman, he is forced to set a game into motion, and Jigsaw's grand scheme is finally understood. Saw VI. We think that kind of says it all. Six. As in the sixth film in this franchise. If you're into Saw, we're sure you'll probably be into this sequel. But, we doubt new moviegoers are going to be drawn to the sixth installment. PASS
Astro Boy (Freddie Highmore, Nicolas Cage, Kristen Bell): Set in futuristic Metro City, Astro Boy (voiced by Highmore) is about a young robot with incredible powers created by a brilliant scientist (voiced by Cage) in the image of the son he has lost. Unable to fulfill the grieving man's expectations, our hero embarks on a journey in search of acceptance. This animated film based on Osamu Tezuka's comic series has Nicolas Cage as a brilliant scientist. Hm. Basically, this is Pinnochio as a robot in a futuristic world. The animation looks pretty good, so if you have kids that would enjoy this, then by all means. IF YOU OWN A MINIVAN
Also out this weekend in limited release: Ong bak 2, Antichrist, Motherhood, and the indie romantic comedy (Untitled)
NICKELODEON PAYS 60 MILLION TO REVIVE PREVIOUSLY REVIVED MUTANT NINJA TURTLE FRANCHISE
Mutant Ninja Turtles, or former members of the Chinese Olympic Turtle Swimming Team? You decide...
Viacom owned Nickelodeon announced to the Ninja Turtle caring world today that they have acquired the rights to the TMNT franchise from The Mirage Group and 4Kids Entertainment for around 60 million. I guess when you have "around 60 million" to throw around, what's a few hundred grand? Nick plans to develop a CGI television series and a feature film for 2012. The deal also gives Nick the merchandising rights which they plan to exploit with longtime TMNT toy partner, Playmates Toys (seriously, that's the name of the company). Although there was a revival of the franchise in 2007, the big film that started off the franchise was back in 1990. So, technically, this is a revival of a revival.
Why is this big news? Well, folks, it's a Thursday and we can't start drinking until 5pm, so we had to do something. Plus, in addition to small children, there are probably dudes in their 30's living in their parents' basement who are super jacked about this. 1990--that was two years before Bill Clinton became President. And, waaaay before Monica Lewinski. Bless her little heart. And, ample derriere...
--Posted by Todd, Oct. 22--
MEDIA MOGULS ANNOUNCE DIGITAL AGE FINALLY HERE
Fox executives Dana Walden and Gary Newman...see if you can guess which one is hotter...
Wow, the digital age is finally here. All the media moguls recently affirmed it at Variety's inaugural Entertainment and Technology summit, so it must be true. Thank God it hasofficially begun. I can finally go out and get that Vespa scooter I've been wanting. We thought it started, like, five or ten years ago, but apparently we were wrong. We think Peter Guber of Mandalay Entertainment summed up the sentiment of the summit perfectly during the particularly revealing lunchtime session.
"The rate of change has changed." said Guber, "This is the beginning of the beginning." Truly gripping stuff right there. The gripping elements of that quote have quite a grip on us.
Let's face it folks, none of these people really have a clue how to produce and distribute digital media at a profit yet. It might not even be possible yet, particularly under the current studio structure and landscape. In fact, we'd go so far as to say tthe entertainment heavyweights' failure to find a way to develop, produce, and make money off digital media is what has been holding it back.
Studios simply are not used to making films, television shows, let alone online web content at a micro level. Once they figure that out, the rest of us might start listening.
--Posted by Todd, Oct. 20--
WEEKEND BOX OFFICE
Where the Wild things Are budget: $80,000,000. Paranormal Activity $11,000. So...some unsolicited advice...if you're looking to make a spec film, you might want to nix the giant muppets...
So, as predicted, Where the Wild Things Are won the weekend, but we have to say, in somewhat disappointing fashion. We were looking for a bigger number. Some of that had to do with Law Abiding Citizen getting over the 20 million mark. We were thinking more in the neighborhood of 15. The biggest story, though, is Paranormal Activity. There are subcompact cars that cost more than this film's budget, and when it expanded to 790 theaters this week--booyah! 26,000 per screen! I haven't seen the film yet, but I know chicks who have wet themselves in the theater. Which isn't hot. At all. Unless you're in the mood for it. This horror film will be the biggest microbudget hit in history. Book it.
1 Where the Wild Things Are $32.5M $32.5M
2 Law Abiding Citizen $21.2M $21.2M
3 Paranormal Activity $20.2M $33.7M
4 Couples Retreat $17.9M $63.3M
5 The Stepfather $12.3M $12.3M
6 Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs $8.1M $108M
7 Zombieland $7.8M $60.8M
8 Toy Story $3.01M $28.6M
9 Surrogates $1.92M $36.3M
10 The Invention of Lying $1.91M $15.5M
--Posted by Casey, Oct. 19--
Well, the weekend many of us have been waiting for is finally here. Where the Wild Things Are has finally reached theaters. And, if the trailer is any indication, it will at least be visually stunning. It's going to be interesting how the story is executed, given the children's book is pretty light on...words? We're not saying these other films aren't decent. We just don't think anyone is really going to care. I suppose we'll see how much a pull Jamie Foxx and Gerard Butler are these days when the numbers come out on Monday. Law Abiding Citizen has some decent buzz, but it's mostly the, "this is actually decent movie and not a cheese fest," type buzz. Not what you're looking for, but you'll take it. In addition to The Stepfather hitting the cineplexes, there're also two films out in limited release: New York, I Love You (an anthology of NY love stories) and Black Dynamite (best described as a sort of Shaft type spoof).
Where the Wild Things Are (Max Records, Catherine O'Hara, Forest Whitaker): Young, mischievous Max is sent to bed without his supper, but when his bedroom turns in to a magical jungle landscape filled with strange creatures, he embarks on a wild imaginary adventure. There's actually been a lot of controversy about this film, and how it might be so dark, it frightens children. Funny, I don't remember being scared of this book when I was a small child, so why would I have been scared of watching giant monster muppets on screen? It's kind of silly. Not to mention kids weren't scared of Monsters, Inc. I have a two year old, and have shown him the trailer about 7,000 times. He loves it. I don't think he's ready to sit through a film yet, or I'd take him to see it. YES, PLEASE
Law Abiding Citizen (Gerard Butler, Jamie Foxx, Leslie Bibb): After family man Clyde Shelton (Butler) is failed by the court system, he concocts a series of events designed to exact his revenge on the killers of his wife and daughter. And from inside his jail cell, the mastermind lures the prosecutor (Foxx) who orchestrated the unjust deal into his deadly plan. The buzz on this is actually pretty good, we just don't know how it will stand up to the giant ele[hant in the room (Where the Wild Things Are). There's a good chance this film gets lost in the shuffle, even thought it might be a serviceable suspense thriller. EH
The Stepfather (Penn Badgley, Dylan Walsh, Sela Ward): Michael Harding (Badgley) returns from military school to find his mother (Ward) living with her new boyfriend, David (Walsh). As the two men get to know each other, Michael becomes suspicious of the man in his mother's life: Is he really the man of her dreams, or could David be hiding a dark side? I had no idea this was even a remake? Sela Ward? I like Sela Ward, but this cast is more like a Lifetime movie than a feature film. Not sure I would even rent this on Netflix, to be honest. PASS
--Posted by Todd, Oct. 15--
FOX ADDING ANIMATED PROJECTS, SHOULD CONSIDER TURNING AMERICAN IDOL, HOUSE, LIE TO ME INTO CARTOONS
Lightning in a bottle: when was the last time you saw three nerds simultaneously fighting off a boner?
As if Fox needs any more animated projects, they seem to just keep hording them like that woman on Oprah who has 80 cats. The execs must be oblivious to the animated smell over at the network. Personally, I like animation. The Simpsons is on life support, but Family Guy seems to be going strong, and The Cleveland Show is pretty funny. I've always thought of American Dad as that guy in high school who's always trying to be funny, isn't, but just keeps trying. Unfortunately, you can't stuff American Dad in a locker, or stick its head in a toilet. Or, give it Ritalin through a feeding tube.
According to Variety, Fox picked up a presentation from actor Jonah Hill, and is also developing a script based on Peter Bagge's graphic novel series The Bradleys (because nothing says cartoon like a graphic novel). Hill has committed to writing and providing voiceover services on his project, which centers on a 7-year-old socialite who acts and talks like an adult--and finds himself out of his element when forced to attend public school. The Bradleys revolves around a dysfunctional suburban family and was first published in the early 1980s.
--Posted by Gary, Oct. 14--
MATTHEW PERRY TO STAR IN, WRITE, EXECUTIVE PRODUCE, AND PROVIDE CRAFT SERVICE FOR NEW ABC SHOW
If Matthew Perry can play tennis in a cardigan sweater, he can do anything...
Hmm. Let's see. An actor writing, starring in, and executive producing his own show. What could possibly go wrong here? According to Variety, Matthew Perry recently sold a series to ABC after an intense bidding war with NBC. Some say NBC lost, but I'll go out on a limb here and guess that the execs at the Peacock finally came down from their morning latte high, and thought, when was the last time an actor pulled this off? I can't remember a time. And, if the show, about an arena manager re-evaluating his life at 40, is a success, it will probably be unprecedented. Or, at least miraculous.
Honestly, I'm not sure I've ever seen a television pitch go out this loaded. Perry is "co-writing" the script with Sony based writers Alex Barnow and Alex Firek. Tom Schlamme (Friends, West Wing) is attached to direct. Jamie Tarses is serving as non-writing EP. That's some serious ammo. The pitch could have been about a guy who lives in his Grandmother's basement and sends pipe bombs to a day care and it would have sold.
Look, we don't have anything against actors being this involved with a television show. Why not? It's just kind of like giving the patients the keys to the asylum.
--Posted by Gary, Oct. 13--
ISLA FISHER HAS TWO MORE PROJECTS THAN US
I really wish Isla would stop going out in public with my baby...it's starting to get embarrassing...
So, let's talk about this for a second. Because I'm pissed. Not because Isla Fisher just sold two projects, but because I can't even sell one. In fact, I'm more like, negative selling projects right now. I wrote this spec called Downs Time--about a superhero team with Downs Syndrome. Really, it's a win, win. It shows people with special needs can kick ass, and it gives someone like Isla Fisher a chance to whip out some serious acting skills. Did anyone want to buy this script? F*** no. My agent wouldn't even send it out because he has balls the size of salt pellets.
Anyway, I guess Fisher is starring in some flick called Life Coach, and some French film remake I can't even pronounce. After Confessions of a Shopaholic, I thought her career was going to get flushed down the toilet faster than a wet wipe. But, apparently people still remember she was hilarious in Wedding Crashers. She'd better be funny in these two movies, or she's going to be divorced, making me a carmel machiado at the Santa Monica Starbucks. There. That's my journalistic contribution for the day. Time to get hammered with my Uncle Barry at Ye Olde Kings Head pub. I'll wait until he goes to the bathroom and stick him with the tab. What's up, sucka!
--Posted by Casey, Oct. 8--
FANTASY ISLAND TO BECOME A REALITY SERIES?
As if you needed any--here's proof that slutty island women cannot resist a midget in a tuxedo...
I had to read this article twice (which, for me is twice too many), but apparantly it's true--Mark Burnett and Sony TV are going to try and turn Fantasy Island into a reality series. Nevermind that the pitch doesn't even make sense. Burnett could run over a baby stroller with an earth mover, and television executives would start dry humping each other. According to Variety, the show will feature contestants who will compete to become a real-life Mr. or Ms. Roarke. 12 contestants will greet guests to a tropical island on a weekly basis and try to turn their guests' fantasies into reality. The guests will judge the competing Roarkes and a contestant will be knocked off each week.
Um. Okay. This is giving me a headache.
The television series, which had writers writing the the show--aired from 1978 to 1984 and featured Ricardo Montalban as Mr. Roake and his sidekick Tattoo (Hervé Villechaize). It was pretty iconic. Which is probably why Sony and Burnett are trying to ruin it. Burnette and Sony plan to shop the series to networks here shortly, and I'm going to take a wild stab at this--they'll probably sell it. And, I will celebrate by sticking pins in my Mark Burnett doll.
--Posted by Casey, Oct. 6--
ZOMBIELAND KILLS IT AT THE BOX OFFICE (GET IT, KILLS IT?)
Man, are we stupid (and by stupid, I mean Gary is stoooopid). He picked Whip It to win the weekend, even though it was only on 1700 screens. And, about un-naked, un-hot nerdy chicks on roller skates. Of course a zombie movie was going to win. I told him on Friday, zombie movies always win. Because they're awesome. And, roller derby movies are not. Man, Whip it got beaten by Surrogates, a movie that bombed recently, and a re-release of Toy Story from1995. Have I told you how crappy Gary's pick was yet? Craaaappyyy.
Maybe I should dust off my zombie movie, Zombies in Heat. It's about how all the women on the earth turn into zombies, then need to procreate. At first guys are psyched, because they're getting laid like eggs, but then they realize the zombie chicks only want their sperm and then kill them. Of course, Gary probably has some roller derby spec. Nerd.
1 Zombieland (2009) $25M $25M
2 Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs (2009) $16.7 $82.4M
3 Toy Story (1995) $12.5 $12.5M
4 The Invention of Lying (2009) $7.35M $7.35M
5 Surrogates (2009) $7.34M $26.4M
6 Whip It (2009) $4.85M $4.85M
7 Capitalism: A Love Story (2009) $4.85M $5.25M
8 Fame (2009) $4.75M $16.6M
9 The Informant! (2009) $3.8M $26.6M
10 Love Happens (2009) $2.78M $18.9M
--Posted by Casey, Oct. 5--
Okay, we've seen worse weekends than this one. That's the good news. The bad news? It's still not that great. There just isn't one film that stands out here. I suppose if you put a gun to my head, I'd go see Whip It (might look cool on the big screen), or The Invention of Lying, but it's hard to think about parting with the cash when I can rent all of these movies on NetFlix. Whip It will likely win the weekend, but Invention of Lying might pull off a sneak attack...
Capitalism: A Love Story (Michael Moore): Documentary filmmaker Michael Moore sets out to uncover the truth behind the current economic crisis with interviews from Wall Street and government insiders. Is it us or is Michael Moore starting to become a characature of himself?
A Serious Man (Michael Stuhlbarg, Richard Kind, Sari Lennick): A black comedy set in 1967 and centered on Larry Gopnik (Stuhlbarg), a Midwestern professor who watches his life unravel when his wife prepares to leave him because his inept brother (Kind) won't move out of the house. The Coen Brothers strike again with another one of their weird, but in a cool way kind of films. I always enjoy watching the DVDs of their films late at night on a Saturday. After my wife's gone to bed and informed me that there won't be any sex. Thanks, honey. I watch a Coen brothers film, then fire up the Skinemax. Bam! Doesn't this sound a lot like You, Me, and Dupree, though?
Zombieland (Jesse Eisenberg, Emma Stone, Woody Harrelson): In a world overrun by zombies, a guy described as "the most frightened person on Earth" (Eisenberg) musters the courage to lead a band of refugees on a cross-country pilgrimage to an amusement park where they think they'll be safe. Um...another zombie movie...great...
Whip It (Ellen Page, Drew Barrymore, Kristen Wiig): In Bodeen, Texas, indie-rock loving misfit Bliss Cavendar (Page) finds a way of dealing with her small-town misery after she discovers a roller derby league in nearby Austin. It'll be interesting to see how this film does at the box office. The trailers looked funny, but we just wonder if audiences will turn out for another roller derby film after so many have failed in the past--even with a stellar female cast.
The Invention of Lying (Ricky Gervais): A comedy set in a world where no one has ever lied, until a writer seizes the opportunity for personal gain. Is Ricky Gervais a film star, or is he this funny little British man we like seeing on TV? We'll find out this weekend...
--Posted by Gary, Oct. 2--
SO...JJ ABRAMS HAS A SPEC SCRIPT OUT TO NETWORKS
J.J. Abrams, or as we like to call him: the dude who kind of looks like Tom Cruise's ugly little brother...
Man, it must be nice to be J.J. Abrams. The dude writes a TV spec, sends it out to the networks, and now they're trampling one another like transvestites with general admission tickets to a Cher concert. Of course, after all the success Abrams has had, he could pretty much write the words "blah de blah blah blah %&%$@% blah" enough times to fill fifty sheets of paper and sell it to a network. Right after they all were done having sex with it. Which lends itself to serious paper cuts.
What's surprising is that the premise doesn't sound that groundbreaking. Variety describes it as centering on spies who are also married. I don't know about you, but that sounds an awful lot like Mr. & Mrs. Smith to me. Hey, networks, I have this great idea for a show. It's about this Jedi Knight who has to take on his Father, who used to be a Jedi, but now is half man, half machine, and a serious asshole. It also has a big a furry side kick that makes weird guttural sounds. What's that? I can't get away with it because I'm not J.J. Abrams? Oh, right...thanks ass bags. All I really have to do is stand outside my apartment and listen to pimps fight with hookers if I want to know that. Thanks.
--Posted by Casey, Oct. 1--
NO ONE CARES ABOUT MAKE BELIEVE MODELS
According to sources on the set of Beautiful Life, Mischa Barton is kiiiind of a bitch. Hard to believe, we know...
So, the Ashton Kutcher produced CW show, The Beautiful Life, got the ax recently after only two episodes. Not surprising given the on-set complications (read: Mischa Barton being a pain in the ass) and the fact that it...well...it really sucked. Kutcher used to be a model, so I'm sure he's used to rejection, but this has to be a pretty good shot to the testicles. We're sure he can shake it off, though. He's young, handsome, and married to a MILF with more money than a Kennedy.
Beautiful life, which was being counted on to retain the lead in from America's Top Model, took a giant dump in it's pants when charged with the task. There's some speculation as to what show will take Beautiful Life's place, but frankly, we don't care enough to cover it. 5 o'clock on the East coast means drinkin' time!
--Posted by Gary, Sept. 29--
ROMAN POLANSKI FINALLY ARRESTED
Unfortunately for Polanski, there will only be large horny men to have sex with in prison...
So it only took thirty years (thirty years ago, I was 2 and still pooping in a diaper), but famed director Roman Polanski (Chinatwon, Rosemary's Baby) has finally been arrested overseas, and will be extridited to the Unites States to face trial for the statutory raping of a 13 year old girl (that he drugged) back in the 70's. He must be really excited. I often wonder what forty year old guys see in teenage girls. Personally, I prefer much more mature women who are at least taking classes at a community college. Oh, wait, that's right. Those guys are PEDOPHILES. Right. Almost forgot. And, how cool are you if you have to drug a child to get her to put out? Wicked cool (heavy sarcasm)! How has this guy managed to hide out in Europe all these years? What foreign country wants a dude like this hanging out? Euorpeans must think statutory rape builds character or something.
Polanski was an excellent director, but I hope this dude fries for what he did. And, I'm sure he did it to other girls, too. I have a 13 year old cousin, and if some forty year old creepy a$$hole ever did something like this to her, I'd take a sledghammer to his balls. Then, I'd drop him off in Compton or East LA with a sign around his neck that said, "Do you have a daughter, or little sister? I love to rape little girls." Because gang bangers love to party with guys like Polanski.
--Posted by Casey, Sept. 28--
BOX OFFICE RESULTS
Prediction: expect fewer 'Bruce Willis wearing a toupee' movies in the future...
Man, what a lousy box office weekend. We tried to warn you. I wonder how Disney feels this morning, after their latest film, the Bruce Willis starrer Surrogates, got its ass handed to it on a platter by a second week cartoon about it raining food from the sky? Are they crying right now? Curled up in the fetal position clutching romance novels? Laying in a hot bubble bath drinking a cup of green tea? I am a bit surprised. Depsite Casey's prediction that movie goers were growing tired of "How do we stop this...?" Bruce Willis movies, I thought he'd just been hitting the vaporizor during the day again. Seeing as how Surrogates cost 80 mil to make and also had a costly marekting and advertising push, Disney has to be doing a lot of fingerpointing this moring. Well, actually it probably started on Saturday when they got the Friday numbers. Guess they would have had to point with their Blackberrys. If you think Surrogates did poorly, how about Pandorum? 4 mil? That's an absolute backhanded bitchslapping.
In a bit of, "Hey, that's neat" the film 9, came in 9th. Otherwise, blecht.
1 Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs $24.6M $60M
2 Surrogates $15M $15M
3 Fame $10M $10M
4 The Informant! $6.92M $21M
5 I Can Do Bad All by Myself $4.75M $44.5M
6 Pandorum $4.41M $4.41M
7 Love Happens $4.33M $14.7M
8 Jennifer's Body $3.5M $12.3M
9 9 $2.83M $27.1M
10 Inglourious Basterds $2.72M $114M
--Posted by Gary, Sept. 28--
"What's going on here? You got four computer monitors and not one of them has any $#@%&%$ porn on it...?"
Not exactly what we would call an inticing weekend at the 'ol box officina. Besides, Swine flu is running the streets like the bulls at Pomplona. Better to stay in, load up on the echinacea, and watch something on DVD. For me, it's going to be a double feature of Animal House, and Silence of the Lambs. An odd pairing, you say? Well, dude, consider this. If you had a Latina girl you met at a Taco Truck coming over wouldn't you want to make her laugh, then scare the bejesus out of her so she'll stay overnight? Of course you would. Of course you would.
Surrogates (Bruce Willis, Radha Mitchell, Ving Rhames): Set in a futuristic world where humans live in isolation and interact through surrogate robots, a cop (Willis) is forced to leave his home for the first time in years in order to investigate cases of surrogate murder. I wish I had a million dollars for every movie Bruce Willis utters something to the effect of, "How do we stop it?" I'd have...uh...millions. If you like movies where Bruce Willis has to figure out how to, "Stop it," this one is for you. MAYBE
Fame (Kelsey Grammer, Bebe Neuwirth, Megan Mullally): A remake of the 1980s musical centered on the teachers and students at the prestigious New York City High School of Performing Arts. I think this tops the all time list of films that didn't need to be remade. Who was clammoring for a Fame remake? Maybe we should punch them in the spleen. And, whose casting dea was it to reunite Lilith and Frazier from Cheers? PASS
Pandorum (Dennis Quaid, Ben Foster, Cam Gigandet): A pair of crew members aboard a spaceship wake up with no knowledge of their mission or their identities. Gee, I wonder what happened? Oh, wait, I don't care. This worked for Borne Identity, but Dennis Quaid isn't going to be driving a Mini Cooper down stairs, or beating the %&$# out of secret agents. PASS
Coco Before Chanel (Audrey Tautou, Benoît Poelvoorde, Alessandro Nivola): The story of Gabrielle "Coco" Chanel (Tautou) and her rise from obscure beginnings to the heights of the fashion world. Um. Do you you ever have to ask us? PASS
Paranormal Activity (Katie Featherston, Micah Sloat, Michael Bayouth): While settling into her new home, Katie (Featherston) is disturbed in her sleep by a mysterious presence. Her husband, Micah (Sloat), tries to ease her fear by installing video cameras in an attempt to capture the strange behavior on tape. Bad idea. Don't hold me to this (I smoke weed through a vaporizer now, so things are improving mentally), but I think this film was an acquisition, and has been around for awhile. If you read that logline, and are excited by it, by all means throw down $20-$30 seeing a film that has a ton of footage that looks like someone shot it on their camcorder. Or, not. PASS
GHOST RIDER II GETS THE GREEN LIGHT
Man, it seems like comic book characters are taking over Hollywood. How many nerds can there be, globally, to support this kind of saturation? After Disney bought out Marvel, Warners stepped up the plate with D.C. comics, and 20th is no slouch with Fantastic Four, Green Lantern, Wolverine, X-Men, Daredevil, and Silver Surfer films/sequels in various stages. Sony recently hired James Vanderbilt to pen Spider-Man 5 & 6, and Universal has their eyes on Sub-Mariner. Paramount will distribute Iron Man 2, and is also looking at several other properties including Thor and Captain America. So it comes as no surprise that Columbia has reportedly inked Nick Cage to star in another installment of Ghost Rider.
The fact that these properties must be active, or else they can be reclaimed explains a lot. Before, the inactivity would mean studios Superhero rights would revert to Marvel. Now, they revert straight to Disney. So, if you thought we were at the peak, guess again. We're still in the valley.
And, hey, if every superhero film was as good as Spiderman, Batman, or Iron Man, that'd be fine by me.
--Posted by Todd, Sept. 24--
SO, THEY'RE REMAKING HIGHLANDER...
With the string of remakes in development these days (including Summit "reviving" Heathers as a TV series), why should we be surprised that they now want to remake Highlander? Instead of surprise I was more like, "Oh, yeah, Highlander. That's a film they haven't ruined, I mean, remade yet." Like a buddy having a grace period before dating your ex-girlfriend, it looks like Hollywood has decided that two decades is long enough to start stalking the 80's classic. I don't know why they don't just do it right away, and be honest about it. Why wait, and see each other behind my back? What's the matter with you, dude? I thought you were my friend!
Not that anything like that ever happened to me. Because it hasn't. Alright?
According to Variety, Summit Entertainment has hired Justin Lin to direct and Neal H. Moritz to produce. Lin and Moritz previously teamed on Fast and Furious, and Universal has hired Iron Man scribes Art Marcum and Matt Holloway to write the script. Summit will expand on the original Highlander premise, and the new pic will center on Connor MacLeod, who must confront a murderous barbarian who lusts for a fabled prize. Summit recently acquired the rights with the intent to turn the franchise into a new refreshed franchise. Never mind that franchises rarely do this. When was the last time they turned McDonalds into McDonalds again?
--Posted by Todd, Sept. 23--
SO, THE EMMYS WERE LAST NIGHT
Alec Baldwin + the power of prayer = Emmy--Take that Left Wing Socialists!
I have to say, not too terribly bad. Of course I was half in the bag, so I was, technically, beer goggling. It works for chicks and TV. It really does. Neal Patrick Harris seemed to do a serviceable job, and was even funny at times. He was sort of a sharecropper's Steve Martin. Maybe a Guy on Skid Row's Steve Martin. 30 Rock continued it's domination of The Office, and Mad Men also made it three in a row. As it should be. There have been times when I was watching 30 Rock last season where I was laughing so hard Chablis almost came out of my nose. I don't know what was up with that Iranian chick, Shohreh Aghdashloo, who won for House of Saddam. Does she have asthma or something? She was breathing like she'd had sex with me (I always keep a paper bag by the bed--as a safety precaution). Ricky Gervais did a 5 minute stand up routine ripping on Steve Carrell and Rainn Wilson. And, Alec Baldwin wants to look like Rob Lowe. Doesn't everyone want to look like Rob Lowe? I know chicks that want to look like Rob Lowe.
A list of notable winners aftert the jump. And, by notable, we mean awards you actually give a %$#@ about. Because, gee, we were all on pins and needles about the best reality show host throw down between Jeff Probst (the winner-booyah!) and Ryan "I Wear Suits Three Sizes Too Small" Seacrest...
COMEDY SERIES "30 Rock"
DRAMA SERIES "Mad Men"
ACTOR IN A COMEDY Alec Baldwin - "30 Rock" (NBC)
ACTOR IN A DRAMA Bryan Cranston - "Breaking Bad" (AMC)
ACTRESS IN A COMEDY Toni Collette - "United States Of Tara" (Showtime)
ACTRESS IN A DRAMA Glenn Close as Patty Hewes - "Damages" (FX Networks)
MADE FOR TELEVISION MOVIE "Grey Gardens" (HBO)
ACTOR IN A MINISERIES OR MOVIE Brendan Gleeson - "Into The Storm" (HBO)
ACTRESS IN A MINISERIES OR MOVIE Jessica Lange - "Grey Gardens" (HBO)
SUPPORTING ACTOR IN A COMEDY Jon Cryer - "Two And A Half Men" (CBS)
SUPPORTING ACTOR IN A DRAMA Michael Emerson - "Lost" (ABC)
SUPPORTING ACTOR IN A MINISERIES OR MOVIE Ken Howard - "Grey Gardens" (HBO)
SUPPORTING ACTRESS IN A COMEDY Kristin Chenoweth - "Pushing Daisies" (ABC)
SUPPORTING ACTRESS IN A DRAMA Cherry Jones - "24" (Fox)
SUPPORTING ACTRESS IN A MINISERIES/MOVIE Shohreh Aghdashloo - "House Of Saddam" (HBO)
WRITING FOR A COMEDY "30 Rock" - "Reunion" (NBC) - Matt Hubbard
WRITING FOR A DRAMA "Mad Men" - (AMC) - Kater Gordon, Matthew Weiner
WRITING FOR A MINISERIES/MOVIE "Little Dorrit" (PBS) - Andrew Davies
WEEKEND BOX OFFICE
Key to world peace: getting it to rain In-N-Out burgers...
While it was kind of a lousy weekend at the box office that's still no excuse for the terrible performance of Jennifer's Body. I mean, they put Body in the title, and it still didn't help. Maybe Megan Fox will have a total emotional breakdown where she decides she can slum it with a nobody writer who buys Charles Shaw Cabernet by the case at Trader Joe's. I'm just sayin' it's possible with a good 'ol fashion mental break down. Maybe throw in a panic attack.
Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs was #1, as expected. Seems Love Happens did about 8.46 million more than it should have.
1 Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs $30.1M $30.1M
2 The Informant! $10.5M $10.5M
3 I Can Do Bad All by Myself $10.1M $37.9M
4 Love Happens $8.46M $8.46M
5 Jennifer's Body $6.8M $6.8M
6 9 $5.46M $22.8M
7 Inglourious Basterds $3.6M $110M
8 All About Steve $3.4M $26.7M
9 Sorority Row $2.49M $8.87M
10 The Final Destination $2.38M $62.4M
--Posted by Casey, September 21--
As you can clearly see from this photo Megan Fox's looks have nothing to do with her popularity as an actress...
So, this actually doesn't look like too bad of a weekend for films. There's a little something for everyone. Animation, horror, true story, a romantic comedy, and a film about a famous poet. If you're into that sort of thing (films about poets, not variety--not that there's anything wrong with being in to variety--although my wife is pretty opposed to me being in to variety). Think of it as a Hollywood buffet. One where the salad bar doesn't give you ecoli.
Jennifer's Body (Megan Fox, Amanda Seyfried, Adam Brody)
A cheerleader at a small midwestern high school becomes possessed by a demon and sets out to kill off all the guys in town. Guess we're going to see what kind of star power Megan Fox has without giant transforming robots stealing the show. Normally I'm exptremely opposed to studios demanding an actress appear topless in a film. Women are creatures to be revered. However, we do wonder if persistent rumors that Fox won't be topless in Body might kill the audience (men who want to see her bosoms).
Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs (Anna Faris, Bill Hader, Bruce Campbell)
Inspired by the children's book, Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs focuses on a town where food falls from the sky like rain. Hey, if you like the book, this might be a hoot. The buzz is pretty good, and the animation in the trailer looks great.
The Informant! [limited] (Matt Damon, Tony Hale, Patton Oswalt)
The U.S. government decides to go after an agri-business giant with a price-fixing accusation based on the evidence submitted by their star witness, company-man-turned-whistleblower Mark Whitacre (Damon). We're hearing great things about this Soderbergh film, but it's in limited release this week. Matt Damon is actually a very talented comedic actor, so it's nice to see him doing something other than driving a Mini Cooper down stairs, beating the s&%t out of people, and trying to remember things.
Love Happens (Jennifer Aniston, Aaron Eckhart)
On a business trip to Seattle, a popular self-help guru (Eckhart) sparks with a woman (Aniston) who attends one of his seminars. Their connection causes his to realize, however, that he hasn't truly confronted his wife's recent passing. Did I just almost projectile vomit on my computer screen? I'll bet if that description didn't make you want to barf, though, you might actually like this movie. I'm going to go take a Pepcid.
Bright Star [limited] (Abbie Cornish, Ben Whishaw, Paul Schneider)
A drama focused on the last few years in the life of poet John Keats (Whishaw), as seen through the eyes of his lover, Fanny Brawne (Cornish). I think this is one of those films college professors make their poetry class watch while they go smoke weed in their office and surf angrywriter.
--Posted by Gary, September 18--
LEBRON JAMES TO PLAY HIMSELF
Lebron is always willing to spend time with small white children who are vertically challenged...
It was only a matter of time before this happened. Like Michael Jordan and Shaquelle O'Neal before him, Lebron James has decided to stick his toe in the water of film. At least they won't be pairing him with Looney Tunes characters. According to Variety he'll be playing himself in Fantasy Basketball Camp, a Universal/Imagine Entertainment pic about five guys who come to Vegas to attend the LeBron James Adult Basketball Camp, and drag James into their various life issues. Brian Grazer will produce from a script written by Lowell Ganz and Babaloo Mandel. You'll never guess how this all happened. Just take a wild guess.
"I initially sought LeBron out because my 8-year-old son, Thomas, and I were just dying to meet him, but I felt that beyond being one of the world's great superstar athletes, here was someone so relaxed and comfortable with himself that he would have the capability to be that way onscreen," Grazer said. "Later, when I watched him host 'Saturday Night Live,' and saw his advertising work, it was clear he can do this."
This is actually brilliant on Grazer's part. Now he leaves the dirty little job of explaining to his son why he'll never be able to dunk a basketball without wearing stilts to Lebron. If only every unathletic Father could have that luxury. I keep waiting for them to make a movie about me, but I'm a fat, unattractive writer with no career. So...I'll keep waiting.
--Posted by Gary, September 17--
A-TEAM REMAKE TAKING SHAPE
I hear Jessica Biel has a nice butt...I wouldn't know...because I'm a gentleman and never look at it...
So, it looks like Jessica Biel is in "talks" to join the cast of the A-Team remake playing Faceman's love interest. That's good news to people who are fans of Biel (hand raised so high in the air my arm is in danger of separating from my shoulder). However, the rest of this cast is just, kind of, weird. Sharlto Copley as Howling Mad Murdock? Liam Neeson as Hannibal? Rampage Jackson as Sgt. B.A. Baracus? Not to mention Ridley Scott is producing? What kind of A-Team movie are we talking about, anyway? The whole point of the TV series was that it was funny and tongue in cheek--not serious.
Well, maybe I'm just old. I remember this series and was a huge fan as a kid. Maybe I'm still reeling from the Dukes of Hazzard movie that butchered the TV show. Maybe this film will be different. Who knows. One thing is for sure. It won't be easy.
--Posted by Todd, September 16--
SWAYZE DIES, ANGRY WRITER STAFF WEEPS UNCONTROLLABLY
The key to a great fight scene: backlighting...the Roadhouse School of Cinema is in session muthafuggahs...
And, so, it has finally come to pass. The death of actor Patrick Swayze, who has finally lost his fight with pancreatic cancer. It seems impossible that pancreatic cancer could actually kick his ass, but alas, here we are on that fateful day he could postpone, no longer. There was a time in his career when Swayze could have blown up an old folks home, or had sex with a panda at a Chinese zoo while children were watching, and the world would not have cared. Yes, we're talking about Roadhouse, my friends. In fact, it hard not to think of the world in those terms--pre and post Roadhouse (pre-R and post-R). There were other films. I'm not afraid to say it. I saw Dirty Dancing at the dollar theater t least ten times. Of course, it wasn't because I wanted to see P.S. in a pair of tight jeans. I went with ten different girls and drove a conversion van back then. You do the math. Thanks for the assist wing man (high five toward Swayze/heaven). There were others still--Red Dawn, The Outsiders, Point Break, Ghost--but I think we all know Roadhouse was really the pinnacle of American cinema.
As I have said in the past, everything is Roadhouse. And, Roadhouse is everything. Tonight, as an homage, I will watch Roadhouse and get very very hammered. Rest in peace, my friend.
--Posted by Casey, September 15--
WEEKEND BOX OFFICE
Um, hey, Tyler, it's your man Casey. Uh, can I borrow, like, 1.2 million? It's for kids in an orphanage dude...
So, Tyler Perry put out another movie this weekend and it was number one, and did 24 million in only 2200 theaters. I think Barack Obama should consider hiring Perry as a consultant to get his health care reform bill passed, because this guy poops gold bricks, and must be using some sort of Jedi mind trick to get people to buy movie tickets. The animated film 9 did 15.3 million at around 1000 sites. That's pretty good as well. As expected, Sorority Row and Whiteout did a Hinderberg coming in way below "estimates." I don't know who's giving these studios their information, but they obviously don't read angrywriter.com. We totally nailed those craptastic numbers. Here's a thought. Don't make a momvie with a hot woman, and have her wear a giant down parka for 120 minutes. I could have given them an "estimate" back when they were developing Whiteout, and saved them about 30 million. Rumer Willis is probably a little discouraged. I can comfort her, if she needs it. Maybe after she visits my apartment, she'll give up acting, and go try to save baby seals, or something. Win, win for everyone.
1 I Can Do Bad All by Myself $24M $24M
2 9 $10.9M $15.3M
3 Inglourious Basterds $6.55M $104M
4 All About Steve $5.8M $21.8M
5 The Final Destination $5.5M $58.3M
6 Sorority Row $5.27M $5.27M
7 Whiteout $5.1M $5.1M
8 District 9 $3.6M $109M
9 Julie & Julia $3.3M $85.4M
10 Gamer $3.15M $16.1M
--Posted by Casey, September 14--
SO...ELLEN IS AN AMERICAN IDOL JUDGE NOW
Unfortunately, there were times on the show when Randy Jackson had to "choke a bitch"
Despite having zero experience in the music business, Ellen Degeneres has been chosen to be the fourth judge on American Idol. I like Ellen Degeneres. She's funny, and her show employs writers (always a plus). But, seriously, WTF is the deal with American Idol. Just when you think the show was done with the ratings ploys (adding a fourth judge just made such a huge a difference), now this. Let's not worry about the authenticity of the show. Who cares about that. Obviously, Fox Alternative chief Mike Darnell doesn't. "It's a win for us, as she'll be talking about it more on her show. And certainly people will come to 'Idol' to see how she does. There's a huge curiosity factor."
Yes, to see how much worse the show can get.
"All of a sudden it hit us, 'I wonder if she's (Ellen) interested,' " Darnell blathered. "Not only was she interested, but she was incredibly enthusiastic. She's not only a great name, but she's terrifically talented and loves music. And in addition we get someone who already adores the show, instead of having to talk them into doing it." Yes, because everyone knows how hard it is to talk someone into taking millions of dollars for sitting in a chair two nights a week and offering generic commentary about a performance.
This is how people kill shows in the never ending quest for ratings. And, thank God. Because the sooner Fox stops being the Idol network, the sooner they can get back to the business of ruining scripted shows, and making writers seek professional help. It's a win-win for everyone. Especially therapists.
As my agent once said, "Every time a writer cries, an executive gets promoted." True story.
--Posted by Todd, September 11--
Couldn't they have at least tried to make the jacket a little tighter?
I generally take September and January off when it comes to seeing movies. Usually studios are dumping films there like a red neck chucking a McDonald's bag out the window on the freeway. But, I have to say, if you're a die hard, some of this stuff actually isn't half bad. It reminds me of that time I was invited to a "party" by a friend. It turned out to be an AA meeting. You know what? I thought it was going to be preachy and annoying, but it wasn't half bad. They had some pretty delicious snacks. And, I met a girl there who worked at The Limited. I think we all know how crazy mall chicks can be in the sack. Take it from me. I worked at Thom McCann for two years in high school. I lost my virginity 23 times, and got a ton of free crap from Orange Julius.
Whiteout (Kate Beckinsale, Gabriel Macht, Tom Skerritt): At the McMurdo Station in Antarctica, U.S. Marshal Carrie Stetko (Beckinsale) looks to identify and capture a killer before the sun sets for six months. Hmm, 2 hours of Kate Beckinsale in a giant winter jacket and pants for two hours? I think I'd need Viagra after that. They'd better at least have her running around in a white tank top and no bra for a few minutes or this movie is gonna flop.
9 (Elijah Wood, Jennifer Connelly, Crispin Glover): When 9 (voice of Elijah Wood) first comes to life, he finds himself in a post-apocalyptic world where all humans are gone. Upon discovering a community of other beings like him, 9 takes the lead in an effort to strike back at the machines that control the world and are bent on exterminating most signs of life. This animated film is based on an Oscar nominated short, so how bad could it be? And, how is Crispin Glover still finding work?
I Can Do Bad All by Myself (Tyler Perry, Taraji P. Henson, Adam Rodriguez): Madea (Perry) delivers three young adults who tried to rob her home to their aunt (Henson), a hard-living nightclub singer who doesn't want the responsibility of parenting the trio. Can Madea's influence, coupled with the arrival a handsome, industrious new tenant (Rodriguez), help April turn a corner in her life? If you like Tyler Perry's Madea movies, then go see this one. I don't get it, but every time this dude makes a film it does, like, 30 mil at the box office.
Sorority Row (Briana Evigan, Rumer Willis, Carrie Fisher): A group of sorority girls pledge to keep mum on the accidental death of one of their sisters; after graduation, however, they find themselves stalked by a serial killer who seems bent on eliminating anyone who knows their secret. Rumer Willis and Carrie Fisher? I don't know if this film is going to be any good, but it has the award for weirdest cast locked up.
The September Issue [limited] (Anna Wintour): A documentary chronicling Vogue editor-in-chief Anna Wintour's preparations for the 2008 fall-fashion issue. If you like watching a crazy bitch boss people around for an hour and half, this one is for you. Wintour was the inspiration for The Devil Wears Prada. Sometimes the real thing can actually be a step down from Meryl Streep.
--Posted by Casey, September 11--
WARNER BROS. FINALLY COMES UP WITH A GREAT IDEA
Somehow Batman always seems to avoid getting bugs in his teeth when riding this thing...
So, a few weeks after Walt Disney paid 4 billion dollars for Marvel Comics, Warners decides to fast track (more like warp speed track) their creation of DC Entertainment, an internal entity at the studio that will focus soley on the publisher's stable of characters. Although Warners claims they have been working on such a deal for "nearly two years," and that the timing is "coincidental" (what the hell was taking them so long?) it's is glaringly apparent to us that the Marvel deal had them taking a dump in their pants. Not that it matters. I couldn't care less what Warner Bros. does with it's structure. As long as they hire me to write, direct, produce, and serve as personal butt masseuse to Jessica Biel on Wonder Woman.
"It's no secret that DC has a myriad of rich and untapped possibilities from its deep library of iconic and lesser-known characters," said Alan Horn, Warner Bros. Entertainment prexy and chief operating officer. "The formation of DC Entertainment will help us bring more DC properties across additional platforms to fans around the world." Translation: in addition to Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman, the Flash and Green Lantern, we'll be subjected to a bunch of shamelessly exploited movies with protagonists no one other than comic book collectors really gives a crap about.
Diane Nelson, who has been given credit for sheperding the Harry Potter franchise to over 5 billion in revenues for the studio, will run the newly formed division as its President. Nelson will report to Warner Bros. Pictures President Jeff Robinov, who, according to Variety, has wanted to take more creative control of DC's properties, but was having trouble choosing an executive he could rely on to adapt the brands while making sure die-hard fans would be happy with the results. Gee, he must've thrown a dart in the hall way and hit Nelson, who's been at the studio, since, like, the 90's. "I've long believed that there was much more we could do across all of Warner Bros.' businesses with this great body of characters and stories," Robinov said. "There are endless creative possibilities to build upon."
That's what we're afraid of, man.
--Posted by Gary, September 10--
HALLE BERRY TO PROBABLY WEAR A BIKINI A LOT IN NEXT FILM
I guess I'd be okay with watching 2 hours of this...
Looks like Halle Berry might star in the action-thriller (where there is action, and you are thrilled by it) Dark Tide, where she'll play a diving instructor who returns to the deep after a near-fatal incident with a Great White shark. The film will cost in the $15-$20 million range. Clark Johnson (S.W.A.T.) is attached to direct, and Twilight producers Marty Bowen and Wyck Godfrey will probably be spending a lot of time on set taking pictures with their iphones. Amy Sorlie wrote the script for dark, which will shoot in South Africa later this year.
The timing on this is all a little weird, because I swear I heard news Halle Berry was pregnant last night. Maybe they'll just be shooting her from the chest up. Which is all most of us care about anyway. More on this story as it develops...literally...
--Posted by Todd, September 9--
SODERBERGH SCORES A KNOCKOUT
This sort of gives new meaning to the age-old phrase, yes dear...
So, looks like Director Steven Soderbergh is going from working with a porn star to a mixed martial arts fighter. Soderbergh, who just finished The Girlfriend Experience, a film starring porn 'actress' Sasha Grey in her mainstream debut, now turns to MMA fighter Gina Carano. Carano will star in Knockout, a spy film in the mold of La Femme Nikita or Kill Bill, that will shoot in Ireland, Turkey, and the U.S. Soderbergh recently helmed the Matt Damon comedy The Informant! (which opens Stateside on Sept. 18), and was attached to Moneyball, before exiting for Knockout.
We're all for superhot women who can put us in a sleeper hold, but couldn't Soderbergh find a porn star who knew karate? And, by the way porn people, here's a gift. You can totally have this title: Tae Kwon Do Me. You're welcome.
The Muay Thai-trained Carano is a star on the MMA circuit, and fights in the lightweight division. Carano stars in the Oxygen reality series Fight Girls, served as Crush on NBC's American Gladiators, and showed some chops in the upcoming action film Blood and Bone.
--Posted by Casey, September 8--
WEEKEND BOX OFFICE
Dude, just let her go to the sale at 9 West...the place really isn't that expensive...
So, now that summer is officially over I will no longer (hopefully) have to be subjected to my Uncle Barry's plumber's crack. Newsflash Barry: there's a draw string on swimming trunks for a reason, dude. As far as the box office went, these numbers don't include Monday, but the results were pretty much the same. I think Final Destination did 15.4 million for the extended weekend, and Basterds did 15.1. Not that it matters. It's not like people place bets on this stuff with a bookie, or win a door prize when they guess right. Oh, you knew Final Destination would edge out Inglourious Basterds this weekend? Awesome. Here's a $50 gift certificate to Bed, Bath & Beyond. Get yourself a new shower curtain.
Most of these new films didn't make much of a dent. All About Steve couldn't edge out two movies that had been out for a few weeks already. Gamer only did 9 mil. Extract didn't exactly set the world on fire, but it was only in about 1,000 theaters. Somehow The Time Travelers Wife is still hanging around like a girl who wants me to take her to breakfast.
Man, I'm always more bitter after a long holiday weekend. Going back to work sucks. I've thought about selling a kidney on the black market so I can take some time off, but then I'd only have one. The ones I have are probably already working overtime. I'm not even going to get in to all the hard work my liver and bladder have to do...
1 The Final Destination $12,315,000 $47,446,000
2 Inglourious Basterds $11,671,000 $91,867,000
3 All About Steve $11,225,000 $11,225,000
4 Gamer $9,120,000 $9,120,000
5 District 9 $7,100,000 $101,374,000
6 Halloween II $5,740,000 $25,796,000
7 Julie & Julia $5,300,000 $78,940,000
8 G.I. Joe: Cobra $5,155,000 $139,470,000
9 Extract $4,367,000 $4,367,000
10 The Time Traveler's Wife $4,310,000 $54,652,000
--Posted by Casey, September 8--
After NBC cancelled My Name is Earl, the main character quickly joined the cast of Extract...
Hmm. Looks like summer is officially, officially over. I'm not sure what to think about this line-up, other than it's not making me want to go to the theater this weekend. Especially when my Uncle Barry is throwing his annual Labor Day bash where he gets wicked hammered and barfs in his pool. At least, that's what happened last year. Don't worry, we yanked him from the pool before he passed out. We rock, paper, scissored for who had to skim the chunks off the top of the water. Of, course, I won, because I always go paper. Dumb asses like my cousins always go rock, even though I always go paper. You'd think one of them would chuck in scissors once in while. When I'm the smartest guy at one of our family gatherings, that means our gene pool is pretty awful. Maybe we should stop procreating. Seriously, dude.
Extract (Jason Bateman, Kristen Wiig, Ben Affleck): The owner of a flower-extract plant (Bateman), tries to contend with myriad personal and professional problems, such as his potentially unfaithful wife (Wiig), a hot new temp (Kunis), and employees who want to take advantage of him. I think Mike Judge is great, and I like Jason Bateman, too (also, Ben Affleck could be funny playing some long haired dude, and Mila Kunis is pretty cute) but this is the reason they make Netflix and PBR. Still...if I get bored enough... MAYBE
Gamer (Gerard Butler, Michael C. Hall, Ludacris): Set in a future-world where humans can control other humans in mass-scale, multi-player online gaming environments, a star player (Butler) from a game called Slayers looks to regain his independence while taking down the game's mastermind (Hall). I don't really get this movie at all. Maybe guys who play video games (I play Guitar Hero exclusively, because, shocker, chicks dig it) might go see it. I'll save my money and try to cozy up to a second cousin this weekend (they're fair game). PASS
Carriers (Chris Pine, Piper Perabo, Lou Taylor Pucci): Four young people speed across the Southwestern U.S. in a desperate attempt to outrun a viral pandemic. Over the course of a few days, tough moral decisions will have to be made if they have any chance at survival. Uh... huh? PASS
All About Steve (Sandra Bullock, Bradley Cooper, Thomas Haden Church): After Mary Horowitz (Bullock) has one date with a CNN cameraman (Cooper), the brilliant crossword-puzzle constructor decides the hunk is her true love. While she alienates him by trailing him all over the country, she falls in with a crew of misfits who appreciate her eccentric nature. I dig this cast, but the trailer doesn't look so great. And, if the trailer is bad... PASS
--Posted by Casey, September 4--
BIG MOMMA'S HOUSE 3?
Central to the character of Big Momma: wearing dresses that look like my Great Grandmother's draperies...
According to Variety, Fox Studios has hired Randi Mayem Singer (Mrs. Doubtfire, The Tooth Fairy) to write the third installment to the franchise which stars Martin Lawrence as an undercover agent and master of disguise. The first two pics grossed $174 million worldwide, and $138 million, respectively. Considering I killed mucho brain cells in college (and after), I never trust my math, but I'd say the third one is going to make about $100 million. Martin Lawrence's fee had gotten so low lately, he probably considered pawning his children, but now that Bad Boys 3 is rumored to be happening, he might be okay.
Fox won't tell anyone what the film is going to be about (which I totallly don't get, unless it sucks--it's not like someone is going to steal the idea and make Big Momma's House 3.5, or something), but I'm assuming Martin Lawrence will put on a fat suit and play about 20 other characters as well.
If it were me, I'd just shoot Big Momma's House 3, 4 and 5 at the sime time, like they did with Lord of the Rings, before Martin Lawrence gets really old, or starts running around in aluminum foil track suits again. Just some unsolicited advice, Fox. You're welcome.
--Posted by Casey, September 3--
FAVREAU, DOWNEY JR. MIGHT PLAY COWBOYS AND ALIENS
Downey Jr. obviously trying to explain why movie stars get a cordless microphone, and directors get one that looks like it just arrived in a space capsule from 1950...
Variety is reporting today that Iron Man I and II helmer John Favreau might re-team with Robert Downey Jr. to direct the DreamWorks/Universal project Cowboys & Aliens. The film, set in the old west, opens with cowboys and indians locked in a fierce battle--until a spaceship full of aliens lands, and the two foes are forced to work together to defeat an enemy with superior technology (based on the Platinum Studios Comics novel written by Fred Van Lente and Andrew Foley).
Robert Downey, Jr. is one of my favorite actors, and I loved Iron Man. But, I just don't get why Downey and Favreau can lock themselves into working together for, like, the next ten years, but Matt Damon and Ben Affleck can't seem to find a way to do another movie together? Even Simon & Garfunkel get back together every now and then, and Garfunkel's terrible 'fro was reason enough for Simon to write him off.
These professional bromances are not unusual in Hollywood, especially when an actor and director are locked into a franchise. I had one with an Indian dude who lived down the hall from me. He was developing a video game and needed a writer to help with the quest aspect of the game's story. Of course the whole thing fell apart when his sister came into town for a visit. Where I'm from, banging your buddy's sister is hilarious. In India, it makes people want to try and stab you (Apparently). Maybe Favreau and Downey are BFFs. Maybe they've traded bracelets. Who cares? As long as they keep making great movies, they could be part of a threesome with Richard Simmons.
Cowboys & Indians is slated to begin production in summer 2010. Alex Kurtzman and Roberto Orci are rewriting the script along with Damon Lindeloff--the same team penned the upcoming Star Trek 2. The film will be produced by Imagine Entertainment’s Brian Grazer and Ron Howard, Steven Spielberg, Platinum Studios CEO Scott Mitchell Rosenberg, and Kurtzman and Roberto Orci.
Favreau and Downey are already set to work together again on Iron Man 3, but no word yet on whether they plan to do any man-spooning in their trailers.
--Posted by Casey, September 2--
Rambo's plastic surgeon is one of the most sought after doctors in the dissident community...
I loved the first Rambo. Loved it. That was back when Stallone was Stallone. He was Rocky Balboa. He was Rambo. He was a tough guy who liked to beat the crap out of people and blow things to smithereens. You didn't mess with Stallone. But, then you realized Stallone wrote and directed Stayin' Alive, and you realized he had a few cracks in the facade. But, you didn't care. He was Rocky and Rambo baby! Well, by now he's had too many cracks, too many Rambos (and Rockys) and a ton of plastic surgery, and you're left wondering--what the hell happened to this guy? Rambo 5? Seriously? Can't he find any mentor/Dad roles where he mumbles vague encouragement to a co-star? Maybe he could teach Zach Efron how to take a punch to the sternum?
Just throwing things out there.
Tell me this guy doesn't look like he's playing with a marionette made out of human intestine...tell me...
So, turns out the Final Destination franchise might not be dead after all. After grossing 29 million this weekend, we can probably look forward to New Line releasing another 15 sequels, at least. We'll all be in assisted living, and there it will be--Final Destination 19! There's no doubt the 3-D element presented in the trailers helped. 3-D showings accounted for 19 of the 29 million it grossed. The weekend as a whole was up almost 40% over last year. With Labor Day weekend still left, this could be the highest grossing summer box office yet. Of course, I can remember when a matinee ticket used to cost $1.50, and you could get popcorn, Goobers, and a coke--and the whole thing would cost around $5. Now, I go see a movie and feel like they should have a booth set up in the cineplex where I can give plasma.
Inglorious Basterds had another strong session, and Halloween II is probably regretting not being released in H-D after Final Destination's numbers. You have to wonder why they would release it on the same date as another horror film franchise? Of course, you'd at least need a therapist and human paradigm expert to understand why executives do what they do. The other new film, Taking Woodstock, looks like it got taken by a couple of prison inmates, but it was out in limited release, so we won't write it off yet.
1 The Final Destination (2009) $28.3M $28.3M
2 Inglourious Basterds (2009) $20M $73.8M
3 Halloween II (2009) $17.4M $17.4M
4 District 9 (2009) $10.7M $90.8M
5 G.I. Joe (2009) $8M $132M
6 Julie & Julia (2009) $7.4M $71M
7 The Time Traveler's Wife (2009) $6.75M $48.2M
8 Shorts (2009) $4.87M $13.6M
9 Taking Woodstock (2009) $3.75M $3.75M
10 G-Force (2009) $2.85M $112M
--Posted by Gary, August 31--
Disney made a stock and cash offer to buy the comic book shop, and acquire the rights to its library of characters such as Spiderman, Captain America, Iron Man, etc. I guess Disney seems like a decent place for Marvel to set up shop, but I wonder what now becomes of the titles that have already been executed and made into motion pictures? Is Paramount, Fox or Warner Bros. now going to have to negotiate with Disney to make Iron Man sequels? Will they co-produce?
A lot of people are saying it's hard to imagine how Disney is going to get their 4 billion worth out of this deal, but I see it the opposite way. I highly doubt Disney expends this kind of dough without having some hard projections about Marvel's worth, say, 30 years from now. Disney's not exactly known for spending money like Charlie Sheen during his cocaine phase.
--Posted by Gary, August 31--
Dude--did you not see the sign on the wall? It says: 'no Stairway'
Sooo, a bit of a weird weekend at the 'ol box officino. Two horror films, a Woodstock movie, and some sports flick that probably should have gone straight to video. I don't know what the obsession is with Halloween (none of the remakes/sequels/prequels/reimaginings have been better than the first), other than the original was one of the best horror films ever (if not THE best). So, now we're supposed to be like, oh Rob Zombie is remaking...a sequel...or...? There have been so many Halloweens, how is this really Halloween II? So, Zombie's Halloween one remake, which itself was sort of a sequel, is now a sequel. Got it. Wait...
The Final Destination franchise seems pretty worn out, but it was generally interesting and never terrible. I wouldn't spend my hard earned cash on seeing it inMaybe he brings something new and different to the horror scene, and we're just too old to notice. the theater, but if you really wanted to see a sequel in 3-D, we won't hand cuff you to a urinal to prevent it.
Taking Woodstock hasn't reaaly interested us from the first time we saw the trailer. The trailer shows...uh...a bunch of people at Woodstock, and doesn't tell you what the movie is about. At all. And,
Big Fan? No idea. I know this Patton Oswalt guy has some buzz as an indie actor, and this movie might be funny, but we'll wait for Casey's Uncle Barry (who is "amped" for this--ohhhkay Barry) to go
see it. He's probably the only one who'll be in the theater this weekend, and he'll be so drunk he won't remember. Which brings us back to square one.
Halloween II (Scout Taylor-Compton, Tyler Mane, Malcolm McDowell)
Laurie Strode (Taylor-Compton) struggles to come to terms with her brother Michael's deadly return to Haddonfield, Illinois; meanwhile, Michael prepares for another reunion with his sister.
The Final Destination (Nick Zano, Krista Allen, Andrew Fiscella)
After Hunt's (Zano) premonition of a deadly race-car crash helps saves the lives of his peers, Death sets out to collect those who evaded their fate.
Taking Woodstock (Demetri Martin)
When Woodstock organizers have the plug pulled on their event, Elliot Tiber (Martin), a young man who is spending the summer working on his parents' farm, helps the event land a permit, and puts the organizers in touch with Max Yasgur (Levy), a dairy farmer whose plot of land could serve as a perfect spot for the concert.
Big Fan (Patton Oswalt, Michael Rapaport)
Paul Aufiero (Oswalt), a hardcore New York Giants football fan, struggles to deal with the consequences when he is beaten up by his favorite player.
--Posted by Todd, August 28--
IS MEGAN FOX THE NEXT CATWOMAN?
I once fried an egg on Megan Fox's hotness...true story...
British tabloid The Sun is reporting that Megan Fox has signed on to play Catwoman in the next installment of the Batman franchise. That's great news to everyone who thinks Megan Fox is smokin' hot (hand raised). I don't know what they could do to make the new Batman franchise better. Hand out gold bricks to people as they walk in the door to the cinema?
Of course, it's The Sun, so who knows. But, wowsers, if it's true, geeks everywhere will be piling on one another like a team that just won the World Series.
Nice that this news hit the wire today right along with "Lindsey Lohan Might Have a Sex Tape." Hey, I wouldn't pass up the chance to work with Lohan if it meant getting my movie made. We might have to hook her up to a feeding tube and give her a vodka IV while we were filming, but how often do you get to work with women who never wear panties?
Unless you're a bouncer at a strip club, infrequently is the answer.
--Posted by Gary, August 26--
A SOUL TRAIN MOVIE THAT'S NOT REALLY ABOUT SOUL TRAIN
To be as cool as Don Cornelius...alas...most of us can only dream of such lofty social status...
I used to watch Soul Train when I was a kid. Mostly for the female dancers who weren't wearing bras (back when a nip slip was a very rare occurance), but also because of Don Cornelius. He really was one cool dude. Even his name sounds cool. C-o-r-n-e-l-i-u-s. Awww, yeeeaahhhhhh. But, I have to say, in all those years of watching--even up until the very moment I read the article on Variety--not once did I ever think they should make a movie about Soul Train. You know, unless it was a biopic about Don Cornelius, or about the inception of the show, or something. But, I never really thought about it, to be honest.
Well, turns out Warner Bros. never did either, until producers Darryl Porter and Aaron Geller walked in with Cornelius attached, and pitched them an idea for a feature that, frankly, sounds kind of weird. Malcolm Spellman has been hired to write the script for the film that will be set in the 1980s. "All of the hip-hop street dances you see today were born during that time period and were first seen on that show, and I remember doing all of them when I was a kid," said Spellman (Dead Presidents).
According to Variety, the main character, "Comes from the L.A. hood, and his ticket out is his gift for "popping." Apparently, the project was born when Cornelius told Spellman he'd always wanted to have a Soul Train tour with bands and dancers, and that's the world for the movie. Even though it never really happened. And, was just a whimsical notion. That's what it's come to folks. Making movies about ideas famous people had, but never actually did. "This guy is a serious popper, with street edge, and he wants to get on that tour, with the hottest of the hot," Spellman said. "Writing with Don involved is quite an experience. He's still the godfather of cool." So, it's Soul Train meets Saturday Night Fever meets Staying Alive meets Fame meets Hairspray meets American Dreams meets So You Think You Can Dance?
As usual, we're just bitter, and wondering why we didn't stalk Don Cornelius, tie him up with duct tape, and drag his cool mofo ass into a studio and pitch a conveluted Soul Train project. And, hey, who knows, with Spellman writing it, we might all be pleasantly surprised.
An American Bandstand movie can't be far away. Does anybody have Dick Clark's home address (we're totally kidding LAPD--calm down)?
--Posted by Todd, August 26--
ELIZABETH BANKS LOOKING TO MOUNT, ER JOIN, PROJECT
No matter how famous she becomes, Elizabeth Banks will always have time for grumpy elves...
Normally I hate remakes, but when I heard Elizabeth Banks was looking at mounting (sexual innuendo intended) the Russell Crowe project The Next Three Days, I threw all of that crap out the window. Elizabeth Banks reminds me of a girl I went to high school with. No one really knew who the hell she was until our Senior year, when she let her hair grow out and started wearing really tight jeans. I tried to get her to go out with me, but she wasn't into guys driving their Dad's conversion van. And, it's too bad, because I would have thrown on the Dirty Dancing sountrack, and put baby in the corner.
Anyway, accordning to Variety, it looks like Banks is in final negotiations to join the cast of director Paul Haggis' adaptation of the French thriller Pour elle. Haggis is directing, writing and producing the film which is about an ordinary couple who, "Find themselves in an unthinkable situation and have to make desperate choices that will test the limits of love." Translation: Banks will be naked. And, Russell Crowe will be hitting on her every three milliseconds.
Banks has had kind of a back and forth career between comedy and drama (she got her big break in 40 Year Old Virgin). She's attached to a New Line's comedy, What Was I Thinking?, and to DreamWorks' workplace comedy Forever 21, but she was also in the horror film The Uninvited and in Oliver Stone's W. Since she's much more likely to disrobe in dramas, I think her "team" might be better served by pushing her toward dramatic, artsy projects. But, seeing her as Laura Bush made my penis crawl back up in my body.
So, I'm torn.
--Posted by Casey, August 25--
WEEKEND BOX OFFICE
Little known WW II factoid: many German officers actually thought it was a good idea to drunk dial Hitler.
So, it looks like Tarantino's latest movie, Inglourious Basterds, made a little money this weekend. Bob and Harvey Weinstein are thrilled, because it will keep people from talking about how their company is going down the crapper for a little bit. "This is Bob and I focused and raw," Harvey Weinstein said. "In other words, we just concentrated on ‘Basterds.’ " Wow, that seems like a pretty good idea when you own a film company. To be focused. And, concentrate on the movie you're releasing. Glad the Weinsteins finally came around. And, like any responsible profit mongers, the Weinsteins are already planning a prequel and a sequel to Basterds.
I actually met Bob at a party once. We were both at the bar getting a drink. I said, "I'm getting a gin & tonic, what are you getting?" And, he said, "What?" It was so awesome. I was hoping we would be able to talk about filmmaking, but he immediately started ignoring me. I think the fact that I was wearing a throwback REO Speedwagon t-shirt might have had something to do with it. Guess I'll never know.
District 9 fell off about 50%. G.I. Joe: Rise of Cobra seems like it's still drawing in the hair metal crowd, or whomever the hell is going to see it. The Time Travelers Wife and Julie & Julia keep hanging around like a sorority girl with acne. Shorts made 6.6 mil. Maybe that will help Robert Rodriguez will get back to making movies like Desperado, where Salma Hayek is naked. Oh, and Post Grad did really well. In case you weren't aware, 2.8 mil for a new release is terrible. The Chinese government loans the U.S. 2.8 million about every nano second and this movie couldn't do it in three days.
1 Inglourious Basterds (2009) $37.6M $37.6M
2 District 9 (2009) $18.9M $73.5M
3 G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra (2009) $12.5M $121M
4 The Time Traveler's Wife (2009) $10M $37.4M
5 Julie & Julia (2009) $9M $59.3M
6 Shorts (2009) $6.6M $6.6M
7 G-Force (2009) $4.21M $107M
8 Harry Potter (2009) $3.52M $290M
9 The Ugly Truth (2009) $2.85M $82.9M
10 Post Grad (2009) $2.8M $2.8M
--Posted by Casey, August 24--