News

WEEKEND BOX OFFICE

If that was me in the middle, this would be my Facebook profile picture so fast my bra would come unhooked by itself...

Shutter Island managed to make a few sheckels over the weekend.  Which is awesome because I love Martin Scorcese.  Not, like, love him like I want him to lavalier me, love him.  Marty kind of looks like an Oscar the Grouch teddy bear, or something.  He's what I like to call "ugly cuddly."  Anyway, if you haven't seen the movie, it totally rocks.  It will make you completely forget about the one with Nic Cage where he's driving an ambulance.  I mean, what the hell was Scorcese thinking with that one?  I walked out half way through it, and was so upset I went through about 5 bottles of Boone's Farm.

Valentine's Day seems to be losing steam.  Which is probably a little disappointing to its 3000 cast members.  Don't worry guys, I hear there's going to be a sequel, and Slater, Screech and Zach will be in it. They're about the only actors who weren't in the first one.

1 Shutter Island (2010) $40.2M  $40.2M

2 Valentine's Day (2010) $17.2M  $87.4M

3 Avatar (2009)           $16.1M  $688M

4 The Lightning Thief (2010) $15.3M  $58.8M

5 The Wolfman (2010)         $9.85M  $50.3M

6 Dear John (2010/I)         $7.3M  $66M

7 Tooth Fairy (2010)         $4.5M  $49.9M

8 Crazy Heart (2009)         $3.02M  $21.6M

9 From Paris with Love (2010) $2.5M  $21.2M

10 Edge of Darkness (2010) $2.21M  $40.3M

Posted by Sara, Feb. 22--

WEEKEND BOX OFFICE

Dear John's audience times 15 million...

What the...?  So, either we were wrong about Channing Tatum, and moviegoers were really interested in seeing him get in touch with his softer side, or this was because the film had a huge tie in.  I'm guessing they could have put Elmer Fudd in the lead, and it would have done numbers.  But, 32.4 mil?  The execs at Sony and Relativity must be doing naked cart wheels.  Dear John was only expected to do about 20 mil.  Audiences were reportedly over 80% women, and over two-thirds were under 21.  So, basically the cast of Glee, minus the football players and teachers.

From Paris with Love, along with just about everything else, was just mauled by the Super Bowl. I didn't see any movies this weekend because my Super Bowl party started on Thursday.  Of last week.

1 Dear John (2010/I)           $32.4M $32.4M

2 Avatar (2009)           $23.6M $630M

3 From Paris with Love (2010)       $8.12M $8.12M

4 Edge of Darkness (2010)           $7M $29.1M

5 Tooth Fairy (2010)           $6.5M $34.3M

6 When in Rome (2010)   $5.5M $20.9M

7 The Book of Eli (2010)   $4.83M $82.2M

8 Crazy Heart (2009)            $3.65M $11.2M

9 Legion (2010)            $3.4M $34.6M

10 Sherlock Holmes (2009)    $2.63M $202M

Posted by Casey, Feb. 8--

WEEKEND PREVIEW

Channing Tatum moments after someone read a negative 'Dear John' review to him...

Is this the weekend that Avatar finally gets knocked off the perch?  That's the big question everyone has been asking all week.  The answer is...no.  I'm going out on a huge limb here and saying DearJohn will not be able to pull is off.  Channing Tatum in a dramatic role where he doesn't punch someone in the spleen?  Doesn't sound too appealing.  I think I'd rather watch 2 hours of Sham-Wow infomercials.  I have my doubts about From Paris with Love as well.  Is it possible this could be an action sleeper?  Eh, maybe.  But, my gut tells me neither of these films is going to be able to break 30 million.  Especially with Travolta sporting a shaved head and goatee.  Is he trying to be Bruce Willis, or what?  

Dear John (Channing Tatum, Amanda Seyfried, Richard Jenkins): A romantic drama about a soldier (Tatum) who falls for a co-ed (Seyfried) while he's home on leave. Their relationship is tested in the wake of the September 11th terrorist attacks, an event that causes him to re-enlist for service.

From Paris with Love (John Travolta, Jonathan Rhys Meyers): In Paris, a young employee in the office of the US Ambassador (Myers) hooks up with an American spy (Travolta) looking to stop a terrorist attack in the city.

[Limited] Frozen (Shawn Ashmore, Emma Bell, Kevin Zegers), Banlieue 13 (Cyril Raffaelli, David Belle), Red Riding: 1974 (Andrew Garfield, David Morrissey, John Henshaw)

--Posted by Gary, Feb. 5--

IN THE NEWS

Carrie, stop looking at me like that.  I told you I wasn't ready for a serious relationship...

There's a lot of stuff out there today.  Here's a rundown:

CARRIE UNDERWOOD JOINS CAST OF SURFER FILM?

I have always thought Carrie Underwood could make the transition to film star.  She's very easy on the eyes, is a great performer, and does well in her videos.  So did Britney Spears.  And, we all know how that turned out.  So, I find her choice of a role here somewhat perplexing.  A surfer movie?  Seriously?  Just kind of weird.  All I'm sayin'.

MORE FAST & THE FURIOUS?

From the category, "Least Requested Film Sequels," comes the announcement that there will be another Fast & the Furious.  I liked the first movie.  I really did.  And, I know the most recent installment did very well at the box office.  But, how interesting could Paul Walker really be?

CAPTAIN AMERICA MOVING FORWARD

Sounds like Joe Johnston is looking for his leading man.  Yes, actually looking.  For realsies.  If I had to take a stab at who Captain America will be, I'd put my money on Matthew McConaughey.  Even though he probably would not be very good.  And, he plays the bongos naked.  I'm not sure Captain America rolls like that.

Posted by Gary, Feb. 4--  

OSCAR NOMINEES

Last year, while watching Hugh Jackman do show tunes in tight trousers, I prayed to God that one day, Alec Baldwin and Steve Martin would host the Oscars.  You're welcome...

So, here they are--the nominees.  Nothing too surprising.  I'm not going to give you my picks, because I always rip it up at Oscars parties on those stupid print outs, and I don't want any comp.  I love taking people's money, and spending it all on beer when everyone is crying, and telling me I have no soul if I don't use it to buy blankets for the homeless.  Look--if you wanted to help society, you should be more awesome at gambling.  Like me.

Best Actress In A Supporting Role

Penelope Cruz - Nine 

Vera Farmiga - Up In The Air 

Maggie Gyllenhaal - Crazy Heart 

Anna Kendrick - Up In The Air 

Mo'nique - Precious 

Best Actor In A Supporting Role 

Matt Damon - Invictus 

Woody Harrelson - The Messenger 

Christopher Plummer - The Last Station 

Stanley Tucci - The Lovely Bones 

Cristoph Waltz - Inglourious Basterds 

Best Actress In A Leading Role 

Sandra Bullock - The Blind Side 

Helen Mirren - The Last Station 

Carey Mulligan - An Education 

Gabourey Sidibe - Precious 

Meryl Streep - Julie & Julia 

Best Actor In A Leading Role

Jeff Bridges - Crazy Heart 

George Clooney - Up In The Air 

Colin Firth - A Single Man 

Morgan Freeman - Invictus 

Jeremy Renner - The Hurt Locker 

Best Director 

James Cameron - Avatar 

Kathryn Bigelow - The Hurt Locker 

Quentin Tarantino - Inglourious Basterds 

Lee Daniels - Precious 

Jason Reitman - Up In The Air 

Best Original Screenplay 

The Hurt Locker 

Inglourious Basterds 

The Messenger 

A Serious Man 

Up 

Best Picture 

Avatar 

The Blind Side 

District 9 

An Education 

The Hurt Locker 

Inglourious Basterds 

Precious 

A Serious Man 

Up 

Up in the Air

Posted by Casey, Feb.2--

SONY LAYS OFF STAFF BECAUSE THEY WERE TOO SUCCESSFUL

all on

Ron Howard and Brian Grazer having a good laugh after Amy Pascal tried to lay them off...

In this economy, it's not very often people who are getting a pink slip read the following words: "In our article in The SPE Reel in December, we spoke about the shifting landscape of entertainment and its impact on the economic model at the heart of this industry.  Despite the records our studio set at the box office, we're not immune from these forces, and we said then that costs needed to be controlled as part of a sustained and strategic effort to remake Sony Pictures for the future."  Those words are from a letter sent to employees by Amy Pascal and Michael Lynton, top execs at Sony, reported by Deadline Hollywood. 

They could have just said, "Thanks for the record year. %$#@ you."  

If this makes you angry,and you think it's a joke, talk to some people who work for Sony.  They want to run someone over with their car.  People who are getting laid off will face a jobless market, and the people who stay are going to be worked to death.  It's a running theme in corporate America right now. Job satisfaction is an an all time low.  But, for some reason we think that Hollywood is different.  That's because it is.  Film studios are making a boat load of cash right now.  They can afford to keep people. 

Here's the link to the Deadline Hollywood Article:

http://www.deadline.com/hollywood/sony-pictures-layoffs-announced-450-staff-6-5-of-workforce-100-open-positions-closed/#more-24204

--Posted by Gary, Feb. 2--

WEEKEND BOX OFFICE

How do you stop James Cameron from taking over the world?  You don't.  We have to hope James Cameron can stop himself.

So, it looks like Avatar is losing steam.  It only made a measly $30 million this weekend when half the country was covered in ice.  What will stop James Cameron's CGI juggernaut?  Maybe I should pitch a film about rival studios trying to stop Avatar.  Like, Outbreak, only with a movie about weird, indigenous blue people.

The big story here is that two new films actually broke into the top three for once.  Edge of Darkness, and When in Rome were one and two, and pulled in a respective $17 and $12 mil.  Rumor on the street is, 98% of the people who saw When in Rome were desperate, single women who were rejected by eharmony.  

1 Avatar (2009)         $30M $594M

2 Edge of Darkness (2010) $17.1M $17.1M

3 When in Rome (2010) $12.1M $12.1M

4 Tooth Fairy (2010)         $10M $26.1M

5 The Book of Eli (2010) $8.77M $74.4M

6 Legion (2010)         $6.8M $28.6M

7 The Lovely Bones (2009) $4.74M $38M

8 Sherlock Holmes (2009) $4.51M $198M

9 Squeakquel (2009)                   $4M $209M

10 It's Complicated (2009) $3.72M $104M

Posted by Todd, Feb. 1--

WEEKEND PREVIEW

In real life Josh Duhamel would have sex with Kristin Bell, then sneak out the bathroom window in the middle of the night...

So, by now you've probably seen the previews for both of the movies out this weekend, When in Rome and Edge of Darkness.  If I hear Mel Gibson say, "I'm Da guy wit' nuthin' ta lose--fasten your seat belt!" one more time, I might actually go punch his dialect coach in the kidney.  See, someone killed Mel's daughter in the film, and now he's going to go on a rampage, and people are going to pay, and...this might be a great movie, but after seeing the same preview 4500 times, I'm kind of over it.  Then there's When in Rome.  I might need an estrogen treatment in order to see this.   When I was single I used to go see films like this with my date because it made me seem sensitive and caring.  Now, I'm married, and my wife goes to see these movies on a girls night out.  Which means I get to watch the kids, put them to bed early, and watch Cinemax on-demand.  Life is sweet.  

When in Rome (Kristen Bell, Josh Duhamel): Beth (Bell) is a young, ambitious New Yorker who is completely unlucky in love. However, when she impulsively steals some coins from a reputed fountain of love during a whirlwind trip to Rome, she finds herself aggressively pursued by a band of suitors.

Edge of Darkness (Mel Gibson, Ray Winstone, Danny Huston): As homicide detective Thomas Craven (Gibson) investigates the death of his activist daughter, he uncovers not only her secret life, but a corporate cover-up and government collusion that attracts an agent (Winstone) tasked with cleaning up the evidence.

[Limited]  North Face (Benno F�rmann, Florian Lukas, Johanna Wokalek), Saint John of Las Vegas (Steve Buscemi, Romany Malco, Sarah Silverman)

--Posted by Todd, Jan. 29--

BANDERAS, PAXTON, SCORE A KNOCKOUT

Paxton: Look, Gina, I'm only your Father in the movie.  This isn't creepy at all in real life, baby...

Anotnio Banderas and Bill Paxton are obviously very smart men who know how important it is to be able to spend time with gorgeous women while making a film.  That's obviously why they are joining the cast of Steven Soderbergh's action-thriller Knockout opposite molten lava hot martial arts champ Gina Carano.  It might have a little bit to do with Soderbergh, seeing as how he's a great director, but if I had to put my finger on it, I would always bet the house on boobs.

Carano, in her screen debut, will portray a top-level private security operative who's convinced she's been betrayed by her boss and the government and goes on the run to prove her suspicions are true.  According to Variety, Paxton will portray her father (um, okay) and Banderas will play a foreign operative drawn into the mission of revenge.

Lem Dobbs penned the script.  He and Soderbergh previously worked together on The Limey and Kafka.

Posted by Todd, Jan. 28--

SAM WORTHINGTON TO STAR IN DRACULA?

I think I wore that same tuxedo for my senior prom...

Since he was just in a film that grossed a billion and half so far, I guess it makes sense that this Worthington dude is getting offers for everything.  I should offer him the part in my film, Catalog Day, about an on the edge postman who goes berserk when the Sears catalog comes out.  When he refuses to deliver the catalog, his boss fires him, and all hell breaks lose.  It's Rambo as a postman, really, and I wrote it back in high school, when Stallone was still cool, so sue me.

Back to Sam Worthington.  Sounds like he's in pretty serious negotiations to star in Dracula Year Zero for Universal Pictures.  Alex Proyas will direct from a Matt Sazama and Burk Sharpless script.  According to Variety, Universal is keeping the logline under wraps, but story explores the origin of Dracula, weaving vampire mythology with the true history of Prince Vlad the Impaler and depicting Dracula as a flawed hero in a tragic love story set in a dark age of magic and war.

That sounds kind of weird to me, no offense.  And, the title is terrible, man.  Dracula, Year Zero?  Uh, get me Marketing on line one, please.  And, Michael Deluca is producing it, so it'll be formulaic.  That much we know.  Deluca treats scripts like they need to read like a recipe on the back of a Betty Crocker box.  Still, they might cast someone hot for the love interest like Rachel McAdams, so there's hope for it yet.

Posted by Casey, Jan. 27--

WEEKEND BOX OFFICE

The 'ol "I don't know how to shoot a bow and arrow trick."  Smooth.  It sucks hot, blue alien chicks in every time...

Yeah, I'm a day late with this.  Don't bitch at me.  Todd already called me this morning and was all, "Dude, where the hell is my weekend box office story? It was supposed to be up yesterday."  Saying yesterday like it was back in 2001, or something.  And, I was all, "Look, narc, I work for this site for free."  Then, he goes into all of this being responsible %$#@, and how I'm in my early thirties, and it's no wonder I haven't sold a script in four years.  You know what, dude?  Rehab is for quitters.  Okay?  Quitters.  I'm in it to win it.

Avatar is still rockin' it.  Legion did okay.  And, Tooth Fairy?  Well, that should answer the question, "How badly do movie goers want to see The Rock in tights?"  I still cannot believe this Squeakquel dudes.  It's massive.  I called my agent, and was like, "Get me the job writing the next one.  And, I'll need 2% of gross."  We both had a pretty good laugh.  I try not to laugh too hard when I'm hung over.  It makes my head feel like someone is crushing it in a vice.

How about It's Complicated?  More like It's About to Break $100 Mil.  I never saw that coming.   Too bad Meryl Streep is 60.  I'll bet in her day she wasa real hell cat.  Maybe she still is.  If I were Gene Hackman or Clint Eastwood, I'd get take enough Viagra to kill a water buffalo, and give her a real hot flash.  

1 Avatar (2009)                   $34.9M  $552M

2 Legion (2010)                   $17.5M  $17.5M

3 The Book of Eli (2010)           $15.7M  $60.7M

4 Tooth Fairy (2010)                   $14M  $14M

5 The Lovely Bones (2009)           $8.42M  $31.2M

6 Sherlock Holmes (2009)           $6.63M  $191M

7 Chipmunks: The Squeakquel (2009) $6.4M  $204M

8 Extraordinary Measures (2010)         $6.01M  $6.01M

9 It's Complicated (2009)           $5.81M  $98.3M

10 The Spy Next Door (2010)   $4.58M  $18.5M

Posted by Casey, Jan. 26--

WEEKEND BOX OFFICE

I've never really wondered what The Rock would look like in tights, a satin shirt, and carrying a man-purse, but now I know anyway.

This is one of those weekends where, if I were an ardent moviegoer, I wouldn't be that disappointed.  Since I'm a Dad, I'll be knee deep in tickle-me Elmo, fingerpainting, and getting nailed in the nuts with some sort of flying object all weekend.

Tooth Fairy (Dwayne Johnson, Ashley Judd, Julie Andrews): A bad deed on the part of a tough minor-league hockey player (Johnson) results in an unusual sentence: He must serve one week as a real-life tooth fairy.  "It's The Rock in a pink outfit!  Do you see this?  It's so funny!"  If that was how you reacted when you saw the trailer, go see it.  Me, not so much.  Although, kids usually like his movies, so stop thnking about yourself and put your kids first, Mr. Selfish. MAYBE, IF MY KIDS WERE OLD ENOUGH

Legion (Paul Bettany, Dennis Quaid, Charles S. Dutton): God has lost his faith in humankind, causing him to send his legion of angels to bring on the Apocalypse. A remote diner becomes the battleground, where the Archangel Michael (Bettany) bands together with a group of strangers, though Michael's true focus is to protect a pregnant waitress whose unborn child is humankind's hope for survival.  This film looks really cool in the trailer and everything, but will the story and dialogue be any good?  Also, it has Dennis Quaid.  Which means this could go either way. MAYBE

Extraordinary Measures (Brendan Fraser, Keri Russell, Harrison Ford): A drama centered on the efforts of John and Aileen Crowley (Fraser and Russell) to find a researcher (Ford) to develop a potential cure for their two children's rare genetic disorder.  I can't stand Brendan Fraser (although he's a very nice guy). I've never been able to completely get through The Mummy. So, I'm going to take a pass on this one.  It really is a great story, though.  If you can tolerate Fraser, go see it.  I'll wait for the DVD so I can fast forward to the third act. BRENDAN FRASER/MEH

[Limited]  Creation (Paul Bettany, Jennifer Connelly), The Girl on the Train (�milie Dequenne, Catherine Deneuve, Michel Blanct), To Save a Life (Randy Wayne, Deja Kreutzberg, Joshua Weigel).

Posted by Todd, Jan. 22--

$45 MILLION FOR CONAN AND STAFF

Look, Conan, I'd take this $45 mil.  I heard if you don't, NBC is going to make you watch the Olympics...

It's official.  Conan O'Brien gets $35 million for himself, and his staff will divvy up another $10 mil.  O'Brien can return to late night as soon as September.  

There's no report on how much of this $45 million will come out of Jeff Zucker's pocket, but I would not expect the NBC/Uni topper to get out of this unscathed.  If I were a bettin' man, I would bet that Zucker does not make it to summer.  It won;t be long before Comcast brass remembers that all of these blunders, the Silverman hiring, the Leno/O'Brien Tonight show fiasco, also include "Good Morning Miami."  Remember that little show about Zucker's experience working in local television?  Yeah, that was a great idea Jeff.  Get your dream job, then develop a show about yourself, that sucks.  Just the kind of impression you want to make.  I remember an NBC exec at the time telling me, "Good Morning Miami is all Jeff."  He was talking about it like it was a plate of dog poop he was being forced to eat.

Joey?  Add that to the list.

Posted by Todd, Jan. 21--

JEFF ZUCKER GETTING DEATH THREATS

Hey, guys, how awesome is this?  We're totally kicking UPN's and the WB's ass...

Wow.  Who knew it would get this bad for Jeff Zucker (us)?  Comcast, who just acquired NBC/Universal, is now calling it's flagship network a mess.  Can you blame them?  Let's see, who could be responsible for this mess?  Hmm.  Let's see.  He's bald.  He wears v-neck sweaters a lot.  He has a lot of chest hair.  The v-neck and the chest hair is not a great combination.  Okay, it's Zucker.  I hate to say it, because Zucker will likely track me down like a cyborg and never buy a pitch or spec from me again, but he has been terrible.  There.  I said it.  In talking with people at NBC, he's probably been more hindrance than help over the years.

Now, I don't endorse death threats for anyone.  Even Zucker.  But, it doesn't surprise me that this is happening in the wake of the Conan/Leno mess.  Conan has some very loyal fans, and so does Leno.

Lost in all of this: I THOUGHT LENO WAS RETIRING?  Why is he coming back to the tonight show?  Is he a comedic version of Brett Favre, or something?  Make up your mind.

In the end, Leno will back on the Tonight Show, where he belongs, and Conan will be on Fox--where he belongs.  Conan deserves a shot at doing his old show in a new setting.  I miss the old Conan. I really do.  And, by the way, I don't hate Leno.  I think he's great at his thing.  I just don't understand why he can't call it a career, and tinker with his cars.  

If he loved doing the Tonight Show that much, he should have stayed in the first place.

Posted by Todd, Jan. 20--

SPIDERMAN REBOOT: PLEASE GOD NOT TAYLOR LAUTNER

At least we won't have to look at Kirsten Dunst for 2 hours in the next installment...

So, Sam Raimi and Tobey Maguire have apparently seen enough of the Spiderman 4 creative disaster.  I can't say that I blame them for exiting.  Maguire will have plenty of options, and Raimi is likely to now get the gig directing World of Warcraft--another huge franchise.  My biggest worry now with a Spidey reboot is casting (I haven't been able to get my grubby hands on James Vanderbilt's script).  For some reason I have this sinking suspicion it's going to be Taylor Lautner.  Why?  I don't know.  I haven't heard any rumors to tell me otherwise, but then again, I'm married, have a son, and just changed a diaper about 20 minutes ago.  It's not like I have my ear to the track constantly.

Here's why Taylor Lautner would bother me.  I know he's an actor, but he's about as interesting as a piece of drift wood.  Maybe he'll be able to portray himself as the Peter Parker in the comic books--a smart aleck, wise cracking, awkwardly skinny type.  Who knows.  I just don't think the kid has the chops.  But, he's probably the most bankable under 18 actor out there right now. I can't think of anyone else who's been in a franchise, is ripped, and barely has a driver's license.  Sony will not go for an unknown, and "make" a star here.  That much we know.  Studios never do that.

Making matters worse in my mind, Sony has hired Marc Webb, the guy who directed 500 Days of Summer.  Webb, the guy who is attached to direct the film version of Jesus Christ Superstar, is going to shoot a franchise action film in 3-D?  A shaky choice, at  best.  Can't blame Webb for wanting the job, though, can you?

If nothing else, it's going to be interesting.  And, that's what's so exciting about Hollywood.  The blunders.  Because 9 times out of 10 they get it wrong.

Posted by Todd, Jan. 20--

CONAN BANKS 40 MIL, GETS TO LEAVE NBC?

Ben Silverman is probably wondering what happened to his $40 million severance package...

Wow, did Conan marry Tiger Woods, or something?  This is the second greatest divorce ever.  Conan snags a pile of sweet cash, gets to leave the S.S. NBCtitanic, and will likely get his own show over at Fox, which fits his comedic style better anyway.  I mean, I'm sure all of the 70 year old women with insomnia who watch the Tonight Show would totally get Pimpa the Robot and Triumph the Insult Comic dog.  As long as they were wearing their hearing aid and smoking medical marijuana.  

Man, I wish I could get this kind of deal to leave my job.  The only problem is, angry writer has zero advertising revenue, and the guy who owns it, Todd, is thinking about selling a kidney right to launch another website no one will care about (I know I'm the only reason anyone comes here--I'm a franchise waiting to happen).  You got married and have a kid, dude.  You're tied down.  I'm kickin' it in a studio apartment in Venice, rockin' the Firebird, and picking up chicks who barely speak English, so...unfettered livin'.  You should try it some time.  Oh, wait, that's right.  You're married, and will never see another woman naked again.

By the way, how does Jeff Zucker get out of this and not look like he was totally owned?  It's possible.  But, will he take some advice from a clever writer with a poker face of steel?  Jeff, babe, call me.  We'll hit Jerry's.  I love their corned beef on marble rye.  It speaks to me.

--Posted by Casey, Jan. 19--

67TH GOLDEN GLOBE AWARDS WINNERS

Good evening, wankers...

There was a little awards show last night called the Golden Globes.  Maybe you've heard of it.  You probably have because it's always better than the Academy Awards.  It is.  They give out the awards people care about, and finish at 11pm.  There's no guy in tight pants doing show tunes, or some artist singing a song from a movie you didn't see.  Winners talk about peeing, or being stuck in the bathroom, or being way too drunk.  As a matter if fact, the host last night, Ricky Gervais, was drinking beer all night.  And, he didn't even slur once.  That's a pro.

Motion Picture - Drama - Avatar 

Motion Picture - Musical or Comedy - The Hangover 

Actor in a Motion Picture - Drama - Jeff Bridges for Crazy Heart 

Actress in a Motion Picture - Drama - Sandra Bullock for The Blind Side 

Actor in a Motion Picture - Musical or Comedy - Robert Downey Jr. for Sherlock Holmes

Actress in a Motion Picture - Musical or Comedy - Meryl Streep for Julie & Julia 

Actor in a Supporting Role in a Motion Picture - Christoph Waltz for Inglourious Basterds

Actress in a Supporting Role in a Motion Picture - Mo'Nique for Precious: Based on the Novel Push by Sapphire

Director - Motion Picture - James Cameron for Avatar 

Screenplay - Motion Picture - Up in the Air: Jason Reitman, Sheldon Turner

Animated Film - Up 

Foreign Language Film - Das weisse Band - Eine deutsche Kindergeschichte 

Television Series - Drama - "Mad Men" 

Television Series - Musical or Comedy - "Glee" 

Mini-Series or Motion Picture Made for Television - Grey Gardens 

Best Performance Actor in a Mini-Series or a Motion Picture Made for Television - Kevin Bacon for Taking Chance 

Performance Actress in a Mini-Series or a Motion Picture Made for Television - Drew Barrymore for Grey Gardens 

Performance Actor in a Television Series - Musical or Comedy - Alec Baldwin for "30 Rock" 

Best Performance Actress in a Television Series - Musical or Comedy - Toni Collette for "United States of Tara" 

Best Performance Actor in a Television Series - Drama - Michael C. Hall for "Dexter" 

Best Performance  Actress in a Television Series - Drama - Julianna Margulies for "The Good Wife"

Performance Actor in a Supporting Role in a Series, Mini-Series or Motion Picture Made for Television - John Lithgow for "Dexter" 

Performance  Actress in a Supporting Role in a Series, Mini-Series or Motion Picture Made for Television - Chlo� Sevigny for "Big Love" 

Posted by Gary, Jan. 18--

WEEKEND BOX OFFICE

Why don't chipmunks wear pants?  Just askin'...

So, Avatar looks like it's really slowing down.  Man, it only made $41 million this past weekend, and couldn't even break $500 million domestically.  What a disappointment.  Denzel Washington showed some serious pull with his new film, Book of Eli.  $31 mil against Avatar ain't too shabby.  Another new entry, The Lovely Bones did decent numbers as well.  The real story here is Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Squeakquel.  It's about to break $200 million domestically, and if you'd asked me how much money this rodent film would make a month ago, I would have said it wouldn't break $100 million because the trailer made me want to expose myself to toxic levels of asbestos.  Show's how much I know.   

1 Avatar (2009)                       $41.3M $492M

2 The Book of Eli (2010)               $31.6M $31.6M

3 The Lovely Bones (2009)               $17.1M $17.5M

4 Chipmunks: The Squeakquel (2009)       $11.5M $193M

5 Sherlock Holmes (2009)               $9.82M $180M

6 The Spy Next Door (2010)        $9.7M $9.7M

7 It's Complicated (2009)                $7.67M $88.2M

8 Leap Year (2010)                $5.88M $17.5M

9 The Blind Side (2009)                $5.57M $227M

10 Up in the Air (2009/I)                $5.46M $62.8M

Posted by Casey, Jan. 18--

INTERESTING

You're lucky you didn't go to Yale, Zucker.  We gave a guy like you a wedgie so bad once, his testicles became ovaries...

This is a story I knew about before, but had completely forgotten until I read Deadline Hollywood.  When Jeff Zucker was a student at Harvard, he was the head of the school newspaper.  At the same time, Conan was running Lampoon.  Well, Conan and some of the other Lampoon staffers had a little rivalry going with the Crimson (they thought Zucker was a total weenie), and decided to steal an entire run of the paper one morning.  Well, Zucker was none too pleased, called the police, and had Conan arrested.  He reportedly had "words" for Conan while police were questioning him, and the cops forced the late night host to reveal the location of that days newspapers.  Conan and others were forced to haul the stash back to the Crimson offices--with Zucker rubbing it in their faces.

Hmm.

Flash forward to today, and the roles have reversed, just a tad, no?  Currently, Conan is handing Zucker his tight rear end on a platter, and making him look like a complete ninnie.  Zucker reportedly tried to put the screws to Conan, threatening to keep him off the air for the time remaining on his contract, and Conan laughed heartily, and said, fine, no worries.  Let me just see if my team of 75 lawyers is back from their team building conference in St. Barts.  Checkmate.  It's kind of hard to threaten someone who doesn't care, and will probably get five times as much money if they sue you.  

It's looking more and more like Conan will be allowed out of his deal at NBC, with full compensation, and allowed to go somewhere else.

In the end, victory is Conan's.  And, he didn't even have to call the cops.

--Posted by Todd, Jan. 15--

CONAN TELLS NBC TO POUND IT

Hmmmm, I wonder what NBC will do if Jay fails at 10pm?  They have a history of being super awesome, so...

Looks like this whole NBC Leno-Conan thing is ending really well.  Yeah, we'll just move Jay back to 11:35, and push Conan to a half-hour later.  Yeah.  Awesome.  Conan will be cool with that.  The guy waited for five years to get  the Tonight Show.  He'll just be, like, "Oh, sure NBC, sure.  Whatever you guys want.  No prob.  I love you guys.  You guys are the best.  I'm naming my next child Zucker.  Yeah, Zucker O'Brien.  That rocks."

Enter reality.  

Conan to NBC: $#%$%@@##$% (just add your own expletives).

Look for Conan to slide over to Fox, return to NYC, and do a Letterman type thing.  Frankly, he deserves his own shot to compete with the big boys.  

We're guessing NBC will want to re-install Leno on the Tonight Show, but it could very well be that they end up with nothing.  No Conan, and no Leno.  And, then what for their venerable late night property?  

It's curtains.  Mhyeah, curtains, see?  Mhyeah.  (get it?  because the host walks out through them, and it's...so...get it?) 

--Posted by Gary, Jan. 14--

THE A-TEAM TRAILER IS OUT

Jessica Biel is either feeling wintery fresh...or she wants to make love to me...I can't decide.

You know how we're always talking about how remakes typically suck?  Um...yeah.

Bleeeaaacht.

www.comingsoon.net/news/movienews.php

Posted by Todd, Jan. 11--

JAY LENO CANCELLED...SORT OF

Oh, hey, excuse me Conan, can I get in here?  I just need a half-hour.  What's that?  I can't hear you over the panic sound coming from NBC.  Go what myself?

The Jay Leno experiment is officially over.  Sort of.  Sounds like NBC is moving the show back to 11:35, but they're only keeping half of it.  They plan to air Conan at 12:05.  Since 30 minutes is pretty much Leno's monologue, and that's all anyone cares about anyway, this might be a good move.  And, by 'good move' I mean hopelessly doomed for crapitude.  As for Conan and Jimmy Fallon, looks like they're sucking it up unless they want to opt out, and move to Fox. 

You ever hear that old adage, if you're in a hole, stop digging?  NBC is using an excavator.  You know, Shanghai is nice this time of year.  It's smoggy, and smells like an arm pit.  You'll feel right at home.

Here's some free advice, NBC, even though I think Jeff Zucker is the Prince of Darkness (see?  I'm not bitter that they passed on, like, four of my pilot specs).  Let Jay go.  Just let him go.  This is starting to get creepy.  Like, when someone puts their dog down, and takes it to a taxidermist.  

--Posted by Gary, Jan. 11--

WEEKEND BOX OFFICE

Doesn't matter where you go in the Universe.  Corn rows are the shizzle, nizzle...

So...looks like Avatar is making some money, still.  Which is good, because I heard James Cameron was in a soup line recently, with his nap sack tied to a stick.  The director's pic about blue people with flat noses has pulled in $1.34 billion worldwide in only it's fourth frame.  That puts the film 'only' about $450 million away from Titanic's record gross of $1.8 billion.  In another riveting quote from a Fox distribution exec, the studio explained how they knew the film would continue to dominate domestically.  Or, not.  

"We thought we would do $100 million overseas, but we really didn't know, because we're outside of holidays and kids are back in school," Fox co-prexy of international distribution Paul Hanneman said.  Basically, this guy was afraid of Leap Year.  That's what he should have said.  Just say it next time, dude.  I couldn't sleep because I thought Amy Adams was going to kill us.

Daybreakers (our pick to be the top new entry-booyah) got owned by Sherlock Holmes and a Chipmunk movie (does anyone understand this?  The trailers made me want to chug battery acid), and Leap Year and Youth in Revolt didn't fare much better.  Hey, at least they tried.  They didn't quit like certain people because they were down $300, and too scared of their wife to go to the ATM (Uncle Barry).  Oh, and, they charged me $13 for that Dasani water you just "had to have."  You %$#@^&% idiot.   

1 Avatar (2009)                 $48.5M $429M

2 Sherlock Holmes (2009)         $16.6M $165M

3 Chipmunks: The Squeakquel (2009) $16.3M $178M

4 Daybreakers (2009)                 $15M $15M

5 It's Complicated (2009)         $11M $76.4M

6 Leap Year (2010)         $9.17M $9.17M

7 The Blind Side (2009)         $7.75M $219M

8 Up in the Air (2009/I)         $7.1M $54.7M

9 Youth in Revolt (2009)         $7M          $7M

10 Princess and the Frog (2009)         $4.74M $92.6M

--Posted by Casey, Jan. 11--  

(send questions or comments for Casey to connectmedia@live.com)

WEEKEND PREVIEW

What Han Solo would have looked like had he been played by Ethan Hawke...and carried a cross bow...

Ohhhhkay, it's January.  This month is usually a dead zone for films.  It's the only hooker walking the streets at 3AM, and "she's" a tranny with a rash she swears is is from razor burn.  But, this weekend actually doesn't look so bad.  If you're the type of person who just has to see a movie every weekend (God bless you), there's got to be something appealing.  Just stay away from the "women" with Adam's apples.  That advice was from Casey, not me.  I'm married.  And, my wife only has eyes for me...

Daybreakers (Ethan Hawke, Willem Dafoe, Sam Neill): In the year 2017, a plague has transformed most every human into vampires. Faced with a dwindling blood supply, the fractured dominant race plots their survival; meanwhile, a researcher (Hawke) works with a covert band of vamps on a way to save humankind.  --Um, the description should just say "vampire movie."  Just like zombie films, bloodsuckers are just awesome to some people for some reason.  They can't resist.  Me?  I'll stay inside this weekend and drink hot cocoa.  With lots of Kalua in it.  PASS

Youth in Revolt (Michael Cera, Portia Doubleday, Ray Liotta): Like most teens, young Nick Twisp (Cera) is ruled by his libido. And from the recesses of a trailer park in Northern California, Twisp concocts a plan -- make that multiple schemes -- to lose his virginity to a local girl, the precocious Sheeni Saunders (Doubleday).  Maybe they should have called this one "14 Year Old Virgin."  I really didn't get Juno.  I know a lot of people liked that film, but I was sitting in the movie theater just waiting for it to be over.  YiR has similiarities.  A lot of critics and trumpeters are calling it Juno with a dude.  I think Michael Cera is hilarious, but he'd better be careful.  There's a limit to how many times an actor can play the same character.  Just  ask Bruce Willis about Surrogates.  MAYBE

Leap Year (Amy Adams, Matthew Goode, Adam Scott): Anna (Adams) has spent four years with her boyfriend, Jeremy (Scott), without a wedding proposal. During his business trip to Dublin, Anna opts to act on Leap Day, an Irish tradition that encourages women to propose to men on the date February 29th. A re-routed plane trip, however, lands her at the door of a Welsh innkeeper (Goode), who might offer a diversion of his own.  I like Amy Adams.  She's cute, and I think she's crazy talented.  But, I'd rather eat a bucket of lima beans than see this chick flick, sap-fest.  That doesn't mean you shouldn't go see it.  I just wouldn't recommend this to someone I hated.  Well, okay, I would.  Jeff Zucker, go see this movie.  YES, IF YOU'RE A CHICK OR WANT TO HAVE SEX WITH A CHICK.

[Limited Release]  Crazy on the Outside (Tim Allen, Sigourney Weaver, Jeanne Tripplehorn), Wonderful World (Matthew Broderick, Sanaa Lathan, Michael K. Williams), Bitch Slap (Julia Voth, Erin Cummings, America Olivo).

--Posted by Todd, Jan. 8--

SPIDERMAN 4 RELEASE DATE PUSHED

Don't worry baby...this suit is made of latex...and webbed for your pleasure...

If you wrote Spiderman 1, 2, or 3, I'm pretty sure you're not reading this site.  For the rest of us who don't get $2 million for a screenplay, it looks like production for Spiderman 4 has been pushed.  Word is it's going to move from May 2011 to July 2011.  I disagree for a number of reasons.  One, Sony has basically thrown out the first three drafts of the fourth installment because director Sam Raimi thought they weren't good enough.  Now Alvin Sargeant, the guy who penned 2 and 3, has been hired (why wasn't he hired in the first place?) and is expected to turn in his draft shortly.  If Raimi hates Sargeant's draft-ruh roh.

Traditionally, Spiderman has kicked off the summer movie season, and dominated.  What will happen if it slides two months into the summer and had some week to week competition?  What if the film is released even later?

I'm going to go ahead and make a call here.  Spidey 4 gets pushed to May 2012.  There's very little chance this latest draft is going to come in and create a consensus with all of the cooks in the kitchen. Let's say they accept this draft as suitable--there will be rewrites.  There are always rewrites.  As for production, how will they accelerate a schedule so dependent on CGI?  Even with advances in technology, CGI still takes forever.

Sony has already forfeited that prime May 2011 slot.  Anymore, July is late in the summer season.  Is it worth losing potentially hundreds of millions to rush this to the theater?

That's my argument for 2012.  I could be wrong.

--Posted by Todd, Jan. 6--

WEEKEND BOX OFFICE

Here James Cameron tries to explain how he and his star ended up with the same haircut...creeeepy...

James Cameron's "Avatar" just seems to keep going like a bad SNL skit.  Just when you thought it was over, Horatio Sanz comes on stage, and it continues for another 10 minutes.  The science fiction film grossed another $68.3 million domestically over the weekend, and shot past $1 billion worldwide.  The film about weird blue people and imperialist Americans raised its domestic total to $352.1 million, and a worldwide gross of $1.02 billion.

"It's like a runaway freight train. It just keeps doing business," said Fox distribution executive Bert Livingston, presumably boning out like a nerd showering with the Dallas Cowboys cheerleaders. "Here's what's happening: I think everybody has to see `Avatar' once. Even people who don't normally go to the movies, they've heard about it and are saying, `I have to see it.' Then there's those people seeing it multiple times."  Oh, you think that's what's happening, dude?  Really?  Genius.  You left out, "I think they might be buying popcorn, too.  I can't be 100% sure without consulting the marketing department."  Why isn't someone from the studio standing there to slap the phone out of of this guy's hand like Ferris Bueller did to Cameron when he was talking to Principal Rooney.  Layoffs, man.  This is what happens.

This is the story of every uber film.  People get off their ass and go see it.  It's called buzz.  Then when people who see movies regularly go to the cineplex and see the poster for Have You Heard About the Morgans, they decide to go see Avatar again so they don't projectile vomit their dinner three rows up.  So, if you want your movies to make a lot of money, studios, just make great ones while everyone else is making crap.  Eazy money, boyee.

Look at me giving the studios free advice.  I'm such a nice guy now.  It's my New Years resolution.  That and to have sex with Heather Locklear.  She's older now,and her boobs have sagged a little.  I might have a shot. 

P.S.  How the %$#@ did Alvin and the Chipmunks make 157 million?  And, how can I get the job writing the next squeakquel???

1 Avatar (2009)                 $68.3M $352M

2 Sherlock Holmes (2009)         $38.4M $141M

3 Alvin and the Chipmunks II (2009)     $36.6M $157M

4 It's Complicated (2009)         $18.7M $59.1M

5 The Blind Side (2009)         $12.7M $209M

6 Up in the Air (2009/I)         $11.3M $45M

7 The Princess and the Frog (2009)     $10M $86.1M

8 Morgans? (2009)           $5M $25.5M

9 Nine (2009)                  $4.25M $14M

10 Invictus (2009)          $4.13M $30.8M

--Posted by Casey, Jan. 4--

WEEKEND PREVIEW

It's nice to see that Grizzly Adams was finally able to adopt a child...

We usually write the weekend preview on Fridays, but since I'll probably be puking my guts out all day tomorrow (hopefully), I thought I'd be proactive and turn it in today.  Basically, the entire 34 and under world will be doing the same thing as me (and studios know 'dis), so both of the films out this weekend are really weird limited releases.  The kind of stuff a theater major would watch and say how 'layered' the performances were.  The only layered thing I'll be watching this weekend is a bean dip.    

So, I'm going to do what I would recommend anyone else do.  I'm going to watch The Hangover(is there anything better to watch when you're hungover?), and think about how cool it would be to wake up and have a tiger and a chicken in my hotel suite.  I'd also like to lose my roommate, but don't tell him that.  He's really sensitive and wears bikini briefs.  It'd probably make him cry.

The White Ribbon [12/30 -- limited] (Christian Friedel, Ernst Jacobi, Leonie Benesch): A series of strange accidents occur in Eichwald, a small village in Protestant northern Germany, on cusp of World War I. The abused and suppressed children of the villagers seem to be at the heart of this mystery, but who is behind it?

The Loss of a Teardrop Diamond [12/30 -- LA/NY] (Bryce Dallas Howard, Chris Evans): (Based on the Tennessee Williams play) In 1920s Memphis, rebellious young heiress Fisher Willow (Howard) chooses an impoverished local (Evans) to be her escort to a societal event. A larger scandal ensues when she loses a valuable diamond earring at the party, making her date the prime suspect and creating a wider rift between Fisher and her family.

--Posted by Casey, Dec. 31--

TAYLOR AND TAYLOR ARE NO MORE

I see how you're lookin' at me, Taylor, and I'm likin' it...

Tragic news if you're a 12 year old girl, fantastic news if you're a cougar, and stupendous news if you are me.  Taylor Swift and Taylor Lautner have split up.  Their Taylor Deux romance is no more.  That means both of them are back on the market.  Which means Taylor Swift is back on the market.  I'm still trying to get used to this chick being legal, so pardon me if this reaction sounds restrained.  Three years ago I could have been given a one way ticket to prison bitch for looking at pictures of this girl on the internet.  Now?  It's on.

I think we all knew this courtship was doomed.  I mean, this kid is 17 (3 years younger than Taylor Swift--light years at their age), and probably still wears head gear to bed.  Taylor Swift is a woman, so she obviously needs a strong, bulky (my new word for fat) writer type who drives a Firebird, drinks Stroh's, and doesn't wear underpants.  I'm not sure if all that's true, but it seems all the other women I meet like glaring underachievement.  

Taylor, babe, facebook me.  The hot female one with boobs, not the other one.  Thanks.

--Posted by Casey, Dec. 30--

WEEKEND BOX OFFICE

Guess who didn't win the box office this weekend?

So welcome back everybody.  Hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas.  I know I did.  I drank enough to make a German at Oktoberfest hide under a table and watch Golden Girls reruns (what does that mean?  I have no idea).  As usual, I got my share of ugly sweaters, and weird gadgets I had no idea I needed.  James Cameron did pretty well, too.  Another $75 million to add to his gigantic pile of money he rolls in just to have that "smell" on himself.  Boy, is Avatr setting up for a run like Titanic, or what?  Of course, when you make a film, and everyone expects it to make a billion dollars at the International box office, that's just a weeeee bit of pressure.

Sherlock Holmes kicked some serious ass, as did The "Squeekquel."  I think that's clever but it annoys me.  Kind of like someone who belongs to Mensa.  You're impressed, but you still know someone is going to pull their underpants over their head at some point.

Oh, and how ya doin' there, Did You Hear About the Morgans?  Yeah, how's it goin', there?  Goin' pretty good, or...?  No?  Aww...

1 Avatar                         $75M $212M

2 Sherlock Holmes                 $65.4M $65.4M

3 Alvin and the Chipmunks: Squeakquel      $50.2M $77.1M

4 It's Complicated                 $22.1M $22.1M

5 Up in the Air                         $11.8M $24.5M

6 The Blind Side                 $11.7M $184M

7 The Princess and the Frog         $8.68M $63.4M

8 Nine                         $5.54M $5.92M

9 Did You Hear About the Morgans?           $5M $15.6M

10 Invictus                         $4.39M $23.4M

--Posted by Todd, Dec. 28--

SO...BRITTANY MURPHY IS DEAD

I think it's always very sad when people die.  But, for some reason people think it's extra sad when someone famous dies.  Not sure why that is, but it's true.  Was she talented?  of course. Could she have achieved more.  I'm sure.  But, I have spoken to some people who seem really torn up about this.  Look--it's terrible--but famous people are no different that anyone else.  They aren't cyborgs.  They get gas when they eat too much hickory smoked sausage and cheese around the holidays.  The only difference is they can get a decent table at The Ivy that isn't right next to the f-ing kitchen door.  There are lots of talented people in the world who struggle with addiction.  

Everyone knew Brittany Murphy was hooked on pills for years.  It was like spotting a toupee.  I know a producer who worked with her pretty closely and back in 2006 he said he said she looked awful, and wondered how long she could live like that.  That was three years ago. What's sad is that she had to live her life with such a severe addiction.  That's what's sad.  Her death?  While I'm certain her friends and family will feel the loss deeply, hopefully she's finally at peace.

--Posted by Todd, Dec. 22--

WEEKEND BOX OFFICE

For the first time ever, Hugh Grant seriously considers chronic masturbation instead of hitting on his co-star...

So Avatar did some pretty big numbers.  I guess it looks a little disappointing at first glance, but there was a gigantic blizzard raging across the country this weekend.  Consider this as well; 73 mil is the largest domestic opening for a non-sequel.  Ever.  The film also pulled in over 230 million worldwide.  Not too shabby for a weird 3-D film.  I would expect Avatar to continue making money well into January.

Speaking of making money, is The Blind Side ever going to go away?  When my two year-ld is packing for college, this film will still be in dollar theaters or something.  Yeesh.

Oh, and how 'bout Did You Hear About the Morgans?  We're shocked it made 7 million.  Remember when Sarah Jessica Parker was hot?  No?  Me either...

1 Avatar                   $73M $73M

2 The Princess and the Frog   $12.2M $44.8M

3 The Blind Side           $10M $165M

4 Did You Hear About the Morgans?   $7M $7M

5 New Moon                   $4.37M $275M

6 Invictus                           $4.17M $15.8M

7 A Christmas Carol                   $3.42M $131M

8 Up in the Air                   $3.1M $8.11M

9 Brothers                   $2.63M $22.1M

10 Old Dogs                   $2.29M $43.6M

--Posted by Gary, Dec. 21--

WEEKEND PREVIEW

Here James Cameron explains to Sam Worthington how he plans to cover up his crappy performance with CGI...

Okay, so there's this movie out this weekend.  You might have heard of it.  It was directed by this guy, James Cameron, who did some romantic boat movie back when Billy Ray Cyrus had a mullet.  Anyway, it's called Avatar.  It took about 20 years to make so it's probably pretty good.  Although, can you imagine it taking 20 years to make a movie and it sucks?  Well, from all accounts, Avatar will not let you down.  I hear it's wicked rad--and the best part is, it won't have Leonardo DiCaprio standing on the bow of a ship, screaming "I'm king of the world!" Who the hell says something like that in front of a chick he's trying to bang?  I'm king of the world?  In real life that's a one way ticket to masterbation.

Other than Did You Hear About the Morgans (this trailer made me want to gouge my eyes out with a spork), it's also a great weekend for other stuff (if you live in New York or LA).  Crazy Heart and Nine are in limited release, and worth a look.  I don't know what The Young Victoria is, but you'd have to threaten to crush my balls with a sledgehammer to get me to pay $10 to see it.

Avatar (Sam Worthington, Sigourney Weaver, Michelle Rodriguez): A paraplegic former marine (Worthington) accepts a unique mission that sends him to the planet Pandora, where, through a connection to a remotely controlled biological body, he learns the way of the indigenous Na'vi people. His link to this world puts him in direct opposition with his orders to infiltrate the Na'vi and remove the barrier between them and the precious ore desired by military and corporate interests.

Did You Hear About the Morgans? (Hugh Grant, Sarah Jessica Parker, Sam Elliott): In New York City, an estranged couple (Grant and Parker) who witness a murder are relocated to small-town Wyoming as part of a witness-protection program.

[Limited] Crazy Heart (Jeff Bridges, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Colin Farrell), Nine (Daniel Day-Lewis, Marion Cotillard, Pen�lope Cruz), The Young Victoria (Emily Blunt, Rupert Friend, Paul Bettany)

--Posted by Casey, Dec. 18--

WEEKEND BOX OFFICE

Hmm, I guess all the animated African-American Princes were "busy" when they made this movie...

So, The Princess and the Frog won the box office this weekend.  I guess that's not really surprising given that Walt Disney has slowly been taking over the world with secret messages in their animation for almost a hundred years.  One day we'll all be watching Toy Story 7, and then boom, we'll all get up and start walking around like zombies--trying to eat one another's small intestines.  By the way, who is still going to see a hand drawn cartoon?  Thta's kind of like still wanting to drive my grandmother's 1970 Buick Regal.

Here's an interesting tidbit.  The studios are only $400 mil away from setting an all time box office record.  In the middle of the worst recession since the Great Depression.  Yet they can't offer people more than scale for a rewrite.  

1 The Princess and the Frog (2009)   $25M  $27.9M

2 The Blind Side (2009)             $15.5M  $150M

3 Invictus (2009)                     $9.09M  $9.09M

4 Twilight: New Moon (2009)   $8M  $267M

5 A Christmas Carol (2009)             $6.87M  $124M

6 Brothers (2009/I)             $5M  $17.4M

7 2012 (2009/I)                   $4.4M  $155M

8 Old Dogs (2009/I)             $4.4M  $40M

9 Armored (2009)           $3.5M  $11.7M

10 Ninja Assassin (2009)             $2.71M  $34.3M

--Posted by Casey, Dec. 14--

WEEKEND PREVIEW

Matt Damon bulked up for this role like any rugby player worth his salt: beef jerky, cigarettes and steroids...

It's kind of a weird weekend out there.  We're not sure what will rise above The Blind Side and New Moon.  If I had to take a stab at it, I'd say this Disney film featuring the first African-American princess will edge out Clint Eastwood's latest film, Invictus.  I assume African-Americans will turn out for The Princess and the Frog, but I do kind of wonder what the hell took Disney so long to make a movie like this.  They've made movies about American Indians, Asians, Middle Easterners--it might be too little, too late.  Like, a few years ago, I decided to grow a soul patch.  Everyone was like, "why are you growing a soul patch now?"  It was a good question.  Why was I growing a soul patch now?  Why didn't I grow one ten years ago, when they were cool?

There's also offerings from Peter Jackson, and the Super Troopers guys, but they seem pretty underwhelming.  Like the time I grew a goatee?  What about a fu manchu?  Anyone...?

Invictus (Morgan Freeman, Matt Damon): A look at the life of Nelson Mandela (Freeman) after the fall of apartheid in South Africa during his first term as president when he campaigned to host the 1995 Rugby World Cup event as an opportunity to unite his countrymen.

The Princess and the Frog (Anika Noni Rose, Keith David, Oprah Winfrey): A fairy tale set in Jazz Age-era New Orleans and centered on a young girl named Princess Tiana (Anika Noni Rose) and her fateful kiss with a frog prince who desperately wants to be human again.

The Lovely Bones (Rachel Weisz, Mark Wahlberg, Saoirse Ronan): Young Susie Salmon (Ronan) watches over her family from "the in-between" as they deal with the aftermath of her brutal rape and murder.

The Slammin' Salmon (Michael Clarke Duncan, Jay Chandrasekhar, Kevin Heffernan): Cleon Salmon (Duncan), a former prizefighter turned restaurateur, hatches a plan to repay his debts to a Yakuza gang: for one night, the waiter who sells the most food wins $10,000 -- the loser, however, gets a beating from Cleon himself.

[Limited Release]: A Single Man (Colin Firth, Julianne Moore, Matthew Goode)

--Posted by Gary, Dec.9--

IS TAYLOR LAUTNER THE NEXT ACTION STAR?

Taylor Swift is dating Taylor Lautner.  If they ever got married, they'd have the same name...isn't that soooooooo cute!

Normally I wouldn't give a crap about the werewolf from Twilight, but about two billion teenage girls do, and apparently Taylor Swift does as well.  Any guy who is seeing Taylor Swift naked on a regular basis gets my approval--especially since I'm in my thirties, and looking at a picture of her, and thinking about banging her makes me want to wash my eyes out with turpentine.  I have the same problem when I watch women's gymnastics during the summer olympics.  See?  You thought I was a heartless, womanizing, Firebird driving piss face--but I have standards.  

Anyway, according to the Hollywood hype machine, this Taylor Lautner guy is going to play Max Steel.  It makes sense.  He has appeared in a global hit franchise, and the dude must work out twelve times a day.  The only way I could get 8 pack abs is if I went on the Lindsay Lohan diet for a year.  

Best of luck to this guy.  I probably won't see Max Steel, but I'll be living vicariously through him as he goes through the Hollywood 'It' girl list like Hurricane Katrina.

--Posted by Casey, Dec. 8--

WEEKEND BOX OFFICE

The Sandy Bullock School of Acting is in session: the key to playing a wealthy woman--very large sunglasses.

So, this Sandra Bullock adopting a giant African-American tenneager film is killing it at the box office.  I had a similar idea for a spec awhile back, only it was about me adopting an African-American hooker who worked the corner near my apartment.  Also a true story. 

Given the line up, I expected Blind Side and New Moon to continue utter domination, but this is starting to get ridiculous.  Also, unlike Gary, Todd nailed his pick.  Everybody's Fine bombed.  Hey, Gar, all you have to do is get out of the hole is make a few more hundred correct picks, and you'll be in the money.  Keep your head up, kiddo.

1 The Blind Side (2009)              $20.4M $129M

2 The Twilight Saga: New Moon (2009)      $15.7M $256M

3 Brothers (2009/I)              $9.7M $9.7M

4 A Christmas Carol (2009)              $7.52M $115M

5 Old Dogs (2009/I)              $6.9M $33.9M

6 Armored (2009)              $6.6M $6.6M

7 2012 (2009/I)                      $6.6M $149M

8 Ninja Assassin (2009)              $5.03M $29.8M

9 Planet 51 (2009)              $4.3M $34M

10 Everybody's Fine (2009)              $4.03M $4.03M

--Posted by Casey, Dec. 7--

WEEKEND PREVIEW

Sorry kids.  There won't be a Christmas this year.  Travis Bickle killed Santa Claus...

Well, it wouldn't be the holiday movie season if Miramax wasn't dumping a bunch of independent peanut brittle on us.  Only these days, it's become more like the fruitcake your Great Aunt Mildred sends every year that  even the dog won't eat (trust me, I tried).  Brothers seems somewhat intriguing. Natalie Portman can sleep with my brother anytime she wants.  In fact, maybe that's what I'll get him for Christmas.  He loves surprises...

Everybody's Fine (Robert De Niro, Kate Beckinsale, Sam Rockwell): A widower (De Niro) takes an impromptu road trip in order to reconnect with his grown children, only to discover that his family members are living far from perfect lives.  Remember when Miramax used to produce and distrubute amazing holiday films?  Now we get this syrupy, gooey mess.  I like Dinero so much better when he's hitting someone with a baseball bat, or ask if someone can milk his nipples.  How much Xanax did he take for this role, anyway?  PASS

Brothers (Jake Gyllenhaal, Natalie Portman, Tobey Maguire): Sam Cahill (Maguire) returns from being held as a prisoner-of-war in Afghanistan to find that his ex-con brother (Gyllenhaal) has become the man, of sorts, of the household where Sam's wife, Grace (Portman) had been living under the assumption that she was a widow.  You banged my brother!?  I thought you were dead!  There.  That's the movie.  And, unlike Toger Wood's wife, Tobey Maguire's character isn't going to get an additional 50 mil for his trouble.  MAYBE

Armored (Columbus Short, Matt Dillon, Laurence Fishburne): A newbie guard for an armored truck company is coerced by his veteran coworkers to steal a truck containing $42 million. But a wrinkle in their supposedly foolproof plan divides the group, leading to a potentially deadly resolution.  All you need to know is the director's first name is Nimrod.  How can anyone take this film seriously now?  PASS

Limited Release: Up in the Air [wide expansion: 12/25] (George Clooney, Vera Farmiga, Anna Kendrick), The Last Station [LA/NY] (Helen Mirren, James McAvoy, Christopher Plummer), Serious Moonlight [LA/NY] (Meg Ryan, Timothy Hutton, Kristen Bell)

--Posted by Todd, Dec. 5--

BOX OFFICE UP 8% SO FAR THIS YEAR

A studio executive's child after learning their parent was forced to take a pay cut  from 50 million per year to 45 million...  

If you talk to studio executives, they act like the past two years have been an entertainment business apocalypse.  And, in some ways it has.  Record lay offs.  Seismic shifts toward even larger budget films.  My grandmother's goiter acting up again.  And, studios have used this as serious leverage, cutting the quotes of actors, directors, producers, and writers.  Cutting costs, period.  However, it won't be long before agents start putting the screws to the studios again.  Domestic box office, even in this severe recession, is up for the second year in a row.  So, the executive sob story about the economy is starting to have less of an effect.  

Exec: "We don't have any money."

Agent: "Really?  What are you doing with all that record box office revenue?"

Exec: "We're still trying to recover our losses from Waterworld."

Man, I long for the old days of studios spending recklessly...

--Posted by Gary, Dec. 2--

FINALLY...PROOF THAT THE WORLD IS COMING TO AN END

Meet the new face of television desperation...at least she's hotter than a GEICO caveman...sort of.

Variety is reporting that Nicole Richie has been given a commitment from Sony/ABC to star in her own scripted series.  Richie has been a guest star on several television series over the years, but is best known for her turn as Paris Hilton's wing woman on the reality series The Simple Life.  She and Hilton essentially played two socialites who ate an ass load of paint chips as children.  Here's how Variety describes this train wreck in waiting:

"The script, which is being produced through Sony Pictures TV, would feature Richie as a professional woman with complicated family relationships and struggling to figure out what role she'll take as her life and her family evolve."  

So, basically, it's her life, minus the heroin, cocaine, whoring, and tipping the scales at 30 pounds soaking wet.  Which were the only interesting parts to begin with.

Look, I'm all for people getting a televisions series.  Even a crappy one needs writers.  But, Nicole Richie?  I think I'd rather watch Rosie O'Donnell get it on with a giraffe.

Talk about ratings!

--posted by Casey, Dec. 1--

WEEKEND BOX OFFICE

What happens when 'Hope Floats' becomes wealthy and adopts a giant black kid?  The Blind Side!

So, something really strange happened this weekend.  It was kind of like that time I walked into the DMV to get a driver's license and didn't have to wait in line.  Which also meant the place didn't smell like a fart for once.  Anyway, The Blind Side actually made more money this weekend than last weekend.  That rarely ever happens (ergo, my DMV analogy--I also rarely use 'ergo').  The other new entries were slapped around like a third cousin at one of my family reunions.  Ninja Assassin couldn't even break the top 5.  What kind of world do we live in, man?

By the way, can SOMEONE teach Sandra Bullock to do a Southern accent.  Geezus.

1 The Twilight Saga: New Moon (2009) $42.5M $231M

2 The Blind Side (2009)         $40.1M $100M

3  2012 (2009/I)                 $18M $139M

4  Old Dogs (2009/I)                 $16.8M $24.1M

5  A Christmas Carol (2009) $16M $105M

6  Ninja Assassin (2009)         $13.1M $21M

7  Planet 51 (2009)         $10.2M $28.5M

8  Precious (2009)         $7.09M $32.4M

9  Fantastic Mr. Fox (2009)         $7.02M $10.1M

10 The Men Who Stare at Goats (2009) $1.52M $30.5M

--Posted by Casey, Nov. 30--

WEEKEND PREVIEW

Hmm, let's see.  A) Two old dudes with 7 year old kids, B) ninja's throwing down, or C) a post-apocalypic adaptation of a Cormac McCarthy novel?  OR, D) stay home and get drunk.  This is a really tough one, becuase you know how I feel about getting drunk, but here's the thing.  It's getting cold out, so I can stuff my coat with some Schlitz, a small pizza, and see ninja's get rad.  Two birds with one stone.  Now all I have to do is find a date.  Which shouldn't be hard.  I'll have pizza, beer, and enough ones left over from my trip to The Body Shop the other night to actually pay for once.  Girls don't stand a chance against that kind of arsenal. 

Old Dogs (Robin Williams, John Travolta, Seth Green): Ben (Williams) is a successful businessman whose professional and personal life is altered when an old flame re-enteres his life --with her two children (twins!) in tow. Finding himself temporarily in charge of their welfare, he enlists his best friend and colleague (Travolta) to co-parent.

Ninja Assassin (Rain, Rick Yune, Naomie Harris): Raizo (Rain) is a rogue ninja who comes to the aid of Mika Coretti (Harris), a Berlin-based Interpol agent who has linked the shadowy Ozunu Clan, a secret society of assassins who trained Raizo, to a series of murders. Most dangerous to them both is Takeshi (Yune), Raizo's former ally and the assassin leading the charge of Ozunu killers to Berlin.   

The Road (Viggo Mortensen, Charlize Theron, Kodi Smit-McPhee): A father (Mortensen) and son (Smit-McPhee) walk for months across a ravaged, post-apocalyptic landscape in search of civilization.

Me and Orson Welles [LA/NY] (Zac Efron, Claire Danes), The Private Lives of Pippa Lee [LA/NY] (Robin Wright Penn, Alan Arkin)

--Posted by Casey, Nov. 26--

HUGH JACKMAN TO STAR IN ROBOT MOVIE, PROBABLY WILL BE SHIRTLESS AT LEAST 30% OF THE TIME

We know what you're thinking.  It's a film about a sad little robot who becomes happy, and starts to dance and sing, only to have his legs stolen and held for ransom.  Well, you'd be wrong, even though that's the first thing I thought of, and this gay dude I know, Terry, thought of it too.  Actually, Terry was like, "Oh, gawd, I hope he dances and wears tight pants."  However, Terry was devastated to learn it is actually a robot boxing movie based on a short story by Richard Matheson.  Jackman will play a futuristic boxer who finds his career ending when robots take the place of humans in the boxing ring.  So, Terry, hopefully you'll feel better knowing Jackman is going to have his shirt off a lot.  My wife is happy as well.

The Dreamworks project, Real Steel, is the first film to be produced under a newly retooled and financed studio--after breaking ranks with Paramount (even though they still share many projects)--and will be produced by Spielberg.  

"When we took it with us, we really highlighted it as something we would put the pedal to metal on," said DreamWorks co-president of production Mark Sourian. "It's a project that Steven always wanted to do. It just came together rapidly after we left Paramount." 

Production starts in June.

--Posted by Gary, Nov. 24--

SO, IT LOOKS LIKE THERE WILL BE A TWILIGHT 3

Why Marisa Miller?  Because, we're sick of posting Twilight pictures, that's why...

Yeah, we're pretty sure there will be a Twilight 3 after the weekend results.  The film made a few shekels for it's trouble.  My math isn't so great, but I know how to use a calculator.  $141 miilion domestically + $118 million internationaly = $259 million total.  That's the third highest opening ever for a film.  The staff at Summit Entertainment probably started dry humping one another with delight on Saturday, when the Friday numbers came out, but it's likely an all out orgy this morning.  I'll bet they're not even doing any work.  I'd be doing Marisa Miller on top of a pile of fresh $100 bills, but that's me.  And, word on the street is, Mariss (pet name) loves fat writers who drink Schlitz and drive a Firebird.  Duh.

1 The Twilight Saga: New Moon   $141M $141M

2 The Blind Side $34.5M $34.5M

3 2012         $26.5M $108M

4 Planet 51           $12.6M $12.6M

5 A Christmas Carol         $12.2M $79.8M

6 Precious           $11M $21.4M

7 The Men Who Stare at Goats $2.77M $27.6M

8 Couples Retreat $1.95M $105M

9 The Fourth Kind $1.73M $23.3M

10 Law Abiding Citizen $1.61M $70M

--Posted by Casey, Nov. 23--

WEEKEND PREVIEW

 

Yeah, this is great and everything, but where is their prom photo?  I bet it's sooooo rad...

So, like we said earlier in the week, Twilight opens this weekend.  Seeing as how it made 36 million on it's frist day, I'm guessing it is going to destroy the box office this weekend.  These other two films, Planet 51 and The Blind Side should do decent numbers, but with 2012 hanging around, and Tyler Perry's Precious expanding into more theaters, I wouldn't expect too much.  Also, according to Variety, Twilight did 4.4 million in France.  There are probably about 4.4 million girls I'd like to do in France, but that doesn't seem like a very big number to me (I guess Twilight did 1.5 mil the last time it opened there).  France is about the same size as Texas, a place that also has tons of hot chicks.  What does this have to do with the weekend box office?  I have no idea, but when the weekend gets near, all I can think about are hot women.  Sue me.  

The Twilight Saga: New Moon (Kristen Stewart, Robert Pattinson, Taylor Lautner): When Bella's blood is shed at her birthday celebration, Edward's intense reaction to the event causes his parents to pull up stakes and leave Forks, Washington for the sake of the young lovers. Heartbroken, Bella finds a form of comfort in reckless living, as well as an even-closer friendship with Jacob Black (Lautner). Danger in different forms awaits.

Planet 51 [animated] (Dwayne Johnson, Seann William Scott, Jessica Biel): The inhabitants of Planet 51 live in fear of alien invasion. Their paranoia is realized when astronaut Chuck Baker (voice of Dwayne Johnson) arrives from Earth. Befriended by a young resident, he has to avoid capture in order to recover his spaceship and try to return home.

The Blind Side (Quinton Aaron, Sandra Bullock, Tim McGraw): A disadvantaged teenager is taken in by a conservative family who see tremendous promise in the young man. Despite certain obstacles, the attention and inspiration he receives helps him mature into an athletically and academically successful NFL prospect.

Limited release:

Broken Embraces, Red Cliff, Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans, Mammoth [NYC]

--Posted by Casey, Nov. 19--

ANNE HATHAWAY INKED FOR SPIDERMAN 4?

 

Annie, babe, you have to stop showing up like this and trying to match your dress to the tile in my bathroom...

According to Deadline Hollywood and geeks across cyberspace, Anne Hathaway might be playing the part of Black Cat in the next installment of Spiderman.  As I'm all for good looking chicks with nice racks being in superhero movies, I'll have to give this a thumbs up.  Frankly, I wouldn't mind them trying to find a replacement for Kirsten Dunst in the series.  How about that red head from Mad Men, who's always busting out of her top at awards shows?  She'd be great.

I'm sure Tobey Maguire would agree with me.  I don't even have to ask him.  That's how dudes roll.

--Posted by Casey, Nov. 19--

TWILIGHT SEQUEL OPENS INTERNATIONALLY, FOREIGN GIRLS SCREAM WITH DELIGHT

If this film was shot like Blair Witch, it would look more like footage from my family's reunion back in 1992...

I'm not 13, and don't own a training bra, so I didn't see the first Twilight film.  My niece thought it was the greatest film of all time.  I tried to get her to watch Goodfellas, but my Uncle Barry won't let her watch a movie about mobsters or gangsters.  He doesn't want to expose her any "negative dating archetypes."  Whatever the hell that  means.  Archetype is probably the biggest word he knows, or something.

Anyway, sometimes a film is a phenomenon just because.  Like Blair Witch.  I saw that piece of crap when it came out and almost yacked up my Goobers and popcorn.  It was one of the worst films I'd ever seen, and looked like someone shot it on a High-8 video cam.  Oh, wait.  That's because most of it was.  There's really no explanation for Blair Witch.  People just gravitated to it for some reason.  Why do I gravitate toward ugly girls at 1 AM when I'm a t a bar?  I have my reasons, and so did Blair Withc worshipers.

Twilight is a little different.  It's based on a book (I think?) and had a built in audience.  The trailer actually looked decent, too.  Again, anything shot on something better than a JVC camcorder is going to look a lot better.

So expect  global domination from Twilight this week.  And, a lot of girls shrieking like someone just introduced the Beatles on Ed Sullivan.  If you even know what/who Ed Sullivan is.  

God, I'm old.

--Posted by Casey, Nov. 18-- 

WEEKEND BOX OFFICE

Will they ever make a disaster movie where everyone runs toward the danger?  Like Point Break, but it's the Apocalypse...without surfboards...

I know what you're thinking.  Wow.  2012 really made a lot of money this weekend. $65 mil.  I could buy a lot of weed and Rolos with that kind of money.  Well, guess again.  This flick cost an assload of cash to make (250 mil?) and only raked in (my math is pretty awesome) 13% of it's budget in the first weekend domestically.  Normally that would have studio execs sweating like a Biggest Loser contestant in a sauna.  But, 2012 killed it overseas--to the tune of $160 million.  That makes for a total of...(hello calculator) $225 mil.  Still a long way off from recouping, but probably a good start.  It's pretty hilarious when a film can have the ninth best opening of all time and you're like, hmm, they're only half way there (studios split theater receipts).  Best of luck 2012.  

I don't see movies during football season.  Football is free.  Besides, it's not as easy to have sex in a theater as it used to be.  Security is wicked these days.  Another reason to outlaw pirating...

1 2012            $65M  $65M

2 A Christmas Carol            $22.3M  $63.3M

3 The Men Who Stare at Goats   $6.2M  $23.4M

4 Precious            $6.09M  $8.91M

5 This Is It            $5.1M  $67.2M

6 The Fourth Kind   $4.74M  $20.6M

7 Couples Retreat   $4.25M  $102M

8 Paranormal Activity            $4.2M  $104M

9 Law Abiding Citizen    $3.93M  $67.3M

10 The Box           $3.19M  $13.2M

--Posted by Casey, Nov. 16--

HOLLYWOOD IS OFFICIALLY, OFFICIALLY OUT OF IDEAS

 

Nothing is hotter than a woman wearing a spread collar standing next to giant chess pieces...

So, Variety is reporting that ABC (the network that brought you Cavemen, the series!) has picked up a pilot order for a remake of the TV classic, Charlie's Angles (I feel like someone just forced me to get a colonic against my will).  Which will actually be based on the film remake, not the iconic TV show.  Also, this is at least the second attempt at a TV remake--Spelling having tried in 1988, and Sony again in 2004 (the two previous versions did not even make it to pilot).  You'd think they would have given up by now, but no!  They just keep on trying.  Gotta love that 'ol network spirit.

ABC and Sony have hired Josh Friendman (Terminator: Sarah Connor Chronicles) to pen the pilot, and Drew Barrymore is producing with original Angels creator Leonard Goldberg.

There's really not much else to say.  Some things should just be left alone.  Like Charlie's Angels. And, Laverne & Shirley.  And, MASH.  And, MacGyver.  And, sardines.  

I think I'll go curl up in the fetal position for awhile.   And, try not to reflux on myself...

--Posted by Todd, Nov. 14--

WEEKEND PREVIEW

This is how I always envision the end of the world starting.  You're just sitting in a flower pattern lawn chair, surfing the weather channel, minding your own business...

So, there's this movie out this weekend.  You might have heard something about it.  It's a disaster movie called 2012, based on the end of our planet.  I guess the Mayans thought the world would end in 2012, so they stopped their calendar.  Never mind that their credibility went out the window when they pretty much bailed thousands of years before that.  "Oh, hey, dudes, the world is going to end in a few thousand years, so we're just gonna let the 'ol civilization collapse here.  Get a head start..."  2012 cost around 250 million dollars and represents everything that's wrong with Hollywood these days, so I won't be seeing it.  Not to mention Roland Emmerich hasn't made a good movie since Independence Day, but Hollywood keeps funneling money to him.  He's like an entertainment business version of AIG.

Oh, and Pirate Radio comes out this week, too.  Prediction: no one will care.

2012 (John Cusack, Thandie Newton, Chiwetel Ejiofor): Academic researcher Jackson Curtis (Cusack) leads a group of people in a fight to counteract the apocalyptic events that were predicted by the Mayan calendar.  NOT

Pirate Radio (Philip Seymour Hoffman, Bill Nighy, Nick Frost): A 1960's comedy about an illegal radio station run by a band of rogue DJs on a ship in the middle of Britain's North Sea. By defying the tastes and laws of the ruling government, the disc jockeys hooked their listeners on pop music and its attendant ideas of love and free will.  NEGATIVE, GHOST RIDER

Limited Release: 

Fantastic Mr. Fox, The Messenger (LA/NY), Dare, Women in Trouble

--Posted by Casey, Nov. 13--

MGM BEING SOLD...AGAIN

...meow...

Man, this studio has been bought and sold more than a call girl at the Bunny Ranch.  Word is Kirk Kerkorian is interested in buying the rights to the MGM logo (something he has done twice before), and the studios' library will be auctioned off to the highest bidder.  MGM tried to get it's %$#@ together by ousting CEO Harry Sloan, and bringing in turnaround specialist Stephen Cooper, but MGM is hopelessly stuck in the mud.  3 billion in debt will do that to you.  Worse, the film library for MGM/UA is likely to only pull in about 1.5 billion (selling an asset in a recession--great idea dudes)--a relative fire sale, despite MGM's library largely skewing 55+.  

If I had 1.5 billion laying around, I think I'd go for it.

Anyone in the biz knows MGM has been a looney bin for awhile.  It's amazing how bad studios can be at making and selling movies.  Maybe Obama can step in and declare MGM too big to fail.  Think of the ramifications man!  Tom Cruise not having his own studio???  

MGM is probably getting what it deserves, but sadly, it will mean one less studio hiring writers.

--Posted by Todd, Nov. 12--

WEEKEND BOX OFFICE

Jim Carrey is dating Jenny McCarthy--so we're guessing he probably makes this face a lot at home...

Since there are radio stations that are already playing 24 hour holiday music it isn't that much of a suprise that A Christmas Carol was number one at the box office this weekend by a large margin.  And, you know what, maybe people need some good cheer with the economy in the dumps like this.  Maybe they need to know that for one day we can all focus on what's important.  Love, family, joy, and egg nog loaded with Jim Beam.  Me, I'm still waiting on my stimulus check from Obama to buy gifts.  A Target gift card would pretty much cover it.  Also, I'd love one of those Hickory Farms gift baskets.  There's nothing like spreadable cheese to make all of your troubles go away!  Just ask anyone from Wisconsin.  I think we all know why they're such happy people.

1 A Christmas Carol                    $31M $31M

2 This Is It                  $14M $57.9M

3 The Men Who Stare at Goats          $13.3M $13.3M

4 The Fourth Kind          $12.5M $12.5M

5 Paranormal Activity                  $8.6M $97.4M

6 The Box                          $7.86M $7.86M

7 Couples Retreat          $6.43M $96M

8 Law Abiding Citizen          $6.17M $60.9M

9 Where the Wild Things Are  $4.22M $69.3M

10 Astro Boy                  $2.59M $15.1M

--Posted by Gary, Nov. 9--

WEEKEND PREVIEW

Is a cartoon that looks exactly like a person really a cartoon?  Discuss...

It's starting to get a little weird.  It's November 6, and they're already releasing a Christmas movie.  Remember when they used to wait until after Thanksgiving?  Which is three weeks away?  Now it's post-Halloween.  Pretty soon Labor Day will be the line of demarcation.  Put that glass of lemonade down, put the American flag in storage, and get ready for Santa!  These other films are all a little weird.  Men Who Stare at Goats?  Um, okay.  The Fourth Kind?  I didn't know there was a fourth kind.  And, The Box.  A Twilight Zonish flick.  Kind of like Indecent Proposal--with murder?  Might be a great time to stay in and watch some football.  Christmas Carol will be in theaters for at least two months...

A Christmas Carol (Jim Carrey, Gary Oldman, Colin Firth): An animated retelling of the Charles Dickens novel about Ebenezer Scrooge (Carrey), a Victorian-era miser who is taken on a journey of self-redemption, courtesy of several mysterious Christmas apparitions.

The Men Who Stare at Goats (Ewan McGregor, George Clooney, Kevin Spacey): In Iraq, reporter Bob Wilton (McGregor) meets Lyn Cassady (Clooney), whose seemingly wild claim - that he's a member of the U.S. Army's First Earth Battalion, a unit that employs paranormal powers in their missions - causes Wilton to join Cassady's hunt for the battalion's founder, whose gone missing.

The Box (Cameron Diaz, James Marsden, Frank Langella): A young couple is gifted with a mysterious box that promises them a handsome windfall with deadly consequences.

The Fourth Kind (Milla Jovovich, Elias Koteas, Will Patton): An investigator (Jovovich) is dispatched to Nome, Alaska to puzzle out a 40-year-long mystery involving an extraordinary number of unexplained disappearances in the town. Her videotaped evidence looks to present the most convincing evidence of alien abduction ever documented.

--Posted by Gary, Nov. 6--

BALDWIN, MARTIN TO CO-HOST OSCARS

Two of the world's funniest men--except when they are starring in the Pink Panther, and angry dialing their daughter.  Very small nit to pick, though...

So, it looks like this is actually happening and isn't some kind of cruel April Fools joke. Because it's November 4th, but also because no one could be this much of an assface.  Not even ABC. This is awesome.  Kind of like that time when I woke up on Christmas morning and instead of a giant  package of tube socks, I got a Farrah Fawcett poster.  Well, I also got the socks, but who cared?  I was five and had a gigantic poster of Farrah Fawcett on my wall.  How did I even pull that off?  I;d get carted off to child services today.

Of course, rumors immediately started spreading that Tina Fey was going to be brought on to write the telecast.  It makes sense, as Baldwin is on her show, and she presented with Martin last  year.  Also, Baldwin and Martin star in a comedy coming out at Christmas called, "It's Complicated."  Should give them a chance to cross promote.  But, who cares about all that!  What about me?  Steve Martin and Alec Baldwin are co-hosting the Oscars, dude!

Hopefully this will mean Steve Martin will get back to doing comedy, and stop playing blue grass on his banjo for awhile.  Man, watching that is almost as bad as watching Jim Carrey do drama.  Almost.

--Posted by Gary, Nov. 4--

NOW IS YOUR CHANCE

I thought about going as Terminator for Halloween, but didn't want to be too awesome.  It's already a huge problem for me...

So, the Terminator rights are up for grabs.  We were thinking about making an offer, but after a quick huddle here in the Angry Writer office, we decided we were about $99,999,987 short.  We're not sure what's more disappointing, the fact that between four of us we had less than $20 in cash, or that Casey had three rubbers in his wallet.  Three.  That seems like an awful lot of unused rubbers to be carrying around when you drive a Firebird and tell everyone you're dating a Croatian stripper.

Anyway, we just wanted to let you know the auction for the rights will be in January, and the asking price is likely to reach $100 million.

We would have looked under the sofa cushions here, but frankly, Casey's here late quite a bit, and there's no telling what he might have done to it after hours.   He probably has a history of molesting fold up lawn chairs, for all we know...

--Posted by Todd, Nov. 2--

WEEKEND BOX OFFICE 

Say what you want about Michael Jackson--his on stage pointing skills are second to none...

Okay, so turns out maybe Michael Jackson is not as popular as we thought.  The film did take in 68 million worldwide, but only scrounged up 32 million in it's first five days domestically.  We expected This Is It to dominate the box office like the Patriots playing a blind Pop Warner team. These results are more like an NFL replacement team during the players strike.  Sony, who is obviously unhappy with the U.S. box office results, has decided to extend the release of the concert rehearsal film through Thanksgiving.  After warning audiences during their marketing blitz that the documentary would only play for two weeks.  

It's interesting when studios do that to people (meaning, lie).  Most greedy people lie, though. Like this dude I used to know who would call me and say that they were running a special but it was only for one week, and if I wanted 40% off vinyl siding installation, I had to act now.  He called me back the next week and said their offer had been extended.  What a dick.  I've never trusted phone salesmen after that.

Paranormal Activity came in second, but I think we all know who was #1 in our hearts.  That's right.  The creepy made up horror film, not the real one.

1 This Is It (2009)         $21.3M $32.5M

2 Paranormal Activity (2007) $16.5M $84.8M

3 Law Abiding Citizen (2009) $7.3M $51.4M

4 Couples Retreat (2009)         $6.1M $86.7M

5 Saw VI (2009)                 $5.56M $22.8M

6 Where the Wild Things Are (2009) $5.08M $61.8M

7 The Stepfather (2009)         $3.4M $24.7M

8 Astro Boy (2009)         $3.04M $10.9M

9 Amelia (2009)                 $3M          $8.31M

10 Cirque du Freak (2009)         $2.81M $10.5M

Posted by Casey, Nov. 2--