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Box Office

W. Gets Beat By a Three Week Old Chihuahua

rottentomotoes.pngWhat does it say about the 43rd President of the United States that even a movie associated with you tanks to new levels? Every time Dubya goes on TV, the stock market plunges. Now Oliver Stone‘s latest film finishes FOURTH in weekend box office receipts…It got beat out by Beverly Hills Chihuahua for crying out loud.

We went and watched W. in a theater this weekend. It was like having your town destroyed by a tornado then escaping into a theater to watch Twister. It wasn’t the subject of the movie that was maddening and frustrating – it was the fact that after we left the theater the rubble was still falling.

Is that a recommendation? No. An explanation? Perhaps.

Will Smith Is No Spiderman so Sony drops 31%

Sony Pictures declared a nightmare downtick in its revenue and stock today. The studio reported a 31% drop in year-on-year sales to $1.5 billion. That was because last year, the Spiderman-led studio was breaking records, while this year, even though “Hancock” cleared more than $500 million worldwide, the studio still fell back to Earth.
“Hancock” had enormous prints and advertising costs, which have not been offset by any future films.
Sony executives were sheepish about the drop.
“The losses that you see in the first quarter, again, you have to look at the pictures business holistically over the course of the year,” Rob Wiesenthal, chief financial officer, said during a conference call with analysts.
If it’s any solace, the tech division fell too, so the film side wasn’t fully to blame for Sony’s suffering.
Sony reduced its net profit forecast for fiscal 2008, which ends in March 2009, going from a May figure of $2.69 billion down to $2.23 billion. It has also dialed back its operating profit outlook from $4.83 billion in May to $4.37 billion, citing a tough environment for electronics sales, off-setting a depreciating yen.
You can’t blame it all on Will Smith.

Pineapple Express – The Panel

comiccon01.gif The Pineapple Express panel was moderated by producer Judd Apatow. On the panel was director David Gordon Green, writer Evan Goldberg and cast members Amber Heard, Danny McBride, Seth Rogen and James Franco.

“Can we combine a weed movie with a Jerry Bruckheimer action movie?” Was the rhetorical question offered by Apatow.

The crowd was shown some clips of the movie and let in on the fact that a lot of the dialog was improv. Seth Rogen was totally on the whole panel. A fan asked about the script to the movie being leaked early on the internet.

“If you want to read it – you’re an idiot. Because you can watch it – its a movie.” Said Rogen.

The thing that struck us was that the panel was very much like all Apatow movies: Seth Rogen was funny, he talked about his balls a lot and the gorgeous blond female stock character was a one dimensional prop. There’s your synopsis.


Comic Con in Name Only

comiccon01.gifCalling this gathering of geeks a Comic Convention is a huge misnomer. Calling it ‘general fantasy in all mediums’ is a better fit. Apparently, other attendees we talked to about three years ago the studios got the message that Comic Con was a proving ground. We’ve seen these folks. Their undying and enthusiastic devotion will politely ignore any injustice – Jar Jar Binks – a ridiculously oversold annual convention…

So here we are now – where it’s more Hollywood preview than next issue peekaboo.


Iron Man: Kenneth Turan Was Just Plain Wrong


We are happy to report that Iron Man is exactly as fun and cool and action-packed-wonderful as we had hoped. Insider’s tip: Stay past the closing credits to get the full Geek Experience.

A raspberry to you, Mr. Turan!

When Life Imitates Box Office

Big_Mama.jpg“Harold and Kumar Escape From Guantanamo Bay” is going up against “Baby Mama” this weekend. Both are scoring high on the Rotten Tomatoes poll scale. “Baby Mama” getting 89% and “Harold and Kumar” a noteworthy 78%.

Both candidates are qualified and competent comedies. They have both enlivened and energized those that are loyal to the genre. It’ll be a nice competition between a guy with a foreign sounding name verses a super successful chick with crippling relationship issues.

It’s an exciting race at the box office this weekend – either a minority or a woman will get top spot. handk2posterorange.jpg

The winner is of course the American people – for once they have two good solid comedies to choose from. Yes We Can. Let the conversation begin!

Word on the street is that Baby Mama got made because she slept her way to the top and Harold and Kumar are elitists/secret Muslims. Check back here for updates.

Still it’s so tough to decide which one we’re going to pick! It’s ridiculous! We think they should just be a double feature and be done with it. SIGH. Maybe by August, that’ll be the case.

EDITOR’S NOTE: We of course, were going to really beat this metaphor to death and say that the old white male films debuting this weekend are “Rogue” and “Deal“. But that would be cheap. Not that we’re against cheap. It’s just that we’ve become accustomed to denouncing it in public.

Diablo Cody Spoof Dead On

A clever spoof of Diablo Cody with spiffy dialog.

“My name means the devil in Spanish. Water is agua!”

Look at the shirt she’s wearing.

My WORD – they predicted her Oscar and her DRESS!

Patricia Arquette couldn’t do better.

Swashbuckling Pirates‘ Box-Office Booty Inspires Awkward Headlines, Leads Everywhere


Via FishbowlNY:

  • ‘Pirates’ Hauls In Record Bounty For Disney
    London — Execs at The Walt Disney Co. ought to have been splicing the mainbrace to a couple of key hands in the Pirates of the Caribbean movie franchise last night. []

  • Pirates of the Caribbean Plunders Box-Office Record
    Treasure piled high for the “Pirates of the Caribbean” sequel this weekend … [San Jose Mercury News]

  • ‘Pirates’ Swashbuckles Competition In Record $132M Weekend []
  • Shiver me timbers! ‘Pirates’ rakes in $132M [WFAA]
  • Yo ho ho and a load of dough: ‘Pirates’ sails to record debut [Sarasota Herald-Tribune]

    Read more

  • It’s a bird! It’s a plane! It’s a scarry-skinny, cold ingenue!

    bosworth_crop.jpgTwo irrefutable truths have emerged from the premier of Superman Returns: 1. The new movie, like, totally rocks, and 2. Kate Bosworth is as personable as paste.

    While fans (and even some reporters) cheered the likes of Dane Cook and Shaq at the Warner Bros. premier last week, the scary-skinny ingenue was met with near silence — and she’s Lois Lane!

    Bosworth cocooned herself in a fortress of solitude and refused to talk to non-TV reporters, with the exception of one particularly tenacious scribe who said she was, well, “bitchy.”

    “She was cold and skinny and uncomfortable,” another reporter told us. “And she looked like death.”

    Can Lois Lane be revived from a skinny bitchy death coma? Looks like a job for Superman!

    Oh, wait…

    Cars on Wall Street: Take the train

    Can you remember as far back as yesterday when Disney distribution guru Chuck Viane was scoffing off the idea that Car‘s $62 million and change opening was less than what the House That The Two Mikes Couldn’t Quite Destroy were hoping. “As far as expectations go, we’ve all grown accustomed to hitting home runs, and in anyone’s ball park $60 million is a home run,” he would tell anyone who is interested.

    Well it turns out that on Wall Street — and maybe in San Diego’s Petco Park where homeruns go to die — Cars’ opening was more of a dribbler past the mound, and with the DVD market as soft as a Carvel swirl, this could be a problem. Apparently when your company pays $7.4 billion to save their core business, the fella’s back east hang a number on all your openings. And let me tell you, Mister Aloha Shirt, you better hit that number.

    This is how Ron Grover in Business Week lays it out:

    Short-sellers meanwhile had set a mythical $70 million opening as their “bogey,” figuring Disney’s stock would tank if Cars opened with less than that. And sure enough, Disney’s stock fell by 1.5%, to $28.90, on June 12, the first trading day after the weekend. Well, chalk one up for the short-sellers. They got their one-day Disney swoon.

    Now the rest of Wall Street has to ponder whether Disney Chief Executiver Bob Iger overpaid to get Pixar, and will be left picking up the pieces if upcoming Pixar flicks also “disappoint.” It certainly didn’t help that his predecessor, Michael Eisner, has publicly weighed in that Disney may have overpaid for Pixar. Pardon me if I don’t immediately jump on the Dump Disney bandwagon for this one.

    Spoken like someone who lives in Marin County and wears flip flops to work, like all the rest of those enlightened ones who are charged with saving that beloved Burbank institution. Grover hates on the panic mongers, pointing out that the investment was in executive and creative talent and content that can be spun six ways to Sunday.

    What he doesnt mention, is that the scrutiny that Pixar is under is all encompassing and coming from everywhere not merely ‘short sellers.’ Not ideal working environment for the Pixar creative types who work and think outside the box, don’t you think? Is that really worth giving up that luxury box at all those Giants games?