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The Maze Runner, a big screen version of James Dashner’s 2007 novel, will not be the latest Ya adaptation to go down in box office flames. Bucking the trend that saw page-to-screen conversions like Vampire Academy and The Giver open to disappointing numbers, The Maze Runner looks like it may actually exceed expectations. The Fox release was originally projected to open to $27 million but, after earning a strong $11.2 million on Friday, the sci-fi thriller is now looking at an opening weekend of $35 million or above. That’s not quite the level that Divergent hit back in March ($54.6 million) but it is well above the $27 million that Ender’s Game claimed last November. Details and Friday’s top five after the jump. While The Maze Runner got off to a sprint, fellow newcomer A Walk Among the Tombstones set a more leisurely pace. The latest R-rated drama to star born-again tough guy Liam Neeson, »
- Nicole Pedersen
The Maze Runner, the new Ya adaptation that hit theaters Friday, chalked up an estimated $11 million for a first-place finish, proving that this over-saturated genre has life left in it yet. Populated with a slew of handsome young male actors led by Teen Wolf’s Dylan O’Brien, The Maze Runner, based on the popular best-selling novel by James Dashner, is on track to pull in close to $30 million. (That’s far better than The Giver, which opened in August to $12 million.) And with Twentieth Century Fox already deep into pre-production on the film’s sequel, the early numbers have »
- Nicole Sperling
The young adult adaptation “The Maze Runner” dominated in its first day at the box office Friday, taking in $11.2 million and easily outstripping two other wide openers, Liam Neeson‘s “A Walk Among the Tombstones” and the comedy “This Is Where I Leave You.” That puts Fox's sci-fi thriller based on James Dashner's novels and starring TV's “Teen Wolf” star Dylan O'Brien on course for a first weekend in the $30 million range, in line with analysts’ expectations and a little better than the studio had projected. Universal's thriller “Tombstone” is heading for a $14 million debut after a $4.7 million Friday, »
- Todd Cunningham
“The Maze Runner” opened to $11.3 million Stateside on Friday. Fox’s dystopian drama is on track for a higher-than-anticipated $31 million weekend debut – double the expected earnings for the runner-up, “Walk Among the Tombstones.”
Based on the first book in James Dashner’s trilogy of the same name, the $34 million production follows a group of teenage boys (and one girl) who are trapped in a maze. The young cast is led by “Teen Wolf” star Dylan O’Brien, whose character comes up with a strategy to escape their prison.
Fox hopes to appeal to the young-adult audience that turned “The Hunger Games,” “Twilight” and “Divergent” into thriving franchises.
Universal’s crime thriller “Walk Among the Tombstones” launched to $4.7 million on its way to a $14 million weekend, which is below forecast. Neeson’s most recent movie, »
- Maane Khatchatourian
Updated, Saturday 7:30 Am: This morning, The Maze Runner is right in line with our estimates last night, given that we think today will be a strong moviegoing time for this Ya offering from Fox. While it looked much softer in matinees yesterday, we held off reporting because we knew that the audience for this picture was going to come out in the evening and late night showings. They did. If this gains tonight by around 10%, Fox will see the weekend end at $30M to $32M (as it looks now). It grossed about $11.3M yesterday. Between a strong Friday, its A- CinemaScore (which should give it a 3.5M multiple) and its international performance, it should give Fox yet another profitable film from the Ya genre. Liam Neeson’s blood-soaked actioner A Walk Among the Tombstones performed much lower than the tracking showed for Universal — not surprising as so did Maze »
- Anita Busch
A Walk Among the Tombstones is a tidy, character-forward procedural offering up Liam Neeson in this year’s second “Liam Neeson movie” working in a more somber, less super-heroic mode than in Non-Stop or the Taken bonanza. A Walk Among the Tombstones finds haunted P.I. Matthew Scudder hunting a couple of sick slashers targeting 1990s New York women in a grim but engrossing dot-connector the likes of which you have certainly seen before, yet is still worth a run due to a well-casted ensemble and the elegant filmmaking of writer/director Scott Frank (he also scripted Get Shorty, Out of Sight, and Minority Report) and cinematographer Mihai Malamaire (D.P. on The Master, so that’s enough of a draw for me).
- Gregory Fichter
Fox’s dystopian “The Maze Runner” is leaving rivals in the dust as it heads for an opening weekend of about $24 million in the U.S., early estimates showed.
The young-adult vehicle was dominating moviegoing Friday with a forecast of $9 million to $10 million at 3,604 locations, including $1.1 million from late Thursday screenings.
The futuristic saga had been tracking somewhat higher earlier in the week with Fox indicating it expected a launch weekend in the high $20 million range. Instead, “Maze Runner” looks likely to come in the vicinity of last weekend’s leader, Sony’s “No Good Deed,” which opened at $24.5 million.
Fox had deployed the young cast, led by Dylan O’Brien of “Teen Wolf,” on an active promo campaign for “Maze Runner” to tap into the fickle young-adult audience that turned “The Hunger Games” and “Twilight” into successful franchises.
Based on James Dashner’s novel, the $34 million tale of teens »
- Dave McNary
The movies need Tina Fey more than she needs the movies, but when it comes to big-screen projects, Hollywood hasn't given the Emmy-winning 30 Rock star much to work with. Last year, as her sitcom went off the air, Fey starred in the wan romantic comedy Admission, and she followed that up this spring with a Russian-baddie turn in the underperforming Muppets sequel. On paper, her participation in this weekend's star-studded family dramedy This Is Where I Leave You might have seemed like a better bet; in actuality, though, the poorly reviewed film is getting clobbered on Rotten Tomatoes by a Ya adaptation and the latest Liam Neeson action movie. Why hasn't Tina Fey's transition to the big screen gone as well as it could (and should)? Here are five tips for Fey that might turn her movie career around.Write your own projectsIn television, you’ve got women like »
- Kyle Buchanan
Red Queen’s Lost Her Head: Westmoreland & Glatzer’s Poetic Elegy of Familial Tragedy
It’s been a busy year for Julianne Moore, in between tent pole studio fare like the last Hunger Games installment and a Liam Neeson action flick she managed to snag Best Actress at the Cannes Film Festival for her perversely satisfying role in David Cronenberg’s Maps to the Stars. While that role is unlikely to generate the same amount of buzz from the Academy, it’s her moving performance in Still Alice that’s likely to garner her considerable awards attention and rightly so. The third film from Richard Glatzer and Wash Westmoreland, it’s a return to quiet, and subtle examinations of human interactions that so generously marked their breakout debut with 2004’s Quinceanera.
A Columbia University Linguistics Professor, Alice Howland (Moore) has just turned fifty. Happily married to her husband, Dr. John »
- Nicholas Bell
Although the trailers and other marketing materials being utilized to sell "A Walk Among the Tombstones" will have you believing that it's another run-of-the-mill Liam Neeson thriller, it's not. The movie is intricate and beautifully done, with one of the finer Neeson performances in recent memory, a twisty crime movie plot (based on a Lawrence Block novel of the same name), and nary a superhero in sight. We recently got to chat with Scott Frank, the film's writer/director, who you might know from his long and illustrious resume that includes collaborating with Steven Spielberg ("Minority Report"), Steven Soderbergh ("Out of Sight") and several other people who aren't named Steven (including Jodie Foster, Kenneth Branagh, Barry Sonnenfeld and Aaron Sorkin). He's also one of the most sought after script doctors in Hollywood. During the course of the interview we talked about everything from the pressure of adapting well-known mystery novelists to the. »
- Drew Taylor
Fox’s “The Maze Runner” has started solidly with an estimated $1.1 million from 2,200 locations in late-night Thursday shows.
The futuristic saga of a group of teenagers who must outrace monsters has been expected to win the weekend with forecasts ranging from the high $20 million into the mid-$30 million range when it expands to 3,604 screens.
The cast, led by Dylan O’Brien of “Teen Wolf,” has been actively campaigning for “Maze Runner” in recent weeks across major social media as Fox aims to tap into the young-adult audience that turned “The Hunger Games” and “Twilight” into successful franchises.
- Dave McNary
Fox’s The Maze Runner grabbed $1.1M in late-night showings at 2,200 locations starting at 10 Pm. The best comparison is probably the sci-fi actioner Ender’s Game, which launched with $1.4 million in November 2013 and went on to have an opening weekend gross of $27M (on the other hand, it cost three times more than Maze Runner). So, perhaps Fox is more on the money with a lower estimate for this weekend.
Another comparison title is this year’s other Ya sci-fi actioner — Divergent (Summit/Lgf). It grabbed $4.9M in late nights that started at 8 Pm and went on to gross $54.6M in its first weekend out. Of course, that one was driven by the young female demo. The Maze Runner is tapping in with the young male audience better, so we will have to see how that translates tonight — which will probably be front-loaded with Ya fans. Fan reviews for the film are pretty good. »
- Anita Busch
Liam Neeson’s "very specific set of skills" usually finds him killing bad guys, drug dealers, and anyone unfortunate enough to cross his path. But in his latest film, A Walk Among the Tombstones, Neeson’s working with drug dealers to keep the body count low. So Vulture caught up with the cast and fellow celebrities at the screening of Universal Pictures' A Walk Among the Tombstones hosted by the Cinema Society, and asked them: If they had to hide a body, where would they dispose it? Their answers:Liam Neeson“I’ve never been asked something like that. I guess dismemberment might be the way to go? And then get rid of the individual pieces, which would be easier, I think. I’ll still be thinking about that tonight, for sure … [while backing away].”David Harbour“That’s such a good question. I need this answer immediately because I have one »
- Renata Sellitti
Two of Hollywood marquee tough guys — Liam Neeson and Denzel Washington – will battle at the box office over the next couple weeks. Neeson will get the first punch in Friday, when he opens in Universal Pictures’ R-rated thriller “A Walk Among the Tombstones.” Washington will open one week later in Sony's “The Equalizer,” another R-rated thriller. See photos: 20 of Denzel Washington and Liam Neeson's Biggest Box Office Hits “I'm glad we're going first,” said Universal's distribution chief Nikki Rocco. Both actors have built broad and reliable fan bases built on delivering in similar rough-and-tumble films, and both movies are aimed primarily. »
- Todd Cunningham
Twentieth Century Fox's boy-centric The Maze Runner took off Friday night at the multiplex thanks to younger males and females, putting it on course for a debut of $30 million or more. It's the first Ya film adaptation to launch in September, a generally sleepy month at the North American box office. Maze Runner, earning an A- CinemaScore, grossed roughly $11 million for the day from 3,604 theaters, including Imax runs. Liam Neeson's A Walk Among the Tombstones placed a distant No. 2, earning $4.7 million on Friday for a projected $14 million weekend and coming in
- Pamela McClintock
The Riot Club no match for feelgood comedy drama on social networks in the UK.
The true story of gay activists who supported miners during the strike of 1984 generated more than 2,400 comments from Sept 4-10, with more than 45% of those expressing intent to view.
Lone Scherfig’s British elite drama The Riot Club, starring Max Irons and Sam Claflin, had to settle for second place with just over 1,900 comments, with a healthy 41% intending to covert comments into cinema tickets.
- email@example.com (Michael Rosser)
Game Changer Award going to Christoph Krachten, co-founder and President of Mediakraft Networks.
Shamberg, who more recently produced Zach Braff’s Wish I Was Here and A Walk Among the Tombstones starring Liam Neeson (both of which will be at the Zurich Film Festival), will discuss ‘Storytelling across platforms’ in his speech. Shamberg is also set to receive the Career Achievement Award at Zff (Sept 25 - Oct 5).
Game Changer Award
The summit, organised by Zff »
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Michael Rosser)
After a few quiet weeks, business should pick up substantially this weekend. Three major new releases hit theaters, and young-adult adaptation The Maze Runner will likely finish at the front of the pack.Opening at 3,604 theaters, The Maze Runner is the latest attempt to cash in on the young-adult craze that's led to successful franchises like Twilight, The Hunger Games and Divergent.For every hit, though, there's at least two misses: in the past two years, the young-adult graveyard includes Beautiful Creatures, The Host, The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones and Vampire Academy.Ahead of the weekend, it's pretty clear that The Maze Runner is going to avoid falling in to the latter category. While the existing fanbase is more-or-less on par with other would-be franchises*and much lower than The Hunger Games or Divergent*20th Century Fox has done a good job campaigning to non-readers.Marketing has nicely established the movie's mysterious premise, »
- Ray Subers <email@example.com>
Opening this weekend is director Scott Frank‘s crime thriller A Walk Among the Tombstones. The film stars Liam Neeson as a troubled ex-cop who investigates the kidnapping of a heroin drug lord’s wife, teaming up with a heroin trafficker (Dan Stevens) and his brother to hunt down the men responsible for the crime. Unlike his Taken role where Neeson is nearly impossible to pin down, A Walk Among the Tombstones takes place in the real world, where the characters need to use their brains and not rely on an endless supply of bullets to get the job done. Frank has a number of great credits as a screenwriter (Minority Report, Out of Sight), and he did great work directing The Lookout. I'm happy to say I really enjoyed A Walk Among the Tombstones and definitely recommend checking it out this weekend. During my video interview with Liam Neeson »
- Steve 'Frosty' Weintraub
While he's reinvented himself as a bona fide badass action hero onscreen in recent years, there is one thing that alarms Liam Neeson. "I'm a wimp about heights. I just am," Neeson, 62, told People Wednesday at the Cinema Society's premiere of A Walk Among the Tombstones in New York City. "We're all just human, aren't we? Somebody might freak out over a snake or a spider. I don't - I pick spiders up and put them outside and stuff," he says. "But put me on a chair to fix a lamp or something and then, boom." And the actor - »
- Jeff Nelson, @nelson_jeff
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