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12 items from 2003

Final boxoffice: $50.5 million for 'King'

30 December 2003 | The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News | See recent The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News news »

The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King remained king of the hill at the boxoffice, holding onto the No. 1 spot with weekend earnings of $50.5 million, according to final studio figures Monday. Ticket sales for the third installment in the fantasy trilogy dropped only 30 percent, although wide-release blockbusters frequently fall by 50 percent or more each week after they debut. So far, Return of the King has collected $222.2 million. The top 10 movies at North American theaters Friday through Sunday, followed by distributor, gross, number of theater locations, average receipts per location, total gross and number of weeks in release, as compiled Monday:

1. The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King, New Line, $50,598,104, 3,703 locations, $13,664 average, $222,268,708, two weeks.

2. Cheaper By the Dozen, Fox, $27,557,647, 3,298 locations, $8,356 average, $35,397,241, one week.

3. Cold Mountain, Miramax, $14,574,213, 2,163 locations, $6,738 average, $19,079,727, one week.

4. Something's Gotta Give, Sony, $13,816,638, 2,709 locations, $5,100 average, $55,902,582, three weeks.

5. Paycheck, Paramount, $13,462,374, 2,762 locations, $4,874 average, $18,615,272, one week.

6. Mona Lisa Smile, Sony, $11,351,439, 2,677 locations, $4,240 average, $31,226,270, two weeks.

7. Peter Pan, Universal, $11,139,495, 2,813 locations, $3,960 average, $14,627,615, one week.

8. The Last Samurai, Warner Bros., $8,326,947, 2,557 locations, $3,257 average, $74,324,104, four weeks.

9. Bad Santa, Miramax, $4,526,000, 1,710 locations, $2,647 average, $50,947,195, five weeks.

10. Elf, New Line, $3,906,028, 2,015 locations, $1,938 average, $164,648,692, eight weeks. »

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'King' collects $73.6 million in opening weekend

21 December 2003 | The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News | See recent The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News news »

Movie audiences shelled out a king's ransom for one last trip to Middle-earth. New Line's The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King raked in an estimated $73.6 million in its first weekend and put up a five-day haul of about $125.1 million since debuting Wednesday, according to studio estimates Sunday. That put it well ahead of the fantasy trilogy's first two chapters. Part one, The Fellowship of the Ring, grossed $47.2 million over opening weekend and $75 million in its first five days, while the middle chapter, The Two Towers, had a $62 million opening weekend and took in $102 million over its first five days. Sony's Julia Roberts starrer Mona Lisa Smile, the weekend's only other new wide release, opened as the No. 2 movie with an estimated $12 million. Last weekend's top movie, Sony's Something's Gotta Give, slipped to third with an estimated $11.5 million. Warners' Tom Cruise starrer The Last Samurai was fourth with an estimated $7.3 million. Fox's Stuck on You rounded out the weekend top five with an estimated $5.4 million. Final figures will be released Monday. »

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Julia Roberts Prefers Ensemble Casts

19 December 2003 | WENN | See recent WENN news »

Hollywood actress Julia Roberts prefers to work as part of an ensemble cast, because she feels less pressure for the movie to perform well at the box office. The Oscar-winning actress has appeared in a string of films filled with big-name casts - including Ocean's Eleven, America's Sweethearts and her latest effort Mona Lisa Smile - since she last headlined with 2000's Erin Brockovich. And Julia puts her love of ensemble casts down to enjoyment, and less work. The 36-year-old says, "It's just more fun, I think. It's more fun and less work. These are the things I strive for in life. But it's really quite selfish, because their genius makes me look like a genius, so it's not like I'm really giving back." But the trial of working with younger actresses including Julia Stiles, Maggie Gyllenhaal and Kirsten Dunst on Mona Lisa seems to have taken its toll on Julia's public persona. She says, "This is what I got asked yesterday: 'What was it like working with all these young, beautiful girls and having to get up every day and look at yourself in the mirror? Does that make you consider plastic surgery?' I was just so insulted. She was not having her best day either, let me tell you. I get asked a lot of insulting questions. I think they're just thoughtless." »

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Julia Roberts Snaps Back at Pregnancy Questions

9 December 2003 | WENN | See recent WENN news »

Julia Roberts flew into a rage at a press conference promoting her new movie, Mona Lisa Smile, at the weekend - when she was quizzed about a possible pregnancy. Fired up by the news that Gwyneth Paltrow was pregnant, journalists asked Roberts if she too was with child - when she appeared to look tired and sickly. She snapped, "I have the flu and I've been throwing up for seven days! So if I seem slightly less than enthusiastic, I'm trying to keep it together." One journalist present says, "Julia was really upset by the question and there was no need to be - it was harmless. A lot of us left thinking perhaps she protested too much." »

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Julia Roberts Uses Her Smarts To Nix Show

13 October 2003 | WENN | See recent WENN news »

Julia Roberts managed to defuse a potentially embarrassing celebrity show - by trading the program for exclusive coverage of her new movie. When she found out celebrity-themed TV channel E! was planning to do a special on her love life, Julia was not pleased, according to gossip source Page Six. The Love Chain show would have focused on her many romances, from an early marriage to Lyle Lovett and relationships with Kiefer Sutherland, Jason Patric and Benjamin Bratt to her current marriage to Danny Moder. But instead of getting angry, clever Julia kept her cool - and offered thrilled TV bosses an exclusive about her new movie Mona Lisa Smile if they promised to axe the idea. »

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Roberts 'Closer' to Blanchett Role

23 September 2003 | WENN | See recent WENN news »

Superstar Julia Roberts is in talks to play the lead in new film Closer after Cate Blanchett dropped out from the role. Blanchett last week quit the film after announcing she's pregnant with her second child, so The Graduate director Mike Nichols approached the Pretty Woman actress to take over in his adaptation of Patrick Marber's play. Jude Law, Natalie Portman and Clive Owen are also on board for the film, about the tangled relationship between two couples after a man from one and woman from the other have an affair. Blanchett is currently wrapping up Martin Scorsese's The Aviator, a Howard Hughes biopic. She will then go to Italy to shoot Wes Anderson's The Life Aquatic alongside Bill Murray, Owen Wilson and Anjelica Huston before her baby is due next year. Roberts will next appear in Mona Lisa Smile, followed by Ocean's Twelve, Steven Soderbergh's follow-up to his 2001 heist flick. »

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Nicole Fears Civil War Film Flop

3 September 2003 | WENN | See recent WENN news »

Nicole Kidman has become her own worst critic - she fears her new movie Cold Mountain will be a flop. The Oscar winner fears the star-studded Anthony Minghella film, set in the American Civil War, will fail to set the box office alight when it's released at Christmas - because it has too much good competition. Kidman fears her new project will lose out to Julia Roberts' Mona Lisa Smile. She says, "I saw a trailer and it looks really good. I thought, 'Maybe our film's too out there.' It's a love story, but it's a love story that's complicated and painful and aches. It's not a love story where everybody wins." »

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CAA's all smiles over Roberts deal

15 May 2003 | The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News | See recent The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News news »

Julia Roberts has landed at CAA. The actress stunned industry insiders last month when she left ICM after more than 10 years at the agency, a period in which Roberts became the first female star to earn $20 million per picture, won an Oscar for 2000's Erin Brockovich and started a production company. At the time of her departure, sources said Roberts had decided to go without agency representation for the time being (HR 4/29). For CAA, signing Roberts is a coup that bolsters its position as the home of many of Hollywood's top female movie stars, including Nicole Kidman, Renee Zellweger, Gwyneth Paltrow, Halle Berry, Julianne Moore, Cameron Diaz, Sandra Bullock and Kate Hudson. Roberts next stars in Revolution Studios' Mona Lisa Smile. »

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Gyllenhaal has 'Criminal' intent for WB thriller

2 May 2003 | The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News | See recent The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News news »

Secretary star Maggie Gyllenhaal is in negotiations to join John C. Reilly and Diego Luna in the Warner Bros. Pictures feature Criminal (aka Nine Queens) for Steven Soderbergh and George Clooney's Section Eight Prods. The project, a remake of an Argentine feature, begins production next month with Gregory Jacobs directing. Criminal is a caper thriller about two men (Reilly and Luna) who team on a scam involving a forged set of extremely valuable stamps, the Nine Queens. Gyllenhaal would play the sister of Reilly's character, whom he swindles out of her inheritance. Jacobs, Soderbergh's longtime first assistant director, co-wrote with Soderbergh the English version of the screenplay. Soderbergh and Clooney will produce, with Section Eight's Jennifer Fox and Ben Cosgrove executive producing. Warners vp production Jessica Goodman will oversee the project on behalf of the studio, which acquired remake rights to Criminal two months ago (HR 2/6). Gyllenhaal, repped by CAA and Benderspink's Courtney Kivowitz, next stars in Revolution Studios' Mona Lisa Smile opposite Julia Roberts and IFC Films' Casa de Los Babys for writer-director John Sayles. »

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Harden moves to 'Mooseport'

23 April 2003 | The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News | See recent The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News news »

Oscar-winning actress Marcia Gay Harden has joined Gene Hackman, Ray Romano and Maura Tierney in the Donald Petrie-directed comedy Mooseport for 20th Century Fox and Intermedia Film. Production is scheduled to start by month's end. Penned by Tom Shulman, Mooseport centers on a former U.S. president (Hackman) who retires to a small Northeastern coastal town. There, he is implored by his new neighbors to fill a mayoral seat that has become vacant. To keep things honest, a local hardware store owner (Romano) runs against him, only to see the race turn into a full-scale battle. Harden will star as the right-hand figure to Hackman's character. Producing the project are Shulman and Intermedia's Basil Iwanyk. Executive producers are Moritz Borman and Doug Richardson, the latter of whom came up with the story line for the project. Harden is repped by ICM, Framework Entertainment and Ira Schreck at Schreck, Rose & Dapello. She next stars on the big screen opposite Julia Roberts in Mona Lisa Smile for Revolution Studios, followed by the Clint Eastwood-directed Mystic River for Warner Bros. Pictures and John Sayles' Casa de los Babys for IFC Films. »

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Julia Upset with Danny's Flirting

17 March 2003 | WENN | See recent WENN news »

Julia Roberts and Danny Moder's eight-month marriage is on shaky grounds following a bust-up about the cameraman's flirting with young actress Kirsten Dunst. Roberts reportedly blew up into a rage when she learned of her husband's flirting ways with her Mona Lisa Smile co-star Dunst - who is romancing Donnie Darko star Jake Gyllenhaal. A set insider has told American tabloid National Enquirer, "A rumor circulated around the set that Julia barged in on Danny and Kirsten when they were in her trailer. Kirsten later apologized to Julia, saying, 'Nothing really happened, ' but Julia wasn't buying it." Friends say the couple have since patched up their differences in a bid to have a baby together, but friends fear the tempestuous couple are sure for more showdowns. A pal says, "It could all blow up tomorrow and Julia could stalk out for good." »

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Gyllenhaal Wants to Wed Dunst

3 February 2003 | WENN | See recent WENN news »

Hollywood actor Jake Gyllenhaal is so smitten with his belle Kirsten Dunst, he's desperate to marry her. Pals of the loving pair tell American tabloid the Star that Gyllenhaal, who starred opposite Friends beauty Jennifer Aniston in the 2002 flick The Good Girl, is begging Spider-Man stunner Dunst to go shopping for an engagement ring. But the 20-year-old actress is firmly turning down her beau, 22, because, although she loves him, she fears she's too young to commit. Dunst will next be seen in Sundance hit Levity and then opposite Julia Roberts and Julia Stiles in Mona Lisa Smile. »

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