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Weekend Report: 'Sniper' Scores Stunning $64 Million in Second Weekend

Weekend Report: 'Sniper' Scores Stunning $64 Million in Second Weekend
Coming off a very surprising opening, American Sniper reinforced its status as a box office heavyweight by scoring one of the biggest second weekends ever.With over $200 million in the bank already, Sniper is now on track to be the highest-grossing movie from 2014 (it opened in New York and Los Angeles on Christmas Day). Among the new releases, Jennifer Lopez's The Boy Next Door got off to a decent start, while Mortdecai and Strange Magic were dead on arrival.Expanding to 3,705 locations*the widest release ever for an R-rated movie*American Sniper added $64.6 million this weekend. That ranks eighth all-time among second weekends, ahead of movies like The Dark Knight Rises, The Hunger Games and The Passion of the Christ.That $64.6 million tally is off just 28 percent from the movie's opening frame, which is the best second weekend hold ever for a movie that opened above $80 million.With fantastic
See full article at Box Office Mojo »

Weekend Report: 'The Town' Bustles

The Town was the talk of the box office over the weekend, Easy A received a lot of attention, Devil wasn't elevated, and Alpha and Omega didn't hunt. Overall business was a bit lower than the same weekend last year when Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs led. Striking approximately 3,500 screens at 2,861 locations, The Town hauled in $23.8 million, earning the comparison its marketing made to The Departed. The latter blazed onto the scene with $26.9 million on around 4,200 screens at 3,017 locations nearly four years ago (though its attendance was about 37 percent greater than The Town's). Like Departed, The Town busted out of its genre norm, grossing more in one weekend than the final grosses of Gone Baby Gone, Reindeer Games and Pride & Glory and more than doubling the opening weekend of We Own the Night. Its estimated initial attendance was in the realm of Cop Land and Sleepers. Upon closer inspection,
See full article at Box Office Mojo »

'Glee's' Lea Michele gets animated as 'Dorothy of Oz'

"Glee" star Lea Michele is putting on Judy Garland's ruby slippers -- or at least an animated representation of her is.

Michele has signed on to play Dorothy Gale in an animated film called "Dorothy of Oz." The movie is being made by independent company Summertime Entertainment and is tentatively scheduled for release in the spring of 2012.

"She's our Judy Garland," producer Bonne Radford tells the Los Angeles Times about Michele. The role will have her singing several songs as well as doing voiceover work.

"Dorothy of Oz" is based on a children's book by Roger Baum, the great-grandson of "Wizard of Oz" author L. Frank Baum. The story finds Dorothy returning to Oz to find the magical land in a state of decay and her old friends Scarecrow, Tin Man and the Cowardly Lion disappeared.

The voice cast also includes Dan Aykroyd, Kelsey Grammer and Martin Short. Dan St. Pierre
See full article at Zap2It - From Inside the Box »

The Bible Comes to the Big Screen in 3-D

Since 3-D movies are continuing to captivate and thrill moviegoers, I suppose it was only a matter of time before someone decided to combine the new technology with the most lucrative literary property of all time: The Bible. Paramount Pictures and former Walden Media co-founder Cary Granat (Journey to the Center of the Earth) are reportedly in the process of putting together a new, visually exciting take on the story of Adam and Eve called In The Beginning. A script has been written by John Fusco (Young Guns, The Forbidden Kingdom) and will be directed by David Cunningham (The Seeker: The Dark Is Rising). Now obviously this could be a pretty successful venture, assuming that the various church groups get behind it, but I don't know if it's necessarily full-blown blockbuster material. The budget is reportedly in the $30 million range, and the visual effects are being done by Reel Fx,
See full article at FilmJunk »

James Michael Dooley: Dorothy of Oz

James Michael Dooley, whose recent credits include Disney's direct-to-video The Little Mermaid: Ariel's Beginning as well as the theahtrical thriller Obsessed, will do the music for the animated Dorothy of Oz, a family movie currently in post-production. It's directed by Dan St. Pierre, the production designer-turned-director behind Everyone's Hero and the upcoming Sheepish. Alpine Pictures produces for release next year. The voice cast includes Martin Short and Jim Belushi.
See full article at MovieScore Magazine »

New Smurfs Movie Director Not a Surprising Choice

Looks like that Smurfs movie is finally going to see the light of day after all. There has been concept art [1] and a logo [2] floating around for a while now, but what the project didn't have was an actual director. At one point, Colin Brady (Everyone's Hero) was attached, but he later parted ways in favour of some movie called The Legend of Santa Claus. (Strange, considering he was also supposed to direct Astro Boy and left that for The Smurfs.) At any rate, it appears that Columbia has now finally found the appropriate helmsman in Raja Gosnell. Who is Raja Gosnell? Why, only the visionary director responsible for such films as Scooby-Doo, Big Momma's House and Beverly Hills Chihuahua! Hey, at least they're not misleading us with regards to the kind of movie we can expect from The Smurfs. It's going to be a combination of CG and live-action,
See full article at FilmJunk »

Review: Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs

Pixar and everything else - them's the breaks when it comes to judging computer-animated fare these days. Although Pixar has rightfully earned themselves the lead among studios, and by a significant margin, it's all too easy to then marginalize the performance of others.

DreamWorks has certainly raised their game beyond pure pop-culture recitation with the inventive and entertaining likes of Over the Hedge, Kung Fu Panda, and Monsters vs. Aliens (and Aardman or no, I'd even include the winning Flushed Away among their finer efforts). For every Open Season, Sony has given us a Monster House (okay, so that's just one-for-one at the moment). And every time that Fox bequeaths to unwilling audiences something like Space Chimps or Everyone's Hero, Blue Sky has nothing to do with it.

Fox/Blue Sky, however, is the precise pairing that gives us the visually engaging and moderately amusing outings like Robots, Horton Hears a Who!
See full article at Cinematical »

First Look: The Smurfs Movie Logo

Columbia Pictures will be presenting "The Smurfs Movie" at the Licensing International Expo 2009 next week in Las Vegas, and ComingSoon got an early look at the logo from the film. Click on the image below to enlarge. The 3-D CG-animated movie is directed by Colin Brady (Everyone's Hero) and is written by David Stem and David Weiss (Shrek 2). It is scheduled to hit theaters on December 17, 2010. "The Smurfs" originated in 1958 as a Belgian comic strip from Peyo (Pierre) Culliford. NBC launched "The Smurfs" in 1981, spawning 256 episodes and multiple Emmy awards. Logo: (click to enlarge) Click here to read more about "The Smurfs."
See full article at Worst Previews »

Another Animated Santa Coming Our Way

A new movie about Santa and the North Pole pops up TV just about every year at this point, and none of them hold up to the old stop-motion animated Rankin-Bass cartoons. But Lumenas Animation Studios, which has done shorts and commercials in the past, is planning a hugely ambitious take on St. Nicholas that will either erase the memories of those old cartoons, or make us beg for their return. The studio has set Colin Brady, who directed the little-seen 2006 animated movie Everyone's Hero, to direct The Legend of Santa Claus, the first in a trilogy of films about the origins of St. Nick. Variety says the movies will be set in the 18th-century, when the figure originated, and will toss in "greedy elves, vain snowfairies and other fantastical creatures" for good measure. A few Christmases ago I saw a really horrible animated TV movie about the battle between
See full article at Cinema Blend »

'Dorothy of Oz' Includes Short and Belushi

  • Comicmix
Alpine Pictures has signed Martin Short and Jim Belushi as lead voices in its Dorothy of Oz animated musical feature film. Short plays the Jester while and Belushi will be the Cowardly Lion. Unlike previous adaptations based on L. Frank Baum’s series of books, this film will use Roger S. Baum, great-grandson of Frank, and his books. This debut offering from Alpine Pictures, will be produced by Bonne Radford (Curious George) and directed by Daniel St. Pierre (Everyone's Hero). Country star Taylor Swift is the likely voice behind Dorothy Gale. Production is underway with a 2009 release date planned.

A former banker, Baum began writing children’s stories in 1968 but he never wrote in the family’s Oz universe until he was approached by the International Wizard of Oz Club in 1987. Dorothy of Oz was published two years later followed by ten more titles.

His Lion of Oz, a prequel
See full article at Comicmix »

Cynopsis Kids 9/17/08

  • Cynopsis Kids
Alpine Pictures signs Martin Short and Jim Belushi to star in its upcoming animated musical feature film Dorothy of Oz. Short and Belushi will lend their voices to the Jester and the Lion respectively. Based on Roger S. Baum's books and writing, Dorothy of OZ is the first in a series of animated movies from Alpine Pictures, in association with Box Office Productions III. The movie is being produced by Bonne Radford (Curious George, Road to El Dorado, Balto) and directed by noted director/animator Daniel St. Pierre (Everyone's Hero, and upcoming Quantum Quest: A Cassini Space Odyssey, and Sheepish). Roger S. Baum is the great-grandson of L. Frank Baum, author of The Wonderful Wizard of Oz and other Oz books.

http://enews.cynopsis.com/html.asp?XZY1172226UTF60
See full article at Cynopsis Kids »

Academy unveils animated film finalists

Academy unveils animated film finalists
Sixteen full-length animated features have qualified to compete in the best animated feature film category at the 79th annual Academy Awards.

Under Academy rules, the full house of qualifiers means that the Academy could nominate as many as five films in the category when the nominees are announced Jan. 23. It's the first time since 2002 that that has been the case.

The list includes lots of movies with talking critters: Buena Vista's The Wild, DreamWorks Animation's Flushed Away and Over the Hedge, Paramount Pictures' Barnyard, Sony Pictures' Open Season, Warner Bros. Pictures' The Ant Bully and Happy Feet and 20th Century Fox's Ice Age: The Meltdown.

Other titles that made the cut include Buena Vista and Pixar Animation's Cars, Fox's Everyone's Hero, Sony's Monster House, and Universal's Curious George, as well as Warner Independent Pictures' indie offering A Scanner Darkly.

Several films from abroad also qualified: Director Luc Besson's Arthur and the Invisibles, set for release from the Weinstein Co. and MGM; Satoshi Kon's Paprika, from Sony Pictures Classics; and Christian Volckman's Renaissance, from Miramax Films.

'Gridiron' tops soft foes

'Gridiron' tops soft foes
Young males again proved to be the dominant force at the North American boxoffice, with Gridiron Gang chalking up a 10th No. 1 opening for Sony Pictures -- a new record for the studio and the industry. That was the only piece of good news for the weekend, however, as Universal Pictures' The Black Dahlia underperformed expectations and the overall boxoffice was down 12% compared with the same frame a year ago, when DreamWorks' romantic comedy Just Like Heaven topped the charts with a $16.4 million opening. The other new wide releases for the weekend, 20th Century Fox's Everyone's Hero and Paramount Pictures' The Last Kiss, performed within expectations, but nothing really knocked out moviegoers as the industry experienced a second soft weekend in a row.

'Gridiron' tops soft foes

Young males again proved to be the dominant force at the North American boxoffice, with Gridiron Gang chalking up a 10th No. 1 opening for Sony Pictures -- a new record for the studio and the industry. That was the only piece of good news for the weekend, however, as Universal Pictures' The Black Dahlia underperformed expectations and the overall boxoffice was down 12% compared with the same frame a year ago, when DreamWorks' romantic comedy Just Like Heaven topped the charts with a $16.4 million opening. The other new wide releases for the weekend, 20th Century Fox's Everyone's Hero and Paramount Pictures' The Last Kiss, performed within expectations, but nothing really knocked out moviegoers as the industry experienced a second soft weekend in a row.

'Gridiron' tops soft foes

'Gridiron' tops soft foes
Young males again proved to be the dominant force at the North American boxoffice, with Gridiron Gang chalking up a 10th No. 1 opening for Sony Pictures -- a new record for the studio and the industry. That was the only piece of good news for the weekend, however, as Universal Pictures' The Black Dahlia underperformed expectations and the overall boxoffice was down an estimated 12% compared with the same frame a year ago, when DreamWorks' romantic comedy Just Like Heaven topped the charts with a $16.4 million opening. The other new wide releases for the weekend, 20th Century Fox's Everyone's Hero and Paramount Pictures' The Last Kiss, performed within expectations, but nothing really knocked out moviegoers as the industry experienced a second soft weekend in a row.

'Gridiron' tops soft foes

Young males again proved to be the dominant force at the North American boxoffice, with Gridiron Gang chalking up a 10th No. 1 opening for Sony Pictures -- a new record for the studio and the industry. That was the only piece of good news for the weekend, however, as Universal Pictures' The Black Dahlia underperformed expectations and the overall boxoffice was down an estimated 12% compared with the same frame a year ago, when DreamWorks' romantic comedy Just Like Heaven topped the charts with a $16.4 million opening. The other new wide releases for the weekend, 20th Century Fox's Everyone's Hero and Paramount Pictures' The Last Kiss, performed within expectations, but nothing really knocked out moviegoers as the industry experienced a second soft weekend in a row.

IDT changes name of CG feature debut

IDT changes name of CG feature debut
IDT Entertainment announced a new title for its first CG-animated feature that will be distributed through 20th Century Fox. Previously known as Yankee Irving, the family comedy has been retitled Everyone's Hero, and its release date was pushed back from Aug. 25 to Sept. 15. The film originally was directed by Christopher Reeve; after his death, Colin Brady and Dan St. Pierre took over. The voice cast is led by Rob Reiner, Whoopi Goldberg, Brian Dennehy, Raven-Symone, William H. Macy, Mandy Patinkin, Robert Wagner, Richard Kind, New York Yankees manager Joe Torre, Jake T. Austin and the late Dana Reeve, who also serves as an executive producer.

Germans join CGI ranks

Germans join CGI ranks
BERLIN -- Just past the historic Oranienburger gate in the most chic quarter of East Berlin, a German company with Hollywood-sized ambitions is getting ready to take on the giants in the world of feature-length CGI. The Berlin Film Co. delivers its first film, the 3-D animated fairy tale Happily N'Ever After, on Feb. 28. Budgeted at $40 million and featuring the voices of Sigourney Weaver, Sarah Michelle Gellar and Freddie Prinze Jr., the family-friendly parody of well-known Grimm Brothers fairy tales is one of a throng of independent CGI projects hitting the marketplace. Like the Weinstein Co.'s Hoodwinked or such upcoming features as Foodfight! from Threshold and Yankee Irving from IDT, Happily intends to put paid to the notion that only Pixar or DreamWorks can make money with CGI cartoons.

Busy IDT sells 'Yankee,' plans 'Hellboy' toons

Busy IDT sells 'Yankee,' plans 'Hellboy' toons
IDT Entertainment Sales has sold Yankee Irving, a family-oriented, CG-animated feature, to more than 25 territories, including the bulk of the Eastern European market, Portugal and Thailand. In a separate development, IDT also said that it has licensed all animation rights to the Hellboy property from Revolution Studios. Yankee Irving, originally to have been directed by the late Christopher Reeve, is being co-directed by Colin Brady and Daniel St. Pierre and features a voice cast headed by Rob Reiner, Whoopi Goldberg, Brian Dennehy, William H. Macy, Mandy Patinkin, Dana Reeve, Robert Wagner, Richard Kind, Raven-Symone and New York Yankees manager Joe Torre. Jake T. Austin (Go Diego Go!) voices the title character.

Stars at bat for Reeve's CG 'Yankee'

Yankee Irving, a computer-animated feature Christopher Reeve was directing from his home at the time of his death in October 2004, has added a deep bench of voice talent to the cast. Rob Reiner, Whoopi Goldberg, Brian Dennehy, William H. Macy, Mandy Patinkin, Dana Reeve, Robert Wagner, Richard Kind, Raven Symone and New York Yankees manager Joe Torre have joined the voice cast of IDT Entertainment's first independently produced CG-animated feature film. Jake Syzmanski, star of the upcoming Nick Jr. series Go, Diego Go, voices the title character. Yankee Irving is an animated adventure about a boy who travels across the country on a mission to return Babe Ruth's bat before the deciding game of the 1932 World Series.

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