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(2017)

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Indies Fight to Survive as Marketplace Undergoes Radical Changes

Indies Fight to Survive as Marketplace Undergoes Radical Changes
For CinemaCon’s annual gathering of theater owners in Las Vegas, the Motion Picture Assn. of America released a new report showing a 6% drop in theatrical attendance in the U.S. and Canada in 2017, representing a 22-year low.

Though the breakout success of “Black Panther” is likely to quiet some worries about superhero fatigue, distributors and exhibitors working the mid-range and low-budget end of the spectrum are facing some doubts about the viability of their product in the age of tentpoles and streaming media.

The situation isn’t dire. A largely tepid year for specialty releases was offset by a strong awards-season showing for a handful of films. The breakouts of 2017 included “The Shape of Water” ($63.5 million), “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri” ($54.2 million), “Lady Bird” ($48.9 million), “The Big Sick” ($42.8 million) and “Wind River” ($33.8 million).

“It’s definitely a tough time,” says Jeff Bock, box office analyst for the tracking firm Exhibitor Relations.
See full article at Variety - Film News »

2017: The Beginning of the End for Hollywood?

Last year, we’ve saw quite a few great movies released in theaters – and an equally diverse set of box office disasters. Just like in most other years. But specialists – and most viewers – agree that 2017 was one of the worst years for Hollywood. When it comes to ticket sales, especially in the United States (the sales in this market are the ones measuring the success or failure of American-made movies) the revenues reported for last year were the worst for more than two decades. And some say that this is just the beginning.

Let the numbers speak for themselves

One of the issues the American movie industry is facing the decline of interest in actually seeing a movie in a movie theater. According to a Bloomberg report published early this year, the total number of theater admissions reached 1.24 billion in 2017, down from 1.32 billion in 2016. As such, the revenues generated by
See full article at Flickeringmyth »

Saoirse Ronan-Margot Robbie’s ‘Mary, Queen of Scots’ Pushed Back to December

Saoirse Ronan-Margot Robbie’s ‘Mary, Queen of Scots’ Pushed Back to December
Focus Features has moved its awards-season contender “Mary, Queen of Scots,” starring Saoirse Ronan and Margot Robbie, back five weeks from Nov. 2 to Dec. 7.

Ronan is starring in the title role opposite Robbie as Elizabeth I. Josie Rourke is making her feature directorial debut on the movie, directing from a script by Beau Willimon. The project is based on John Guy’s biography “My Heart Is My Own: The Life of Mary Queen of Scots.”

Producers are Working Title co-chairs Tim Bevan and Eric Fellner, and Debra Hayward. The trio all received best picture Academy Award nominations for “Les Misérables.” Other cast members include Guy Pearce, David Tennant, Jack Lowden (“Dunkirk”), Joe Alwyn, Martin Compston, and Brendan Coyle (“Downton Abbey”).

The story is set during the 16th century when Mary Stuart became Queen of France at 16, was widowed two years later, and returned to her native Scotland to reclaim her throne.
See full article at Variety - Film News »

‘Hot Summer Nights’ Trailer: Timothée Chalamet Gets His Own Edgy Coming-of-Age Thriller From A24

‘Hot Summer Nights’ Trailer: Timothée Chalamet Gets His Own Edgy Coming-of-Age Thriller From A24
Timothée Chalamet fans won’t have to wait until the fall to see the young actor back on the big screen. A24 is set to release “Hot Summer Nights” in theaters and on DirecTV this summer, and the indie studio has debuted the edgy first trailer for the coming-of-age thriller. The film marks the feature debut of Elijah Bynum and co-stars “It Follows” favorite Maika Monroe and Alex Roe.

Hot Summer Nights” is set during the summer season on Cape Cod and centers on Chalamet’s shy out-of-towner named Daniel, who gets in way over his head after he begins selling weed for the neighborhood drug dealer (Roe). Daniel sparks a romance with the drug dealer’s sister (Monroe), starting a triangle of love and betrayal.

The film will be Chalamet’s first release since earning an Oscar nomination for “Call Me By Your Name” earlier this year.” The actor
See full article at Indiewire »

Apple May Not Buy A24, But Don’t Be Surprised If It Did: Silicon Valley Increasingly Defines Hollywood

After a brief flurry of acquisitions gossip, and Monday’s announcement that A24 co-founder John Hodges will exit the company, A24 and/or Apple “insiders” let it be known that Apple wasn’t going to buy the hot young indie studio. Per Deadline, talks between A24 and Apple “so far appear to only be for partnerships on projects.”

While this deal appears to be a nonstarter, it speaks to the presence of Silicon Valley in Hollywood, and with the independents as well. It’s very likely that Apple will consider film acquisitions, just as A24 will continue to see overtures. But more than ever, it’s the techies who will call the shots.

For decades, six major studios ruled film and television. As studios’ output continues to shrink, with their parent companies increasingly disenchanted with the movie business, it’s likely that the new six will be Amazon, Apple, Disney/Fox/ABC,
See full article at Indiewire »

Joe Wright Directing ‘The Woman in the Window’ (Exclusive)

Joe Wright Directing ‘The Woman in the Window’ (Exclusive)
Joe Wright will direct “The Woman in the Window,” a big screen adaptation of A.J. Finn's best-seller, Variety has learned. Tracy Letts, the Pulitzer Prize winning writer of “August, Osage County,” will pen the script, and Scott Rudin (“No Country for Old Men,” “The Social Network”) and Eli Bush (“Lady Bird”) will produce the picture. Fox 2000 is backing the project.

“The Woman in the Window” centers on the reclusive Dr. Anna Fox, who spends her days holed in in her New York City brownstone, fortifying herself with too much wine, binge watching old movies, and spying on her neighbors. In the “Rear Window” vein, Anna eventually witnesses something she shouldn’t while keeping tabs on the Russell family, the seemingly picture perfect clan that lives across the way. The thriller has been a brisk seller since debuting in stores in January.

Wright is in demand following the box office
See full article at Variety - Film News »

‘Justice League’ Storms to Top of DVD, Blu-ray Disc Sales Charts

Warner’s “Justice League” led a slew of newcomers that debuted in the top 20 of the national home video sales charts the week ended March 17.

The superhero team-up adventure, which earned $229 million at the domestic box office, came in at No. 1 on both the Npd VideoScan overall disc sales chart, which tracks combined DVD and Blu-ray Disc unit sales, and the dedicated Blu-ray Disc chart.

Slipping to No. 2 on both charts was the previous week’s top seller, Disney’s “Thor: Ragnarok,” which in its second week sold 44% as many discs as “Justice League” did in its first week.

Debuting at No. 3 on both charts was 20th Century Fox’s animated “Ferdinand,” which earned $83.8 million in U.S. theaters.

Disney’s “Coco” dropped to No. 4 on both charts in its third week.

Rounding out the top five on both charts was the newly minted Oscar Best Picture winner, 20th Century
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Shia Labeouf Is Starring in a Movie About Shia Labeouf, but He Won’t Be Playing Shia Labeouf

Shia Labeouf Is Starring in a Movie About Shia Labeouf, but He Won’t Be Playing Shia Labeouf
You might think it’s too soon for a Shia Labeouf biopic, but you would apparently be wrong: “Honey Boy” is adopting the actor’s “just do it!” philosophy and coming into existence whether you like it or not. Labeouf will star in the film, but not as himself — the actor will instead play his father, with Lucas Hedges taking on the role of Labeouf.

Loosely based on its subject’s life, the project is described by Variety as “the story of a child star attempting to mend his relationship with his law-breaking, alcohol-abusing father over the course of a decade.” Hedges, 21, is 10 years Labeouf’s junior. He’s built an impressive resume throughout his young career, earning an Academy Award nomination for his performance in “Manchester by the Sea” and most recently appearing in “Lady Bird” and “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri,” both of which were nominated for Best Picture.
See full article at Indiewire »

Shia Labeouf Biopic ‘Honey Boy’ Casts Lucas Hedges, Causes Brows to Furrow Nationwide

File this one under your ever-expanding "Wtf" tab. Following a series of genuinely redemptive performances in American Honey, Nymphomaniac, and the upcoming Borg vs. McEnroe, Shia Labeouf is now looking to bring his life story to the big screen. THR is reporting that Labeouf is currently gearing up to play his own father in Honey Boy, a quasi-biopic centered on Labeouf's relationship with his former clown and heroin-addict dad, beginning around the time the young actor was on Disney's Even Stevens. Lucas Hedges, a standout performer in Manchester by the Sea and Lady Bird, is …
See full article at Collider.com »

Lucas Hedges to Play Shia Labeouf in ‘Honey Boy’

Lucas Hedges to Play Shia Labeouf in ‘Honey Boy’
Lucas Hedges will play a younger version of Shia Labeouf in the family drama “Honey Boy,” with Labeouf playing his own father.

The story of a child star attempting to mend his relationship with his law-breaking, alcohol-abusing father over the course of a decade, it’s loosely based on Labeouf’s life. “Honey Boy” was Labeouf’s childhood nickname.

Alma Har’el is directing. Producers are Automatik’s Brian Kavanaugh-Jones, Daniela Taplin Lundberg of Stay Gold Features and Christopher Leggett of Delirio Films. Automatik’s Fred Berger is executive producer. Stay Gold Features will finance.

Endeavor Content put together the financing and will co-represent worldwide rights with CAA.

Labeouf starred as John McEnroe in “Borg vs McEnroe,” which premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival and is due out April 13 in the U.S. from Neon. He will be seen next in “Peanut Butter Falcon.”

Hedges recently starred in Martin McDonagh
See full article at Variety - Film News »

‘Thor: Ragnarok’ Surges to Top DVD, Blu-ray Disc Sales Charts

‘Thor: Ragnarok’ Surges to Top DVD, Blu-ray Disc Sales Charts
Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment again claimed the top spot on the national home video sales charts the week ended March 10, this time with “Thor: Ragnarok,” while five other newcomers also found their way into the overall top 20.

The latest hit superhero film from the powerhouse Marvel Studios unit had earned $315 million at the domestic box office before debuting at No. 1 on the Npd VideoScan overall disc sales chart, which tracks combined DVD and Blu-ray Disc Unit sales, and the dedicated Blu-ray Disc sales chart.

The arrival of “Thor:Ragnarok” pushed Disney’s “Coco,” from the Pixar Animation Studio, to No. 2 on both charts after it had debuted on top the week before. “Coco” sold about 39% as many units as “Thor: Ragnarok” during the week.

Dropping a slot to No. 3, also on both charts, was 20th Century Fox’s “Murder on the Orient Express” remake.

No. 4 on the overall chart was Lionsgate’s “Wonder,
See full article at Variety - Film News »

A24 Developing ‘Native Son’ Film With ‘Moonlight’ Actor

A24 is on a roll, recently. The film company had an impressive Awards Season last year with “Lady Bird,” “The Florida Project,” and “The Disaster Artist” all factoring heavily in awards discussions. “Lady Bird” actually landed multiple Oscar noms, including Best Picture. It looks like A24 isn’t slowing down anytime soon.

The company just announced that they have acquired the rights to “Native Son,” an adaptation of the classic Richard Wright novel.
See full article at The Playlist »

‘Tomb Raider’ to Wrestle ‘Black Panther’ at Weekend Box Office

‘Tomb Raider’ to Wrestle ‘Black Panther’ at Weekend Box Office
Could “Tomb Raider” be the film to take down “Black Panther’s” four-week dominance at the domestic box office? It might be too close to call.

Warner Bros. and MGM’s video game adaptation is aiming to strike with $25 million in 3,700 locations. However, if “Black Panther” continues on its stratospheric trajectory, its fifth weekend could also see approximately $25 million.

Alicia Vikander stars in “Tomb Raider” as Lara Croft, who embarks on a journey to her father’s last-known destination, hoping to solve the mystery of his disappearance. Based on the 2013 game, the film was directed by Roar Uthaug and written by Geneva Robertson-Dworet and Alastair Siddons, from a story by Evan Daugherty and Robertson-Dworet. The cast also includes Dominic West, Walton Goggins, Daniel Wu and Kristin Scott Thomas.

The “Tomb Raider” video game franchise has sold over 45 million copies worldwide. In 2001 and 2003, Paramount’s original “Tomb Raider” films starring Angelina Jolie
See full article at Variety - Film News »

TV Review: ‘Rise’ on NBC

TV Review: ‘Rise’ on NBC
As TV has aggressively expanded its scripted output, it’s begun to lean hard on that entertainment-industry standby: “Appealing kids put on a show.” “Rise,” a moderately winning drama that follows those familiar contours, will instantly draw comparisons to “Glee,” though it eschews that program’s slick sheen and barbed sarcasm. It also contains parallels to everything from “Lady Bird” to the retro Netflix comedy “Everything Sucks!,” in which a motley assortment of gawky teens make a sci-fi movie with a few dollars and a whole lot of determination.

Money is also an issue for the characters of “Rise,” which
See full article at Variety - TV News »

'Black Panther' stays top as 'The Greatest Showman' rises 26% at UK box office

'Black Panther' stays top as 'The Greatest Showman' rises 26% at UK box office
Woody Allen’s Wonder Wheel struggles on debut.

Rank Film / Distributor Weekend Gross (Fri-Sun) Running Total Week 1 Black Panther (Disney) £2.94m £39.83m 4 2 The Greatest Showman (Fox) £1.56m £37.33m 11 3 Red Sparrow (Fox) £1.17m £4.02m 2 4 Game Night (Warner) £886,000 £2.64m 2 5 Lady Bird (Universal) £697,130 £3.97m 3

Today’s Gbp to Usd conversion rate - 1.39

Disney

Black Panther recorded a fourth straight week top of the UK box office, posting a strong hold by falling a slim 22% to £2.94m this weekend.

The film is up to £39.83m, surpassing the UK total of Iron Man 3 (£36.97m) and Captain America: Civil War (£37m). By next weekend, the
See full article at ScreenDaily »

Fandango Survey: What Women (Filmgoers) Want

A majority of women in a new survey by Fandango said they preferred action movies, while fewer than one in 10 said they preferred romance or romantic comedies.

The survey of more than 3,000 women ages 18 to 52 coincides with International Women’s Day and a shift in Hollywood to feature more female-led stories in television and film.

The top genres for women were action, science fiction, drama and comedy. The least popular genres were romance, family and animated films, and fantasy.

“It’s clear from our survey that women want more female-driven stories told by female writers and directors on the big screen,” Alicia Malone, author of “Backwards & In Heels: The Past, Present and Future of Women Working in Film, said in a statement. “Contrary to the age-old Hollywood belief, women are not just looking for romance at the cinema.”

The survey also found that 85% of women are the decision-makers when choosing movies for friends and family.
See full article at Variety - Film News »

SXSW 2018 Women Directors: Meet Hannah Marks — “Shotgun”

“Shotgun”

Hannah Marks is an actress, writer, and director known for her roles in the BBC America/ Netflix series “Dirk Gently’s Holistic Detective Agency” and films such as “Anesthesia,” “Southbound,” and “Hard Sell.” She was recently named one of Rolling Stone’s 25 under 25 for her work as co-writer/director of “Shotgun,” her feature directorial debut.

Shotgun” will premiere at the 2018 SXSW Film Festival on March 9. The film is co-directed by Joey Power.

W&H: Describe the film for us in your own words.

Hm: “Shotgun” is not a cancer love story, though it may seem like it at first. It’s really an exploration of a young marriage and how Ptsd from an illness affects the relationship later. The main characters are 23-year-olds Elliot and Mia, who fall for each other under the cloud of life or death stakes.

W&H: What drew you to this story?

Hm: Joey
See full article at Women and Hollywood »

Oscars: How ‘The Shape of Water’ Rallied a Consensus

Oscars: How ‘The Shape of Water’ Rallied a Consensus
As the 90th annual Academy Awards drew to a close Sunday night, Warren Beatty intoned the (correct) words that answered the season’s biggest mystery: “The Shape of Water.”

Guillermo del Toro’s fantasy-romance picture, subtitled “A Fairytale for Troubled Times” in early drafts, was in many ways the catch-all for a year brimming with films that spoke to the moment. “Darkest Hour” and leadership, “Dunkirk” and defiance,” “Get Out” and insidious racism, “Phantom Thread” and toxic masculinity, “The Post” and press freedom, “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri” and reconciliation — so many of the best picture nominees this year had the zeitgeist in their sights in varying ways.

But “The Shape of Water” carried its message with subtlety and nuance in an entertaining genre package. That graceful and accessible touch goes a long way when you’re aiming to appeal to some 7,200 voters. Del Toro’s movie, as he’s said,
See full article at Variety - Film News »

Oscars: Predicting Next Year’s Competitors

Oscars: Predicting Next Year’s Competitors
It’s never too early to start handicapping next year’s film awards race.

Much of Hollywood is still shaking off the hangover from another champagne-soaked Oscar night, but even 12 months removed from the next telecast, the coming battle for statuary is already taking shape.

It’s a competition that could bring back previous winners such as Robert Zemeckis and Damien Chazelle or reward shockingly overlooked auteurs like Yorgos Lanthimos. There’s also the possibility that Martin Scorsese will be in the hunt for Oscar glory if Netflix moves up the release of “The Irishman,” a long-gestating, big-budget crime drama starring Al Pacino and Robert De Niro that’s tentatively scheduled to debut in 2019.

Zemeckis has mostly been ignored by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences since winning the director Oscar for “Forrest Gump” in 1995, but his next project, “The Women of Marwen,” seems tailor-made to appeal to voters.
See full article at Variety - Film News »

A24 Buys Horror Spec From ‘Cat Person’ Author

A24 is launching development of the horror movie “Bodies Bodies Bodies[/link],” written by “Cat Person” author Kristen Ropuenian, in the company’s first purchase of a spec script.

“Bodies Bodies Bodies” is Roupenian’s foray into the screenwriting space. A24 did not disclose details of the story, other than saying it infuses a “fresh, incisive perspective” into the horror genre, mixing together elements of shrewd character study, mystery and deep-seeded scares.

A24 is fast-tracking the film for production. CAA brokered the deal.

Ropuenian is the author of the popular New Yorker fiction story “Cat Person.” After being published in December, “Cat Person,” which follows a downhill relationship and delves into the dynamics of millennial dating, turned into a viral phenomenon and became the most-read fiction story the New Yorker published throughout all of 2017.

Ropuenian also just made a major seven figure deal with Scout Press for her next collection of stories.
See full article at Variety - Film News »
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