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Summer Slows to a Crawl as 'Hitman's Bodyguard' and 'Logan Lucky' Debut
The downward trend continues this weekend. Two new releases arrive in theaters and neither will debut with enough to even marginally turn the summer box office tide. In fact, we may be looking at the worst weekend at the box office this year with a top twelve that could struggle to generate a combined $80 million. As for the new releases, Lionsgate's release of The Hitman's Bodyguard will do what it can to challenge Annabelle: Creation for the weekend's top spot while Bleecker Street's release of Logan Lucky is a fascinating study in and of itself and whether it pushes higher than $10 million will be something to watch. At the top of the weekend box office it's looking like a competitive race between last weekend's strong opening performance for WB and New Line's Annabelle: Creation and Lionsgate and Summit's The Hitman's Bodyguard. Annabelle delivered a $35 million opening, which is just a »
- Brad Brevet <firstname.lastname@example.org>
'Star Wars' Obi-Wan Kenobi Film in the Works (Exclusive)
Sources say talks are at the earliest of stages and that the project has no script. If a deal makes, Daldry would oversee the development and writing with Lucasfilm brass. It's not known at this stage if Ewan McGregor will reprise his role.
The Obi-Wan Kenobi standalone is one of several projects being developed by Lucasfilm and Disney that fall outside the trilogies telling the »
- Borys Kit
Amazon Studios, Warner Bros. Teaming on ‘The Goldfinch’ (Exclusive)
As part of the pact, Amazon will invest more than a third of the movie’s budget, which is estimated to be in the $40 million range, according to insiders. In return, it will get streaming rights to the picture and debut it on home entertainment platforms in what is commonly referred to as the pay-tv window, the term for when movies debut on HBO and Showtime.
Warner Bros. will distribute the film in theaters worldwide. There were several other parties interested in boarding the project, but Amazon was the most aggressive. The e-retailer believes the project is a good fit for its customer base, because Tartt’s novel was a big seller on its platform. It also views the partnership on the movie as a good branding opportunity. »
- Brent Lang
Director David F. Sandberg gives an update on Shazam and his comic book inspirations
Fresh from the box office success of Annabelle: Creation, director David F. Sandberg is now turning his attention to the DC Extended Universe and his next project, Shazam!. Speaking to Film Riot (via Heroic Hollywood), Sandberg has provided an update on Shazam!, confirming that the script is ready and it will be the next DC movie to go into production after Aquaman.
“There’s a script, it’s the next DC movie to shoot,” said Sandberg, who also confirmed that Dwayne Johnson’s Black Adam will no longer feature in the film. “There’ve been variations of the script, like before I came along, where… you know, variations where Black Adam was in and out and, you know. But now, this is about Shazam.”
Sandberg also talked about which comic books he’s been reading in preparation for the project: “I’m taking it all in. Some of those really old ones are quite fun, »
- Gary Collinson
The Jetsons Live-Action Sitcom From Robert Zemeckis Lands at ABC
ABC, meet George Jetson. George Jetson, meet ABC.
The Alphabet network has given a put-pilot order to a live-action sitcom reboot of The Jetsons, TVLine has learned. The remake, first reported here back in June, will update the classic 1960s Hanna-Barbera cartoon about a futuristic family, this time as a traditional multi-camera sitcom. Oscar-winning director Robert Zemeckis (Forrest Gump, Back to the Future) will serve as an executive producer, with Family Guy writer Gary Janetti penning the pilot.
Janetti’s presence may be a hint about the tone of these new-look Jetsons, which “looks at America’s favorite future family through a modern filter, »
'It' Tracking for Record $50M Debut in U.S.
The Warner Bros. and New Line horror film, rolling out in theaters Sept. 8, could clear $50 million or more in its first weekend, besting Hotel Transylvania 2 ($48 million) to score the biggest start ever for the month of September, not adjusting for inflation. Some even believe it could approach $60 million.
Warners insiders are being more cautious and saying $40 million-$45 million, noting the sluggish marketplace and the fact that September has never been known for huge openings. Also, It is rated R.
- Pamela McClintock
San Sebastian: Glenn Close-starrer ‘The Wife’ Selected as Closing Night Film
Madrid — Glenn Close and Jonathan Pryce-starrer “The Wife” will close the 65th San Sebastian Festival on Sept. 30, where the film’s European premiere will see the festival end with an upscale tale of a woman’s belated empowerment, a showcase for Close and Pryce’ mano a mano acting talents and, in industrial terms, a blue-chip U.S.-U.K.-Scandinavia production.
Produced by Anonymous Content, Meta Film,Tempo Productions, Spark Film and Television, and Silver Reel, “The Wife” turns on Joan Castleman (Close) who is married to a Nobel Prize-winning American novelist (Pryce), the kind of man who thinks he owns the world and his wife.
On the eve of the Nobel Prize award ceremony, Close, who has “spent 40 years ignoring her own literary talents to fan the »
- John Hopewell
Netflix Orders Batch of Japanese Animation, Including ‘Saint Seiya’ Reboot
Netflix has ordered more than 20 new animation titles in Japan, including a reboot of the classic anime and manga “Saint Seiya.”
Greg Peters, Netflix’s chief product officer, announced the new batch of animated series in Tokyo earlier this month. He said that 90% of the Japanese animation titles carried by the streaming service are watched in territories outside of Japan. He also said Netflix was focused on working with Japanese studios and production companies to meet the high demand for animated shows.
Two announced titles that have caused a stir are “Cannon Busters” and “Knights of the Zodiac: Saint Seiya.” The original “Saint Seiya” manga was released more than 30 years ago, but remains popular in South America, France, Italy and China. “Saint Seiya” has already been adapted in the past into a TV series and six feature films. A new live-action “Saint Seiya” is in the works.
- Variety Japan
Film Review: ‘Shot Caller’
While American audiences wait for the Hollywood remake of Jacques Audiard’s gritty 2010 French thriller “A Prophet,” Ric Roman Waugh swoops in with a comparably gritty prison epic of his own: Debuting on DirecTV two weeks before hitting theaters, “Shot Caller” dramatizes how a hardcore stint behind bars transforms an otherwise docile citizen — in this case, a white-collar wheeler-dealer (Danish actor Nikolaj Coster-Waldau) convicted of a DUI manslaughter charge and tossed in with the violent offenders — into a ruthless crime boss.
The character’s arc proves considerably more complex than that description suggests, as Waugh forgoes cheap action-movie gimmicks, offering up instead a haunting psychological portrait of an intelligent man forced to completely reinvent himself before he can even dream of seeking redemption for his previous sins. “Shot Caller” marks the third time that writer-director Waugh (who previously helmed “Felon” and “Snitch”) has taken audiences into this intimidating underworld, and the tough, no-punches-pulled »
- Peter Debruge
Dealing With the Past: Sarajevo Film Festival Addresses Balkan Wars
Two decades after the bloody Balkan wars, reconciliation in the region can still be hard to come by. The Sarajevo Film Festival is trying to do its part with Dealing with the Past, a program launched last year that comprises a festival sidebar of films dealing with the wars and their aftermath and an industry section called the True Stories Market.
The market seeks to connect filmmakers with organizations that are documenting and researching the conflict with the aim of bringing dramatic fact-based stories to light and to wider audiences through documentaries, feature films, and television productions.
This year’s True Stories Market presented nine stories, including “Profile of a Mercenary – Making Money Off the War or Crimes,” by the Sarajevo-based Balkan Investigative Reporting Network (Birn). The story focuses on a former convict who had served time for robbery and attempted murder before going on to serve as a mercenary, first »
- Ed Meza
‘The Defenders': What is K’un-Lun? A Quick Explainer of the Heavenly, Mystical City
(Some light spoilers ahead for early episodes of “Marvel’s Iron Fist” and “The Defenders” on Netflix.) When Danny Rand (Finn Jones) shows up back in the New York in Netflix’s “Iron Fist,” he’s been missing for some 15 years. Presumed dead in a plane crash over the Himalayas, nobody he knows even believes he really is who he says he is. Where has he been all this time? According to Danny, he was living in a city called K’un-Lun. Danny returns to New York a changed man from the boy who disappeared at age 10. He’s a martial arts master, »
- Phil Hornshaw
Finally: Patty Jenkins Reportedly Closing A Deal To Direct Wonder Woman 2
The director was reportedly holding out for a much, much bigger payday. »
- Jordan Crucchiola
Film Review: ‘California Typewriter’
Vinyl made a comeback, and so did slow food and long beards. So why not the typewriter? Actually, there’s a good reason why not: If you’re composing on a typewriter — a letter, say — and you change your mind about a word or a sentence you’ve just written, then you have to white it out or x it out. It’s an added task, and the result will likely be a tad smudgy. On the typewriter, every single keystroke is a tiny punch of commitment. (The seamless clickety-clack of a computer keyboard, with its instant erasability…not so much.) But according to “California Typewriter,” a lively and appealing analog-nostalgia documentary, it’s that very physicality that makes the typewriter a machine of the past that deserves to have a place in the future. As the movie sees it, the typewriter isn’t just for saying things. It’s for saying them and meaning them.
- Owen Gleiberman
‘The Three Stooges’ Set for Indian TV Revival (Exclusive)
Larry, Moe and Curly are face-slapping and eye-poking their way to India.
U.S.-based C3 Entertainment’s iconic Vaudeville comedy franchise, “The Three Stooges,” is set to be adapted for Indian television. With a working title of “Three Stooges Bole Toh Hungama Ho Gaya,” the Hindi-language series is being developed by Mumbai-based Galani Entertainments.
Galani Entertainments is linked to Vijay Galani Moviez/Film Folks, whose credits include Salman Khan vehicles “Veer” and “Suryavanshi” and “Ajnabee,” starring Akshay Kumar and Kareena Kapoor. New talent will be cast in the roles of Larry, Moe and Curly.
The original comedy trio featured in some 190 film shorts from 1934 to 1958, with U.S. television syndication beginning thereafter. “The most appealing factor for recreating ‘The Three Stooges’ in India is the universal appeal of the »
- Naman Ramachandran
Patty Jenkins in Final Negotiations With WB to Direct ‘Wonder Woman 2’
Despite the runaway success of “Wonder Woman” and the confirmation in July that the sequel is due in theaters December 13, 2019, the director behind that success hasn’t yet been announced to return. That will soon change, as Patty Jenkins is in final talks to direct “Wonder Woman 2,” TheWrap has learned. The specific terms of her return to the franchise she led to a $797.8 million worldwide box office haul are not known. But it is said to be large whatever the final numbers end up being, on par with other directors who have delivered the kind of success »
- Umberto Gonzalez and Ross A. Lincoln
‘King Arthur’ Rules DVD, Blu-ray Disc Sales Charts
Two new releases took the two top spots on the national home video sales charts for the week that ended Aug. 12, led by Warner’s “King Arthur: Legend of the Sword,” the latest retelling of the saga of the mythical British king.
“Arthur” debuted at No. 1 on both the Npd VideoScan overall disc sales chart, which tracks combined DVD and Blu-ray Disc sales, and the dedicated Blu-ray Disc sales chart. The film made less than $40 million in U.S. theaters and was panned by critics, with the reviewer for the Chicago Tribune calling it a “grim and stupid thing.” Nearly 40 films have been made about about King Arthur, the earliest one in 1904.
Debuting at No. 2 on the overall disc sales chart only was “Snatched,” which opened theatrically the same weekend (May 12-14) as “Arthur” and finished second, with $19.5 million, to $15.4 million for third-ranked “Arthur.” The comedy, from 20th Century Fox, stars »
- Thomas K. Arnold
Miley Cyrus Sings to a Puppet and Rides the Gravitron in Music Video for New Song ‘Younger Now’
“What goes up must come down.” »
- Tim McGovern
Seth Rogen Tweets 10 Facts About ‘Superbad’ on Its 10th Birthday
A decade on and “Superbad” remains one of the funniest comedies of the current century. The coming of age pic written by Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg hit the ten year milestone today, and to celebrate Rogen distributed 10 facts about the film from his Twitter account. Many of them have long been public knowledge, or more recently have been, like how his mother came up with the statutory rape joke at the end of the film. Even so, they make for a fun look at the film. For instance, we did not know the MPAA told the production they »
- Ross A. Lincoln
Tina Fey Stress-Eats and Screams Into a Cake After Talking About Trump in Her Return to Weekend Update
Dealing with political frustration has never been so tasty. »
- Tim McGovern
Zoo Recap: The Mile-High Club
Boy, Zoo really likes its cliffhangers. »
- Joshua Rivera
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