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EMMYS: A Year After Its Finale Bryan Cranston Still Hopes ‘Breaking Bad’ Has Awards Mojo On Its Side

By | Wednesday July 30, 2014 @ 3:44pm PDT
Pete Hammond

EMMYS:  A Year After Its Finale Bryan Cranston Still Hopes ‘Breaking Bad’ Has Awards Mojo On Its SideBreaking Bad may have finished its run a year ago but, as far as Emmys are concerned, it has all the heat now – and then some. It recently won Best Drama Series from the Critics Choice Television Awards, Program Of The Year  from the Television Critics Association and even finally the Golden Globe last January for the show and star Bryan Cranston after essentially being ignored by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association for the length of its 6-year  run. The show has really come into its own and continues to be talked about and debated, and has taken a kind of victory tour at all the Guild shows as well since finally winning its first Best Drama Series Emmy in 2013. And it is nominated again, for the last time, for those final eight episodes that ran last summer just as Emmy voting for the previous season was in full force. Some think voters gave breaking-bad-beats-mad-men-and-homeland-to-win-best-drama-seriesit the Emmy then as much for the new shows, that were unspooling as they had ballots in hand, as much they did for the eligible 8 shows from  the first half of the sixth and final season. It begs the question whether the Academy is ready to go there one more time even though BB long ago finished its first-run episodes on AMC. But despite three lead actor Emmys in 2008, 2009 and 2010 for Cranston as well as a pair for … Read More »

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So Who Comic-Conquered San Diego?

So Who Comic-Conquered San Diego?The fanboy Super Bowl is over. Who made the most of San Diego Comic-Con and who spit the bit? Here’s the view from Deadline staffers who endured endless movie and TV show presentations. We’ll start with features:

WARNER BROS: Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice, Mad Max: Fury Road, Jupiter Ascending, The Hobbit: Battle of the Five Armies
Mad Max Comic ConThe best Comic-Con panels show fans things they’ve never seen before. From that standpoint, Warner Bros changed the game by making the Hall H experience seem larger. It turned the dark curtains covering 450 feet down the sides of the auditorium into a wraparound multimedia visual experience that left jaded geeks looking left and right in wonder at images that complemented the onstage presentation. Expect others to rip this off. For star power: Zack Snyder introduced his Batman v Superman stars Ben Affleck, Henry Cavill, and Gal Gadot and offered glimpses of the film. Warner Bros also wowed with explosive footage from Mad Max: Fury Road, a film that looks like it could be the answer someday to this Trivial Pursuit question: What movie transformed Tom Hardy from a great actor into a big fucking movie star? Warner Bros also brought Middle Earth excitement to Hall H with a lengthy Hobbit: The Five Armies panel and footage that had LOTR fans aflutter.

Related: Q&A: Peter Jackson On His Middle Earth Exit And A Disguise That Let Him Haunt Comic-Con

MARVEL: Ant-Man, Avengers: Age Of Ultron, Guardians of the Galaxy 2
Avengers 2 at Comic-ConMarvel is always the must-see panel; not so much this year. Maybe it was DC Comics’ turn to shine, and maybe being a sequel factory imposes limits on the surprise front. They trotted out the superstar Avengers lineup — been there, done that! — with additions Josh Brolin, Aaron Johnson, and Elizabeth Olsen. No Black Widow Scarlett Johansson, who was busy bitch-slapping Hercules at the box office in the Luc Besson film Lucy. Footage was OK, but Kevin Feige set a high bar for himself in past Cons, and this year he couldn’t clear it. Ant-Man brought Corey Stoll and Evangeline Lilly (already knew they were in the movie), and plans for a Guardians Of The Galaxy sequel were greeted by a collective “Duh!’ Feige could have told us what movies will fill all those release dates he recently staked out. He didn’t. Better luck next year, Marvel Man.

Related: Marvel Sets ‘Guardians 2′ For 2017; ‘Avengers 2’ Footage Draws Standing O

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Comic-Con: Legendary Wants Joe Cornish For ‘Skull Island’

By | Monday July 28, 2014 @ 6:29pm PDT
Mike Fleming

Comic-Con: Legendary Wants Joe Cornish For ‘Skull Island’EXCLUSIVE: Legendary Pictures wowed the crowd in Hall H by unveiling Skull Island, a new feature by Godzilla scribe Max Borenstein based on the mythic origins of King Kong, where mutant giant creatures rule. They set a November 4, 2016, release and are wasting no time staffing up. I’m told they’ve offered the directing job to Joe Cornish, who has been offered big movies since his low-budget alien-invasion breakthrough pic Attack The Block. I’m not sure if Cornish will take the job because he’s offered so much — like Universal’s Section Six, the Aaron Berg-scripted drama about the formation of MI6 Brit intelligence branch, for instance. But this is going to be catnip to some hotshot director. When Peter Jackson re-made King Kong, the part where they landed on Skull Island and ran for their lives from over-sized exotic carnivorous creatures was the highlight of the movie. No comment from Cornish’s CAA reps.

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FINAL: Intl Box Office: ‘Apes’ Dawns Again; ‘Godzilla’ Stomps Japan; ‘Hercules’ Muscles In; ‘Transformers’ $300M+ In China; Asia Action Ramps Up; More

FINAL: Intl Box Office: ‘Apes’ Dawns Again; ‘Godzilla’ Stomps Japan; ‘Hercules’ Muscles In; ‘Transformers’ $300M+ In China; Asia Action Ramps Up; More3RD UPDATE, MONDAY 3:10 PM PT: All studios have reported actuals for the international weekend with no major discrepancies between the cumulative estimates reported Sunday and what’s come across today. Across the top titles, Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes was up a tick to $54.84M from an estimated $54.4M; Transformers: Age Of Extinction was slightly lower at $36.9M versus $37.5M; Hercules was smack on with $28.7M; and How To Train Your Dragon 2 was up a whisker at $24.4M versus the $24M estimate.

cinemaworldOne notable factoid is that for the 2nd weekend in a row, numbers on Adam Sandler/Drew Barrymore comedy Blended are higher than expected. Yesterday, they were estimated at $3.8M in 47 markets. Today, Warner says the actuals are $4.25M. That takes the overseas cume to $66.6M – the domestic cume was $45.4M. In Brazil, the film has been especially strong, adding $1.7M this weekend for a local cume of $6.8M and a slight 18% drop from last frame. When I asked what the deal is with Sandler, Blended and Brazil, I was told that his films are roundly popular there where family fare is also big – and this one is now bigger than Grown Ups, 50 First Dates, Bedtime Stories, Don’t Mess With The Zohan and Chuck And Larry.

Along with the above films, all figures throughout the below have been updated on: Planes: Fire & Rescue, Godzilla, Step Up All In, Sex Tape, The Purge: Anarchy, Maleficent, The Fault In Our Stars, Mrs Brown’s Boys D’ Movie, 22 Jump Street, Deliver Us From Evil, Neighbors, Kick, Edge Of Tomorrow, and Boyhood. Read More »

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Comic-Con: Legendary Unveils Glimpse Of New King Kong Pic ‘Skull Island’

By | Saturday July 26, 2014 @ 1:35pm PDT

Comic-Con: Legendary Unveils Glimpse Of New King Kong Pic ‘Skull Island’Legendary Entertainment packed its film panel today with plenty of monsters (Godzilla, Mothra, Rodan and King Ghidorah), but a small teaser at the end of the Hall H event today glimpsed an unexpected one: King Kong. It was Legendary’s way of unveiling that it will be making a feature film based on King Kong’s home Skull Island. That film will be released November 4, 2016. The teaser video did the trick, showing first person POV soaring over dark and stormy seas into an island — Skull Island — where King Kong stands tall and roars.

From the studio’s post-panel release: “Previous works have touched on the island, but staying and exploring this mysterious and dangerous place offers Legendary the opportunity to take audiences deeper inside this rich world with a style and scope that parallels other Legendary productions.”

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Comic-Con: Gareth Edwards To Direct ‘Godzilla 2′ After ‘Star Wars’, With Familiar Foes In Sequel

By | Saturday July 26, 2014 @ 12:45pm PDT
Mike Fleming

Comic-Con: Gareth Edwards To Direct ‘Godzilla 2′ After ‘Star Wars’, With Familiar Foes In SequelLegendary‘s Thomas Tull has just made it official at his Comic-Con panel: Gareth Edwards appeared via video announcing Godzilla 2. As for timing, he will direct it after helming the Star Wars spinoff stand-alone film that Disney has dated for December 16, 2016. They also disclosed Mothra, Rodan and Ghidorah would be part of it, and the clip ended with “Let them fight.”

RELATED: Godzilla Sequel in the Works

Edwards came to Comic-Con last year with the kaiju reboot which went on to be a hit for Legendary, and in the video message sent today “from a galaxy far, far away” he said he’ll return for Godzilla 2 after shooting his Star Wars pic. “We get to make another one,” he said. “I’m just up here doing a small little sci-fi movie, as soon as that’s over will be Godzilla 2.”

Tull said familiar Godzilla monster baddies Rodan, Mothra, and Ghidorah will appear in the next installment. “Toho’s been great to us and now we have more monsters to play with,” he said.

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Movie Ticket Prices Averaged $8.33 In Q2, A Slight Drop From Last Year

The average consumer outlay for tickets, from the National Association of Theatre Owners, is down 0.6% vs the same three-month period in 2013 — mostly due to a drop in attendance for premium-priced 3D and large-screen films. Box office for the quarter was down 6.6% as tentpole films including The Amazing Spider-Man 2, A Million Ways To Die In the West, and Captain America: The Winter Solider fell short of some analysts’ expectations. Janney Capital Markets’ Tony Wible, for one, noted that in Q2 “64% of tentpoles underperformed [his forecasts] and offset stronger performance by Maleficent, Transformers, 22 Jump Street and Godzilla.” The $8.33 average price in Q2 was up 4.6% vs the first three months of the year, a period when studios typically release few 3D films. Consumers paid an average of $8.13 for a movie ticket in 2013.

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Paramount Takes Worldwide Distribution On Spain’s ‘Capture The Flag’, ‘Tad’ Sequel

Paramount Takes Worldwide Distribution On Spain’s ‘Capture The Flag’, ‘Tad’ SequelParamount Pictures has boarded worldwide distribution on two upcoming animated features hailing from Spanish director Enrique Gato. The studio has entered a landmark deal with Telecinco Cinema, Telefónica Studios and Los Rockets AIE on space race adventure Capture The Flag and Tad Jones: The Hero Returns, the sequel to 2012′s Tad, The Lost Explorer. Gato won the Best New Director Goya for The Lost Explorer, a wink to the Indiana Jones series, and the movie also took the screenplay honors last year. It is the highest grossing Spanish animated film of all time with a worldwide haul of about $45M. That film went through Paramount in Spain and this new deal sees the studio look more broadly at international where the movie did strong business with releases throughout Latin America and Europe. The sequel will roll out in 2016. The pact for both films is significant in that it’s the first studio deal on two upcoming Spanish toons. Latin American moviegoers are growing in importance at the international box office, notably in places like Mexico and Brazil, while animation can be smoothly translated for wider audiences. Last year’s Argentine and Spanish 3D football picture Metegol (aka Foosball 3D) was a big hit for Universal.

capture the flagCapture The Flag is inspired by the 1960s space race and sees a ruthless billionaire bent on exploiting the source of … Read More »

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Peter Shinkoda Joins Netflix’s Marvel Drama Series ‘Daredevil’; AMC’s ‘Galyntine’ Adds Cast

By | Wednesday July 16, 2014 @ 10:20am PDT

Peter Shinkoda Joins Netflix’s Marvel Drama Series ‘Daredevil’; AMC’s ‘Galyntine’ Adds CastPeter Shinkoda has been tapped for a major recurring role in Netflix’s Marvel drama series Daredevil set to premiere in 2015. The series was written by executive producer Drew Goddard, with Steven S. DeKnight as executive producer/showrunner. Daredevil is the first of four 13-cutmypic (3)episode superhero series set in the Hell’s Kitchen neighborhood of New York City. Shinkoda, repped by D2 Management and Characters Talent Agency, will play Hachiro. Shinkoda was a regular on TNT’s Falling Skies and recently guest-starred on Hawaii Five-O. His big screen credits include I Robot, Godzilla and Paycheck.
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Update: Intl Box Office: ‘Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes’ Awakens To $31.3M Overseas; ‘Transformers’ Adds $100M+ To Crash Past $500M Barrier

Update: Intl Box Office: ‘Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes’ Awakens To $31.3M Overseas; ‘Transformers’ Adds $100M+ To Crash Past $500M BarriercinemaworldUPDATE, Monday 5:30 PM: Updates are in from Fox and Universal which had the films everyone wanted to know about in the domestic marketplace this weekend as well — Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes and the indie favorite Boyhood. Meanwhile, Paramount Pictures’ Transformers: Age of Extinction took in a little less than the $102M estimate, but nonetheless grossed $100.3M from 12 markets, according to the studio, to sail past the $500M market in just three weeks of release. The international cume is now $540.6M. Added with the domestic gross and the go-bots are hitting on all cylinders with $713.4M worldwide.

All other numbers are updated below for those two films as well as for X-Men: Days of Future Past, How to Train Your Dragon 2, The Other Woman, Neighbors, A Million Ways to Die in the West, and The Fault in Our Stars and newcomer Rico, Oskar Und Die Tieferschatten. Just received Warner Bros. and Disney final international grosses so more updates below on Tammy, Jersey Boys, Maleficent, Edge of Tomorrow, Blended, and Godzilla. Sony has come in at 3 PM with its numbers for 22 Jump Street, Deliver Us From Evil, Heaven is For Real and Think Like a Man Too.

UPDATE, Sunday 2:10 PM PT: With the World Cup winding down tonight, next week will see Transformers: Age Of Extinction and Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes expand significantly to … Read More »

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Box Office: ‘Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes’ Swings With $72.6M Weekend; ‘Boyhood’ Mans Up With Strong Per Screen

By | Monday July 14, 2014 @ 1:57pm PDT

Box Office: ‘Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes’ Swings With $72.6M Weekend; ‘Boyhood’ Mans Up With Strong Per ScreenUPDATED, Monday 1:57 PM: Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, brought in, as we reported this AM a total take of $72.6M for the three-day weekend (which included $4.1M in Thursday late nights). This, after it took in $31.3M overseas so it has a worldwide total of $103M+ already and it has barely begun its international run.

The Matt Reeves-directed film had a wonderful Saturday and ended up with an A- CinemaScore so audiences loved it as much as the critics. Sunday moviegoing was off for all films, probably due to the World Cup Finals and the nice weather. Fox’s other film, How to Train Your Dragon 2 had a great hold from Saturday to Sunday but will be hit by Disney’s Planes: Fire and Rescue when it bows next weekend.  Apes should have at least two solid weeks of play before audiences look to Disney/Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy to keep them entertained when it bows on August 1. Transformers: Age of Extinction — in its third weekend of release — crossed $200M on Saturday.

Sony opens Sex Tape next weekend in hopes of making it pop over its estimated $42M+ budget. I’ve seen it and yes, it starts out raunchy, but it is really funny and even, at times, hilarious. The guys will go to see a naked Cameron Diaz and the girls will go see tall drink of water Jason Segel, but it’s really for couples. Rob Lowe also co-stars in this film from the next generation Kasden — Jake — who directed the two in Bad Teacher.

The other movie opening next weekend is Universal’s horror film, The Purge: Anarchy. And, after seeing the one-sheet, I certainly hope they aren’t running those teaser one-sheets reminiscent of the Joker around the Cinemark Theater in Colorado where it will be in the marketplace during the two-year mark of the theater shooting. To me and others who suffered through that, it’s a hard image to look at … sort of like the geniuses who came up with The Strain one-sheets that people don’t want to see either. “Not for everyone.” Indeed. The Purge is bowing today and over the weekend in 14 overseas markets. The chart follows: Read More »

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Update: Intl Box Office: ‘Transformers’ Adds $52M In China Weekend; ‘Dragon 2′ Fires Up $30M; And How’s ‘Tammy’?; ‘Maleficent’ Dethrones ‘Frozen’ In Japan; More

Update: Intl Box Office: ‘Transformers’ Adds $52M In China Weekend; ‘Dragon 2′ Fires Up $30M; And How’s ‘Tammy’?; ‘Maleficent’ Dethrones ‘Frozen’ In Japan; More5TH UPDATE, TUESDAY AM: Paramount came in with numbers late on Monday evening showing a slight bump in the overseas cume for Transformers: Age Of Extinction‘s 2nd frame. It was worth to $96.6M, the studio said, although the total overseas figure to date was unchanged at $400.9M. China‘s gross lifted to $52M from the previous $50.9M estimate. That was good for a total box office in the market through Sunday of $212.8M. There is some confusion over the tally, however, as local websites are reporting it had $222.74M through Sunday. That would push it past Avatar as the highest-grossing movie ever in China. We’re working to get the exact figures nailed down. All other figures for TAOE are updated in the copy below.

4th UPDATE, MONDAY, 4:00 PM PT: Paramount Pictures is the only studio that has not reported, and it has, of course, Transformers: Age Of Extinction, which is pounding it way across international markets. So we have finals for everything but the No. 1 pic internationally. The studio is still on holiday in the states. But Sony, Disney, Fox, Warner Bros and Universal have weighed in with updated numbers for their international releases this weekend.

The titles we have final updates for include 22 Jump Street, Deliver Us From Evil, Maleficent, Frozen, The Fault In Our Stars, How To Train Your Dragon 2, Rio 2, The Other Woman, X-Men: Days Of Future Past, Edge Read More »

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BOX OFFICE: July 4th Holiday Down 42% As ‘Transformers’ Led And ‘Tammy’ Bowed

BOX OFFICE: July 4th Holiday Down 42% As ‘Transformers’ Led And ‘Tammy’ Bowed16th UPDATE, Monday, 2:40 PM: Here are the final gross updates for the Top 20 films of the July Fourth weekend. I’ve included both 3-day and 5-day totals for the Top Ten. The jump went to favorite son 22 Jump Street as this morning it looked like it was under Screen Gems’ Deliver Us From Evil. See below for the Monday updates. So while 22 Jump Street won the three-day weekend, it racked up a lesser per screen average than Evil which won the five-day derby. That’s a way to mix it up as they were neck in neck throughout the weekend. Overall, the Fourth of July holiday weekend was 42% lower than last year when Despicable Me 2 bowed to a whopping $83.5M. Last year, the 4th fell on a Thursday.

Interesting to see how the weather affected the box office holiday this weekend. On the Fourth, which was a Friday, Los Angeles was down only 1% night to night (which is fairly normal for the Fourth with good weather in L.A.). However, the East Coast where it was raining saw a huge jump in movie attendance — 76% up from Thursday to Friday in New York and 170% rise on Friday in Boston. When it rains in the summer, people go to the movies, esp. on a rainy holiday.

Transformers: Age of Extinction, in its second weekend dropped 63%. It also dropped 75% Friday to Friday (which included $8.75M of late night grosses) so the studio likely made their adjustments during the week or weekend. Despite what others reported, everyone knows that this industry has yet to see a picture open to $100M. Next weekend, we have Dawn of the Planet of the Apes coming from Fox, but that is not expected to do it either even though it is a high-quality film well-targeted for its demo. Expect a high CinemaScore and great word of mouth. Right now, it’s expected to surpass the opening weekend of Rise of the Planet of the Apes which bowed to $54.8M in April 2011. Dawn opens at 10 PM on July 10.

A shout out to a very high-quality film coming out this coming weekend: Richard Linklater’s Boyhood from IFC Films. It is, simply put, one of the best films I’ve seen so far this year.

Meanwhile, it will be interesting to see how far Tammy falls next weekend as word of mouth is going to hurt it. Here’s the finals from the studios: Read More »

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From Long, Long Ago, Georgia’s Oldest Theater Gets Oldest ‘Star Wars’ For Anniversary Screening

By and | Sunday July 6, 2014 @ 4:06pm PDT

From Long, Long Ago, Georgia’s Oldest Theater Gets Oldest ‘Star Wars’ For Anniversary ScreeningAtlanta’s Plaza, the state’s oldest continuously operating film palace, will open celebrations of its 75th anniversary on July 18 with an extremely rare screening of  Star Wars: Episode IVthe first of the six films (for the moment) in the much beloved sci-fi movie cycle. That original Star Wars film came out in 1977, then underwent a substantial cleanup of its VFX and more during the Special Edition version that came out on the film’s 20th anniversary. Disney officials confirmed that the digital print being provided the Plaza will be based on the Special Edition version which got a wide release in 1997. The original 1977 was re-released in April of 1981.

But think of this, some of the tickets are going for $75 a pop.

A few years ago, during a special event spotlighting Star Wars’ visual effects at the American Cinematheque in Los Angeles, writer-director George Lucas said that he would never want to re-release the film’s original version featuring the old (though then ground-breaking) VFX, because the technological progress made in the ensuing decades allowed him to come closer to actually creating the movie that he saw in his own head. Whatever the version on screen, the original Star Wars hasn’t had a lot of runs in theaters in quite a while. But then again, when the movie came out, it stayed out, setting box office records and running in some theaters for more than a year (76 weeks(!) at one Beaverton, Ore., theater alone) as part of … Read More »

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Top Box Office Performers For First Half 2014; Summer Off 14.9%

Top Box Office Performers For First Half 2014; Summer Off 14.9%The Very Big Opening of Transformers: Age Of Extinction did nothing to lift the box office for the first half of the year. It’s basically flat when compared to 2013, down .8%. The box office summer — which semi-officially begins the first Friday of May — is way off, down 14.9% from 2013, when the box office was plumped up by such films as Iron Man 3 and Monsters University. We have neither a $300M grosser nor do we have a $100M opening weekend yet. It would be great to see Fox’s The Dawn of the Planet of the Apes pull it off, but expectations are that we won’t see it until November, when Lionsgate bows its adaptation of the first part of the last book of Suzanne Collins’ Hunger Games‘ trilogy, Mockingjay.

Last year was a record year at the box office. “Comparing to last year’s record, you have to keep up and hit it of the park every time and that’s difficult to do. It’ll happen next year, but it a cyclical business,” said Paul Dergarabedian, senior media anaylst with Rentrak. “People can talk about all these external forces going on like The World Cup and weather, but when you have the product, it delivers.”

Right now, Warner Bros./Legendary Pictures Godzilla is the only picture in history to have had an opening weekend larger than $90M that has yet to cross $200M mark for its domestic cume. This past weekend … Read More »

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Update: Intl Box Office: Boosted By China, ‘Transformers’ Crushes $202.1M Says Paramount For Biggest 2014 Offshore Bow; ‘Breakup Guru’ Woos; ‘Dragon’ Still Flying

Update: Intl Box Office: Boosted By China, ‘Transformers’ Crushes $202.1M Says Paramount For Biggest 2014 Offshore Bow; ‘Breakup Guru’ Woos; ‘Dragon’ Still FlyingcinemaworldFINAL UPDATE, MONDAY, 2:30 PM: Final numbers are in for Sony’s 22 Jump Street, Think Like a Man Too, and The Amazing Spider-Man 2, Warner Bros.’ Edge of Tomorrow, Jersey Boys, Blended and Godzilla, Disney’s Maleficent and Frozen (in Japan), Fox’s How to Train Your Dragon 2, The Fault in Our Stars, The Other Woman, and Uni’s batch of films, Mrs. Brown’s Boys D’Movie, Neighbors, Boyhood, and A Million Ways to Die in the West, Transcendence (which debuted in France and Japan) and Heaven Is For Real. We just updated territory by territory breakdowns of Paramount’s Transformers: Age of Extinction.

We have overall cume numbers of Paramount’s Transformers: Age of Extinction now. Internationally, it was estimated at $201.3M yesterday and the studio says its final number for the weekend is $202.1M. In China, the estimate was $90M and today’s final the studio says is $91.9M. The worldwide gross sits around $299.6M based on true domestic three-day domestic grosses of $97.5M. Paramount’s claim of a $100M three-day box office is being widely disputed by all other distributors in the U.S. who also think the $97.5M is about right. In 10,152 locations, the Michael Bay-directed movie opened No. 1 in all 37 territories that it debuted in and Paramount Pictures was 35% bigger than the last installment, 2011′s Transformers: Dark of the Moon.

4TH UPDATE SUNDAY 3:28 PM PT: Michael Bay’s fourth in the Transformers franchise, as expected, dominated international play this weekend. With what Paramount says on Monday is a final of $202.1M, Age Of Extinction is the biggest international opener of the year and has bragging rights as the biggest imported bow ever in China at what was estimated at $90M but Monday showed $91.9M. China was the top market for Transformers: Dark Of The Moon which tallied $165.5M in 2011. TAOE included an added incentive for the Chinese given its Mainland locales, home-grown star Li Bingbing and a big publicity push that boasted the Hong Kong world premiere and the closing-night berth at the Shanghai Film Festival. The overall international numbers for the Top 10 films this weekend are worth 56% more than last weekend, but they are still 3% down on the comparable frame in 2013. That seems kind of surprising.

Transformers international box office chartBut, looking at last year, there was World War Z with $70.1M, Man Of Steel with $52.2M, Monsters University with $44.2M, Despicable Me 2 with $40.1M and local Chinese romancer Tiny Times, which debuted to $42.8M. Studios this year were already getting out of the way of the World Cup, and with TAOE sucking a lot of air out of the Asian markets, ultimately the result has its reason. One film that did creep up into the top echelons this weekend as local counterprogramming to TAOE in China was The Breakup Guru. The romantic comedy opened to $20.57M in two markets – China and the U.S. – and helps explain why holdovers like Maleficent or Godzilla dropped in their Middle Kingdom runs. (More on Breakup Guru below in the territory round-ups). TAOE has yet to bow in several territories, in many cases because of the ongoing World Cup, and could yet provide further records. They include the UK (July 5), Mexico (July 11), France (July 16), Germany and Brazil (July 17) and Japan (August 8). Of those, only France, Germany and Brazil are still moving forward in the mega-football tourney, so having their release dates fall after the final looks somehow prescient. The European premiere for TAOE will be held in Berlin this week. Read More »

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Box Office: ‘Transformers’ Controversy Erupts As Paramount Stakes Claim To $100M Three-Day Gross, No One’s Buying It

By | Monday June 30, 2014 @ 1:20pm PDT

Box Office: ‘Transformers’ Controversy Erupts As Paramount Stakes Claim To $100M Three-Day Gross, No One’s Buying ItFINAL UPDATE, MONDAY 1:20 PM: Sorry, Paramount, but our Box Office chart will reflect what we believe is the more accurate three-day gross of Transformers: Age Of Extinction. We are also posting Par’s numbers so we can show the industry how they claimed to have gotten there. See below. Also, it is worth noting that with the accurate grosses, it puts Transformers 4‘s worldwide total at $299.6M. With Paramount’s inflated domestic grosses, it puts their worldwide gross at an inflated $302.1M. But what better headlines to please the bosses and shareholders with: A $100M domestic and over $300M worldwide. The only problem? It’s a public company and there are strict guidelines about this type of thing.

Paramount Pictures Logo10th UPDATE, MONDAY 9:43 AM:  The first big controversy of box office in the sixth months since I’ve been reporting erupted this AM as Paramount Pictures put the final three-day domestic cume of Transformers: Age Of Extinction at $100.038M as its opening weekend for the fourth installment. “They’re lying,” said one distribution head at a major studio. Said another, “I don’t get get it.  Is it just arrogance? What is the point of inflating your box office numbers? So they can claim the first $100M movie opening of the year? Oh please, who cares? It’s a great opening anyway.”

That being said, the Box Office Chart below reflects both the industry three-day gross for Transformers as well as Paramount’s purported final gross, which, by everyone’s account in the industry is inaccurate and inflated.

One insider at Paramount with knowledge of the financials told Deadline that there have been concerns that there could be more layoffs if Transformers 4 didn’t hit the $100M mark. So maybe that’s what’s going on. Even so, everyone in town — and I mean everyone – has it much less than $100M. Hey, as one my colleagues just said, the movie itself is inflated to 2 hours and 45 minutes, so why not the box office grosses, too? Read More »

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No Puzzlement: Kelli O’Hara Will Star in ‘King And I’ Opposite Ken Watanabe

By | Monday June 30, 2014 @ 10:35am PDT

No Puzzlement: Kelli O’Hara Will Star in ‘King And I’ Opposite Ken WatanabeGetting to know Kelli O’Hara has hardly been the problem for Broadway — but getting her a Tony Award is another matter. Five times a nominee — most recently for The Bridges Of Madison County — but never a winner, O’Hara will get another shot next spring when she stars as “I” in the Lincoln Center Theater revival of the Rodgers & Hammerstein classic, The King And I.

In the title role created (and oft-reprised) by Yul Brynner, Oscar nominee Ken Watanabe (The Last Samurai)  will make his American stage and Broadway debut as the stubborn ruler torn between custom and a desire to join the modern world, challenged by the arrival of the widowed British schoolmarm imported to teach his platoon of children.
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‘Transformers: Age Of Extinction’: Will It Get Summer Box Office Out Of Its Funk?

By | Thursday June 26, 2014 @ 12:04pm PDT

‘Transformers: Age Of Extinction’: Will It Get Summer Box Office Out Of Its Funk?Everyone has been hoping for Transformers: Age Of Extinction to pull the summer out of its box office flatline, and while it will be No. 1 this weekend, with a 2:45 minute play time and a huge budget (around $180M with another $140M+ for marketing ww) and with director Michael Bay getting 10% FDG and others like Mark Wahlberg and Steven Spielberg getting high participations as well, Paramount Pictures needs this one to blow the lid off. Image (8) box_office_weekend_3202008-12-22-1229966765__111124053707-150x150.jpg for post 735558Even toymaker Hasbro has gross participation (I hear maybe 5%). Will it be a $100M weekend? It certainly looked like it in its tracking earlier. Now, it depends. Its late night opening starts at 9 PM. If this movie doesn’t break $100M, it may take until November when we see a $100M weekend when Mockingjay opens from Lionsgate. Gulp. However, if it takes in $50M over the two days, it should easily get to or pass $100M. I would hope so as it’s in around 4,200 theaters and … get this … on 10,000 screens.

Transformers: Revenge Of The Fallen also opened the weekend before July 4th in 2009. It grossed $62M on a Wednesday (included previews) and $30M on Thursday and by the end of the three day it had tallied $108.9M; the five-day was $200M. Transformers: Dark Of The Moon opened June 29 in 2011, had a $43M opening (included previews) and ended the three-day with $97.8M; in six days it grossed about $180M.
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