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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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Box Office Final: ‘Lucy’ In The Sky At $43.9M; ‘Hercules’ At $29.8M; Top 20 Listed

By | Monday July 28, 2014 @ 2:00pm PDT

Box Office Final: ‘Lucy’ In The Sky At $43.9M; ‘Hercules’ At $29.8M; Top 20 Listed15th UPDATE, Monday, 2:00 PM: Lucy ended up the weekend just shy of $44M while Hercules did better on Sunday to get $29.8M and several other films did a notch better than expected from Sunday moviegoers. And So It Goes ended up right at $4.6M. Ugh. The Fluffy Movie was on only 432 screens and will remain on those going into the weekend  (results below).

Next weekend, all eyes are on the new openers — Marvel/Disney’s Guardians of the Galaxy and Universal’s James Brown biopic Get On Up — to lift the box office out of its summer slump. And Guardians is likely to do just that. It’s tracking right now between $65M and $75M and veteran distribution executives think it could go higher. It’s 100% fresh on Rotten Tomatoes right now and seems to be getting positive reaction on all sides. And why not? It’s a really entertaining film, filled with unexpected humor and a raccoon character that kind of steals the show. Right now, Get On Up is tracking around $15M to $20M so between that and the second weekend of Lucy, Universal should end up with the No. 2 and No. 3 spots. Here’s the Top 20 chart … until next weekend when the Star Lord arrives:

1). Lucy (UNI), 3,173 theaters / 3-day cume: $43.9M / Per screen average: $13,835 / Wk 1

2). Hercules (MGM/PAR), 3,595 theaters / 3-day cume: $29.8M / Per screen: $8,289 / Wk 1

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MGM Acquires Terry Hayes Thriller ‘I Am Pilgrim’

By | Thursday July 17, 2014 @ 8:38am PDT

MGM Acquires Terry Hayes Thriller ‘I Am Pilgrim’MGM has landed feature film rights to screenwriter Terry Hayes’ debut novel, the just-released espionage thriller I Am Pilgrim. The scribe, whose film credits include Payback, Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior and Dead Calm, will adapt his book, and Lloyd Braun will produce the film through his Whalerock Industries. Whalerock’s Andrew Mittman will be executive producer. This is a franchise play for the studio.

MGM90In the book, “Pilgrim” is the codename for a man who doesn’t exist. The adopted son of a wealthy American family, he once headed a secret U.S. espionage unit. Now in anonymous retirement, he is called upon to lend his expertise to an unusual investigation but ultimately is caught in a race against-time to save America from oblivion. Emily Bestler Books/Atria Books, a division of Simon & Schuster, published the book in May, with plans to translate it into 20 languages. 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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Olga Kurylenko To Star In Action Thriller ‘Little Mizz Innocent’

By | Friday June 20, 2014 @ 5:42pm PDT

Olga Kurylenko To Star In Action Thriller ‘Little Mizz Innocent’EXCLUSIVE: Quantum of Solace Bond girl Olga Kurylenko is set to star in her own action pic for director Marc Forby (Princess Kaiulani). She’ll lead the cast of indie thriller Little Mizz Innocent, about a seemingly innocent UN interpreter caught in a power struggle between the FBI and a criminal dynasty. Filming is set for this summer in Toronto, the U.K., and China. It’s the first major feature for Goldove Entertainment, a film and music shingle founded by former banking pros Hudson and Lynda McKoy, who will produce the film alongside son Gino, who wrote the script. Kurylenko’s recent credits include Oblivion, To The Wonder, Vampire Academy, and Russell Crowe’s upcoming directorial debut The Water Diviner. She’s repped by Tavistock Wood and CAA.

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Expanding Appian Way Ups Pair To Co-Veep Posts

By | Tuesday June 17, 2014 @ 9:47am PDT
Mike Fleming

Expanding Appian Way Ups Pair To Co-Veep PostsEXCLUSIVE: Appian Way, which has broadened its slate in features and moved into television, has promoted Michael Hampton and Nathaniel Posey to co-vice president status and has named James Ward to be creative executive to help handle the volume. They report to Appian Way principal Leonardo DiCaprio and president of production Jennifer Davisson Killoran.

michael hamptonHampton and Posey are homegrown talent. Hampton worked at LBI Entertainment before moving to Appian Way two years ago and has steered development of Graveland, which Brian koppelman & David Levien are directing for New Regency; the adaptation of A. Scott Berg’s biography of U.S. President Woodrow Wilson at Warner Bros; and Home, which Dennis Iliadis wrapped for Blumhouse. Posey got his start at Silver Pictures and Brillstein before moving to Appian Way six years ago and working his way up. He’s worked on the live-action adaptation of Akira that Appian Way is producing with Andrew Lazar and which Jaume Collet-Serra will direct, as well as the viking epic King Harald which is a star vehicle for DiCaprio, and Live By Night, the Dennis Lehane novel that Ben Affleck has scripted and will direct, star in and produce with Appian. Read More »

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Final Int’l Box Office: ‘Godzilla’ Thrashes Again With $38.4M Weekend Led By China; ‘How To Train Your Dragon 2′ Fires Up $24.4M; ‘Fault’ On Fire In Brazil

Highlights: Godzilla (WB) lords over China with $38.4M open; Edge Of Tomorrow (WB) stilil sharp with $37.3M; Maleficent (DIS) adds $37.2M; How To Train Your Dragon 2 enters 28 markets with $24.4M (total $26.1M); X-Men: Days Of Future Past (FOX) flies over $450M; The Fault In Our Stars (FOX) shines with $16.1M; 22 Jump Street cops to $7M; Noah (PAR) enters Japanese waters, crosses $250M; More…

cinemaworldUPDATE, 3:44 PM, PT: Final numbers are in for Sony’s 22 Jump Street, Fox/DreamWorks Animation’s How to Train Your Dragon 2, Tom Cruise’s sci-fi actioner Edge of Tomorrow and Godzilla, Fox’s The Fault in Our Stars and X-Men: Days of Future Past, Universal’s A Million Ways to Die in the West and Neighbors, and the festival fave Boyhood, the animated Rio2, the Viggo Mortenson, Oscar Issac thriller Two Faces of January and local Spanish hit, Spanish Affairs, Paramount Pictures’ Noah in Japan and more.

UPDATED SUNDAY, 4:02 PM PT: This was largely a Hollywood holdover weekend with some new market plays and only one major new entry. Of the Top 15 movies internationally, three were from offshore: Korean action thriller A Hard Day in its 3rd frame, Korean action noir For The Emperor in its 1st frame and Hong Kong’s Overheard 3. This is of course the first weekend of full-on World Cup action, which in Asia is not as all-consuming as in Europe. That’s despite Korea and Japan having teams in the mix. The massive sporting event certainly doesn’t seem to have dented box office in China where Godzilla roared to the best opening of 2014 while Edge Of Tomorrow and X-Men: Days Of Future Past continued to perform (see below). In Europe, on days when the major national teams play, box office can be down by about 50%-60% in the home markets, and by about 20% if the home team isn’t involved. The phenomenon may not be as drastic this year because of the time differences between Europe and Brazil which means most games are airing late at night on the Continent.

godzilla2014-china-poster

However, overseas, across the Top 10 titles, the frame was down 22% on last weekend and 15% on last year. At this same point in 2013, Man Of Steel opened to $71.6M in 24 international markets. After Earth, Fast & Furious 6, The Hangover Part III and Star Trek Into Darkness were also still playing. Plus, Chinese action pic Switch flicked on at home with a $22M+ opening. Overall drops are expected this year during the World Cup play, when very few blockbuster type films open. That, however, opens the door for holdovers to stretch and counterprogrammers to pick up some of the slack. The films that tend to work during this period are ones that skew to female, family and older audiences. How To Train Your Dragon 2 was the only big new opener this week, with $24.4M across 28 territories. It dominated market share, while The Fault In Our Stars continued to woo overseas audiences. In other holdovers, Edge Of Tomorrow, Maleficent and X-Men: Days Of Future Past kept churning. Each of those films has received positive reviews (as has Dragon 2) and so given the studios’ strategic plans, could continue to show legs even if they begin to wobble a bit. Next weekend, Clint Eastwood’s Jersey Boys warbles in the UK, France, Italy and elsewhere. The subject matter of Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons may be a bit foreign to foreign auds, but moviegoers less concerned with football are likely to seek out a film by the respected director. TFIOS and HTTYD2 are hitting a bunch more markets next weekend as well; especially the latter which flies forth into about 30 including Australia, Mexico and Brazil, each of which were among the first film’s best territories. In Brazil, kids are also off from school. Maleficent, meanwhile, sees its China bow on June 20. See below the original post for key market breakdowns.

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Update: Intl Box Office: ‘Godzilla’ Thrashes Again With $38M Weekend Led By China; ‘How To Train Your Dragon 2′ Fires Up $24.8M; More

Highlights: Godzilla (WB) lords over China with $36M open; Edge Of Tomorrow (WB) stilil sharp with $37.4M; Maleficent (DIS) adds $37.2M; How To Train Your Dragon 2 enters 25 markets with $24.8M; X-Men: Days Of Future Past (FOX) flies over $450M; The Fault In Our Stars (FOX) shines with $16.4M; 22 Jump Street cops to $6.9M; Noah (PAR) enters Japanese waters, crosses $250M; More…

cinemaworldUPDATE, 4:02 PM PT: This was largely a Hollywood holdover weekend with some new market plays and only one major new entry. Of the Top 15 movies internationally, three were from offshore: Korean action thriller A Hard Day in its 3rd frame, Korean action noir For The Emperor in its 1st frame and Hong Kong’s Overheard 3. This is of course the first weekend of full-on World Cup action, which in Asia is not as all-consuming as in Europe. That’s despite Korea and Japan having teams in the mix. The massive sporting event certainly doesn’t seem to have dented box office in China where Godzilla roared to the best opening of 2014 while Edge Of Tomorrow and X-Men: Days Of Future Past continued to perform (see below). In Europe, on days when the major national teams play, box office can be down by about 50%-60% in the home markets, and by about 20% if the home team isn’t involved. The phenomenon may not be as drastic this year because of the time differences between Europe and Brazil which means most games are airing late at night on the Continent.

godzilla2014-china-poster

However, overseas, across the Top 10 titles, the frame was down 22% on last weekend and 15% on last year. At this same point in 2013, Man Of Steel opened to $71.6M in 24 international markets. After Earth, Fast & Furious 6, The Hangover Part III and Star Trek Into Darkness were also still playing. Plus, Chinese action pic Switch flicked on at home with a $22M+ opening. Overall drops are expected this year during the World Cup play, when very few blockbuster type films open. That, however, opens the door for holdovers to stretch and counterprogrammers to pick up some of the slack. The films that tend to work during this period are ones that skew to female, family and older audiences. How To Train Your Dragon 2 was the only big new opener this week, with $24.8M across 25 territories. It dominated market share, while The Fault In Our Stars continued to woo overseas audiences. In other holdovers, Edge Of Tomorrow, Maleficent and X-Men: Days Of Future Past kept churning. Each of those films has received positive reviews (as has Dragon 2) and so given the studios’ strategic plans, could continue to show legs even if they begin to wobble a bit. Next weekend, Clint Eastwood’s Jersey Boys warbles in the UK, France, Italy and elsewhere. The subject matter of Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons may be a bit foreign to foreign auds, but moviegoers less concerned with football are likely to seek out a film by the respected director. TFIOS and HTTYD2 are hitting a bunch more markets next weekend as well; especially the latter which flies forth into about 30 including Australia, Mexico and Brazil, each of which were among the first film’s best territories. In Brazil, kids are also off from school. Maleficent, meanwhile, sees its China bow on June 20. See below the original post for key market breakdowns.

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Intl Box Office: ‘Edge Of Tomorrow’ No. 1 With $81M; ‘Fault In Our Stars’ Shines Bright In Brazil, Mexico, Oz; ‘Maleficent’ Adds $61.7M; ‘X-Men’ Crosses $100M In China; More

Highlights: Edge Of Tomorrow (WB) loops $81M in 2nd frame for $111M overseas cume; Maleficent (DIS) spells another $61.7M; X-Men: Days Of Future Past (FOX) adds $41.1M, helps studio over $1.5B GBO mark; The Fault In Our Stars (FOX) twinkles with $16.5M in 17 markets; 22 Jump Street (SONY) uncovers $8.2M; Godzilla‘s cume is now $208.2 … MORE

cinemaworld

FINAL UPDATE, 7:30 PM PST: Grosses for the last film of the weekend, Godzilla, have been added below. All numbers final.

2nd UPDATE, 4:52 PM PST: Grosses are in on everything but Godzilla as we are still waiting to hear from Warner Bros. However, they did report for the Tom Cruise sci-fi film Edge of Tomorrow. So, we have updated grosses for every other film but the Big Lizard, including Fox’s The Fault In Our Stars, Sony’s 22 Jump Street, Fox franchise X-Men: Days Of Future Past, Sony’s franchise player The Amazing Spider-Man 2, Uni’s ill-fated domestic comedy A Million Ways To Die In The West and their comedy success Neighbors, as well as Babysitting, Spanish Affairs, Her (which Uni is handling in South Korea), Fox’s The Other Woman and just got numbers in for Richard Linklater’s Boyhood which was a favorite at the Berlin Film Festival this year and has been winning awards at festivals Stateside, too. Uni is handling. All Final updated international numbers are below: Read More »

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FINAL BOX OFFICE: ‘The Fault In Our Stars’ Phenom $48M; ‘Edge Of Tomorrow’ $28.7M And Bows At No. 3 Behind Disney’s ‘Maleficent’

By | Monday June 9, 2014 @ 1:45pm PDT
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Box Office Breakdown

'The Fault In Our Stars' was a $12M-budgeted film whose frontloaded start carried it past the likes of Tom Cruise and Angelina Jolie. It runs into biggies '22 Jump Street' and 'How To Train Your Dragon 2' this week. Deadline's Anita Busch and Dominic Patten discuss.

OPENING: The Fault In Our Stars (FOX), beyond expectations with a solid $48M; Edge Of Tomorrow (WBros.), $28.7M and expected at No. 3. Noteworthy: Chef (OPRD) respectable in expansion.

BoxOffice_logo__131122164403-275x2065th UPDATE, MONDAY, 1:45 PM: Fox’s The Fault in Our Stars came in pretty much as we predicted on Friday night with $48M on a $12M negative cost (studio figures) for the three-day after a wild ride of a weekend for the teen tearjerker which had it tracking over $50M going into Saturday. The-Fault-In-Our-Stars-Official-Trailer-Video1_FotorThe film, starring Shailene Woodley and Ansel Elgort, was front-loaded on Thursday and Friday by author John Green’s best-selling book’s superfans which enjoyed a $25 a pop ticket for a Q&A simulcast with the filmmakers and cast and a stellar $8.2M Thursday night. Then it slid hard on Saturday, falling off 52% and dipped about another 27% on Sunday. The question is how the film will play in its second weekend when Sony’s highly-anticipated 22 Jump Street comes into play with 20-somethings. Also, as we’ve been watching, will its star Jonah Hill ever go back to social media to help build fans for the weekend bow of his film?

edge-of-tomorrowEdge of Tomorrow never cracked $30M; it came in at $28.7M for Warner Bros. However, the film is currently enjoying a strong run overseas, especially in particular markets — China, Russia and Korea. The question remains does Tom Cruise have a solid audience anymore domestically? The sci-fi actioner, which played well on IMAX — accounting for a little over 14% of its total gross — debuted at No. 3 behind the second weekend of Disney’ Maleficent which took in $34.3M (dropping 51% in its sophomore frame). Angelina Jolie will be blasted out of the family circle when the fire-breathing How to Train Your Dragon 2 flies in next weekend from DreamWorks Animation. The film is good. Read More »

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UPDATE: Int’l Box Office: ‘Edge Of Tomorrow’ Cruises To $60.3M Through Friday; Saturday Lifts China Haul To $16.5M

International Box Office-cUPDATE, SATURDAY 12:31 PM PT: After opening at No. 1 in China on Friday, Tom Cruise/Emily Blunt-starrer Edge Of Tomorrow added an estimated $9.6M on Saturday to bring its local cume to $16.56M. The screen count has been modified from yesterday’s 4,000 to 6,272, or about a third of the available real estate. The two-day haul is nearly double what Cruise’s Oblivion did in its first three days in China which went on to be that film’s biggest non-U.S. territory last year at $23.7M. It’s also a Friday-Saturday increase, something EOT experienced last weekend in several territories. In all, the Friday gross across 36 international markets was an estimated $19.3M, taking the total to $60.3M — that figure does not include the Saturday numbers from China. Next weekend, EOT will face competition from Godzilla in the Middle Kingdom, followed by Maleficent on June 20.

Related: International Box Office: ‘Edge Of Tomorrow’ Dawns To $3.8M In Korea; Overseas Cume At $33M As Rollout Ramps Up Read More »

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International Box Office: ‘Edge Of Tomorrow’ Dawns To $3.8M In Korea; Overseas Cume At $33M As Rollout Ramps Up

cinemaworldAfter bowing in 28 overseas territories last weekend, Warner BrosTom Cruise-starrer Edge Of Tomorrow is storming into a further 36 this frame. The initial weekend was worth $20.1M to the Doug Liman-directed pic. Openings yesterday brought in an estimated $6.2M, taking the cume to $33M. The sci-fi actioner had a terrific debut in Korea on Wednesday where it was a public holiday. On 681 screens, it grossed an estimated $3.8M (KRW 3.9B). Excluding Tuesday sneaks, the Wednesday gross was KRW 3.2B, giving Warner Bros’ its biggest opening of all time there. It also ranks as the 4th biggest industry opening, and the XXX EOT-TRL2-01925R.JPG D ENTbiggest ever bow for a Tom Cruise movie — outperforming Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol by 70%. With a five-day holiday afoot, Warner says it’s poised for a record-breaking debut. As I noted last week, Edge Of Tomorrow already had No. 1 starts in parts of Asia including Indonesia (also Cruise’s best opening ever) and Taiwan. It heads to China tomorrow which gave Cruise’s Oblivion its best ex-U.S. perf last year with $23.7M.

The movie, that’s got a $178M production budget, is taking advantage of a potentially lucrative pre-World Cup slot and has been expected to build internationally. It’s gotten strong reviews, has good word of mouth, and showed Friday-Saturday increases in important markets last weekend including … Read More »

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UPDATE: Int’l Box Office: ‘Maleficent’ Awakens $106.1M Overseas; ‘X-Men’ Adds $95.6M; ‘Edge Of Tomorrow’ Cruises To $20.1M In Select Markets; ‘A Million Ways To Die In The West’ Holsters $10M; More

Highlights: Maleficent (DIS) takes estimated $106.1M in overseas bow; X-Men: Days Of Future Past (FOX) mutates beyond $500M worldwide; Edge Of Tomorrow (WB) has $20.1M debut; Godzilla (WB) nearing $200M; A Million Ways To Die In The West (UNI) shoots up $10M; Neighbors (UNI) crosses $200M worldwide; Frozen (DIS) skates past $200M in Japan; The Amazing Spider-Man 2 (SONY) nears $500M…

cinemaworld3rd UPDATE, MONDAY, 3:46 PM PT: The final tally is in for Maleficent and its weekend debut was better than expected in many international territories. It’s gross is now well past $100M. Specifically, the Angelina Jolie-driven film is at $106.1M in 7,427 runs. Final tally is in for Warner Bros.’ opener Edge of Tomorrow starring Tom Cruise but need to corroborate territory by territory breakdowns and will update when we’re sure of them, but otherwise, final numbers are in for Godzilla, Universal’s opener A Million Ways to Die in the West and Neighbors, Fox’s X-Men: Days of Future Past, The Other Woman and Rio2. In addition, we have Spanish Affairs and Babysitting updates all incorporated below.

2ND UPDATE, MONDAY 9:05 AM PT: While we wait on updated actuals from around the international dial, Disney has revised its numbers for Frozen‘s 12th consecutive weekend atop the Japan box office. The cume this frame was $7.5M, not $5.8M as the studio previously reported. That was 8% above last weekend and pushed Frozen even farther past the $200M mark locally with the cume now at $207.5M. With X-Men: Days Of Future Past taking the No. 2 slot in its bow — at $3.4M, the best of the franchise’s openings since 2003 — could it ultimately fall to Disney’s other female-led fairy tale to snatch away the box office crown when Maleficent opens on July 4? Frozen figures have been updated throughout the below. Read More »

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Is Peter Chernin Key To AT&T’s Deal With DirecTV?

By | Wednesday May 21, 2014 @ 3:33pm PDT

AT&T DirecTV Merger That’s the way it looks to me the closer I examine the transaction. Just last month the telco announced that it forged a partnershipwith former News Corp COO Peter Chernin, valued at $500M, to either buy or build a so-called over-the-top (OTT) online video service. That’s now potentially the biggest — and perhaps the only meaningful — new opportunity for AT&T if it completes its $49.5B acquisition of DirecTV. The satellite company’s CEO Michael White told analysts this week that OTT and mobile video could be ”big win-wins not only for us and our customers but also for our programming partners.”

Related: Peter Chernin Teams With AT&T In $500M Effort To Create Online Video Service

Chernin peterIt’s more than an opportunity — it’s a necessity for the two companies. DirecTV‘s domestic TV business is mature, and AT&T’s copper wireline phone network is becoming obsolete. The media world is now about broadband, and cable companies led by Comcast have pretty much locked up the part of the business that involves wired connections. About 83% of the 1.2M people who signed up for wired broadband in Q1 went with cable, Leichtman Research Group reports. DirecTV and AT&T can’t beat cable’s ability to transmit gobs of programming and data to home TVs and computers.

Yet AT&T’s wireless spectrum could put it in the pole position to sell video and Internet services for smartphones and tablets — especially when out of the home.

The problem? AT&T and DirecTV were slow to move, which gave their respective chief competitors — Verizon and Dish Network — a head start in the race to develop a national OTT service. Read More »

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UPDATE: Intl Box Office: ‘Rio 2′ Soars With $63.4M; ‘Captain America: The Winter Soldier’ Blasts Past $300M Overseas; ‘Noah’ Adds $36.2M; ‘Divergent’ Nearing $50M

Highlights: Rio 2 (FOX) has $63.4M weekend, lands $12.6M in China debut; Captain America: The Winter Soldier (DIS) crosses $300M international; Noah (PAR) adds $36.2M; Divergent (LGF/SUM/var) nears $50M; Spanish Affairs (UNI) has 5th No. 1 weekend in Spain…

cinemaworld4th UPDATE, 7:15 PM, PST: The final Divergent  numbers are in, with the film nearing $50M but not yet crossing it; it stands at $48.1M. The film is based on the YA novel of the same name (part of a trilogy) and Lionsgate is hoping it will become another big franchise. This is the same company that launched the wildly successful Hunger Games series. Divergent is at $124.7M in the U.S. after the 3-day weekend for a worldwide gross of $172.8M+.

3rd UPDATE, Monday, 1:52 PM, PST:  New grosses are in for Rio 2, The Grand Budapest Hotel, 300: Rise Of An Empire, The Lego Movie, Spanish Affairs and The Secret Life of Walter Mitty. Rio 2 did better than previously expected internationally over the weekend, with a total tally of $63.4M to date; the worldwide cume on the animated family picture is over $100M.

2ND UPDATE, MONDAY 12:45 AM PT: Last weekend, Captain America: Read More »

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James Goldston Tapped To Be ABC News President

By | Thursday April 10, 2014 @ 5:50am PDT

James GoldstonABC made a pro forma announcement this morning, officially naming ABC News SVP James Goldston to replace Ben Sherwood as president of the news division. Last month, when Sherwood was promoted to co-chairman of Disney Media Networks and president of Disney/ABC Television Group, following Anne Sweeney’s surprising decision to step down as president of the Disney/ABC Television Group to become a TV director, the list of possible Sherwood replacements read like this:

1) James Goldston

2) James Goldston

3) James Goldston

abc-news110915165209Goldston’s the guy credited with saving Nightline from oblivion, and turning Good Morning America into the franchise that deposed NBC’s Today as king of the morning show ratings — though Goldston already had been upped to Sherwood’s No. 2 guy, and Tom Cibrowski, who’d worked with Goldston on GMA, had been promoted to GMA chief when the program actually went in for the kill. Discussions about Goldston generally include the expression “golden gut” and he is said to be well-liked in the news division. He’s also considered so valuable to the news operation that discussion of Sherwood-replacement plans didn’t seem to include any other names.

Related: Q&A: Incoming Disney/ABC TV Group Co-Chairman Ben Sherwood
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On The Bubble: Where Endangered Broadcast Series Stand

By | Wednesday April 9, 2014 @ 2:25pm PDT
Nellie Andreeva

networklogosIt is very difficult for showrunners to wrap production on a season without knowing if their series would get another season. Unfortunately, that is the nature of the network business, and about two dozen shows go though that every year. Here is a look at each network’s comedy and drama series in peril and their odds for survival.

With all the drama carnage at ABC this season (Lucky 7, Betrayal, Killer Women, Mind Games, The Assets), the network is pretty lean on the hourlong side, and all shows currently on the air have a good shot at coming back. agents of shieldThat includes two freshman series, fall drama Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., despite slipping in the ratings, and midseason entry Resurrection. Of returning dramas, there is no doubt about renewals for Shonda Rhimes’ Grey’s Anatomy, especially with stars Ellen Pompeo and Patrick Dempsey signed on, and Scandal, as well as Castle and Once Upon A Time. While it was heavily on the bubble last season, country music drama Nashville appears in a stronger position this spring and looks likely to continue. And, despite its ratings erosion, Revenge remains a signature, upscale drama for ABC that the network also owns. Because of its heavy mythology with a revenge storyline that has been central to the show since the pilot, it is unlikely that ABC would abruptly end the series without giving it a final chapter to wrap things up.

Things are far murkier on the comedy side where there are three shoe-ins, anchors Modern Family and The Middle and freshman The Goldbergs. None of these hail from ABC’s sister studio, and building a steady comedy pipeline at ABC Studios has been important for the overall health of the company. There are three ABC Studios-produced comedy series on ABC at the moment, all on the bubble: freshmen Trophy Wife and Mixology and sophomore The Neighbors. The network will likely renew at least one comedy from its own studio. (Last year, it picked The Neighbors vs. 20th TV’s How To Live With Your Parents.) Of the three, Trophy Wife seems to have the biggest support and is the most promotable, with KATE SIMSES, ADAM CAMPBELLa star cast led by Malin Akerman and Bradley Whitford. But the name cast also makes Trophy Wife the most expensive, and its ratings are pretty soft. The Neighbors, which comes from prominent Disney writer Dan Fogelman, costs way less, and, while only doing so-so on Fridays, it could deliver something ABC Studios has not seen in a while: a third-year comedy. (Fogelman also has comedy pilot Galavant in the running at ABC.) Then there is Mixology, which has not done well behind Modern Family. It stands out with its unusual structure — set in a bar over the course of one night — it has quickly built a core fan base and has supporters at ABC. But relaunching a heavily serialized comedy in the fall four months after a brief midseason run would be a challenge and growing ratings for such a show with a continues storyline would be very difficult. ABC has a recent history of sticking with narrow, quirky relationship comedies like Happy Endings and Don’t Trust the B—- but all were eventually cancelled. 20th TV’s Last Man Standing starring Tim Allen is quietly wrapping its third season. It has done a decent job as a Friday 8 PM anchor and is ABC’s only multi-camera series. With several high-proile multi-camera pilots, the network could use Last Man Standing as a building block. (How about Allen paired with another comedy vet, Henry Winkler of The Winklers?). Read More »

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All Eyes On James Goldston As ABC News Looks To Replace Ben Sherwood

By | Monday March 24, 2014 @ 11:23am PDT

James GoldstonWith ABC News chief Ben Sherwood named today to replace Anne Sweeney as president of Disney/ABC Television Group, betting money is on James Goldston, senior vice president of ABC News, stepping in to replace Sherwood at the helm of the news division. ABC News declined to comment.

Related: Q&A: Inoming Disney/ABC TV Group President Ben Sherwood

abc-news110915165209Goldston’s the guy credited with saving Nightline from oblivion, and turning Good Morning America into the franchise that deposed NBC’s Today as king of the morning show ratings —  though Goldston already had been upped to Sherwood’s No. 2 guy, and Tom Cibrowski, who’d worked with Goldston on GMA, had been promoted to GMA chief when the program actually went in for the kill. Discussions about Goldston generally include the expression “golden gut” and he is said to be well-liked in the news division. He’s also considered so valuable to the news operation that discussion of Sherwood-replacement plans don’t seem to include any other names.
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Box Office: ‘Need For Speed’ Late Night Off To Races With $1.1M; Questions For No. 1, 2, and 3 Spots; ‘Veronica Mars’ Midnight Surprise

By | Friday March 14, 2014 @ 12:45pm PDT

Mr.-Peabody-And-ShermanUPDATED: 12:45 P.M.: Mr. Peabody & Sherman from Fox/DreamWorks is doing very well today with what looks like a $6M take in early estimates to come in second right now behind Need For Speed which is about $1M to $2M higher. Like I said below, this animated pic will get a nice bump from family audiences this weekend and about 19% of kids are off for early Easter break so that is fueling it. Tight race.

Need For SpeedPREVIOUS, Friday, 9:58 A.M.: Need For Speed, the soft PG-13 cross-country racing film from DreamWorks based on the Electronic Arts video game of the same name, opened with what distributor Disney said is a $1.1M take on Thursday night. The late shows started at 8 PM to grab good numbers — in fact, Oblivion, which opened in April of last year, also took in $1.1M in late nights. Need For Speed is expected to open around $25M-$28M for the three-day weekend to take the No. 1 spot. We’ll see how many gamers come out and bring a friend this weekend.
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