New Mexico’s film tax incentive program got two black eyes today at the PGA’s Produced By panel on state tax incentives. Transcendence and A Million Ways to Die in the West, which both shot in New Mexico last year, still haven’t received their tax incentives, which are being tied up by a bureaucratic mind boggling array of red tape and audits.
Panelist Peter Wentzel, vp of production finance at Media Rights Capitol, complained that this company’s film A Million Ways to Die in the West is still dealing with the state’s auditors even though the production wrapped there in August.
Describing New Mexico’s new auditing process as “onerous”, he stated that the company had to scan over 12,000 pages of financial documents to get its incentives. “it’s tough to get answers and explanations”.
“It’s been interesting,” said Yolanda Cochran, SVP of physical production at Alcon Entertainment.
Alcon’s Transcendence wrapped there in June and hasn’t received their tax incentives either, its state audit is stalled in what she called “A holding pattern. It’s quite the process which is unfortunate. You don’t have this with other states incentives.”
Other panelists gave high marks to tax incentive programs in Louisiana, Georgia, and Massachusetts.
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…
3rd 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 »
Box Office Winners And Losers
Deadline Film Editor Anita Busch offers her post-mortem for the weekend, which saw Angelina Jolie's 'Maleficent' score big (especially overseas), while Seth MacFarlane's 'A Million Ways To Die In The West' went south fast.
OPENING: Maleficent (DIS) conjures up $69.4M ; A Million Ways To Die In The West (UNI) done for at $16.7M.
5th UPDATE, MONDAY, 1:40 PM: Disney’s announced $70M for numbers on Maleficent even though no one else could conceive of it making that number, but the studio sure got its $70M headline around the world, didn’t it? We didn’t bite and kept it in the $68M+ to $69M+ range. Perception is reality, but the reality is it made $69.4M and now (surprise) the international numbers for Frozen just happened to come in higher in Japan. A bit of a balancing act to squeeze out their $2 billion worldwide box office boast. Would one day have mattered? Meanwhile, Seth MacFarlane’s R-rated roustabout A Million Ways To Die In The West will end up with less than $17M. When the dust cleared this morning, the raunchy comedy kicked in only $16.7M for Universal which saddled up for this disaster in anticipation of MacFarlane’s Ted sequel. Fox’s X-Men: Days Of Future Past fell, as reported, 64% in its second weekend and Warner Bros’ Blended and Uni’s Neighbors (in its fourth weekend) were neck in neck all weekend and ended up only $64,000 apart. Blended took the No. 5 spot.
Next Weekend Openers: The Tom Cruise sci-fi actioner Edge Of Tomorrow from Warner Bros. The screenwriter on the pic, which also stars Emily Blunt, is Christopher McQuarrie, who has worked with Cruise before on Jack Reacher and Valkyrie. The film already bowed overseas to a soft $20M in 28 markets. From 20th Century Fox (I can’t help but think this should have been a Fox Searchlight release) will be the highly anticipated adaptation of the YA John Green novel The Fault In Our Stars with Divergent‘s Shailene Woodley and Ansel Egort starring. It will open day and date in about 20 markets. Chef, which has been getting tremendous word-of-mouth, expands next weekend to around 1,200 theaters. Here’s the final weekend chart: Read More »
The Summer Movie Season Is Heating Up
It's expected to be a big weekend at the box office for Disney's 'Maleficent' and its star Angelina Jolie. Deadline's film editor Anita Busch looks ahead at this weekend's openers, including Seth MacFarlane's 'A Million Ways To Die In The West'.
Related: BOX OFFICE PREVIEW: Disney’s ‘Maleficent’ Opens Tonight; Seth MacFarlane’s ‘A Million Ways To Die In The West’ Also Debuts
Let’s just say it’s tough to get a handle on how a Seth MacFarlane product will play without a red band look (if only Family Guy were on HBO). So here’s one that dropped today ahead of the Universal-MRC pic that premieres May 30. MacFarlane directs, produces, co-writes and stars in the Western-themed comedy alongside Charlize Theron, Liam Neeson, Amanda Seyfried, Giovanni Ribisi, Sarah Silverman and Neil Patrick Harris:
EXCLUSIVE: Amanda Seyfried is going to play the female lead in Ted 2, the Seth MacFarlane-directed sequel with Mark Wahlberg back as the centerpiece in the ongoing saga of a man and his foul-mouthed teddy bear. MacFarlane is still putting together the pieces for the Ted 2 sequel, but it looks like Mila Kunis will only appear in a tiny role, if at all, in the sequel. I’m told this has nothing to do with anything other than a creative decision that MacFarlane decided to take with the plotting of the sequel. He and Kunis remain close, I’m told, and she continues to provide the voice of Meg in MacFarlane’s Family Guy. MacFarlane is nearly done with post-production on his next film, A Million Ways To Die In The West, in which MacFarlane stars with Liam Neeson, Charlize Theron, Seyfried and Ted star Giovanni Ribisi. Scott Stuber produces both films.
Like A Million Days To Die In The West, the film is back by Media Rights Capital, and a deal is expected to be made with Universal to co-finance and distribute the film, as the studio did with the original.
Seth MacFarlane directs, produces, co-wrote and stars in the Western comedy as cowardly sheep farmer Albert, whose fickle girlfriend leaves him for another man after he backs out of a gunfight. When a mysterious and beautiful woman rides into town, she helps Albert find his courage and they begin to fall in love. But when her outlaw husband arrives seeking revenge, Albert must put his newfound courage to the test. Charlize Theron, Liam Neeson, Amanda Seyfried, Sarah Silverman, Giovanni Ribisi, and Neil Patrick Harris also star. A Million Ways To Die In The West reunites MacFarlane with many of the filmmakers behind Ted, including Scott Stuber (Bluegrass Films) and Jason Clark who produce, and Wellesley Wild and Alec Sulkin who co-wrote the script. Universal releases A Million Ways To Die In The West on May 30. Check out the trailer:
With his career as a sports agent circling the drain, JB Bernstein (Jon Hamm) swings for the fences: He heads to India in the hope of finding a cricket player who can pitch in the major leagues. There he finds a pair of 18-year-olds (Madhur Mittal and Suraj Sharma) who have never left their villages and brings them to the U.S. for training. Culture shock and family-type bonding ensue. Lake Bell, Alan Arkin, Aasif Mandvi and Bill Paxton co-star in director Craig Gillespie’s Million Dollar Arm. Written by Tom McCarthy, the Disney pic opens May 16, when Major League Baseball — and the summer movie season — will be in full swing. Here’s the pitch:
BREAKING: Universal Pictures has formalized the much-expected arrangement to co-finance with Media Rights Capital and distribute worldwide Seth MacFarlane’s Western comedy A Million Ways To Die In The West. The studio has also set a May 30, 2014, North American release date. MacFarlane directs, produces and co-wrote the film and he plays sheep farmer Albert alongside a cast that includes Charlize Theron, Liam Neeson, Amanda Seyfried, Sarah Silverman, Giovanni Ribisi, and Neil Patrick Harris. Scott Stuber and Jason Clark are producing with MacFarlane, who wrote the script with Wellesley Wild and Alec Sulkin. They along with Universal and MRC are responsible for the global juggernaut Ted.
EXCLUSIVE: Add Giovanni Ribisi to A Million Ways To Die In The West, the next film to star and be directed by Seth MacFarlane. Ribisi reteams with MacFarlane, who is once again teamed in this venture with Media Rights Capital, which finally rode in a big winner when it backed MacFarlane’s last film, Ted, the foul mouthed stuffed bear comedy that has now grossed over $543 million worldwide. Universal is expected to become the distributor of the Western, after releasing Ted. MacFarlane wrote the script with Ted and Family Guy cohorts Alec Sulkin and Wellesley Wild, and Scott Stuber and Jason Clark are producing. They were producers on Ted with MacFarlane and John Jacobs. Read More »
EXCLUSIVE: When he completes Sunday’s Oscar hosting stint, Seth MacFarlane will get down to business about where to place his next film, one that is shaping up to be the hot movie project in town. I’m hearing that Universal Pictures has the inside track to acquire A Million Ways To Die In The West, the live action comedy he’ll begin shooting this spring that is a kindred spirit to Blazing Saddles. Several studios are chasing the project, which so far stars MacFarlane, Amanda Seyfried and Charlize Theron.
MacFarlane is once again teamed in this venture with Media Rights Capital, which finally rode in a big winner when it backed MacFarlane’s last film, Ted, the foul mouthed stuffed bear comedy that has now grossed over $536 million worldwide and is out-grossing Skyfall in Japan. MacFarlane wrote the script with Ted and Family Guy cohorts Alec Sulkin and Wellesley Wild, and Scott Stuber and Jason Clark are producing. They were producers on Ted with MacFarlane and John Jacobs. You can see he is a loyal guy, and so why wouldn’t he go back to Universal when the result was so good last time around. Read More »