Elizabeth Banks To Direct ‘Pitch Perfect 2′ For Universal

By | Monday January 27, 2014 @ 1:11pm PST

Elizabeth Banks Pitch Perfect 2Actress and producer Elizabeth Banks is making her feature directorial debut with Universal’s Pitch Perfect 2, the sequel to the 2012 $115M hit about a college student who joins an a capella group. Banks, … Read More »

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Hot Trailer: Focus World’s ‘Walk Of Shame’

By | Wednesday January 15, 2014 @ 5:22pm PST

Walk Of Shame‘s long walk to release started when its original premiere date of September 2013 was pushed by original distributor FilmDistrict, eventually landing on a March 2014 date. Then FilmDistrict and Focus Features combined, and in the divvying up of titles this one ended up at Read More »

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‘Walk Of Shame’ Moves To Focus World And Is Pushed Back Again

By | Tuesday November 26, 2013 @ 2:13pm PST

First, the FilmDistrict rom-com was set for release this past September. Then in June it was pushed to March 14. Now Walk Of Shame has a new opening date — April 25 — and will be released by Focus World, the alternative-Read More »

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‘Little Accidents’ Draws Elizabeth Banks, Chloe Sevigny, Josh Lucas

By | Thursday August 15, 2013 @ 10:10am PDT
Mike Fleming

Elizabeth BanksEXCLUSIVE: Production has gotten underway in West Virginia on Little Accidents, an indie drama written and directed by first timer Sara Colangelo. Elizabeth Banks, Boyd Holbrook, Chloë Sevigny, Jacob Lofland and Josh Lucas are … Read More »

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Lionsgate Buys Two For Elizabeth Banks’ Brownstone Banner; Erica Oyama Adapting ‘White Girl Problems’

By | Thursday June 27, 2013 @ 11:28am PDT
Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: Lionsgate is closing two deals for book adaptations that will be produced by Pitch Perfect producers Elizabeth Banks and Max Handelman through their Brownstone Productions banner. They’ve just closed a deal to acquire a pitch for hot scribe Erica Oyama to write a comedy based on Babe Walker’s bestseller White Girl Problems, a comic pseudo-memoir by a pampered gal out to show that even rich people deserve sympathy too. For example: She hates her horse and all the wealthy men she dates, and she has a shopping addiction that caused her once to spend $246,000 at Barneys in an afternoon. Authors Tanner Cohen, David Oliver Cohen and Lara Schoenhals wrote the book under the alias Babe Walker.

Lionsgate is separately acquiring for Brownstone Heist Society, the Ally Carter bestseller about a woman who has been part of a larcenous family and tries to go straight. That ends when her father is suspected of stealing a mobster’s art collection and she and a friend have two weeks to steal back the artwork and get it back to the mobster. For Banks, both of these are producing projects only at this point, and she will produce with Handelman. Read More »

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Berlin: Kristen Stewart & Elizabeth Banks To Explore Fashion & Fetishism In ‘The Big Shoe’

Kristen Stewart and Elizabeth Banks are joining Jim Sturgess in Steven Shainberg’s The Big Shoe. HanWay Films is handling international here at the EFM with CAA repping domestic. Secretary director Shainberg is helming from a … Read More »

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James Marsden On ‘Walk Of Shame’ With Elizabeth Banks

By | Thursday December 6, 2012 @ 11:40am PST

James Marsden is heading to Walk Of Shame with Elizabeth Banks. He will play Gordon, Banks’ character’s love interest in the comedy written and directed by Steve Brill. Walk Of Shame follows an uptight news anchor … Read More »

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Toronto: ‘West Of Memphis’ Helmer Amy Berg Gets Diane Lane And Elizabeth Banks For ‘Every Secret Thing’

By | Sunday September 9, 2012 @ 4:32am PDT
Mike Fleming

BREAKING: Amy Berg, who had Johnny Depp and Natalie Maines on hand here to launch her latest documentary West Of Memphis, will next helm Every Secret Thing, a Nicole Holofcener-scripted drama that will star Diane Lane and Elizabeth Banks.

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Warner Bros Builds Morgan Freeman And Elizabeth Banks Into ‘Lego’ Feature

By | Monday August 27, 2012 @ 3:49pm PDT
Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: Elizabeth Banks and Morgan Freeman will lend their voices to lead roles in Lego, Warner Bros tent pole animated 3D film that will be released … Read More »

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Elizabeth Banks To Star In Alan Ball’s ‘What’s The Matter With Margie’: Cannes

By | Friday May 18, 2012 @ 1:20am PDT

Elizabeth Banks What's The Matter With MargieElizabeth Banks has been cast in the title role of writer-producer Alan Ball’s new dark comedy What’s The Matter With Margie? Myriad Pictures announced today. Banks plays a downtrodden office worker who after years of … Read More »

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Daniel Day-Lewis, George Clooney, Spielberg Among Hollywood Heavyweights For White House Correspondents’ Dinner

Abraham Lincoln is coming to this weekend’s White House Correspondent’s dinner. Actually the Great Emancipator isn’t coming but Daniel Day-Lewis, who plays the 16th President in the upcoming Steven Spielberg Lincoln film, is. The often reclusive Oscar winner, … Read More »

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Hot Trailer: ‘Man On A Ledge’

Mike Fleming

Summit Entertainment has released a trailer for Man on a Ledge, the drama that stars Sam Worthington as a disgraced ex-cop who climbs out on a ledge on the roof of a Manhattan hotel to protest his innocence. It’s clear from the trailer there is more going on here than … Read More »

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Hurricane Irene: Worst Movie Weekend Of 2011? ‘The Help’ #1 Again, ‘Colombiana’ #2, ‘Afraid Of The Dark’ #3, ‘Our Idiot Brother’ #6

SATURDAY PM/SUNDAY AM, 4TH UPDATE: This weekend’s numbers bounced around, especially after Rentrak, the box office reporting service, sent out the following advisory: “We wanted to make you aware that a possible 1,000 theatres could be affected by the weather on the East Coast. We’ve been hearing about closures at many theatres and wanted to advise you that both Saturday and Sunday grosses will be affected.” This is turning into the worst moviegoing weekend of 2011, in a race with only Super Bowl weekend, because of the expected miniscule $80M expected for total North American box office grosses. Theater chains like AMC, Regal, and Clearview Cinemas were closing, location counts were dropping, and major releases were finding cover. Hurricane Irene came ashore along the Atlantic Seaboard on Saturday starting in North Carolina and heading due north. Mass transit was suspended in many areas while heavy rains and high winds pounded the region, causing one studio exec to complain to me, ”Business is in the crapper right now. Any way you slice it business is getting creamed this weekend.” The storm, at one point bigger than the size of Europe, created a state of emergency up the East Coast from North Carolina to Massachusetts and will depress box office by 10%, 20%, or more. Considering that this weekend’s 3 major opening movies were only expected to debut modestly even in fair weather, studios and distributors have a Mother Nature excuse when their films underperform at the North American box office. So I can’t humiliate them for not hitting double digits. Drats!)

1. DreamWorks/Disney’s The Help is a lock again for #1 with $4.4M Friday and $5.9M Saturday for a $14.3M weekend as the bestselling book-turned-pic enters its 3.5th week into 2,778 originally booked theaters. The cume is estimated at $96.6M and should pass the $100M plateau mid-week.

2. Sony Pictures/TriStar’s Luc Besson-produced and co-written PG-13 actioner Colombiana starring Zoe Saldana as the female assassin. It did the best of the newcomers opening to $3.7M Friday and also $3.7M Saturday to a $10.3M weekend with an original booking into 2,614 theaters. It earned an ‘A-’ CinemaScore from audiences. “Given the devastating weather system on the East Coast, the film performed better than expected and is off to a solid start and should hold well for the coming holiday weekend and into the Fall,” the studio said. Sony Pictures did a distribution deal for Colombiana which was fully financed by EuropaCorp and partners TF1 Films Production, Grive Productions with the participation of Canal+ and Cinecinema. They also put up the P&A for this title. For the media and promo campaign, Sony tied into the revenge theme of the movie with custom branded promotions and tie-ins with outlets like BET where there was “back to payback” stunt. The studio placed sneak peaks of the film in programming blocks where the cable channel was broadcasting revenge-oriented titles like Romeo Must Die and A Man Apart. Zoe Saldana shot custom interstitials. On channels like G4, a sweepstakes gave the winner time with Zoe’s trainer and to remake a scene from the film. Activities also specifically targeted urban audiences and Spanish language press. TriStar Pictures and Stage 6 Films present a coproduction EuropaCorp. Directed by Olivier Megaton, Colombiana gave writing credits to Luc Besson & Robert Mark Kamen, and produced by Luc Besson and Ariel Zeitoun.

3. FilmDistrict’s Guillermo del Toro-written and co-produced haunted house movie Don’t Be Afraid Of The Dark, starring Katie Holmes and Guy Pearce was originally booked into 2,760 theaters. It debuted with $3.6M Friday and $2.9M Saturday and will make $8.6M this weekend. It earned an unfortunate ‘C-’ CinemaScore from audiences. “All things considered, not a bad Saturday and ultimately the weekend total was good despite the hurricane,” said FilmDistrict’s Bob Berney. ”Our key large urban East Coast markets were really killed.” Females under 25 responded strongest to Don’t Be Afraid Of The Dark and in markets with large Latino populations. Berney has known Guillermo since distributing his Academy Award-winning Pan’s Labyrinth at Picturehouse. that’s also where Berney released The Orphanage which del Toro exec-produced. Don’t Be Afraid Of The Dark had been in the works for some time ever since del Toro made Mimic for the original Miramax. Guillermo based the new movie on a 1973 TV pic that had “scared the crap” out of him as a kid in Mexico. Del Toro chose director Troy Nixey from his work in comic books and a short film that Guillermo really responded to. Don’t Be Afraid Of The Dark was shot while Guillermo was in New Zealand preparing The Hobbit (remember that?) and would fly over to Melbourne where Nixey was shooting and remained very involved in the $28M production. After Disney sold Miramax to the Colony Capital/Ron Tutor group, FilmDistrict acquired Don’t Be Afraid Of The Dark around Sundance this year. It was the closing night pic at the LA Film Festival and put together a Comic-Con panel with del Toro and Guy Pearce. Attendees called it the most highbrow discussion of the Con steeped in both film history and profanity. Guillermo has a “Presents” credit on the film and his pedigree has been one of the key marketing points of the film. “Jeanne and I were really happy to be working with Guillermo again,” Berney emailed me. “He really is the ’hardest working man in show business’ and the most generous and nicest guy as well. Not to mention that he holds the record for ‘F bombs’ at Q&As and panels around the world.”

4. Rise Of The Planet Of The Apes (Fox) Week 4 [3,374? Theaters]
Friday $2.6M, Saturday $3.6M, Weekend $8.6M, Cume $148.4M

5. Spy Kids 4D (Dimension/Weinstein Co) Week 2 (3,305? Theaters)
Friday $1.5M, Saturday $2.5M, Weekend $5.7M (-51%), Cume $21.7M

6. The Weinstein Co’s not-so-raunchy R-rated comedy Our Idiot Brother showcasing Paul Rudd surrounded by Elizabeth Banks, Zooey Deschanel and Emily Mortimer originally booked into 2,555 theaters. It opened to $2.3M and $2.5M Saturday for a $5.7M weekend. It earned a disappointing ‘C+’ CinemaScores from audiences. This film was acquired by TWC and Ron Burkle’s YUK Films at the Sundance Film Festival for $6 million in exchange for U.S., Germany, France, Japan, and Benelux rights. Alliance has Canada via their recent acquisition of Maple Films. Directed by Jesse Peretz from a script he wrote with his sister Evgenia, he reached out to producer Anthony Bregman (Eternal Sunshine Of The Spotless Mind) who in turn enlisted producer Peter Saraf (Little Miss Sunshine) and they put the whole deal together in a few weeks. TWC’s marketing campaign involved not only the traditional media buys but a lot of extras on the Internet as well — like the Funny Or Die video with Harvey Weinstein and Paul Rudd. Rudd went on MLB.com talking sports. There also was a ’Search for Willie Nelson’ (the dog’s name in the film) viral campaign. And an Idiot Photo Booth social campaign. Our Idiot Brother gave writing credits to Evgenia Peretz and David Schisgall and producing credits to Stefanie Azpiazu, Caroline Jaczko, Aleen Keshishian, Anthony Bregman, Peter Saraf, and Marc Turtletaub. Read More »

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Elizabeth Banks Added To ‘What To Expect When You’re Expecting’

Elizabeth Banks has joined the growing ensemble cast of Lionsgate’s adaptation of the bestselling pregnancy guidebook What to Expect When You’re Expecting, which already stars Cameron Diaz, Jennifer Lopez, Brooklyn Decker, Anna Kendrick and Chris Rock. The romantic comedy is set … Read More »

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Sundance: Update; Weinstein Co. Closes ‘The Details’ For $7.5 Million, $10 Million P&A

Mike Fleming

UPDATE: The Weinstein Company indeed closed this deal, and here are the details. I’m told the minimum guarantee was $7.5 million, with a P&A commitment upwards of $10 million. That makes The Details the largest minimum guarantee of … Read More »

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DreamWorks Open Casting: Boy Age 11-13

So DreamWorks Studios is holding an open casting call this Saturday for the lead role of “Josh” in its upcoming movie Welcome To People starring Chris Pine and Elizabeth Banks and the feature film directorial debut of Alex Kurtzman (Transformers, Star Trek) with a script written by Kurtzman & Roberto Orci … Read More »

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Elizabeth Banks Joins ‘Welcome To People’

Mike Fleming

Elizabeth Banks will star alongside Chris Pine in the DreamWorks pic Welcome to People, the directorial debut of Star Trek and Transformers co-writer Alex Kurtzman. Pine plays a guy charged with delivering $150,000 of his dead father’s fortune to a … Read More »

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Elizabeth Banks Joins ‘Man On A Ledge’

Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: Elizabeth Banks will play the female lead in Man On A Ledge, the Asger Leth-directed Summit Entertainment drama that stars Sam Worthington, Jamie Bell and Anthony Mackie. Banks will play an NYPD crisis negotiator who tries to talk a suicidal detective (Worthington) off a ledge. She has a past relationship with the ex-cop, who was framed for a crime he didn’t commit. Script was written by Pablo Fenjves, with Darkest Hour‘s Chris Gorak doing a rewrite and Red‘s Erich and Jon Hoeber doing a final polish. Read More »

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Steve Coogan Joins ‘My Idiot Brother’

Mike Fleming

Steve Coogan has joined the cast of My Idiot Brother, the Jesse Peretz-directed indie comedy that is shooting in New York with Paul Rudd, Elizabeth Banks, Zooey Deschanel, Emily Mortimer, Rashida Jones and Adam Scott. The film’s about family and … Read More »

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