Disney/Marvel’s Guardians Of The Galaxy and Universal’s James Brown biopic Get On Up both bow tonight in late nights but all eyes are on Guardians which storms into theaters at 7 PM. This is a title with a relatively unknown actor in the lead (Chris Pratt) and about minor characters in the Marvel Universe, so this is relying quite heavily on the Marvel brand. Will they wish they had Bradley Cooper in the starring role and Chris Pratt as the voice of the scene-stealing Rocket raccoon at the end of the day? Naawww. It works fine just as it is … better than fine. We expect it to go north of $70M. And Universal’s Get On Up may be only in the mid-teens as Lucy‘s second-weekend percentage drop is not likely to keep it out of the No. 2 spot. So No. 3 right now is up for grabs, depending on Hercules second weekend drop.
Related: Can ‘Guardians of the Galaxy’ Save Summer Box Office?
Get On Up, from Brian Grazer and Ron Howard’s Imagine Entertainment and Mick Jagger’s Jagger Films, bows in 2,466 theaters this weekend. Chadwick Boseman portrays the legendary singer in the film. Audiences will remember him from portraying Jackie Robinson in 42. Directing this one is Tate Taylor who helmed the 2012 Best Picture nominee The Help which won best supporting actress for Octavia Spencer who is also in Get On Up. With Viola Davis in this one, too, audiences can expect a quality film. It opens tonight at 8 PM.
But let’s get back to the film of the weekend: Guardians. Yeah, OK the marketing for Guardians comes across, at times, as a bit campy, but Marvel fans were asking for something original and Marvel definitely delivered. The film bows tonight in 4,080 theaters, making it the widest August release ever. It will be on 350 IMAX screens for the next few weekends; in addition, it debuts on 3,200 3D, 350 large formats and 240 D-Box — yes, D-Box. This is a picture that will play well with kids — and an exec noted that 90% of them are still out of school (HUGE plus) and the tracking shows it on fire with all quadrants right now. This could be the biggest August opening ever, surpassing Bourne Ultimatum‘s seven-year record of $69.2M. Read More »
3RD 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.
One 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 »
15th 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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“I only want to be a husband and a father,” Hercules says humbly. So we all know what’s gonna happen to the family. Dwayne Johnson stars as the Son of Zeus, out for vengeance against men, beasts and descendants of Hades — who cannot be killed by an ordinary mortal. Based on Radical Comics’ take on the mythical muscle man, the Paramount-MGM actioner co-stars Ian McShane, Rufus Sewell, Joseph Fiennes, Peter Mullan and John Hurt. Brett Ratner directs from a script by Ryan Condal and Evan Spiliotopoulos. Check out the new trailer for Hercules, which invades theaters July 25.
Paramount and MGM’s revisionist take on Hercules stars Dwayne Johnson as the legendary hero, adapted from Steve Moore’s graphic novel. Ian McShane, Rufus Sewell, Joseph Fiennes, Peter Mullan and John Hurt co-star in the actioner which drops July 25. For those not in the CinemaCon audience last night in Vegas here’s the first Hercules teaser:
Six major studios, and what many have been referring to as a seventh major (Lionsgate/Summit who have the week’s number one film Divergent and what appears to be Hollywood’s latest franchise player), will be presenting, in one form or another, their goods to exhibitors this week at CinemaCon in Las Vegas. This major convention, coming only three weeks on the heels of the Oscars, is promising to show off the most commercial flicks the studios have in store, not necessarily the most awards worthy. You get the drift? Paramount opened the studio portion of the convention tonight with a brief reel highlighting its 2014 slate, but then really focusing on just three of those movies: Hoped-for summer blockbusters Hercules (with MGM), starring Dwayne Johnson; a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles cinematic reboot from producer Michael Bay; and Bay’s fourth go-round with Hasbro’s Transformers franchise, Age Of Extinction. Each got the full-court press from Par’s Vice Chairman Rob Moore who said he stopped by the convention in between trips to “Vatican City and New York City” on behalf on the studio’s terrific, but sure-to-be-controversial, Friday release, Noah. The latter shown in some brief footage represents the kind of ambitious and daring fare studios tried more often before the Hollywood corporate takeover started dictating more obviously commercial and exhibitor-friendly kinds of movies like Paramount’s big summer slate promises.
Johnson … Read More »
Principal photography on Hercules has begun in Budapest, Hungary. The film, starring Dwayne Johnson and Ian McShane is based on the graphic novel Hercules: The Thracian Wars. The ensemble action film is a revisionist take on the classic myth set in a grounded world where the supernatural does not exist. Brett Ratner is directing from a screenplay by Ryan Condal and Evan Spiliotopoulos. Ratner also is producing with Beau Flynn (Journey 2: The Mysterious Island). Rufus Sewell, Peter Mullan, John Hurt also star in the ensemble cast that includes Rebecca Ferguson, Ingrid Bolso Berdal, Aksel Hennie and Reece Ritchie. Hercules will be distributed worldwide by Paramount Pictures on July 25, 2014, with select international territories as well as all television distribution being handled by MGM.
EXCLUSIVE: WME has just signed Brett Ratner, the director and producer. This comes at a time when Ratner is getting ready to direct Hercules, which stars Dwayne Johnson, and he’s also been very active in producing such projects including the Ben Mezrich book Seven Wonders, which Fox bought for him to produce with Beau Flynn. Ratner had been at CAA. The signing comes on the heels of Ratner donating $1 million to the museum of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.
EXCLUSIVE: Hercules has put on a bit more casting muscle. Reece Ritchie has joined Dwayne Johnson in Brett Ratner-directed action movie from Paramount and MGM. The Lovely Bones and Prince Of Persia actor will play Iolaus, the legendary strongman’s nephew and biggest booster who eagerly promotes Hercules’ achievements and adventures. A poet, Iolaus is forced in the film to also become a warrior alongside his uncle. Ritchie is the latest in a series of additions to the film. Rufus Sewell also recently joined as did Ian McShane, Joseph Fiennes, Rebecca Ferguson, Aksel Hennie and John Hurt. Going into production next month, Hercules is scheduled to open on July 25, 2014. Ritchie, repped by UTA, Thruline Management and the UK’s Conway Van Gelder Grant, will also be seen in the upcoming Desert Dancer with Slumdog Millionaire’s Freida Pinto.
The Dwayne Johnson-starrer Hercules already set Rufus Sewell to co-star as Autolycus. Now Ian McShane, Joseph Fiennes, Rebecca Ferguson (BBC’s The White Queen), Aksel Hennie (Headhunters) and John Hurt have come aboard, Paramount and MGM said today. Ryan Condal wrote the screenplay for the action film, based on Radical Studio’s graphic novel Hercules: The Thracian Wars, Evan Spiliotopoulos rewrote it and Brett Ratner is directing and producing with Barry Levine and Beau Flynn. Production is set to begin in May and the movie will be released July 25, 2014.
The plot: After renouncing his mythological origins, Hercules lives in exile and fights as a mercenary for hire alongside his loyal but weary comrades. Hercules and his crew will face their most challenging labor yet when one battle forces the man behind the myth to question everything he once believed, and reconsider the truth behind his own legend. Read More »
EXCLUSIVE: Rufus Sewell is set to star as Autolycus alongside Dwayne Johnson in Hercules for MGM. Ryan Condal has written the film and Evan Spiliotopoulos rewrite it and Brett Ratner is directing. Ratner will produce with Barry Levine and Beau Flynn. After renouncing his mythological origins, Hercules lives in exile and fights as a mercenary for hire alongside his loyal but weary comrades. Hercules and his crew will face their most challenging labor yet when one battle forces the man behind the myth to question everything he once believed, and reconsider the truth behind his own legend. The pic has been set to open July 25, 2014. Read More »
Paramount and MGM said that the Dwayne Johnson-starrer Hercules, originally scheduled for wide release on August 8, 2014, will now open July 25, 2014. Brett Ratner is directing the pic, which is being eyed as a franchise. The movie’s original date fell a week after the one staked out by Disney/Marvel’s Guardians Of The Galaxy. Now Hercules has a date to itself for the time being, and comes a week after Warner Bros’ The Hobbit: There And Back Again, the final installment of that trilogy; and Fox’s sequel X-Men: Days Of Future Past.
Paramount‘s Brett Ratner-directed Hercules, starring Dwayne Johnson as the legendary strongman, will hit theaters August 8, 2014, a week after Disney/Marvel’s Guardians Of The Galaxy is slated to bow. Hercules is an adaptation of the 2008 Radical Studios graphic novel Hercules: The Thracian Wars, which takes the supernatural out of classical mythology and places it in a more real-world context. If the MGM-Paramount co-production is a hit, it could signal the beginning of a franchise; the graphic novel was followed by a sequel, The Knives Of Kush, in 2011. The film’s script is by Ryan Condal, with revisions by Evan Spiliotopoulos. Ratner, Beau Flynn and Barry Levine are producing, with Peter Berg, Sarah Aubrey and Jesse Berger executive producing. Production is scheduled to start soon. Aside from Johnson, no other cast has been announced.
Related: Paramount & MGM Team For ‘Hercules’; Dwayne Johnson To Star, Brett Ratner To Direct
Dwayne Johnson really will play the classic strongman Hercules onscreen. The Brett Ratner-directed Hercules action film will be co-produced by Paramount and MGM, the companies announced today. Johnson and Ratner’s names have been attached to the project since early spring. The screenplay was adapted by Ryan Condal from Radical Studios’ graphic novel Hercules: The Thracian Wars; Evan Spiliotopoulos did script revisions. Beau Flynn, Barry Levine and Ratner will produce. Peter Berg, Sarah Aubrey and Jesse Berger will executive produce. Production is scheduled to start in early 2013. Condal is repped by WME. Ratner is repped by CAA. Johnson is repped by WME and The Garcia Companies.