Box Office Final Numbers: Weather Knocks Film Grosses Down Across The Board

OPENING: Paranormal Activity: The Marked Ones (Paramount, wide) $18.3 est. 3-day opening for recast franchise NOTEWORTHY: Frozen (DIS) crosses $600M worldwide

BoxOffice_logo__131122164403-275x206__131207011855UPDATED MONDAY, 1:30 PM: Final numbers for all weekend estimates are less than expected as arctic temps across the nation kept moviegoers home Sunday night. As it played out, The Wolf of Wall Street ended up at $13.2M and American Hustle at $12.4M for the three-day weekend and, of the top ten, Wolf had the best weekend to weekend hold, down 29%. Other pics have been in the marketplace longer, of course, but it is still worth noting. Opening wide this Friday will be The Legend of Hercules from Lionsgate from director Renny Harlin, Universal’s Afghan battle pic Lone Survivor and expanding to 1,700 screens is Warner Bros.’ Her from Spike Jonze. Here are the final numbers and rankings from this weekend. Bottom ten on second page:

1). Frozen (DIS), $19,575,525 3-day (-32% from previous weekend) / 3,318 locations (-17) / $5,900 average / Cume: $296,691,729 / Wk 7

2). Paranormal Activity: The Marked Ones (PAR), $18,343,611 / 2,867 locations / $6,398 average / Cume: $18,343,611, / Wk 1

3). The Hobbit: The Desolation Of Smaug (WB), $15,675,220 (-46%)/ 3,730 locations (-168) $4,202 average / Cume: $229,059,642 / Wk 4

4). The Wolf Of Wall Street (PAR), $13,230,353 (-29%) / 2,557 locations (+20) / $5,174 average / Cume: $63,125,467 / Wk 2

5). American Hustle (SONY), $12,404,207 (-34%) / 2,518 locations (+11) / $4,926 average / Cume: $87,923,123 / Wk 4

6). Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues (PAR) $10,633,959 (-45%)/ 3,407 locations (-100) / $3,121 average / Cume; $108,713,472 / Wk 3

7). Saving Mr. Banks (DIS), $8,694,891 (-35%) / 2,110 locations (0) / $4,121 average / Cume: $58,958,280 / Wk 4

8). The Secret Life Of Walter Mitty (FOX), $8,001,717  (-37%)/ 2,922 locations (+13) / $2,738 average / Cume: $45,470,954 / Wk  2

9). The Hunger Games: Catching Fire (LG), $7,051,309 (-30%) / 2,143 locations (-172) / $3,290 average / Cume: $407,139,699 / Wk 7

10). Grudge Match (WB), $5,325,423 (-34%) / 2,856 locations (+18) / $1,865 average / Cume: $24,835,480, / Wk 2

Read More »

Comments 60

OSCARS: From ‘Philomena’ To ‘Saving Mr. Banks’, Composers Show Creativity And Agility With This Year’s Scores

David Mermelstein is an AwardsLine contributor.

This year’s bevy of awards contender films is not only uncharacteristically large but also varied, particAwardsLine.LogoBWularly in how they were scored. The lack of similarity is apparent in everything from genre to instrumentation and even transcends musical matters, touching on the very core of the process. Specifically, when the composer is handpicked to buttress feelings and emotions primarily expressed in visual terms, what is his or working relationship with the director? Several prominent composers spoke about that intimate union, which in some cases was a new collaboration and in others a welcome reteaming.

Philomena (1)Alexandre Desplat first worked with Stephen Frears on The Queen in 2006 and gratefully accepted the director’s offer to work on this year’s Philomena, a bittersweet road movie starring Judi Dench and Steve Coogan. “The story is intimate and deeply moving, and Stephen thought I could emphasize that,” Desplat says. “The story is such that it’s difficult not to be in tears: This little woman who seems to be lost but is actually ahead of everyone. It was so appealing to me. I came out with the main theme rather quickly.”

Related: ‘Philomena’: Could It Be This Year’s Oscar Sleeper?
Read More »

Comments (2)

Christmas Box Office Update: Last Weekend Of 2013 Up 8.1% On More Movies In Marketplace, ‘Hobbit,’ ‘Frozen,’ Together Take 34% Out Of Weekend, ‘Anchorman 2,’ ‘Hustle,’ ‘Wolf’ Follow

CHRISTMAS DAY OPENERS: The Wolf Of Wall Street (Paramount, wide) sliding down to No. 5 in 3-day, The Secret Life Of Walter Mitty (Fox, wide), 47 Ronin (Universal, wide) bomb, Grudge Match (Warner Bros, wide), Justin Bieber’s Believe (Open Road, moderate), The Invisible Woman (Sony Pictures Classics, ltd), Lone Survivor (Universal, 2 runs), August: Osage County (The Weinstein Co, ltd on Friday) $35,000 per screen wknd.

BoxOffice_logo__131122164403-275x206UPDATE: MONDAY, 2:42 PM: Year-to-date industry box office numbers are in, showing a slight increase of less than one percentage point from last year, or about $90M difference. Specifically, 2013 grosses rose .8% to $10.763B for the year ending 12/29/13 vs. $10.674B for the year ending 12/30/12 (as previously reported it would be less than 1%). When you just look at the Top Ten films in the marketplace over the last weekend of 2012 vs 2013, there was an overall increase this year of 8.1% in grosses, according to Rentrak. In analyzing these numbers, one must take into account that this year there were simply more movies in the marketplace. We must also look at attendance and ticket prices increases or decreases. But those specific attendance figures and average tickets prices, which will round out the big picture, won’t be released by the National Association of Theater Owners for another few weeks. In the meantime, here are the 3-day and 5-day Christmas holiday box office weekend numbers from Rentrak. These are the best estimates available, given that the studios only reported their estimates and the actuals won’t arrive until Thursday.

1). The Hobbit: The Desolation Of Smaug (WB), $29,040,000 (3-day), $48,870,000 (5-day), 3,928 locations, $189,494,000, Wk 3.

2. Frozen (DIS), $28,596,319 (3-day), $44,059,244 (5-day), 3,335 locations, $248,117,795, Wk 6.

3). Anchorman 2 (PAR), $19,662,000 (3-day), $35,126,000 (5-day), 3,507 locations, $83,180,000, Wk 2.

4). American Hustle (SONY), $18,701,000 (3-day), $32,451,000 (5-day), 2,507 locations, $59,185,000, Wk 3.

5). The Wolf Of Wall Street (PAR), $18,360,000 (3-day), $34,151,000 (5-day), 2,537 locations, $34,152,000, Wk 1.

6). Saving Mr. Banks (DISNEY) $13,453,533 (3-day), $23,261,566 (5-day), 2,110 locations, $37,276,150, Wk 3.

7). The Secret Life Of Walter Mitty (Fox), $12,765,508 (3-day), $25,360,468 (5-day), 2,909 locations, $25,360,468, Wk 1

8). The Hunger Games: Catching Fire (LGF) $10,061,479 (3-day), $15,629,461 (5-day), 2,315 locations, $390,985,322, Wk 6

9). 47 Ronin (Uni) $9,910,310 (3-day), $20,612,531 (5-day) 2,689 locations, $20,612,530, Wk 1.

10). Walking With Dinosaurs (Fox) $7,276,172 (3-day), $11,151,353 (5-day) 3,243 locations, $20,944,478, Wk 2

11). Grudge Match (WB) $7,015,000 (3-day), $13.4M (5-day), 2,838 locations, $13,140,000, Wk 1

12). Tyler Perry’s A Madea Christmas (LGF) $6,887,194 (3-day), $12.4M (5-day), 1,788 locations, $43,206,270, Wk 3.
Read More »

Comments 174

BOX OFFICE FINAL: All Totals In But Paramount Gives Only Estimates; Overhype Comes Back To Bite Them, ‘Hobbit’ No. 1,’Frozen’ Slides Past Over-Estimated ‘American Hustle’ For Third Spot; ‘Thor 2′ Crosses $200M

8th UPDATE, MONDAY PM:  Here are today’s final Top 10 studio-reported actuals for the December 20-22 box office frame, courtesy of Rentrak. Paramount Pictures is the only studio to report estimates to Rentrak on Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues. Go figure. Disney’s Frozen did slip past Sony’s American Hustle to take the No. 3 spot with $19.6M (see below). Sony is reporting $19.0M, down from an over-estimation. Yes, Paramount wasn’t alone, but at least the other distribs thought Hustle could be higher, too. The Christmas crunch comes on Wednesday. Final numbers (except for Paramount estimate on Anchorman 2). See the full Top 20 at the bottom of the file.

1. The Hobbit: The Desolation Of Smaug,BoxOffice_logo__131122164403-275x206__131207011855 Warner Bros., $31,505,278, 3,928 locations, $8,021 average, $127,550,695, Week 2.

2. Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues, Paramount, $26,234,000, 3,507 locations, $7,480 average, $39,457,000, Week 1. (ESTIMATE)

3. Frozen, Disney, $19,642,107, 3,540 locations, $5,549 average, $192,034,117, Week 5.

4. American Hustle, Sony, $17,901,068, 2,507 locations, $7,140 average, $19,014,436, Week 2.

5. Saving Mr. Banks, Disney, $9,344,381, 2,110 locations, $4,429 average, $9,969,867, Week 2.

6. The Hunger Games: Catching Fire, Lionsgate, $8,764,479, 2,949 locations, $2,972 average, $371,718,275, Week 5.

7. Tyler Perry’s A Madea Christmas, Lionsgate, $8,384,980, 2,194 locations, $3,822 average, $28,155,257, Week 2.

8. Walking With Dinosaurs, 20th Century Fox, $7,091,938, 3,231 locations, $2,195 average, $7,091,938, Week 1.

9. Dhoom 3, Yash Raj Films, $3,152,590, 239 locations, $13,191 average, $3,422,590, Week 1.

10. Thor: The Dark World, Disney, $1,341,763, 1,116 locations, $1,202 average, $200,779,871, Week 7.

OPENING: Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues (Paramount, wide after Wed. opening) Paramount says $40M for 5-day; others estimates well under, and in fact it looks like $39.4M, American Hustle (Sony, wide) great set up for Christmas week, Saving Mr. Banks (Disney, wide) respectable, Walking with Dinosaurs (Fox/Reliance/IMG Global, wide) in the tar pits, Dhoom 3 (Yash Raj Films, ltd) Top Ten surprise and record breaker. Her (WB) is strong and The Past (Sony Pictures Classics) is in the past. NOTEWORTHY: Disney’s Thor: The Dark World goes over $200M mark.

7th UPDATE, MON. 7:45 AM: Paramount finally came to its senses this morning, downgrading its Sunday overstatement that Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues would gross $40M for the three-day — an overhype that had everyone rolling their eyes. This morning, it has a new number: $34.2M for the five-day. The Paramount brass ordering up this over-inflated nonsense should take a breath. Still, $34.2M is nothing to sneeze at guys. The sequel took in $26.2M for the three day weekend pre-Christmas.

In addition, when the dust cleared this morning, it appears as though Disney’s Frozen slid passed  Sony’s American Hustle to take 3rd place this weekend. Read More »

Comments 79

Julie Andrews And Dick Van Dyke Light Up ‘Saving Mr. Banks’ Premiere As Disney Goes All Interactive With ‘Mary Poppins’ (Exclusive)

Pete Hammond

After earlier premieres at the London Film Festival in October and the AFI Film Fest at the Chinese Theatre in November where the original Mary Poppins premiered in 1964, Saving Mr. Banks, Walt Disney Studio’s big awards contender, finally had its official Los Angeles premiere on a cool December Monday night. It took place on the verysavingbank01 Disney studio lot where much of the movie about the making of the 1964 classic was filmed (as well as Poppins itself).  And just to add a touch of nostalgia and class itself the stars of Mary Poppins Julie Andrews and Dick Van Dyke  joined the cast of Banks including Tom Hanks who plays Walt Disney and Emma Thompson who plays the cantankerous author of Poppins P.L. Travers. At a photo opp before the film the Banks cast members along with Andrews and Van Dyke and studio execs Bob Iger and Alan Horn all joined in a spontaneous rendition of the catchy tune from Poppins, “Let’s Go Fly A Kite” (watch here). Those singing along included the indefatiguable two-time Oscar winning co-writer of that song and the entire score, Richard M. Sherman.

At the post party in a completely made-over igerhorn1studio commissary Horn told me how pleased they were that Saving Mr. Banks had made the AFI Top Ten Movies Of The Year list released earlier Monday. When I asked how he felt about singing with all those iconic stars he said he can’t sing and in fact was banned from trying to carry a tune in church and everywhere else. Iger also marveled at the idea he was actually singing along with everyone and modestly just said ” let’s not count the eggs before they are hatched” when I suggested that the movie was a cinch to become the Disney studio’s first home grown live action Best Picture nominee since the original Mary Poppins 49 years ago, the one and only other time the studio had such a distinction.

savingbank02The 85-year-old Sherman, who has been on cloud nine since this whole ride began, said it was completely “surreal” to be back on the Disney lot with Andrews and Van Dyke celebrating this whole experience. Only in Hollywood.  There’s something about the movie that really has created a team spirit. At a Saturday night cast Q&A with Hanks, Thompson, Colin Farrell, Jason Schwartzman and Bradley Whitford  I moderated after a SAG screening of the film, Hanks also led everyone in a rendition of “Let’s Go Fly A Kite”.  Guess it is just a movie that makes people want to sing. Hanks and Thompson had also been doing Q&As earlier that day at BAFTA  and for the Academy where I am told 700 members showed up for a 3 PM Saturday matinee. Certainly Disney, which has been having a great holiday season already with Thor and Frozen, is hoping they will be singing about Banks which opens nationwide on December 20th. I am told it is tracking well. Banks opens Friday with a special engagement at the Walt Disney Studio Theatre that includes a special studio tour of spots of where the films were made.  Read More »

Comments (7)

Lupita Nyong’o & Composer Thomas Newman On Palm Springs Fest Honors List

Palm Springs International Film Festival 2014 -- smallPalm Springs, CA (December 9, 2013) – The 25th annual Palm Springs International Film Festival (PSIFF) will present Lupita Nyong’o with the Breakthrough Performance Award for 12 Years a Slave and Thomas Newman

Read More »

Comments (1)

‘Saving Mr. Banks’ Q&A: “It’s All True – All This DID Happen” (Video)

By | Friday November 29, 2013 @ 12:17pm PST
Pete Hammond

EXCLUSIVE: ‘Tis the season for many things but that also includes awards season, and this year what seems likeSAVING MR. BANKS more Q&A sessions than ever before.  If you have a contender you are out there touting it at screenings all … Read More »

Comments (8)

Emma Thompson Mulls “Hierarchical” Hollywood, Ang Lee’s Brutal/Funny Notes, Oscars & More In BAFTA Career Chat

By | Sunday November 24, 2013 @ 1:40pm PST

Following in the recent footsteps of her Saving Mr Banks co-star Tom Hanks, Emma Thompson sat down in London on Sunday afternoon for a trip down memory lane. At a BAFTA Life in Pictures event at the British Academy’s headquarters, Thompson spoke of the important role that comedy played in her early career, and touched on her collaborations with the likes of Merchant Ivory, Richard Curtis and Ang Lee. The Oscar-winning actress and screenwriter also peppered in some stark feelings about Hollywood.

Thompson has steadily worked across borders since the 90s and while she feels there’s no real difference between great actors in the States and Britain – “Dustin Hoffman is as exquisite as Anthony Hopkins” – the star system in Hollywood “is not a good system.” Thompson called it “hierarchical” and said it was “just revolting for people who are actors to become grand and unattractive to watch.” She recalled that while working on Last Chance Harvey, Hoffman had been stuck in traffic one day and, so concerned with being late to set, ran there in his socks once he’d arrived at the location. “Those are the people you want to work with. You find some young actors who really can’t be bothered and you think well, let someone else do it,” she said to the largely British crowd. Thompson noted that “some of the most intelligent people” she knows live in Hollywood, but lamented that the town “always finds a way to make you feel bad.” At parties, there’s “always some bit that’s penned off that you’re not allowed into,” she mused, adding that it’s the “better than/less than judgment you’re making upon yourself and others that Hollywood is particularly good at and that’s the one thing I really hate.” Read More »

Comments 21

OSCARS: Filmmakers Walk A Fine Line When Dramatizing Real-Life Events

By | Saturday November 23, 2013 @ 7:30am PST

Charles Lyons is an AwardsLine contributor.

Late last year, the acting director of the Central Intelligence Agency, Michael Morell, took the unusual measure of voicing the CIA’s distaste for a Hollywood film. “The film takes significant license, while portraying itself as being historically accurate,” Morell wrote in a letter to CIA personnel, later widely republished. “What I want you to know is that Zero Dark Thirty is a dramatization, not a realistic portrayal of the facts.”

Of course, no one thought Sony’s Zero Dark Thirty was a documentary, but Morell’s letter speaks to the conundrum that any screenwriter crafting a script based on real events must confront: How to tell the story in a dramatically engaging way while remaining true to the facts. Read More »

Comments (2)

The Contenders 2013: Screenwriter Kelly Marcel On Emma Thompson’s Character In ‘Saving Mr. Banks’: “She’s So Horrible. How Do We Soften Her Up?” (Video)

By | Tuesday November 19, 2013 @ 2:14pm PST
Pete Hammond

Screenwriter Kelly Marcel came late into the process of writing her famously blacklisted script for Saving Mr. Banks (12/13). Original writer Sue Smith had crafted it more as a biopic of Mary Poppins author P.L. Travers but Marcel focused instead … Read More »

Comments (4)

George Clooney, ‘Hunger Games’, ‘Mary Poppins’ And More On A Dizzying Awards Season Friday Night

Pete Hammond

Any doubt that awards season has not kicked into full gear even though it’s only early November were firmly erased Friday night as I kept running into the same Hollywood Foreign Press Association and Academy members as we dashed from an AFI Fest pre-party for The Weinstein Co.‘s August Osage County premiere in Hollywood, to a Lionsgate holiday (!) celebration at Spago, to Disney‘s Mary Poppins sing-a-long for Saving Mr. Banks at the Beverly Hills Hotel. And that doesn’t even count Sony‘s  tribute to their American Hustle David O. Russell for the AFI Fest at the Egyptian. When the picture isn’t ready to show why not just throw a tribute with clips instead? (they sneaked the first six minutes).  Deadline’s Jen Yamato was there and reports Jane Fonda and his Oscar winning Silver Linings Playbook star Jennifer Lawrence showed up for the pre-reception. Just down the street at the Academy’s Linwood Dunn Gravity star Sandra Bullock was holding court doing a Q&A for SAG nominating committee members after a screening of the film (Warner Bros. had a separate Gravity press cocktail reception Wednesday night in West Hollywood which drew director Alfonso Cuaron and son, co-writer Jonas, along with producer David Heyman).

At Hollywood and Highland’s The Grill, August Osage County co-producer George Clooney was clearly the star attraction taking photo after photo with excited (mostly female) members of the HFPA who swarmed around him at the intimate, but crowded event before the North American premiere of the film at the Chinese. If anyone knows how to work a room like this, it is Clooney. When I managed to catch his eye he told me the film has been reworked a bit since I saw it at its Toronto Fest debut in September and that, after the balancing act of getting the adaptation of a 3 1/2 hour play down to a tight – and funny – two hours (it’s entered in the Golden Globes as a comedy),  both Harvey Weinstein and director John Wells are happy with it, as Wells also confirmed. The director said he worked on honing the script for over two years with Pulitzer Prize and Tony winner Tracy Letts (also at the reception).  As Clooney explained they had to take a rather insular play and open it up a bit which wasn’t easy, but the film I saw played like gangbusters in Toronto and was well-received at AFI, I am told by some who saw it last night for the first time.  Co-stars Juliette Lewis, Julianne Nicholson, Dermot Mulroney and Chris Cooper who has a couple of scenes that stop the show were also at the reception before hitting the red carpet (stars Julia Roberts and Meryl Streep were absent). Read More »

Comments (4)

AFI Fest: A “Practically Perfect” U.S. Premiere For Disney’s ‘Saving Mr. Banks’ Steps Up Oscar Talk

By | Friday November 8, 2013 @ 9:53am PST
Pete Hammond

The 2013 AFI Fest opening night at Hollywood’s famed, newly IMAX’d Chinese Theatre was as AFI president and CEO Bob Gazzale said “practically perfect in every way” — thanks in no small part to nabbing the North American premiere of Disney’s surefire Oscar contender Saving Mr. Banks. It was a no-brainer on AFI and Disney’s part to launch this holiday release (it opens domestically December 13) which chronicles the turbulent relationship of Walt Disney and Mary Poppins creator P.L. Travers during the the making of that 1964 musical classic which had its premiere at the very same theatre a half century ago. Director John Lee Hancock noted that in his opening remarks: “My life just keeps folding around. Just like in Mary Poppins it seems what happened has happened before. Fifty years ago there was a premiere here for Mary Poppins. About a year ago we were here filming the re-creation of that premiere, and now here we are again so it all just feels right,” he said. By the way, Poppins itself returns to the Chinese when AFI Fest hosts a red-carpet screening Saturday with stars Dick Van Dyke, Karen Dotrice and Oscar-winning composer Richard Sherman attending.

Related: ‘Saving Mr. Banks’ World Premieres In London – Can It Be Heading For Oscar Night?

Disney chair Alan Horn was taking congrats for the film he actually inherited when he came to the studio, and production president Sean Bailey was also singled out for praise in making this happen. Of course stars Tom Hanks and Emma Thompson were there, but both skipped the Hollywood Roosevelt after-party where Sherman was the main attraction. I told Horn this is a word-of-mouth movie if ever there was one and should be a big hit for the studio. How it fares in the Oscar race will be interesting considering the last three Best Picture winners — Argo, The Artist and The King’s Speech — all seem to be films that make audiences feel good about themselves with the former two having a special Hollywood connection just like this one. Banks seems to fit the same bill that Oscar voters have been responding to recently, effortlessly blending laughs, tears, comedy, drama and emotion. This was my second viewing in three weeks (I saw it at a small screening shortly before it had its world premiere at the London Film Festival) and it holds up. Hanks and Thompson are slam-dunk nominees here and the film has many possibilities — but it is facing weightier fare in frontrunners 12 Years A Slave, Gravity and Captain Phillips (another film with Hanks, which could make him a double nominee this year). Read More »

Comments (4)

Contenders 2013: ‘Captain Phillips,’ ‘American Hustle,’ ‘Tim’s Vermeer,’ ‘Before Midnight,’ ‘Saving Mr. Banks,’ ‘Lone Survivor,’ ‘Despicable Me 2’ & ‘The Croods’ Bid For Oscar

Anna Lisa Raya is a Deadline contributor.

The second half of Deadline’s 3rd annual Contenders event at the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts in Beverly Hills got off to an energized start after lunch on the outdoor terrace. Deadline Awards columnist Pete Hammond returned with Captain Phillips star Barkhad Abdi, who had one of the bigger moments of the day when he revealed he ad-libbed his momentous “I am the captain now” line in the Sony film, essentially stealing the scene from Tom Hanks. The film’s producers, Michael De Luca and Dana Brunetti, were spotted in the audience joining in the roaring applause.

Related: Deadline’s Contenders 2013 – Morning Panels

Anyone who’s been waiting for David O. Russell’s follow-up to last year’s Oscar-nominated Silver Linings Playbook, American Hustle (also for for Sony), will be happy to know the film was locked down today. This is per one of the film’s producers, Richard Suckle, who was on hand to discuss the genesis of the film which is loosely based on the ABSCAM scandals of the 1970s. One of his funnier reveals was that star Bradley Cooper — not wanting to perm his hair for the film — spent hours in hair and makeup every day getting it curled. Co-star Christian Bale, on the other hand, gained 40 lbs. for his role and shaved the crown of his head to perfect his character’s outlandish comb over.

Julie Delpy, co-writer and star of Sony Pictures ClassicsBefore Midnight, had a lot to say about the intense writing and preparation that went into making the film appear as improvised and natural as it does. Acting the role was “extremely stressful,” she told Hammond. “There’s no plot. There’s nothing to hold onto but character and emotional arc.” Also for SPC is Tim’s Vermeer — a documentary about one man’s attempt to recreate a Johannes Vermeer painting — which was uncharacteristically directed by Teller (better known as the other half of Penn & Teller). He was thankful for his editor, Patrick Sheffield, who made sense of the over 2,400 hours of footage. Writer Kelly Marcel was on-hand to discuss Disney’s Saving Mr. Banks, the only film ever allowed to feature Walt Disney as a character. She called the studio “unbelievably brave” in how hands-off they were with her and director John Lee Hancock.

Related: PHOTOS: Contenders 2013 Gallery
Read More »

Comments (2)

PHOTOS: Contenders 2013 Gallery

Deadline’s sold-out award season kick-off The Contenders unspooled Saturday at the Wallis Annenberg Center For The Performing Arts in Beverly Hills. Take a look at our special guest panelists from this year’s crop of Oscar hopefuls from … Read More »

Comments (3)

Deadline Awards Watch With Pete Hammond, Episode 47

By | Friday October 25, 2013 @ 11:48am PDT
Pete Hammond

Listen to (and share) episode 47 of our audio podcast Deadline Awards Watch With Pete Hammond. Deadline’s awards columnist talks with host David Bloom about the fantastic spoonful of sugar and spice that is Saving Mr. Banks, which debuted strongly at the London Film Festival. They also assess the impact of the Oscar race departures by The Monuments Men and the possible re-insertion into the race by Wolf Of Wall Street; ponder the value of the heavily attended Hollywood Film Awards and look at whether James Schamus’ surprise departure from Focus Features will sell short Dallas Buyers Club.

Finally, we’ll get Pete’s take on this week’s new movie releases, including Ridley Scott’s The Counselor, which features a glittering cast and a problematic Cormac McCarthy script; the latest hijinks from the Jackass crew, Bad Grandpa; and Cannes conqueror Blue Is The Warmest Color.

Deadline Awards Watch, Episode 47 (MP3 format)
Deadline Awards Watch, Episode 47 (M4a format) Read More »

Comments (0)

London Film Festival: Disney’s ‘Saving Mr. Banks’ World Premieres – Can It Be Heading For Oscar Night?

By | Sunday October 20, 2013 @ 3:26pm PDT
Pete Hammond

Could Disney finally be on track for a Best Picture Oscar winner of its own making? Who knows, but judging from the very enthusiastic reaction to the world premiere tonight of Saving Mr. Banks at London’s Odeon Leicester Square theatre on the closing night of BFI London Film Festival, it’s off to a good start. Deadline’s International Editor Nancy Tartaglione reports there was about four minutes of sustained applause as the end credits began and word at the Old Billingsgate after-party was unanimously upbeat with premiere-goers loving it. Initial reviews also seem to be strong. Before the film rolled an organist onstage warmed up the first-nighters with the score for Mary Poppins, the film that serves as the inspiration for this tale of how Walt Disney led a two-decades-long quest to bring notoriously reticent P.L. Travers’ classic book to the screen. Director John Lee Hancock, producers Alison Owen and Ian Collie and stars Colin FarrellTom Hanks, Ruth Wilson and Emma Thompson were then introduced to the crowd. Thompson remarked, “it’s very moving to have the film premiere in London… so let’s watch the damn thing”. There’s even a reference to the Leicester Square theatre in the movie.

Related: Tom Hanks Retraces A Life In Pictures At BAFTA Event Read More »

Comments (8)

Tom Hanks Retraces A Life In Pictures, Talks Pitfalls Of Comedy & Freedom From Self-Consciousness At BAFTA Event

By | Saturday October 19, 2013 @ 4:52pm PDT

Tom Hanks was in London on Saturday to spend an evening with BAFTA. The British Academy’s Life In Pictures series is a walk through an actor or director’s career – Hanks’ this evening lasted two hours, which, considering his resumé, wasn’t nearly enough time to touch on every film. Hanks joked throughout the evening that he was getting whiplash from the fast-paced interview that started out with his early work as mostly a comedic actor, through to more serious turns in Punchline, Philadelphia, Forrest Gump, Saving Private Ryan, and up to his current films Captain Phillips and Saving Mr Banks.

Hanks is also in London ahead of the world premiere of Saving Mr Banks, in which he plays Walt Disney. The film tells the story of how Disney persuaded Mary Poppins author P.L. Travers to sell rights to her tale of the magical nanny. Portraying the legend came with a particular challenge, Hanks said, due to “the current atmosphere of pressure in films.” Disney, he noted, “died of lung cancer. He smoked three packs of cigarettes a day. So, can we show him smoking? No way in hell.” Hanks said there was an actual “negotiation” about whether or not he could be filmed holding a lit cigarette in a scene. He could not. That film is the closing night gala for the London Film Festival which wraps tomorrow.

Over the course of tonight’s retrospective in front of about 150 BAFTA members, Hanks shared anecdotes from his long career, starting off, improbably, with 1989’s Turner & Hooch. “It has been so long since someone has shown a clip” from the film, he said, “I’m delighted, I learned a lot from that dog.” The dog in the film was male, but Hanks called comedy in general, “such a bitch… It’s sink or swim. It can’t be faked on film. The chops you develop in comedy are chops you will not be slave to, but will serve you.” Read More »

Comments 29

‘Saving Mr Banks’ Producer Alison Owen On The Power Of Story, And Oxytocin

Along with Saving Mr Banks, which closes the London Film Festival on Sunday night in its world premiere, producer Alison Owen‘s credits include a lot of movies with women’s names in the title. They range from Temple Grandin to Elizabeth, Sylvia, Tamara Drewe and Jane Eyre. Many of those, Owen said in a keynote address today, she made because she was drawn to material that explored themes that she was exploring in her own life at the time. Although it’s got a man’s name in the title, Saving Mr Banks is no different. In the film, Tom Hanks plays Walt Disney as he tries to convince Mary Poppins author P.L. Travers, played by Emma Thompson, to let him turn the beloved nanny’s tale into a film. Owen admitted that at first she thought she was making it because of her kids, but soon came to realize it was really a film for her dad. “As we developed the story, I remembered Hannah Minghella… telling me how Amy Pascal always used it as a trick question for prospective interviewees or writers — asking them who Mary Poppins was about. And the answer, of course, is not Julie Andrews, or Bert, or the children — but Mr Banks.”

In a wide-ranging discussion today, Owen, who is also founder and managing director of UK-based Ruby Film and Television, also touched on the importance of story and keeping movies alive. Below are excerpts from her address:

“‘After nourishment, shelter and companionship, stories are the things we need most in the world.’ That’s a quote from Philip Pullman.

I believe that to be true. I have to, really – I’ve spent my work life so far finding stories, telling stories, making stories.

But I’ve spent my life telling those stories in the movie business. And, as we keep hearing from various dark brooding media outlets, movies are seriously under threat. There’s many a Cassandra out there touting the death of the movie industry, as we know it.

Read More »

Comments (7)

AFI Fest Selects Disney’s ‘Saving Mr Banks’, Bennett Miller’s ‘Foxcatcher’ For Opening Slots

By | Wednesday September 4, 2013 @ 6:00am PDT
Pete Hammond

With Telluride over, Venice wrapping up and Toronto about to begin, it’s never too early for another film festival to make some noise. So here comes the AFI Fest announcing their opening-night film November 7th will be a Disney awards-season biggie: the North American premiere of Saving Mr Banks starring Emma Thompson as Mary Poppins author P.L. Travers and Tom Hanks in a supporting role as Walt Disney. It is said to be warm and funny and a potential Oscar contender, not only for Thompson and Hanks  but also Best Picture. It is also a no-brainer opener for the AFI. It has a movie theme (Disney tries to convince the stubborn author to sell him rights to make Mary Poppins) and also is partially set at the Chinese theatre, where AFI Fest is headquartered. What could be more perfect? Hate to say I TOLDJA! — but I did. AFI announced they will also be showing 1964′s Mary Poppins itself in honor of its 50th anniversary. It’s actually only 49 years but hey, who’s counting? In a move that indicates filmmakers LOVE to have that opening-night slot , AFI also announced Sony Pictures Classics’ new Bennett Miller drama Foxcatcher will be the cleverly titled “Opening Weekend” Gala on November 8, a World Premiere. SPC’s co-president Michael Barker is very high on this one and told me over the weekend in Telluride that the company expects it to be one of their top awards contenders including for star Steve Carell’s transformative performance in which he is virtually unrecognizable. Barker indicated the film will start early press screenings in mid-October. Mark Ruffalo and Channing Tatum co-star. That Best Actor race promises to be more crowded than ever. The Coen brothers’ Cannes hit, Inside Llewyn Davis which just played Telluride and will also hit the New York Film Festival, was previously announced as the Closing Night film on November 14. Here’s this morning’s full release: Read More »

Comments (0)
More Deadline | Hollywood »