Brian Brooks is managing editor of MovieLine.
Lee Daniels’ The Paperboy lead the pack of specialty newcomers with a solid $110,033 at 11 locations and an average of $10,003. That gives the Oscar-nominated director a respectable first showing for his follow-up to his lauded 2009 film Precious, although it falls short of spectacular. Even so, it bested the weekend’s other new titles in limited release. Only Abramorama’s The House I Live In came close with a $9,827 average in 2 theaters. Oscilloscope’s Wuthering Heights bowed in one theater with $8,785, while Drafthouse Films’ Wake In Fright opened comparatively softer with $6,749 in at New York City’s Film Forum. The restored 1972 film (Outback in its original U.S. release) will move to Austin, Washington and Boston next weekend and to Los Angeles on October 19th. IDP/ATO’s The Oranges bowed in 110 theaters with a soft average of $1,636. SnagFilms-Paladin release Decoding Deepak averaged $3,017 in three theaters, while Magnolia’s V/H/S opened in 15 theaters with a modest $2,667 average. Read More »
Brian Brooks is managing editor of MovieLine.
A film starring Nicole Kidman, Zac Efron, Matthew McConaughey, Macy Gray, and John Cusack may sound like a packaged star vehicle of some sort, but apparently it’s not. It’s Lee Daniels’ follow-up to his 2009 Oscar-favorite Precious and it has divided audiences with wild supporters and vocal dissenters at festivals since debuting in Cannes. The Paperboy will be hitting theaters after its NY Film Festival debut this week and the rest will be box office history. Veteran actor Matthew Lillard will open his pic, Fat Kid Rules The World, about a suicidal high school dropout who is recruited to join an upstart punk band through self-distribution beginning in New York. Doc The Revisionaries, meanwhile, will use its Texas base to drive a later national roll out. And Magnolia is hoping to scare up audiences with its multi-filmmaker title, V/H/S.
Fat Kid Rules The World
Director: Matthew Lillard
Writers: Michael M.B. Galvin, Peter Speakman, K.L. Going (novel)
Cast: Jacob Wysocki, Matt O’Leary, Billy Campbell, Dylan Arnold
Distributor: Outsider Films
Veteran actor Matthew Lillard made his first foray into directing with a short in 2009 before going behind the camera again for his comedy Fat Kid Rules The World. But he had long considered the filmmaker hat when he first optioned the book 10 years ago. “Finding an opportunity to get it made took so long,” he said. Before launching into his acting career, he took on directing as a high school kid. But, getting the deal done on Fat Kid Rules The World, of course, took more than simply the desire. After the film won an Audience Award at the SXSW Film Festival, Lillard and his producers thought they’d be off and running into distribution. “But all we got was a bunch of options to release it on VOD,” he said. “Looking at it and understanding where we were at, we figured we were probably not going to make our money back, but I decided not to stop until we broke even.” So Lillard and crew turned to crowd funding site Kickstarter and promptly raised $158K in 33 days to help self-distribute the title. “We realized we had a pretty extensive reach in the social media world,” Lillard said. “I have fans, [Pearl Jam lead guitarist] Mike McCready who did the music for the film does as well, so we knew we could reach that [audience].” Read More »
BREAKING: Magnolia Pictures genre label Magnet Releasing has completed an acquisition of V/H/S, the Midnight movie thriller. Deal was low seven figures for North American rights. V/H/S is about a group of misfits hired by an unknown third party to burglarize a desolate house to acquire a rare VHS tape, and discover more found footage than they bargained for. The film is basically a found footage anthology of various VHS tapes that tell different horror tales, with different segments directed by Adam Wingard, David Bruckner, Ti West, Glenn McQuaid, Joe Swanberg, and Radio Silence. As Deadline reported yesterday, a moviegoer passed out last night during a midnight screening of the genre film, which is becoming a badge of street cred for festival horror films. EMTs came, after the moviegoer passed out–during the first particularly gruesome scene. Another audience member was treated for nausea about 20 minutes later. The title was acquired by Magnolia’s Eamonn Bowles and Dori Begley and sold by WME Global’s Mark Ankner. Plans are for a theatrical release in the fall and then VOD.
A moviegoer passed out last night during a midnight screening of the genre film V/H/S. EMTs came, say sources close to the film. I’m told the guy who passed out–during the first particularly gruesome scene–was embarrassed and didn’t want to leave but was encouraged to by his girlfriend. He returned to meet the film’s directors, Adam Wingard, David Bruckner, Ti West, Glenn McQuaid, Joe Swanberg, and Radio Silence. Another moviegoer was apparently treated for nausea 20 minutes later. This is the second festival in a row where a hard-edged horror film caused moviegoers to faint. At Toronto, two audience members passed out during The Incident, a hardcore horror film about three struggling musicians who moonlight as cooks in a high security insane asylum, only to see the cells open during a storm. One person fainted when one of the cooks was tied to a stove top and burned alive. The film sold for distribution right after to IFC Midnight. While these reactions are not desirable for films in other categories–though I’ll never forget when the New York Film Festival premiere of Quentin Tarantino’s Pulp Fiction was temporarily halted when a moviegoer fainted after John Travolta plunged an adrenaline needle into Uma Thurman’s chest–I wonder if this is going to become the Good Housekeeping seal for festival midnight horror films looking for distribution deals. V/H/S is about a group of misfits hired by an unknown third party to burglarize a … Read More »