As movie fans all over the world mourn the death of Philip Seymour Hoffman, executives at Lionsgate find themselves facing a potential calamity. With one of the most important actors in their massively successful 'Hunger Games' franchise no longer with us, how do they move forward?
So it has come to this: 2015 will see not only the 30th anniversary of 'Back to the Future,' but a stage musical adaptation that will premiere in London's West End with an eye towards a Broadway debut in 2016. This is no cheap knock-off either. This version of the enormously popular film has several of the original's key players heavily involved in the production.
Despite its seemingly low-key release, 2012's 'Pitch Perfect' was one of the year's biggest surprise hits and most pleasant surprises, grossing $115 million worldwide and winning over even the most cynical of audiences. A sequel was a no brainer, but we've already been thrown a curveball -- original director Jason Moore will not be back and will be replaced by producer and star Elizabeth Banks, making her directorial debut.
A strange thing happened during the production of 'The Amazing Spider-Man 2.' Shailene Woodley was cast in the small role of Mary Jane Watson, AKA, the love of Peter Parker's life, but the part was completely excised in post-production for reasons that remain nebulous. Although she will not be appearing in the second film of the rebooted superhero franchise, some have wondered if she would be brought back for the inevitable third and fourth films ... and now we have an answer.
We think that talking or texting during a movie is the epitome of rudeness and shouldn't be tolerated in any way. While we fully support hushing and zero-tolerance policies that eject talkers from theaters, we draw the line at physical violence and we imagine that even the most ardent movie fans would agree.
Every year presents a new apocalypse for the film industry and every year sees movies and theaters evolving to match the increasingly strange age that we live in. However, Hollywood's evolution may not be happening fast enough to win back certain audiences. A new Harris Poll asked Americans about their moviegoing habits and the results are a fascinating combination of the surprising and the not-so-surprising.
New releases have a habit of floundering in January, which tends to be one of Hollywood's biggest dumping grounds. Even this year's big January horror release, which is commonly a sure thing, floundered. What does tend to do well are the prestige pictures that opened late in the previous year (often in limited release) and finally expand in the new year, riding awards momentum to solid box office.
Of course, this is just a roundabout way of saying that Peter Berg's 'Lone Survivor' emerged from limited release this week to kick everyone's ass at the box office.
Over the past few years, the 'Paranormal Activity' series has established itself as one of the most inexpensive and reliable horror franchises around. Produced for (non-literal) pennies, they've consistently opened strong at the box office, ensuring a fast and efficient turnaround. The latest film, 'Paranormal Activity: The Marked Ones,' has already accomplished that goal, but it did so without grabbing the number one spot. Sure, people may love found footage demons, but it turns out that they love animated singing princesses more.
Although you'd think people would spend the holidays in their homes catching up with their families and what-not, they actually tend to go to the movies after opening gifts and having awkward conversations. And Christmas Day moviegoers had a bunch of options this week, with recent releases (and not-so-recent releases) still going strong and a whole bunch of new releases arriving to coincide with the holiday.
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