THE WOLF OF WALL STREET the Most Pirated Film of 2014; Film Illegally Downloaded over 30 Million Times

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Pirating movies is wrong.  You can justify it any way you want—movies are too expensive; distribution models are outdated; they didn’t release it in your area—whatever your reason, you’re stealing revenue from people who worked hard on a film, and you’re also devaluing their work because you wanted something and didn’t want to pay for it.  This year’s most-pirated film may have even created a new excuse: it was in the spirit of the plot.

According to Yahoo!, Martin Scorsese’s The Wolf of Wall Street was the most-pirated film of 2014.  The movie was downloaded illegally “30.035 million times between Jan. 1 and Dec. 23, 2014.”  While I’m sure we can all appreciate the irony of people stealing a movie that’s about an unrepentant crook, that’s over 30 million crummy people.  Interestingly, as Yahoo! points out, two of 2014’s biggest films—Guardians of the Galaxy and The LEGO Movie—didn’t crack the Top 20, so I guess that’s something.  Hit the jump for the Top 10 most-pirated films of 2014.

THE INTERVIEW Pulls in $18 Million on Opening Weekend; $15 Million Comes from Online Sales

by     Posted 7 hours ago

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On a weekend where both Unbroken and Into the Woods grossed over $30 million, and still lost to The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies (which made $41 million this weekend), I don’t know how The Interview would have fared as a standard theatrical release.  Boxoffice.com [via Yahoo!] estimates that the $44 million film would have grossed $20 million.  But cyberterrorist threats against movie theaters ultimately led the picture to indie cinemas and VOD, and The Interview ended up scoring $18 million with $15 million of that coming from VOD sales.  VOD numbers aren’t usually released, but it would look suspicious if that part the gross was kept secret since this film has such a high profile.  And really, there would be no reason to keep it secret since The Interview was virtually guaranteed to be the highest grossing VOD release from the studio thanks to all of the controversy.  Additionally, Yahoo! reports that the opening total will be even higher once iTunes’ revenue is added (Apple didn’t carry the movie until Sunday).

It will be interesting to see how much The Interview grosses and if it will ever end up in major theater chains.  But no matter the outcome, please don’t be one of those people who think that all of this was a viral marketing campaign.  Those people sound silly.

Rumor: STAR WARS Spin-Off to Focus on Young Han Solo; Aaron Paul Interested in Being Involved

by     Posted 8 hours ago

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How can we leave 2014 without some more dubious Star Wars rumors?  Last month, we reported that Gareth EdwardsStar Wars spin-off would be a heist film in the vein of The Dirty Dozen, and featuring bounty hunters stealing the plans for the Death Star.  That sounded like a great premise, and I would love to see that Star Wars film assuming it was done well.

I don’t want to see a Star Wars film about a young Han Solo, so I’m hoping this new rumor is false.  Hit the jump for more.  The untitled Star Wars spin-off is slated to open on December 16, 2016.

Krysten Ritter and Jason Schwartzman Talk BIG EYES, The Casting Process, Working with Tim Burton, Marvel’s A.K.A. JESSICA JONES and More

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Big Eyes is very much about Walter and Margaret Keane (Christoph Waltz and Amy Adams) and what happens when he decides to claim her artwork as his own, but as is the case with many Tim Burton films, there are a number of supporting cast members who make quite the impression, like Krysten Ritter and Jason Schwartzman.  Ritter steps in as DeeAnn, Margaret’s good friend who watches her suspect relationship with Walter progress and isn’t happy about it while Schwartzman takes on the role of Ruben, a gallery owner who won’t give Walter’s work the time of day and then is rather resentful when the saucer-eyed waifs become a big hit.

Prior to Big Eyes’ December 25th limited release, I got the opportunity to sit down with Ritter and Schwartzman to talk about their favorite Tim Burton characters and lines of dialogue, what it was like meeting him for the first time, their first impression of the Big Eyes script, Ritter’s casting in Marvel’s A.K.A. Jessica Jones and more.  Catch it all in my video interview after the jump.

Michael K. Williams Talks THE GAMBLER, His Unique Relationship with Mark Wahlberg’s Character, THE PURGE 3 and More

by     Posted 9 hours ago

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The Gambler is all about Jim Bennett’s (Mark Wahlberg) gambling addiction and his self-destructive habits, but one of the most engaging elements of the film is his relationship with Michael K. Williams’ character, Neville, a local loan shark who gives him a hefty sum to hit the tables.  He isn’t happy when Jim recklessly loses it all and then some, but, at the same time, there’s still something to suggest Neville genuinely wants to see Jim pull himself together.

With The Gambler making its way into theaters on December 25th, I got the opportunity to sit down with Williams to talk about that unique relationship, what it was like working with Wahlberg, whether or not he does much gambling himself and the status of The Purge 3.  Hit the jump to check it all out.

Weekend Box Office: THE HOBBIT 3 Claims Second Title on Strongest Post-Christmas Frame of All Time

by     Posted 16 hours ago

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After posting one of the strongest Christmas Day totals of the last decade, the domestic box office went on to claim the best post-holiday frame ever this weekend with over $208 million in overall earnings.  That tops the all-time record from 2009: the year that Avatar, Sherlock Holmes and Alvin and the Chipmunks: the Squeakquel dominated the chart.  On this historic weekend, The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies claimed its second consecutive top ten title with an estimated $41.4 million, while new releases Into the Woods and Unbroken each brought in over $31 million in what proved to be a very close race for second place.

 Title Weekend Total
1.  The Hobbit 3 $41,400,000 $168.5
2.  Unbroken $31,748,000 $47.3
3.  Into the Woods $31,021,000 $46.1
4.  Night at the Museum 3 $20,600,000 $55.3
5.  Annie $16,600,000 $45.8
6.  Mockingjay – Part 1 $10,000,000 $306.6
7.  The Gambler $9,300,000 $14.3
8.  The Imitation Game $7,930,000 $14.6
9.  Exodus: Gods & Kings $6,750,000 $52.5
10.  Wild $5,415,000 $16.3

 

Full story after the jump.

Chris Pine Says There Won’t Be a JACK RYAN Sequel; Has “Deep Regrets” About Not Getting the Film Right

by     Posted 16 hours ago

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Anyone out there hoping for more Jack Ryan is out of luck, at least with Chris Pine in the title role.  Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit, the latest of many attempts to bring Tom Clancy‘s beloved spy to the big screen, opened back in January to tepid reviews and box office.  Kenneth Brangagh‘s spy thriller faced the lowest-grossing opening weekend of all the Jack Ryan adaptations, and earned only $50 million domestically during its theatrical run, falling short of recouping even its modest $60 million production budget.  With that in mind, it should come as no surprise that the studio isn’t exactly eager to move forward with future installments.  Hit the jump to see what Pine had to say about the future of the franchise.

Best Worst Movies of 2014

by     Posted 17 hours ago

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It’d be nice if most movies could live up to Selma, Birdman, Boyhood and other Oscar hopefuls’ standards, but every now and then, you just need a good bad movie.  It could be a film that’s such an utter failure that it’s fun to get a laugh at its expense, a subpar movie that you enjoy watching simply because you’re into a certain genre, actor or character, or perhaps a movie that’s actually pretty good, but just isn’t your thing whatsoever.  No matter which classification you prefer, the beauty of a Best Worst movie is that it manages to spark interest and/or entertain, but for the wrong reasons.

Hit the jump out to check out my Best Worst Movies of 2014.

Finn Wittrock Talks UNBROKEN, Angelina Jolie’s Directing Style, His Most Memorable Day on Set, Working with Mike Nichols, THE SUBMARINE KID, More

by     Posted 2 days ago

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Now playing in theaters is director Angelina Jolie’s Unbroken.  The film tells the incredible true story of Louis Zamperini (Jack O’Connell), a former Olympian and WWII bombardier whose plane crashed at sea in 1943.  Zamperini and two crewmates floated adrift for 47 days and 2000 miles, eventually finding themselves caught by the Japanese Navy and sent to a POW camp where Zamperini was targeted by a sadistic overseer.  While Unbroken could have ended up a movie of the week on Lifetime, Jolie has crafted a film worthy of your time and money.  For more on Unbroken, check out six clips, the trailer, and all our previous coverage.

At the New York City press day I landed an exclusive interview with Finn Wittrock (who plays Mac, one of the people that floated adrift with Zamperini).  He talked about making the film, the challenges of working when you’re starving, if the script changed during production, the way he likes to work, collaborating with Angelina Jolie, working with Mike Nichols on Broadway, co-writing The Submarine Kid and what it’s about, future projects, and more.

Enter Our New Year’s Giveaway and Win Copies of GODZILLA, HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON 2, HIMYM, MORK AND MINDY, and More

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I’m pretty sure this is one of the biggest giveaways, in terms of sheer variety of product, that we’ve ever done.  And several of our readers will walk away very, very happy.  We’ve got one copy each of How I Met Your Mother: The Whole Story, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, How To Train Your Dragon 2, The Fault In Our Stars: Extended Edition, Sons of Anarchy: Seasons 1-6, and Mork and Mindy: The Complete Series on Blu-ray (and/or DVD) to give away.  In addition, we’ve got three Blu-rays of Godzilla to unload!

How can you win one of these prizes with minimum effort on your part?  Hit the jump to find out!

Writers Scott Alexander and Larry Kraszewski Talk BIG EYES, Tim Burton, the GOOSEBUMPS Movie, and AMERICAN CRIME STORY: THE PEOPLE V O.J. SIMPSON

by     Posted 2 days ago

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From director Tim Burton, Big Eyes tells the fantastically outrageous true story of one of the most unbelievable and epic art frauds in history.  The paintings of waifs with big eyes that Margaret Keane (Amy Adams) worked tirelessly on, day and night, received huge international success in the 1960s, but it was her husband, Walter (Christoph Waltz), who took credit for all of her work.

During this exclusive phone interview with Collider, screenwriters Scott Alexander and Larry Karaszewski (Ed Wood, The People vs. Larry Flynt, Man on the Moon) talked about why the like to examine the previously unexamined, how obsessive they get with their research, what initially attracted them to the story of Margaret Keane, and how they feel Amy Adams and Christoph Waltz embodied the Keanes.  They also talked about their work on the upcoming TV series American Crime Story: The People v. O.J. Simpson, that they’re writing and showrunning for Ryan Murphy to direct, how the story will be structured, and the fantastic cast (which includes Cuba Gooding Jr, Sarah Paulson and David Schwimmer), as well as their approach to the Goosebumps movie.

10 Musicals for People Who Hate Musicals

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Musicals used to be one of Hollywood’s staples, but they’ve fallen out of fashion lately: relegated to Disney animated features and the occasional prestige project like Les Miserables.  Their surprising status on the sidelines may help explain why for every bubbly enthusiast for the latest Broadway blockbuster, there’s another equally passionate film fan who responds with “ick, dancing!”

The prevalence of musical hate is undeniable, but it does the genre a huge disservice.  Moreover, skeptics don’t need to choke down some syrupy Rogers and Hammerstein production in order to find entries that they enjoy.   Like every genre, the musical embraces a wide range of subjects, tones and storylines.  It can be subversive, dark, iconoclastic and even frightening.  In fact, a lot of people who profess to hate musicals may actually love more than a few: regarding them as “not real” musicals or musicals in name only.  We’ve collected ten of them, though there are plenty more.  Through their tone, approach or content, they march to a different beat… and even the most resolute genre hater probably has one or two on his or her shelf.  We’re presenting them in alphabetical order and have peppered a few honorable mentions among them: films that match our choices close enough to merit mention.

Director Ava DuVernay Talks SELMA, Finding the Balance between History and an Emotional Connection, the Length of the Original Cut, and More

by     Posted 2 days ago

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Selma tells a very human story of a man finding his way through doubts and daunting obstacles, in order to make real change in the world.  Dr. Martin Luther King Jr (David Oyelowo, in a stunning performance) helped to unite America through actions that showcased the unbreakable spirit of ordinary men and women who sacrificed so that African Americans could gain the basic rights that they so desperately wanted and deserved.

A writer, producer, director and distributor of independent film, Selma is Ava DuVernay’s biggest project to date, but it is expertly directed with an emotional impact that hits you right in the gut.  While at the film’s press day, DuVernay spoke to Collider for this exclusive interview about finding the balance between history and emotional connection, making sure the historical drama was an intimate character experience, deciding on the right bookends to start and end the film with, the first 3-hour and 10-minute cut, her hope that the deleted scenes will make it to the DVD, the most emotional moments on set, and why her dream was to be the black Lynn Shelton.  Check out what she had to say after the jump.

Want to Write for Collider? We’re Now Accepting Internship Applications

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I’ve been working for Collider since 2007, and over the years we’ve added great people to our team. The site continues to expand, and we are now accepting applications for paid internships (if you are still in college, you can receive college credit).  One position is Los Angeles-based and the other is based outside of L.A.  If you’re looking to build a portfolio, get real experience writing about movies professionally, and contribute to our great site, we would love to read your application.

Hit the jump for more details on who we’re looking for, the responsibilities of the job, and how to apply. We will be accepting applications through January 1st and begin looking through them shortly thereafter.

Amazing New IT FOLLOWS Trailer Fleshes Out Intriguing Concept

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Amazingly enough, I have yet to see It Follows. As a horror fan with over four years experience covering the genre you’d think I would have caught up on it at Cannes, TIFF, Fantastic Fest or AFI Fest or would have plans to see it next month at the Sundance Film Festival.  But I have’t been making it out to many fests recently, so I’ll likely (and happily) plunk down my money to see this new film from director David Robert Mitchell (The Myth of the American Sleepover) when it’s finally released next year.

After a year where several strong horror films explored the physical decay of horrible STD’s, this movie seems to be tackling the subject on a larger, metaphorical (but no less fun) angle.  The film also seems to have a distinctive visual flair, continuing the impressive recent trend of low budget horror films intent on putting every penny onscreen.  Hit the jump for the It Follows trailer (and check out Perri’s review here).  The film stars Maika MonroeKeir GilchristDaniel ZovattoJake WearyOlivia Luccardi, and Lili Sepe and opens in the US this march from Radius/TWC.

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