It seems that the effects of Hurricane Sandy will not extend to the box office. In spite of the mess the storm made of the East Coast, November got off to a strong start at the multiplex with two impressive Friday debuts and an overall weekend expected to top 2011 by about 15%. Disney’s Wreck-It Ralph did the most damage: easily capturing first place with an estimated $13.4 million from 3,752 locations. The PG-rated toon is expected to take in $50 million by Sunday, making Wreck-It Ralph Disney’s biggest non-Pixar animated debut ever. Paramount’s Flight landed in second place with an estimated $8.1 million. Considering that the drama was in far fewer locations (1,900), however, Flight looks like the break-out hit of the frame. The Man with the Iron Fists saw a more modest opening. The R-rated action film took in $3 million from 1,868 runs and should end the weekend in the $8 million range. We’ll have complete details tomorrow.
|| Wreck-It Ralph
|| The Man w/the Iron Fists
|| Taken 2
I’ve seen two films that deal with alcoholism this year, and Robert Zemeckis‘ Flight is the weaker of the two. Earlier this year, I saw Smashed, an honest, unflinching look at a woman struggling to get sober. In all fairness, Flight isn’t about the quest to get sober, as much as it brushes up against interesting notions of control. Unfortunately, these notions become overshadowed as the film boils down the protagonist’s weakness into obvious plot points, character motivations, and a sermonizing finish that undermines the promise of a more textured, thoughtful story.
Flight marks the first pairing of Academy Award winners Denzel Washington and director Robert Zemeckis, who returns to live-action dramatic storytelling after a decade of success on the forefront of directing and producing movies utilizing motion capture technology. The screenplay by John Gatins centers on Captain Whip Whitaker (Washington) who miraculously crash lands his plane after a mid-air catastrophe, saving nearly everyone on board, but then becomes the target of a follow-up investigation that raises troubling questions about what really happened. Flight also stars John Goodman, Don Cheadle, Melissa Leo, Kelly Reilly, and Bruce Greenwood.
At the film’s recent press day, Washington, Zemeckis, Gatins, Goodman, Leo, Reilly, and Greenwood discussed making the dramatic thriller, what drew them to the project, the attraction and challenges of portraying complex, morally ambiguous characters, setting up a pivotal scene that pays homage to Hitchcock, and writing a suspenseful script that invites the audience to ride along with virtually every character while deciding which one to root for. Greenwood also shared his own harrowing tale of a real-life air travel experience he will never forget, and Washington revealed his recurring dream about flying and reminisced about the 20th anniversary of Malcolm X.
Halloween is right around the corner and with it comes Michael J. Bassett’s Silent Hill: Revelation 3D. The follow-up to Christophe Gans’ 2006 original adaptation of the horror survival game, Silent Hill: Revelation 3D picks up on the even of protagonist Heather Mason’s (Adelaide Clemens) 18th birthday. This new clip features Clemens and co-star Deborah Kara Unger talking as an air-raid siren signals their approaching doom.
And in case you missed our earlier exclusive clip from director Robert Zemeckis’ Flight, we have a bonus one for you this evening. The clip features post-plane crash pilot, Whip Whitaker (Denzel Washington) in his hospital room being visited by his friend (John Goodman) who must have been pre-Pharmacy in college. Hit the jump to check out the clips.
Director Robert Zemeckis puts a decade of motion capture behind him and returns to live-action fare with Flight, starring Denzel Washington. The John Gatins screenplay centers on a pilot (Washington) who miraculously lands a malfunctioning plane, only to become the focus of a follow-up investigation. Today, we have an exclusive clip to share with you and it is a doozy. It shows off the inciting incident of Flight while highlighting Washington’s grace under pressure, though the same can’t be said for his co-pilot (is it his first day?).
Also starring John Goodman, Don Cheadle, Melissa Leo and James Badge Dale, Flight opens on November 2nd. Hit the jump to check out our exclusive clip, and click here for over 20 images from the film.
Over 20 new images from director Robert Zemeckis’ new drama Flight have been released. Denzel Washington stars as a commercial airline pilot who is heralded as a hero after safely landing a disabled jet, but then comes under fire for possibly operating the plane under the influence of alcohol. It’s been ten long years since we’ve seen a live-action effort from Zemeckis, and I’m eager to see his take on this intense-looking character drama.
Hit the jump to check out the images. The film also stars Don Cheadle, Bruce Greenwood, Kelly Reilly, John Goodman, Melissa Leo, and James Badge Dale. Flight opens on November 2nd.
Our latest poster round-up includes:
- Cloud Atlas, from the Wachowski Siblings (or Wachowski Starship?) and Tom Tykwer, starring Tom Hanks, Halle Berry, Jim Broadbent and Hugo Weaving. Cloud Atlas opens October 26th.
- Flight, from director Robert Zemeckis, stars Denzel Washington, John Goodman and Don Cheadle and opens November 2nd.
- Rise of the Guardians, the animated film from director Peter Ramsey, features the voices of Hugh Jackman, Alec Baldwin, Isla Fisher, Jude Law and Chris Pine, and opens November 21st.
- Silent Hill: Revelation 3D, from director Michael J. Bassett, stars Sean Bean, Radha Mitchell, Carrie-Anne Moss and Kit Harington, and opens October 26th.
- The Impossible, from Juan Antonio Bayona, stars Ewan McGregor and Naomi Watts and opens in New York and Los Angeles on December 21st.
Hit the jump for the new posters and synopses.
A new extended TV spot for director Robert Zemeckis’ drama Flight has been released. Denzel Washington stars as a commercial airline pilot who is heralded as a hero after safely landing a disabled jet, but then comes under fire for possibly operating the plane under the influence of alcohol. This clip shows off more of the ridiculously tense plane crash, and it looks to be even more harrowing than the one Zemeckis crafted for Cast Away (which still gives me nightmares). I’m happy to see Zemeckis back in live-action and Washington looks poised to give an unsurprisingly impressive performance, so hopefully Flight delivers the goods.
Hit the jump to watch the 90-second TV spot. The film also stars John Goodman, Don Cheadle, James Badge Dale, Melissa Leo and Bruce Greenwood. Flight opens on November 2nd.
New clips have gone online for two of our most anticipated films of the end of 2012. First up is an extended look at the stunt sequence we saw in the trailer for Sam Mendes’ James Bond flick, Skyfall. Daniel Craig does his best train-jumping work here as he transitions from construction vehicle to train carriage in debonair fashion.
Speaking of debon-air (sorry), Denzel Washington is featured in this official TV spot for Robert Zemeckis’ Flight. The thirty-second ad, titled “Hero,” focuses on the vantage point of Washington’s character as a savior when he rescues his passengers by successfully crash-landing a jumbo jet. Skyfall opens stateside November 9th; Flight lands a week earlier on November 2nd. Hit the jump to see both videos.
We’ve got a few poster debuts to share this afternoon. Briefly:
- Flight – Two new posters have been released for director Robert Zemeckis’ excellent-looking character drama. Denzel Washington stars as a commercial airline pilot who is heralded as a hero after safely landing a disabled jet, but then comes under fire for possibly operating the plane while intoxicated. The film opens on November 2nd.
- Broken City – The first poster for director Allen Hughes’ political crime drama puts stars Mark Wahlberg and Russell Crowe front and center. Wahlberg plays a private detective hired to identify the lover of a powerful politician’s wife who soon uncovers more than he expected to find. The film opens on January 18th, 2013.
- Not Fade Away – The first poster for Sopranos creator David Chase’s feature directorial debut. The pic tells the story of three best friends growing up in the New Jersey suburbs who decide to start a rock band. The film opens on December 21st.
Hit the jump to check out the posters.
Summer 2012 was a disappointment for the most part, but things have picked up in September, and there’s almost too much good stuff in the final quarter of the year. There are new films from Tarantino, Affleck, McDonagh, the Wachowskis, Russell, and more. There are also some great-looking sequels and blockbusters that will be fun for the whole family.
So hit the jump to check out what Matt, Adam, Brendan, and Dave are looking forward to for the rest of the year as part of our Most Anticipated series.
We’ve got a lot of images from the upcoming slate of late-2012 films:
- Paranormal Activity 4, directed by Henry Joost and Ariel Schulman, opens October 19th.
- The Impossible, starring Ewan McGregor and Naomi Watts, opens October 11th.
- Flight, starring Denzel Washington and John Goodman, opens November 2nd.
- Not Fade Away, from writer/director David Chase, stars John Magaro, Will Brill and Jack Huston and opens December 21st.
- Les Miserables, starring Hugh Jackman, Anne Hathaway, Russell Crowe and Amanda Seyfried, opens December 14th.
- Anna Karenina, starring Keira Knightley, Jude Law and Aaron Johnson, opens September 7th.
- Resident Evil: Retribution, starring Milla Jovovich, Michelle Rodriguez and Sienna Guillory, opens September 14th.
Hit the jump to check out the images and synopses, including a full second page featuring featuring Looper, This Must Be the Place, The Man with the Iron Fists, Wreck-It Ralph, Frankenweenie, Red Dawn, and Chasing Mavericks.
The full line-up for the 2012 New York Film Festival has been announced. I’ve been impressed with the line-ups for the Venice Film Festival and the Toronto International Film Festival, but they both have a surprising omission: Michael Haneke‘s Amour, which one the Palme d’Or at this year’s Cannes Film Festival. However, it won’t be bypassing the fall festival circuit entirely, and it will make its North American debut at NYFF. The festival will also open with Ang Lee‘s Life of Pi and Robert Zemeckis‘ Flight. In between, you have other exciting films like David Chase‘s Not Fade Away, Noah Baumbach‘s Frances Ha, Roger Michell‘s Hyde Park on Hudson, Brian de Palma‘s Passion, and more.
Hit the jump for the full line-up. Tickets for the 2012 New York Film Festival go on sale September 9th. The festival runs from September 28 – October 14th.
On the red carpet at tonight’s Saturn Awards, I was able to interview Bruce Greenwood. We talked about J.J. Abrams Star Trek sequel, Robert Zemeckis’ Flight, Derek Cianfrance‘s The Place Beyond the Pines with Ryan Gosling, Atom Egoyan‘s Devil’s Knot (which also stars Reese Witherspoon and Colin Firth and follows the true story of the West Memphis Three case), and more.
For fans of Star Trek, I asked Greenwood about filming with IMAX cameras, what the first few days were like on set, lens flairs, what it was like being on a fully constructed Enterprise bridge, and the size of Pike’s role in the sequel. Hit the jump for what he had to say.
The first trailer has landed for director Robert Zemeckis’ Flight. Starring Denzel Washington as a heroic commercial airline pilot who miraculously lands a disabled jet, Flight goes deeper by delving into the real reasons behind the near-catastrophe. The trailer does a nice job at highlighting the cast, which includes the always-charismatic Washington alongside John Goodman, Don Cheadle, James Badge Dale, Melissa Leo and Bruce Greenwood. It also attempts to take what is initially a fairly thin inciting incident in John Gatins’ (Real Steel) screenplay and expand it to more of a human interest story. You’ll have to decided for yourself whether the trailer gets you interested or not. Flight opens November 2nd of this year. Hit the jump to see the trailer along with the first image and poster for the movie.