New to Blu-ray: THE HOBBIT: THE DESOLATION OF SMAUG, PARANORMAL ACTIVITY: THE MARKED ONES, A FIELD IN ENGLAND, and More

by     Posted 233 days ago

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This week’s new Blu-ray releases include the second installment in Peter Jackson’s The Hobbit trilogy, a French New Wave classic, a very darkly comedic ensemble drama, the latest from filmmaker Ben Wheatley, and more.  Briefly:

Weekend Box Office: LONE SURVIVOR Clears $38.8 Million: THE LEGEND OF HERCULES Looks Less Than Legendary

by     Posted 319 days ago

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Lone Survivor easily dominated in its first weekend in wide release.  The real-life war drama took in an estimated $38.8 million from 2,876 locations – doubling its studio’s pre-release projection of $19 million.  Along with its surprising windfall, Lone Survivor now claims the second-highest January opening of all time, behind the $40 million of 2008’s Cloverfield.

 Title Weekend Total
1.  Lone Survivor $38,511,000 $38.8
2.  Frozen $15,070,000 $317.6
3.  The Wolf of Wall Street $9,000,000 $78.5
4.  The Legend Of Hercules $8,600,000 $8.6
5.  American Hustle $8,600,000 $101.5
6.  The Hobbit 2 $8,015,000 $242.2
7.  August: Osage County $7,315,000 $7.8
8.  Saving Mr. Banks $6,578,000 $68.9
9.  Paranormal Activity: The Marked Ones $6,300,000 $28.4
10.  Anchorman 2
$6,100,000 $118.5

More box office news after the jump.

Friday Box Office: LONE SURVIVOR Thrives, THE LEGEND OF HERCULES Dies

by     Posted 320 days ago

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Of the five movies opening nationwide as of Friday, only one was brand new – and it’s looking like a bit of a weakling.  The Legend of Hercules, the first of two movies this year to star the mythic strong man, opened to a disappointing $3 million from 2,104 locations.  That means that Hercules is likely to fall short of its (very modest) $10 million goal this weekend.  Considering Hercules is currently rocking a 2% on Rotten Tomatoes, however, things could be worse for the son of Zeus.

Among the four titles expanding their runs this weekend, the clear winner is Lone Survivor.  After two weeks in two locations, Universal’s military drama took in an estimated $14.4 million from 2,876 locations on Friday.  That puts Lone Survivor on track for first place with about $34 million this weekend.  That’s well above the $24 million originally projected and tops the $24.4 million that Zero Dark Thirty realized after its nationwide expansion at this time last year.

 Title Friday Total
1.  Lone Survivor $14,400,000 $14.7
2.  Frozen $3,111,000 $305.7
3.  Legend of Hercules $3,080,000 $3.08
4.  Wolf of Wall Street $2,726,000 $72.3
5.  American Hustle $2,580,000 $95.5
6.  August: Osage County $2,200,000 $2.7

Friday numbers for Her and August: Osage County after the jump:

Oscar Beat: The Guilds Have Spoken, So Where Does This Leave Us for Oscar?

by     Posted 324 days ago

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We’re very, very close to the nominations announcement for the 86th Academy Awards, and now that the various guilds—the Screen Actors Guild, the Producers Guild, the Writers Guild, and the Directors Guild—have announced their nominees, we have a pretty clear picture of what we might expect with regards to Oscar.  As I’ve said before, one of the biggest predictors of how the Academy will vote comes with the guilds, since the guild membership has a strong crossover with Academy membership.  With just over a week to go before the Oscar nominations are announced, now feels like a good time to take a glance at the current landscape to see what films are shaping up to be Oscar favorites, and which films might miss this cut.

Hit the jump to read this latest installment of Oscar Beat in which I take a closer look at this morning’s DGA nominations, offer an overview of which films have landed the most nods from the various guilds, and what that means for Oscar.

2014 Writers Guild Nominations Include HER, DALLAS BUYERS CLUB, WOLF OF WALL STREET, and LONE SURVIVOR

by     Posted 328 days ago

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The Oscar precursors are in full swing.  Yesterday we got a look at the nominations for the Producers Guild Awards—a solid predictor for the Best Picture Oscar category—and today the Writers Guild of America has unveiled its nominations for the 2014 awards.  The Best Original Screenplay nominees include Nebraska, Her, and American Hustle, while the Best Adapted category is filled out by the likes of Before Midnight, Captain Phillips, and The Wolf of Wall Street.  The major surprise in today’s WGA announcements is the inclusion of Peter Berg’s Lone Survivor script for Best Adapted Screenplay and the befuddling absence of Joel and Ethan Coen’s Inside Llewyn Davis for Original Screenplay.

Hit the jump for more, including the full list of WGA nominations and my analysis with regards to what this means for Oscar.  The 2014 WGA Awards will be held on February 1st.

Oscar Beat: Best Picture – 12 YEARS A SLAVE, GRAVITY, and Everything In Between

by     Posted 340 days ago

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We launched our awards column Oscar Beat earlier this fall, and over the past month or so we’ve been taking an in-depth look at some of the individual Oscar races: Best Actor, Best Actress, Best Director, Best Supporting Actor, and Best Supporting Actress.  With the holidays approaching and the Oscar nominations poised to be announced in just under a month, now feels like a good time to survey the Best Picture category.  The critics continue to weigh in, and while 12 Years a Slave currently leads with the most “Best Film” wins, the results have surprisingly been a bit all over the place as Gravity, Her, and American Hustle received top honors as well.

Hit the jump to read on as I take a look at the current state of the Best Picture race in this edition of Oscar Beat.

Screen Actors Guild Nominations Announced; 12 YEARS A SLAVE Leads with 4 Nominations

by     Posted 351 days ago

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The Screen Actors Guild nominations were announced this morning, and unsurprisingly, 12 Years a Slave led the pack with four nods including Best Ensemble, Best Actor (Chiwetel Ejiofor), Best Supporting Actor (Michael Fassbender), and Best Supporting Actress (Lupita Nyong’o).  The surprises came with the snubs.  The Wolf of Wall Street, Her, and Inside Llewyn Davis missed the cut, and it’s clear that The Weinstein Company was a heavy hitter by getting multiple nominations for Lee Daniels’ The Butler and August: Osage County.  Arguably, the biggest snub was Robert Redford for All Is Lost.  Not only is it an acclaimed performance, but also part of his momentum is supposed to be based on the respect he’s accumulated for his long career.  Keep an eye for Oscar Beat as Adam breaks down what the nominations and snubs mean in the long run. [Correction: Adam tells me Wolf of Wall Street was ineligible because it missed the SAG voting deadline, so it's not really a snub]

Hit the jump for the full list of nominations including the ones for television shows.  The winners will be announced on January 18th.

Oscar Beat: Best Supporting Actress – Could Jennifer Lawrence Play the Spoiler?

by     Posted 355 days ago

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Though there’s normally a fairly agreed-upon shortlist of contenders for each Oscar category before the nominations are announced, every year has its fair share of surprises.  More often than not, these occur in the Supporting Actor/Actress categories, and it could very well happen again this year.  Though the general lack of well-written female characters tends to result in a thin crop of contenders for the Best Supporting Actress category, there are no doubt a number of excellent supporting female performances to thumb through in 2013.  The contenders range from fresh newcomers to acting veterans, and the ever-popular Jennifer Lawrence has made a late surge thanks to David O. Russell’s American Hustle finally being unveiled.

In this edition of Oscar Beat, we examine the current state of the Best Supporting Actress category.  Read on after the jump.

F-Bombs Fly in New Red-Band Clip from AUGUST: OSAGE COUNTY Featuring Julia Roberts and Meryl Streep

by     Posted 356 days ago

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A new red-band clip from director John Wells’ adaptation of the Pulitzer Prize-winning Tracy Letts play August: Osage County has been released online, and it is very NSFW.  The story follows the women of a family whose lives have splintered in many directions until a crisis bring them back to their childhood home and to the dysfunctional woman who raised them.  This new clip is a nice showcase of the complicated and tense relationship between Meryl Streep’s pill-popping matriarch and Julia Roberts’ oldest daughter.  As you can see, there’s not exactly a language filter in this family, and Roberts more than holds her own opposite Streep for the film’s runtime, turning in her best performance in years.

Hit the jump to watch the new red-band clip, and click here to read Matt’s review from the Toronto International Film Festival.  The film also stars Julianne Nicholson, Ewan McGregor, Benedict Cumberbatch, Margo Martindale, Chris Cooper, Abigail Breslin, Juliette Lewis, Dermot Mulroney, and Sam ShepardAugust: Osage County opens in limited release on December 25th and expands nationwide on January 10th.

Oscar Beat: The Best Actress Race – Can Anyone Beat Blanchett?

by     Posted 1 year, 4 days ago

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In Collider’s ongoing awards feature Oscar Beat, we recently took a look at the state of the Best Actor Oscar race, which is looking to be one of the most competitive in recent memory.  Likewise, this year’s Best Actress race is chock-full of fantastic performances and serious contenders, but we’ve had a frontrunner for the category since July and Cate Blanchett’s name remains atop the pile as we head into the thick of the race.  Will Blanchett remain the favorite over the next three months or is there another contender more worthy of the trophy?  Can any of the brilliant performances from this year’s smaller indies crack the top five?  Read on after the jump as we examine the current state of the Best Actress category.

Meryl Streep Grills Dermot Mulroney in New Clip from AUGUST: OSAGE COUNTY

by     Posted 1 year, 5 days ago

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A new clip from director John Wells’ adaptation of the Pulitzer Prize-winning Tracy Letts play August: Osage County has been released online.  The story follows the women of a family whose lives have splintered in many directions until a crisis bring them back to their childhood home and to the dysfunctional woman who raised them.  That pill-popping matriarch is played by Meryl Streep, and this new clip is from focuses on Streep’s character grilling one of her daughters’ (Juliette Lewis) new beau (Dermot Mulroney).  It’s a nice tease of what to expect from Streep’s dark portrayal, and it comes in the middle of an extended dinner sequence that acts as the fantastic dramatic centerpiece of the film.

Hit the jump to watch the clip and click here to read Matt’s review from TIFF.  The film also stars Julia RobertsEwan McGregorBenedict CumberbatchMargot MartindaleChris Cooper, Julianne Nicholson, Abigail Breslin, and Sam Shepard.  August: Osage County opens on December 25th.

Watch: Live Q&A with AUGUST: OSAGE COUNTY Producer George Clooney, Julia Roberts, and More

by     Posted 1 year, 16 days ago

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Director John Wells‘ feature film adaptation of Tracy Letts’ beloved stage play August: Osage County finally comes to theaters this Christmas, and in anticipation of the film’s release (and awards campaign), The Weinstein Company is live-streaming a fan Q&A event with some of the film’s cast and producer George Clooney.  Tonight at 8pm PST/11pm EST, fans will have the opportunity to ask questions to Clooney, Julia Roberts, Julianne Nicholson, Juliette Lewis, Margo Martindale, Chris Cooper, and Dermot Mulroney.  I caught the film at the Toronto International Film Festival and found it to be an entertaining and darkly comic family drama packed with swell performances and biting wit courtesy of Letts’ screenplay.  Read Matt’s review here.

Hit the jump to watch the Q&A, which will go live tonight at 11pm EST.  August: Osage County opens in theaters on December 25th.

New Images from VAMPIRE ACADEMY Starring Zoey Deutch and ENDLESS LOVE Starring Alex Pettyfer and Gabriella Wilde, and AUGUST: OSAGE COUNTY

by     Posted 1 year, 41 days ago

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We’ve got a few new images from the following films for you to check out:

  • Vampire Academy - Mark Waters’ adaptation of Richelle Mead’s novel, starring Zoey Deutch, Lucy Fry and Olga Kurylenko.  Vampire Academy opens February 14, 2014.
  • Endless LoveShana Feste’s romantic drama starring Alex Pettyfer and Gabriella Wilde.  Endless Love also opens February 14, 2014.
  • August: Osage CountyJohn Wells’ adaptation of Tracy Letts’ Pulitzer Prize-winning play presents the mother-daughter duo of Julia Roberts and Meryl Streep in appropriate fashion.  The film also stars Ewan McGregorBenedict Cumberbatch, and Margo Martindale and opens on December 25th.  Read Matt’s review from TIFF here.

Hit the jump to see the images.

AFI Fest Adds AUGUST: OSAGE COUNTY, JODOROWSKY’S DUNE, THE UNKNOWN KNOWN, HER, LONE SURVIVOR, and More

by     Posted 1 year, 41 days ago

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American Film Institute’s annual festival, AFI Fest, is setting up to be damned impressive.  Although they were set to host the world premiere of Foxcatcher, the movie was delayed until 2014.  However, as we previously reported, they’ve found a strong replacement with Out of the Furnace.  They’re also hosting the North American premiere of Saving Mr. Banks as the festival opener.  Today, they’ve announced additional films to their “Centerpiece Galas and Special Screenings” line-up.  The festival will include August: Osage County, The Last Emperor 3D, Her, Jodorowsky’s Dune, Philomena, The Unknown Known, Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom and the world premiere of Peter Berg‘s Lone Survivor.  When you throw in the previously announced Inside Llewyn Davis and Nebraska, you have an absolutely killer line-up and a chance for folks in Los Angeles to get a jump on some likely awards contenders.

Hit the jump for the press release and to find out how you can attend.  AFI Fest 2013 runs from November 7 – 14th.

From STAR TREK INTO DARKNESS to THE FIFTH ESTATE: How Benedict Cumberbatch Became a Household Name in 2013

by     Posted 1 year, 42 days ago

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In 1976, Benedict Timothy Carlton Cumberbatch was ushered into our world; in 2013, his incredibly British moniker became a household name when he landed a starring role in the global hit, Star Trek Into Darkness.  Cumberbatch is anything but a one-hit wonder, however, having built a fan following with roles in Atonement, War Horse, and of course, playing the title character in Sherlock.  Cumberbatch continues to test his skills by taking on roles across the spectrum, from voice roles in television with The Simpsons and Peter Jackson’s blockbuster trilogy, The Hobbit, to awards-worthy turns in 12 Years a Slave, The Fifth Estate and August: Osage County.  Hit the jump for more on Cumberbatch’s career, including where he’s been, what we’ll see him in this year, and what films are yet to come.

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