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David Poland

By David Poland

Sunday Estimates by Klady

Not a lot more to say, is there?
Miami Vice

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54 Responses to “Sunday Estimates by Klady”

  1. anghus says:

    i was wondering if they could top this year in ’07…
    but then i remembered Spidey 3.
    and they still have Casino Royale for the holidays.

  2. martin says:

    it’s been feast or famine for Sony, last year everything tanked, this year everything hit. Monster House is a question mark, probably finishing up with only $70 mill. But I suspect in the long run it will at least break even. And Little Man and Click are major profit-makers, plus Benchwarmers, etc. that have done very well. And Talladega a true breakout smash. Interesting that last summer the real winners were the medium-budget comedies, and same this summer.

  3. anghus says:

    the debate about budgets is raging right now in Hollywood. No one questions the 200+ million on Dead Man’s Chest… but everyone questions the almost 300 million spent on Superman Returns, the 135 million spent on Miami Vice, the 100+ million on Poseiden, the 135 million spent on M-I:3…
    the tourniquet needs to be applied. The stars aren’t bringing in the bank they used to. The nineties fucked it all up. once you started giving actors 20 million dollar paydays and massive back end deals, it became impossible to try and take it away.
    i mean christ, someone gave Affleck 20 million for Jersey Girl. A 35 million dollar movie, over half the the budget for an actor.
    when did these guys start warranting these paychecks? (other than Cruise, Hanks, Gibson etc.

  4. EDouglas says:

    “Who would have guessed in May that Miami Vice, Lady in the Water and Ant Bully combined would make less domestically than The Devil Wears Prada?”
    Not me and not Premiere. They had Miami Vice being one of the Top 10 movies of the summer and I had Lady in the Water. I guess after seeing Miami Vice, moviegoers didn’t agree with Poland’s pull quote. (I’ve yet to see the movie..maybe this week.)

  5. David Poland says:

    They didn’t (warrant these paychecks), But DVD revenue made everyone crazy… like the internet boom in the stock market.
    But I would suggest that it was more than the star salaries… that the budgets rose to match those salaries.
    Jim Carrey is still a bargain at $20 million (and if it was just his $20m upfront, more of his movies would be shooting now), but the $100 million-plus budgets that now accompany his price make him a non-viable commodity.
    Adam Sandler is a cash machine because his movies remain relatively cheap to make. So even when Click does less than hoped for, it is still a money maker. If the budget was $150 million and he took $25m upfront, Sony would be pissed off about the gross and maybe even have lost money on the film. But the budget was a little more than half that, including Adam’s upfront, and the film will make good money in post-theatrical. But even that – $80 million – for a dumb comedy… it’s really too much. Cut another $20 million off that budget and you’re in profit in theatrical. It’s fine as long as he doesn’t keep raising the bar… but if he does, he’ll eventually have the Carrey problem.
    As for Carrey… time to do a couple of movies that are bigger than him in concept… and without regard to his paycheck.

  6. EDouglas says:

    I’m going to be really curious to see how Evan Almighty does next year because it might be the first sequel to a Jim Carrey movie that might do well sans Jim Carrey. It could also bring Carell to the level of Ferrell, Sandler, etc. Also wonder if we’ll be seeing Carell’s name in serious supporting actor consideration for LMS. I’m starting to think that people like him enough for it to happen.

  7. Eric says:

    I love Carell, but don’t think he’ll ever reach the level of Carrey or Ferrell. He doesn’t pander to the audience in the same way. He’s a little too snarky for that.

  8. Lota says:

    I hope Carell does reach the level of Carrey & Ferrell.
    Carell is considerably less annoying, and is cheaper than Carrey, for two. Don’t think Carell is snarky, he has more deadpan comedy style than Carrey, he isn;t a “stand up” type.
    So what’s up with Get Smart? WIll it ever get made or did I miss some announcement? It could be a good parody, I could see Carell as Maxwell Smart very easily.

  9. James Leer says:

    Compared to Ferrell and Carrey, Carell has less of an outgoing comic persona to play off of. Those actors tap a certain comic vein every time no matter the role, but the two roles Carell is best known for (The 40-Year-Old Virgin and The Office) are wildly different…add Little Miss Sunshine into the mix and it gets even more eclectic.

  10. Me says:

    Carell can emote, too. And with the depth that he’s conveyed in all three – 40YOV, The Office and now LMS – it’d be interesting to see him in a straight drama (or a gay one – that was for you Waterbucket). I think this guy still has a lot of untapped potential that hasn’t shown up on the silver screen yet.

  11. Tofu says:

    Quite painful to see that number for Miami Vice. Such a fantastic film… However, I think many of us saw it coming.
    The word of mouth before release was lukewarm from multiple test screenings, the first teaser hit like a dud, and the worst reviews and word of mouth for a Mann yet. One has to wonder if playing up the 80’s angle would’ve have even have helped.
    Is the market just too full of these crime dramas? Every network and cable channel has a gritty edition to call their own anymore.
    With different expectations and a smaller budget, Mann would be sure to come back in force.

  12. jeffmcm says:

    I would think that the only serious crime/action movie in months would not have to worry about competition.

  13. Tofu says:

    Not so much in competition, but more along the lines of treading NEW water that will bring crowds out to the theater.

  14. jeffmcm says:

    Well if they wanted to tread new water, they shouldn’t have called it ‘Miami Vice’.

  15. palmtree says:

    I think expectations has everything to do with Miami Vice tanking. You expected a little tongue in cheekiness to the proceedings, but the overall tone was very dark and somber. You expected some 80s reference, but only get one at the closing credits. You expect action in the style of modern blockbuster films, but instead you got talking and a few cool but unspectacular gunfights. I don’t think it was the Miami Vice people had in their heads.

  16. jesse says:

    OK, at the risk of sounding unsophisticated… I saw Miami Vice this weekend, and I can totally see why it’s tanking. Yes, it is more intelligent, darker, and less campy than some might expect from their memories of the TV show… but it’s also not as if it makes up for this by being as exciting or entertaining as Heat or Collateral. MV the movie (I’ve actually never seen the show) is murky, hard to follow, and doesn’t really give you much to latch onto. I like Farrell and Fox in the right roles, but they’re subdued to the point of nonentities in this movie. And why did Farrell and Gong Li fall in love again? (Especially her with him.) As much as I liked certain parts of it, it strikes me as Mann’s Lady in the Water — an overwritten, well-directed (in parts), well-intentioned mess.
    Even though I didn’t much like it, I do wish it made more money just ’cause I like Mann… but I can’t sympathize too much. It doesn’t make a lot of business sense for a movie so dreary to cost so effing much.

  17. Tofu says:

    “It doesn’t make a lot of business sense for a movie so dreary to cost so effing much.”
    Hmmm? You can spend millions on dreary. Do you mean to greenlight a budget for something so dreary? MV was greenlit at $80 million, but then the Hurricane season of 2005 came along…

  18. Eric says:

    “Carell can emote, too. And with the depth that he’s conveyed in all three – 40YOV, The Office and now LMS – it’d be interesting to see him in a straight drama.”
    I’m with you 100%. It takes a very precise eye for human behavior to do the sort of humor that Carell does. With the right director, who could focus that talent in the right way– Milos Forman?– Carell could be a powerful dramatic actor.

  19. jesse says:

    Tofu, I guess $80 mil is a little more realistic than $135 mil for what Mann needed/wanted, so I shouldn’t rag on the filmmakers for running into hurricanes. However, by “dreary” I don’t just mean “downbeat” or “dark visuals”… parts of the movie itself feel so talky and deflated, which is not what I’d expect from Mann. Also, his dialogue was pretty spotty here; I’m surprised such a tinkerer let it slide.

  20. jeffmcm says:

    Lady in the Water is neither well-directed nor well-intentioned. Only Giamatti comes out of it unscathed. (I finally saw it last night.)

  21. KamikazeCamelV2.0 says:

    “It is Will Ferrell’s biggest opening ever.” Also his first ever #1 debut, right? Elf was #1 but it made that in its second week if I remember.
    EDouglas, I’m currently predicting Carell makes it in. A Globe nod seems on the cards, a SAG nod is not too hard to imagine (these groups seem to love doubling up on their nominees).
    Miami Vice had a big problem attracting women, right? Didn’t help that Farrell and Foxx look uuugly in it.
    Interesting to note that Prada is still pulling in over $3mil a week and it could get to $125mil. Seriously, Meryl’s Oscar nom is in the bag.

  22. Chucky in Jersey says:

    Kami, you are correct re Will Ferrell.
    Fox can keep “Little Miss Sunshine” going strong given the current product flow. It adds more theaters Friday and goes semi-wide on 8/18.

  23. KamikazeCamelV2.0 says:

    The list of movies that had seen promising results in limited release and then failed to live up to suposed expectations in wide release is getting longer.
    Good buzz didn’t get Almost Famous or Lost in Translation (the two most obvious examples) to much more than $30mil, right? And as much as I simply love Collette (seriously, one of the best actors working atm) she’s not a draw. Neither is Kinnear or Arken. Carell could get interested teens in, but I still think Little Miss Sunshine has it’s work cut out for itself.

  24. right says:

    Isn’t Miami Vice just Bad Boys II without the sense of humor and aggressive levels of ridiculous action? I love Michael Mann, but why would I want to see that?

  25. djk813 says:

    For Little Miss Sunshine, the movie is the draw. The audience reaction I’ve seen is over the top, and I wouldn’t be surprised to see it be #1 for the weekend at some point, maybe Labor Day Weekend.

  26. Tofu says:

    Isn’t Seven Samurai just A Bug’s Life without the sense of humor and aggressive levels of ridiculous action? I love Akira Kurosawa, but why would I want to see that?

  27. jesse says:

    Right is being flip but not exactly incorrect; Miami Vice *is* kinda like Bad Boys II with less humor and action. This by itself is not a bad thing — it’s not as grotesque as Bad Boys II, for one — but more to the point, it’s also a pretty sizable comedown from the guy who made Heat and The Insider. I mean, Collateral was minor but very well done… so why make a movie that isn’t *even* as interesting/original as Collateral?? My first thought about MV when I first heard about it was “I’m sure it’ll be much better than almost any other director’s version… but why is Mann making it at all?” Early good reviews and a cool-ish trailer eventually got me interested, but the result still struck me as a watered-down combination of Mann’s other recent-ish crime pictures. Kinda pointless.

  28. THX5334 says:

    I haven’t seen MV yet (still plan to) but this was the reaction from a friend of mine who is not in the business, and is what I consider a regular movie watcher. I thought it was interesting:
    “The beginning and the end were cool with the shootouts. But the Colin Farrel, Gong Li stuff in the middle dragged. They fall in love, and then it gets all cheesy for 10 or 12 minutes and I felt like I was watching Days of our Lives. Then it’s over and Farrel’s all like ‘Back to Business’ and it just felt like some sappy soap opera that was a whole ‘nother movie. It took me out of it.”
    Then he commented on how he felt just about everything this summer has been a disappointment.

  29. Sandy says:

    The feeling I got from people about Vice is that they wanted that old series from the 80s, otherwise why use the same title…give them action and fun. Farrell and Foxx are more than capable of being funny and should have been instead of this dark humorless thing.

  30. jeffmcm says:

    Lost in Translation ended up grossing $46m, mainly thanks to awards attention. Little Miss Sunshine seems to not have a lot of competition for a while.

  31. Cadavra says:

    Sony had the same problem a few years back with I SPY: it wasn’t the TV show, just a white/black knock-off of the RUSH HOUR movies. And it tanked even worse than MIAMI VICE. You can tinker and update to your heart’s content, but if it doesn’t resemble the original show on at least more than a superficial level, your audience will be pissed off and stay home. The most successful TV-to-movie titles have been the ones that stayed truest to the original concept (e.g., THE FUGITIVE, MAVERICK, THE ADDAMS FAMILY).

  32. jeffmcm says:

    That is, after all, the whole point of using a franchise name: audiences already know what kind of emotional experience to expect. The marketing monkeys at Universal obviously were happy to have Mann working with a ‘presold’ title, but the movie itself gummed up their works.

  33. David Poland says:

    In trying to get to $50 million, Little Miss Sunshine is ocmpeting with every movie that teens find cool, from Snakes on a Plane to Accepted.
    I haven’t lowered my projeciton yet, but I am very worried for them about raised expectations, which are deadly. The film is good, but it is far from perfect or legendary. (Murray’s performance in Lost In Translation and the first real film to use Tokyo that way – it’s already becoming a cliche’ – made that film legend.) And the audience I saw it with this weekend liked it… but only about 10% were laughing hard at the big jokes. It’s not Napoleon Dynamite and it surely isn’t 40 Yr Old Virgin.
    Streep is the only real awards lock this year so far. And don’t be surprised if she takes Stanley Tucci or Emily Blunt with her long before Carrell gets a nod.

  34. Me says:

    I think you’re selling LMS short, movie-wise, not necessarily numbers-wise.
    The movie is far better than Napoleon Dynamite, and in its own way, as good as 40YOV. That said, I don’t think it is going to do either of those movies’ numbers, simply on subject matter.
    But to dispute the other point you made, I recently saw a showing at 1:40 on a Saturday that was packed and not only did most of the audience get into it, there was a good 10% of people who applauded it. But then again, neither your nor my anecdotal experience should be taken as evidence of how the movie will ultimately play.
    Personally, this one seems to have $30 million written all over it.

  35. jeffmcm says:

    So all those Wong Kar Wai films that Sophia Coppola was ripping off weren’t real films? (I guess they weren’t about Tokyo).

  36. Hopscotch says:

    If there is a God, Brick would be the lock this year for Best Original Screenplay.
    I think Carell could be the next Farrell or Carrey but hopefully he’ll be something different. Carrey’s movies don’t age well AT ALL. And I’ve never found “Old School” that funny…when I’ve watched it sober.

  37. Cadavra says:

    I agree about BRICK. A work of true audacity, even moreso because he managed to pull it off so well. It all depends on whether Focus chooses to push it comes Oscar time. And I’m pulling for Tucci (talk about undervalued actors!) and Blunt, too. The look on her face when Hathaway gave her the dresses–gratitude forcing its way through the deep veneer of resentment–was remarkable.

  38. Spacesheik says:

    “Lady in the Water is neither well-directed nor well-intentioned. Only Giamatti comes out of it unscathed. (I finally saw it last night.)”
    Jeff what did you think of the overall script and can you be more specific about Shyamalan’s role?

  39. KamikazeCamelV2.0 says:

    I definitely think Tucci is right in there for Supporting Actor. The only problem for him is that (well, from what I’ve heard) Tucci’s character neither has AIDS nor is a big screaming queen. The Academy doesn’t particularly like their gay men to be happy and open with their sexuality. Or, that’s the image I get from the Academy. Wouldn’t it be funny if they did a Collateral and made Anne Hathaway a Supporting Actress contender. I still don’t understand how anybody could accept Jamie Foxx was “supporting” in that movie. Crazy.
    If there is a god, Ellen Page would be a contender for Best Actress in Hard Candy instead of a mere Independent Spirit possibility.
    Jeff, if you’re gonna insult Sofia can you please spell her name correctly, thank you (Sofia is my love).
    Me, I don’t think David was comparing LMS to those movies in terms of quality, but in terms of audience perception. Napoleon rode the wave of it being a revolution, essentially whereas 40-Year-Old Virgin was a mainstream sex comedy. Little Miss Sunshine while perhaps better than those films (surely it’s better than Napoleon Dynamite, right!?) there doesn’t seem to be a unique hook.
    The movie being good will get it to a certain point (the $30mil somebody up there mentioned sounded good) but it needs something to take it higher (it’s not getting the Lost in Translation awards buzz, or not as much) and it’s too early to ride it if and when it comes.
    Wow. I’m pretty sure that made sense! Go me.
    I swore, Lost in Translation made less! Oh well, way to go. I love that movie something chronic.

  40. KamikazeCamelV2.0 says:

    Also, seeing this on the IMDb home page was funny.
    Tops at the Box Office
    1. Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby
    2. Barnyard: The Original Party Animals
    3. Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest
    God that’s some long names. Only one of those even needs the subtitle.

  41. jeffmcm says:

    I thought the script for Lady in the Water was badly written in an arrogant way that makes it appear that M. Night thinks he’s above such simple, audience-pleasing elements as interesting characters or a tight, focussed, three-act storyline. I thought the self-referential aspects were confused and inconsistent and the fate of Bob Balaban’s character demonstrated a meanness and pettiness that would seem out of place in a film that purports to be a about childlike wonder.
    As for M. Night’s performance, he’s at least a better actor than Quentin Tarantino, but he was still one-note and not particularly likeable.
    Sorry about misspelling “Sofia”. Also I do not believe Stanley Tucci is gay.

  42. palmtree says:

    I thought Sofia’s debt to Wong Kar Wai was well documented in her Oscar speech. It was kind of like when Dimitri Tiomkin won for best score only to thank Tchaikovsky and Mozart.

  43. jeffmcm says:

    Yeah, except Tchaikovsky and Mozart never did music that was about ticking-clock morality tales, while Coppola’s movie was essentially an Americanized WKW movie from beginning to end.

  44. palmtree says:

    I beg to differ…Don Giovanni.

  45. jeffmcm says:

    Touche. But how much of DG is there in the High Noon score?

  46. jeffmcm says:

    (Sorry, I didn’t know that he had won for other movies besides that one.)

  47. Cadavra says:

    Actually, one of the things most interesting about Tucci’s character is that he never says or does anything to confirm that he’s gay. We merely assume it because of his job and fastidiousness; even his speech and mannerisms are not particularly “swishy.” Ordinarily, I’d agree that this low-key-ness (to coin a word) could be a real hindrance at awards time, but in a post-BROKEBACK era, I’d like to believe his chances aren’t as bleak as they once were.

  48. jeffmcm says:

    I just got back from seeing Miami Vice. I now totally understand why it isn’t making that much money. Kinda tedious, kinda full of cliches.

  49. KamikazeCamelV2.0 says:

    *The boys from Brokeback Mountain were playing tortured characters who weren’t happy with their lives and all that stuff. One died, the other lived alone for the rest of his life (we assume)
    *Tom Hanks, Ed Harris and Djimon Hounsou have AIDS and die in Philadelphia, The Hours and In America respectively.
    *Phillip Seymour Hoffman was extremely effeminite and eventually had a break down of sorts in Capote (a result of his homosexuality, of course).
    *Hilary Swank has identity crises and eventually gets bashed to death in Boys Don’t Cry
    *Felicity Huffman has identity crises in Transamerica and is never truly happy until the very end.
    *Charlize Theron is raped and prostitutes herself and eventually becomes a murder and is sentenced to death in Monster
    *Javier Bardem gets put in jail for simply being gay
    The closest we come to a performance of a gay character that is simply normal and living out their life is Ian McKellen in Gods & Monsters and even he is conceited about the men in his life and is near-secluded and so on. Although Javier Bardem in Before Night Falls seems quite content, he was merely the result of an awful system. And then there were people like Dennis Quaid in Far From Heaven whose character was quite content with his homosexuality and didn’t bat an eyelid at divorce and he wasn’t even nominated.
    Still, it can’t be said that the Academy doesn’t like their homosexuals to be unhappy. I know there aren’t that many movies that portray gay characters as “normal” (just regular folks living their life who aren’t dying or what have you), but if there were more, I doubt the trend would change. And if they are content and happy they would have to be raging queens.
    Which is why I am cautious about Tucci.
    Man, that was longer than I anticipated.

  50. Cadavra says:

    All excellent points, Camel. But the point I was making–I guess I could have been more clear about this–is that Tucci doesn’t play the “swishy” gay stereotype, which is also what many of your examples (including Ledger and Gyllenhaal) do. You’re right about “happy” gays missing the boat (hey there, Gary Beach and Roger Bart), but sooner or later that dam has to be breached, and Tucci–not unlike Hoffman (both of them)–is overdue for some props. Plus I think PRADA in general will be in for heavy awards consideration just because it proved a smart, adult comedy can still crack the $100 million barrier, and the voters like to feel good about themselves.

  51. jeffmcm says:

    Camel, McKellen’s character kills himself in Gods & Monsters, and I think that to say that Dennis Quaid was ‘quite content with his homosexuality’ is fairly inaccurate. Also Hoffman in Capote has a breakdown but I do not think it has anything to do with his sexuality.

  52. KamikazeCamelV2.0 says:

    Capote’s breakdown in part had to do with his relationship with the killer (his name escapes me. Perry something, i know that). Essentially, if Capote weren’t a homosexual and didn’t fall in love (or whatever it was that he fell into) he wouldn’t have felt so emotionally connected and their deaths wouldn’t have lead to his breakdown. Or, that’s an extreme view of it anyway.
    I had forgotten the ending of Gods & Monsters, so there you go. Another example.
    I would say that Quaid’s character is happy with himself. His character shows none of the trouble that other gay-men-pretending-to-be-straight have. If I remember correctly his character becomes quite unrepressed. He seems happy and content at the end, in stark contrast to his ex-wife who he has left and made a laughing stock (bad gay husband!)

  53. jeffmcm says:

    The Capote argument is debatable, I thought it was his hypocrisy and ethical problems that were more at issue. I only saw Far From Heaven once 4 years ago so maybe I’m not remembering it too well, but I thought everyone in it ended up miserable.

  54. KamikazeCamelV2.0 says:

    No, no they don’t. While even Cathy (Julianne Moore) appears to be miserable the final shot is of a brance of budding flowers and you realise that she will move on and she will regrow.
    And I’m fairly certain Quaid’s character appears happy at the end of the movie (which is why people didn’t like his character because he seemed to able to move on when his ex-wife couldn’t – although some people didn’t interpret the end the way I do).
    The Capote argument is debatable. But I think it goes that if Truman weren’t gay he wouldn’t have fallen in love with the killer and he wouldn’t have had such an ethical aboutface when it came to his execution.
    But whether Truman was gay or straight, his moral compas was way off so I can understand it being read differently.

Quote Unquotesee all »

It shows how out of it I was in trying to be in it, acknowledging that I was out of it to myself, and then thinking, “Okay, how do I stop being out of it? Well, I get some legitimate illogical narrative ideas” — some novel, you know?

So I decided on three writers that I might be able to option their material and get some producer, or myself as producer, and then get some writer to do a screenplay on it, and maybe make a movie.

And so the three projects were “Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep,” “Naked Lunch” and a collection of Bukowski. Which, in 1975, forget it — I mean, that was nuts. Hollywood would not touch any of that, but I was looking for something commercial, and I thought that all of these things were coming.

There would be no Blade Runner if there was no Ray Bradbury. I couldn’t find Philip K. Dick. His agent didn’t even know where he was. And so I gave up.

I was walking down the street and I ran into Bradbury — he directed a play that I was going to do as an actor, so we know each other, but he yelled “hi” — and I’d forgot who he was.

So at my girlfriend Barbara Hershey’s urging — I was with her at that moment — she said, “Talk to him! That guy really wants to talk to you,” and I said “No, fuck him,” and keep walking.

But then I did, and then I realized who it was, and I thought, “Wait, he’s in that realm, maybe he knows Philip K. Dick.” I said, “You know a guy named—” “Yeah, sure — you want his phone number?”

My friend paid my rent for a year while I wrote, because it turned out we couldn’t get a writer. My friends kept on me about, well, if you can’t get a writer, then you write.”
~ Hampton Fancher

“That was the most disappointing thing to me in how this thing was played. Is that I’m on the phone with you now, after all that’s been said, and the fundamental distinction between what James is dealing with in these other cases is not actually brought to the fore. The fundamental difference is that James Franco didn’t seek to use his position to have sex with anyone. There’s not a case of that. He wasn’t using his position or status to try to solicit a sexual favor from anyone. If he had — if that were what the accusation involved — the show would not have gone on. We would have folded up shop and we would have not completed the show. Because then it would have been the same as Harvey Weinstein, or Les Moonves, or any of these cases that are fundamental to this new paradigm. Did you not notice that? Why did you not notice that? Is that not something notable to say, journalistically? Because nobody could find the voice to say it. I’m not just being rhetorical. Why is it that you and the other critics, none of you could find the voice to say, “You know, it’s not this, it’s that”? Because — let me go on and speak further to this. If you go back to the L.A. Times piece, that’s what it lacked. That’s what they were not able to deliver. The one example in the five that involved an issue of a sexual act was between James and a woman he was dating, who he was not working with. There was no professional dynamic in any capacity.

~ David Simon