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David Poland

By David Poland

Friday Estimates by Klady

Good for W.. Glad Lionsgate was able to find a bigger than expected audience. Honestly, I was pretty sure that Letterman hit it on the nose when he said something last night to the effect of, “W… yeah… we want some more of that.”
That said, I would expect Beverly Hills Chihuahua to move up into the #2 slot by the end of the weekend.
Nice starts for The Secret Life of Bees, which should be leggy with a little word of mouth. It’s not for everyone, but adult women should be pleased by the rarely-theatrically-movied kind of tale with strong performances and a good heart.
Max Payne is clearly a yawn on the quality scale, but it’s a pretty decent number on the Screen Gems level, which is where is belongs. The question is what the budget was. At Screen Gems, that movie costs under $20m.
Let’s start the suicide watch for Patrick Goldstein as it lands at #1… but don’t worry too much… he’ll just pretend the moment of success didn’t happen and count the failures before and after. Perhaps Tom Rothman can arrange to finally have lunch with Punitive Pat, but secretly invite Drew McWeeny and Dr. Phil so the dyspeptic duo can work through their anger at the rough hewn studio chief.
Sex Drive is typical of Summit openings so far. The distributor-in-infancy is set up to have a true Newmarket/IFC moment with Twilight. According to Box Office Mojo charts, My Big Fat Greek Wedding is the only IFC release to ever be on more than 300 screens and was their only grosser over $14m ever… and while Newmarket ended up having four $20m+ movies, only TPOTC ever did more than $35 million.
I suspect that Twilight will be their first $100 million-plus film. The questions are whether there will be a second and whether they will be able to collect on all the ticket sales without an equally muscular film coming in behind the vampires

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36 Responses to “Friday Estimates by Klady”

  1. The Pope says:

    Letterman has been spinning gold these last few months and I hope those who make such decisions transform that into another Emmy for himself and his team of writers.
    As for the box-office… Body of Lies is out for the count.

  2. aframe says:

    I suspect you mean TWILIGHT…

  3. David Poland says:

    I did…. I fixed… thx

  4. a_loco says:

    I’m kind of disappointed about Sex Drive. We held a preview screening at my University a few weeks ago and it wasn’t even close to being as bad as the advertising made it out to be.
    I predict it’ll be a hit on DVD, tho.
    I want to predict a disappointment with Twilight, as it looks awful, but I won’t misunderestimate teenage girls.

  5. Cadavra says:

    How come we haven’t heard from Lex yet about the five times he saw WHAT JUST HAPPENED yesterday? Or does THE STEWWWWW no longer OWNNNNNNN?

  6. EthanG says:

    According to producer Scott Faye, the budget is closer to $45 million.
    Is $19 million for the weekend decent news for Fox? I guess, considering they haven’t opened at number one since March and are haven’t even cracked a $12 million since June…still, the fact that this ranks behind “Silent Hill” among video game adapts (with Wahlberg and Kunis no less) is pretty stunning.

  7. David Poland says:

    Silent Hill was sold to girls, EG… that is the Screen Gems not-so secret weapon.
    And yeah, Marychan… listening to the local trades (variety, THR, LAT, BOM) about budgets is dangerous.

  8. Roman says:

    Hmm, Eagle Eye’s cume is way off… wishful thinking?

  9. movieman says:

    Gee, why the hard-on for “Eagle Eye,” Roman? The last act kind of sucks, but it’s an above average genre flick with a charming “star” performance by Shia.
    I second Loco’s comments about “Sex Drive:” it’s a perfectly respectable, mid-80s-kinda “Porky’s” knockoff (think “Losin’ It” or “Fraternity Vacation”) that deserved better.
    It’s a good thing for Summit that “Twilight” is pre-sold (to young girls at least) because they clearly have no idea how to market a film.
    Nice to see “W” is doing better–during the opening weekend at least–than most (including myself) had predicted. In Lex-age, Brolin totally OWNS! I’d love to see him walk off with two Oscar nominations this year (lead for “W” and supporting for “Milk”) as an apology for his “NCFOM” snub last year. Of course, he probably has a much better shot at landing the lesser “Milk” nod (IF that film delivers) since I just don’t see a whole lot of Academy members voting for George Bush, even if it’s only “George Bush.”
    For a vidgame adaptation directed by one of the lamest hacks in the industry, “Max Payne” wasn’t completely awful. It sort of improves as it goes along, and there’s some visually arresting moments that made me think Moore just might have an eye after all (he clearly doesn’t have a brain). Kunis was something of a letdown, though, after her breakout perf in “Sarah Marshall” (she was my favorite thing in last spring’s Apatow-ian sex farce).
    And good for “Bees.” It’s nice to see that not every movie that premiered at Toronto this year is automatically d.o.a. at the box-office. That should bode well for F-S’s “Slumdog” and “Wrestler” later this year. Next weekend’s “Pride and Glory,” of course, will return to post-TIFF ignominy (“Ghost Town”/”Miracle at St. Anna”/”Flash of Genius”/ etc.) form.

  10. leahnz says:

    perhaps all those directors with a good eye but no brain should be rounded up and sent off down the yellow brick road with the scarecrow to see the great and terrible oz…
    (brolin was so bonza in ‘ncfom’, he knocked my socks off)

  11. Roman says:

    “Gee, why the hard-on for “Eagle Eye,” Roman? The last act kind of sucks, but it’s an above average genre flick with a charming “star” performance by Shia.”
    I am getting pretty tired of people misinterpreting my comments. All I said was that the cume was off, I didn’t declare my everburning love for the movie.
    This is especially suprisng considering that you obviously kind of liked it (I’m sorry but that’s what “an above average genre flick with a charming “star” performance by Shia” reads to me as).
    By the way, I was not suprised about “W’s” performance at all. It was obvious that the movie wasn’t going to turn away audiences due to the simple fact that it’s completely HARMLESS and pointless.

  12. movieman says:

    My, what a sour little man you are, Roman!
    Your bitchy “wishful thinking” comment bespoke an unwarranted contempt for a decent enough film that’s demonstrated above-average legs in a ridiculously cluttered fall movie season.
    I was merely calling you on it–as you deserved–for your arrogant, above-it-all posturing.
    And that snotty “W” comment indicates to me that you either (a) haven’t seen the movie; or (b) completely misunderstood it.
    While I don’t think “W” is a Stone masterpiece, it’s a damn sight better than his last two films (“WTC” and “Alexander”).

  13. EthanG says:

    “Silent Hill was sold to girls”
    Huh? According to CinemaScore the opening weekend audience was overwhelmingly adult male. How the hell were they marketing “Silent Hill” to girls, when it was (rightfully) slapped with a hard R rating??? Payne is PG-13 with a bankable star name and a recognized supporting player. SH was hard R with a no-name cast and will open better.
    I’m conceding Payne will probably turn a profit for Fox..eventually. But the take should be higher. The flick has probably a $40 million ceiling domestic (admittedly I have No clue internationally)….NOT what they were hoping for, but with 4 months and running without a movie hitting that level, they’ll take it.

  14. Roman says:

    “My, what a sour little man you are, Roman!
    Your bitchy “wishful thinking” comment bespoke an unwarranted contempt for a decent enough film that’s demonstrated above-average legs in a ridiculously cluttered fall movie season.
    I was merely calling you on it–as you deserved–for your arrogant, above-it-all posturing.”
    movieman, not to lower myself your level, but you are fool. “My wishful thinking” comment was directed at David, who didn’t like the movie. It was meant to be sarcastic.
    Not that I have to defend my views to you. Still, next time do yourself a favor and make sure you understand what the comment is saying before you critique it. Especially if is not directed at you.
    I have no sympathy for people who don’t understand sarcasm.
    And as for W. I did see it – just as I’ve read the screenplay – and I find the movie to be completely pointless. The fact that it’s better than Alexander and WTC doesn’t mean anything. Stone seems to have turned into a completely different filmmaker in the past decade or so. Instead of doing something provokes a response or a at least tries to be truthful (not in terms of circumstances but in terms of the real personality) we get PC Stone Light. I, for one, find this dissapointing.
    This is not what I would have expected from Oliver Stone of old or the man who made JFC, or even Nixon. This is why it’s harmless.

  15. movieman says:

    Mea culpa.
    Make that “sour, bitchy, SARCASTIC little man…”
    Feel better?

  16. Roman says:

    “I’m conceding Payne will probably turn a profit for Fox..eventually.”
    I’m conceding that you don’t know what you are talking about.
    “flick has probably a $40 million ceiling domestic (admittedly I have No clue internationally)”
    You got all of this from the Friday estimates? For your information Hitman opened to $13.1 million and grossed 39,687,694 (here’s your 40 million ceiling) and managed to gross $100 million worldwide.
    Max Payne will do better than that and if makes $50 million domestically that I’m betting it’s not that far from what the FOX was expecting.

  17. Roman says:

    and movieman, futue te ipsum.
    I am not interested in your replies so please don’t waste my time.

  18. EthanG says:

    “I’m conceding that you don’t know what you are talking about.”
    I’m Happy for you.
    “You got all of this from the Friday estimates? For your information Hitman opened to $13.1 million and grossed 39,687,694”
    Here’s the problem with your comparison. “Hitman” opened on Tnanksgiving weekend, in fact it opened on Thanksgiving with a 5-day haul of $21 million.
    Secondly, “Hitman” dealt with the killer competition of “Atonement,” “Juno,” “The Golden Compass,” and “Enchanted” during its run, with “Beowulf” proving to be a generally tough sell after “Hitman” opened.
    “Saw” is going to level the action/horror competition next weekend like it does every year, with “Pride and Glory” poised to sap away from Payne, and “Rocknrolla” piling it on with its expansion the following weekend.
    Much tougher competition, but we’ll see, you could be right…

  19. leahnz says:

    roman, i’m sorry but movieman is most certainly not a fool. ok, i’m the big buttoutski now

  20. movieman says:

    I’ll be sure to skip over any of your future postings, Roman.
    And if you’ve got such a problem with Dave Poland–I feel like I walked in on the middle of some marathon pissing contest that I knew nothing about–why don’t you start posting on Nikki Finke’s blog?
    I’m sure she’d appreciate the traffic.

  21. leahnz says:

    oh, buttinski again, i was also going to say i’ve learned the hard way that sarcasm is sometimes difficult to convey and interpret in this forum, so allowances for shrinkage and misunderstanding must be made when reading and responding to stuff

  22. Roman says:

    movieman, help me, are you seriously that dense?
    I don’t have any problem with David. You have been desperately trying to put your own spin on a perfectly harmless post.
    I just pointed out a mistake I have noticed in the chart, something I would have done for any movie and than sarcastically wondered if the lowered figure represented he’s own desiries for were the movie should be. That’s it. Stop trying to draw your own idiotic conclusions.
    What “such problem” and “pissing contest”? What the fuck are you talking about? How were you able to read that (even after I spelled it out for you)? You are obviously either a troll or a brutally underbrainded numbskull. Go and mind you own business and feel free to ignore this or any other post.

  23. STOP TALKING! Geez. None of you can even understand what you’re arguing about.
    The number for Secret of Life of Bees actually pleases me. Nice to see a movie of that sort that isn’t directed by Tyler Perry get some decent numbers. Of course, it’ll gross half of what Perry usually does, but it’s still impressive.
    Cadavra, I imagine Lex is seeing Max Payne for the fifth time.
    Does anybody else remember that movie Twilight that starred Paul Newman and Reese Witherspoon getting her tits out? That was pretty awful if I remember correctly.

  24. martin says:

    Max Payne doing 20 open/45 finish is I’m sure less than Fox’s 30 open/70 finish that they hoped. That said, $100 mill ww and 50 mill on ancillaries will keep it well within profit. Wahlberg can now rest easy that he’s done 2 crappy films in a row that both made money, that’s why he gets paid the big bucks.

  25. anghus says:

    If Wahlberg shows up at 30 Rock tonight and slaps the shit out of Andy Samberg, then Max Payne could cross 100 million.
    If he doesn’t, it won’t make it to 50.

  26. Roman says:

    “Max Payne doing 20 open/45 finish is I’m sure less than Fox’s 30 open/70 finish that they hoped”
    And where, I dare ask, do these figures comes from?
    How much did Punisher make? There is a cap for the movies of this time and it’s way below $70 million.
    And when was the last videogame based movie that grossed over $60 million (name actor or not)?
    There is a reason why the Halo movie hasn’t happened yet, folks.
    Also, unless there is a huge Sunday drop, Max Payne should do around 22 million with a finish of at least $50 million.

  27. LYT says:

    “Does anybody else remember that movie Twilight that starred Paul Newman and Reese Witherspoon getting her tits out? That was pretty awful if I remember correctly.”
    I never watched past that scene, but yes, it’s the only movie she’s been naked in, which guarantees eternal viewings.

  28. movieman says:

    Hey, Leahnz. Thanks for sticking up for me, lol.
    Some of these kids can be a real handful sometimes: so desperate to prove themselves; and so pitifully inadequate to the task.
    (“Go play your videogames in the other room, children, and leave the grownups alone for their adult business.”)
    Hey, Kam: I rather liked the 1998 “Twilight” you’re referring to.
    Of course, except for “The Human Stain” I’ve pretty much liked all of Robert Benton’s films (including last year’s unfairly maligned “Feast of Love”).

  29. LexG says:

    Still have to catch W. and K-STEW!!!!!!
    They should have put THE STEW front and center in the WHAT JUST HAPPENED? campaign.
    I of course know she’s in it, but the ads don’t play it up at all; Insanity. That’s like if they hadn’t shown LEO in the “Celebrity” campaign.

  30. leahnz says:

    hey, benton’s ‘bad company’, i love that movie! quite brutal, tho…it made a real impression on me as a kid. i haven’t seen it in ages but it must be the first movie i ever saw starring jeff bridges as mere pup himself

  31. Joe Leydon says:

    Benton’s Nobody’s Fool showcases one of Paul Newman’s best performances. That’s why I’ve asked them to screen it when I present the Newman tribute next month at the Denver Film Festival.
    And Leahnz, you’re damn right: Bad Company is a classic. Poor Barry Brown. Gone too soon.

  32. LexG says:

    For those of you critics and awesome people who actually did MAN UP and FEEL THE PAYNE, a SPOILERY QUESTION….
    So, the main element (and, hell, genre!) promised and promoted in the trailer was just kind of a side nonissue in an otherwise much more straightforward movie of an entirely different type?

  33. movieman says:

    I can’t agree with you more Leahnz (and Joe):
    “Bad Company” is one of the great American films of the ’70s, and Barry Brown’s performances in “BC” and Bogdanovich’s exquisite “Daisy Miller” have earned him a permanent place in my pantheon.
    How sad that he was taken away at such an early age.

  34. westpilton says:

    Now Imma talk to a dude with wings. Hey man, you got wings right? I like that. I used to sell underpants.
    Say hi to your mother for me, alright?

  35. Chucky in Jersey says:

    Next weekend’s “Pride and Glory,” of course, will return to post-TIFF ignominy …
    Originally scheduled for April, release delayed while Time Warner got ready to gut New Line.

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