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David Poland

By David Poland

Friday Estimates by Klady – Terminator @ The Museum

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So… T4 will definitely not be the first $100m weekend of the summer. We’ll have to wait for Tr2.
The first ever $100 million weekend was 2002’s Spider-Man launch. The only May that has not had a $100 million kick-off since then was 2003… when X-Men 2 opened the summer with a very Wolverine-like $85 million. (X2 had stronger legs… but also, less competition.)
After all the talk about the strength of the box office this year, is this a sign of a downturn? Of course not. It’s the movies, stupid. There have never been more than four $40m+ openings in May before… this year, it looks like we wlll have five. The money is being spent, it’s just more spread out.
I would argue that this, however, IS the sign of a trend. More big, mid-sized openings, but fewer and fewer mega-openings. Studios need to adjust to this thinking, and as I have written before, they seem to have already started doing that, as there are fewer mega-priced movies – as well as overly expensive mid-price movies, like the $100m+ comedies – this summer than in years past.
These numbers are looking to be in the Madagascar/The Longest Yard range. TS is not looking much different – though in very different initial release patterns, making direct comparisons awkward at best – than T3. For Museum 2, Day 1 is higher than for the first film, but only about 25%, and the original was released in the days before X-Mas, when there is more shopping than movie going. The original came out of its second weekend with $127m… not likely to happen here. Plus, it faces a lot more competition, starting with Up, than the original did against a January release schedule.
Pretty decent numbers at the art house this weekend, including the experimental release pattern on GFE and the Jessica Biel sell that is only partially a Jessica Biel sell.

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57 Responses to “Friday Estimates by Klady – Terminator @ The Museum”

  1. Tofu says:

    You have to wonder if MGM is still tripping over themselves to acquire the rights to the next Terminator after this lukewarm opening and the cancellation of the television series.

  2. IOIOIOI says:

    Is it safe to state that people were torn between going to see Salvation and Museum 2, and are seemingly picking which one to see randomly? It sure sort of seems that way.

  3. ManWithNoName says:

    No, I think it’s safe to say that Terminator = Arnold, and a non-Arnold property just isn’t very interesting. All the talk about fans wanting to see the future war is completely misguided. I’m sure some fans did, but the majority could care less.

  4. Tofu says:

    $100m weekend of the summer. We’ll have to wait for Tr2.
    Revenge of the Fallen & Potter both open on a Wednesday. We shall see.

  5. JamesLaFleur says:

    MWNN: I still disagree, and people want to see the future war. Unfortunately this movie does not show a lot of it, and the reviews have not been great. Blaming the lack of Arnold on this film not making bank seems less likely then two huge movies opening on the same week, and siphoning off each others business.

  6. martin says:

    T4 numbers are right in line with realistic expectations. The last couple weeks expectations went overboard. These are Terminator sequel numbers we’re seeing right now. And it’s a pretty good sequel, not great, but the material by this point is hand-me-down and they did what they could with it. As far “people want to see the future war”. Very few general audience members even know what that means. Terminator represents humans vs. cyborgs, and for the first two movies had a great match of Linda Hamilton vs Arnold Schwarzenegger. You can’t top that. To say that audiences are genuinely looking for specific plot aspects of a new Terminator movie is completely missing the point. No one gives a shit about the whole Terminator storyline, they want to see people fighting robots, violently, and some characters they can empathize with. Some fanboys might care about specific aspects of the Terminator storyline, but that will get you maybe 5 or 10 million at the box office.

  7. ManWithNoName says:

    No doubt *some* people do, but I don’t think enough to warrant the FX cost on continuing the franchise. I haven’t seen T:S yet, so don’t want to kick it while it’s down, but everything I’ve read makes me wonder why they made this movie in the first place. How does it advance the story at all?
    And I definitely think the lack of Arnold hurts the film. It’d be like making Pirates 4 without Johnny Depp. Some franchises are built around specific stars, and Terminator is one of those. Yes, the story was always about saving Sarah and John Connor. But Arnold was integral to that story, both as a villian and hero.

  8. ManWithNoName says:

    What martin said!
    In a way, I envy IO because he’s been getting some great properties made on the big screen tailored specifically to his desires (Watchmen, T:S). But I think Hollywood is starting to realize that there aren’t enough IO’s out there to sustain the massive budgets of these films.

  9. jeffmcm says:

    I’m sure the two movies (Terminator, Museum) have overlapping audiences, but they obviously are not going after identical audiences. One is clearly going for the family market, the other for the action movie demographic.

  10. martin says:

    I agree Jeff, I’m not sure where that comment started above but I think it was pretty dumb. Night at the Museum and Terminator Salvation are presumably very different audiences that are not going to eat into each other’s box office that much. The only thing that argument has going for it is that they’re both big movies. And I suppose 2 big movies in the same weekend competes for business, but in this case much less so when they are such completely different films.

  11. LexG says:

    Whoa, am I the only one who thought DANCE FLICK would do like 25-30 this weekend?
    I dug Terminator: Salvation and am a little perplexed by the mostly negative response to it; McG successfully dropped the candy-colored silliness (for the second movie in a row, actually) and as with Abrams on Star Trek, and UNLIKE Hood and Howard this summer so far, you can feel an enthusiasm and an excitement to be working on this particular material.
    Is it outstanding in any particular way? Not really, but seems like everyone gave T3 a pass for being a solid mid-level action movie and for “being better than it needed to be.” Fair enough, but what’s the big difference this time out? They dropped the silly jokes off 3 and seemed to go for a more T1/Aliens-era Cameron serious tone.
    All the Worthington stuff (the better half of the movie, I’d argue) worked, especially the longish stretch early on when he hooks up with Kyle Reese on through his hooking up with Moon — Boner! — Bloodgood. I don’t know, just saying I enjoyed it more than apparently anyone else. Audience didn’t seem that enthused either… Is summer fatigue already kicking in at week four?

  12. Eric says:

    Maybe it seems like it’s been a crappier May than usual.
    I expected Terminator to do better than this– the marketing has been as good as any that of any other summer movie I’ve seen so far. Maybe it would have been done better in July.

  13. Direwolf says:

    I did not see the first three Terminator movies making me a poor candidate to see this one. But I do go to at least one movie every week (Bloom Brothers this week – meh). Thus, I pay close attention to movie ads on TV. I watch mostly sports. Saw tons of T4 ads and I think they sucked. Impossible to know what the plot was without prior knowledge and the coloring made the whole thing look bleak and depressing. I am not surprised it did not spill over to mega hit status.
    Overall, the top two films will about equal Indiana Jones from a year ago while #3-4 will outdo a year ago so the weekend looks up. But comps are stiffening and TDK from a year ago is coming.

  14. leahnz says:

    TDK from a year ago is coming?

  15. Tofu says:

    Between the two, ROTF & Potter will top TDK. For twice the budget sure, but worldwide both have a shot at TDK’s 1 billion.

  16. jesse says:

    Lex, I’m sort of with you on T4. It wasn’t hugely accomplished by any means, but it’s a lot more interesting than T3 which is essentially a remake of T2 with a more definitive downer of an ending (ballsy, but not much point when tacked on to such a retread). T4 is a pretty cool action movie with some decent story points that could’ve been more fleshed out; inessential but certainly more of a worthy story than T3, even without Arnold, and it surpassed my (admittedly low) expectations. My audience didn’t seem that hostile to it, though — I’m surprised to hear about people openly laughing at it. There were certainly a few times I chuckled to myself at some goofy moment or another, but I wasn’t hearing a lot of hooting derision in general.
    What I found a little weird and off-putting about T4 were the boring performances. I’m so accustomed to watching a middling-to-lame summer blockbuster type movie and saying, yeah, sure, the actors do their best, but there just isn’t interesting material here (like Wolverine, for example). T4 had reasonably interesting material (albeit chockablock with bad exposition dialogue), but the actors either weren’t directed well or just brought nothing to the table. I usually enjoy Christian Bale but Connor as written/performed here was just completely uninteresting. And why cast Bryce Dallas Howard and have her do almost nothing? (Though I could just watch her face, which is really what we were given here. She’s lovely.)
    Don’t give McG too much credit for the last time he dropped the candy-colored silliness, though — We Are Marshall is a terrible, terrible movie. Actually far worse than anything in the Charlie’s Angels pictures. Actually, those movies are totally enjoyable silliness, especially the first one. Really, they’re the ideal franchise for the guy — kept him busy, kept him from ruining something cooler, or from doing awful music videos.

  17. jesse says:

    Oh, also, I’m bummed out overall for the lack of enthusiasm over Brothers Bloom among critics and nerds (save AICN, I guess). It’s not quite as great as Brick but it’s definitely one of the best movies I’ve seen this year: inventive, engaging, just plain delightful. But the whimsy police have flagged it as too cute or too full of itself or trying too hard or blah blah blah — basically, the same completely uninteresting charges leveled against any indie-ish movie with a sense of style and humor put together.

  18. Wrecktum says:

    “Whoa, am I the only one who thought DANCE FLICK would do like 25-30 this weekend?”
    No. The marketplace has been lacking anything to appeal to urban audiences for weeks now, and Dance Flick had a shot to break out. The crowded marketplace will no doubt be blamed, but perhaps the fact that the movie looks like absolute shit might be a contributing factor.

  19. But if Terminator films are built around Arnie, then how come Rise of the Machines only made $150m on the back of positive reviews (as you may forget, T3 has an RT score of 70% to Salvation‘s 34%), which Salvation will probably pass (albeit, probably not by much).
    Although, again, interesting to note that Rise of the Machines made nearly double overseas.

  20. Thank you, Glenn, for remembering that T3 actually got solid reviews back in summer 2003. I rather liked the film then and have no shame admitting it (yes, it’s better than part 4).
    I still think it was beyond stupid for Warner Bros. to open this one a day early. I’d imagine that WB would be more impressed with a $20-$25 million opening day that blew away Night at the Museum 2, as opposed to a $28 million two-day total. Second of all, they once again broke the ‘Godzilla Rule’, which states that if your movie is not ‘good’, do not open it early and give word of mouth a chance to spread before Friday (a lesson they failed to learn with Superman Returns or Matrix Revolutions).

  21. IOIOIOI says:

    Pretty dumb? This coming from people who seeming do not understand, that there are two different kinds of teenagers in the world. There are some who want to see Terminator. Thus explaining why it’s PG-13… DUH! While there are some teenagers that would rather see NatM2. Seriously, if you cannot put two and two together, then fucking go do something else with your life. You fucking hosers.
    MWAN: Not really. My people by DVDs. This is how we roll. While I may have liked Salvation a lot more than most people. It’s still not THE FUTURE WAR. This is an early skirmish if anything, but there’s more of the war story to tell. If they let McG tell it. Which I doubt they will let him because his story idea is ridiculous.

  22. IOIOIOI says:

    Jesse: Yes to the Brothers Bloom, but you can go right to hell with your We Are Marshall hatred. YOU CAN BE DRUG TO HELL! Hold on… [makes a phone call, gets an answer, and finishes the post] you can watch DRAG ME TO HELL! THIS FRIDAY… ONLY IN THEATRES!

  23. tfresca says:

    I actually saw Dance Flick and while it had a few laughs and was better than the most recent slew of “parody” movies it had no story at all and Damon Wayans Jr. lead performance is awful and the direction is nonexistent. Really blank and soulless. I think if they actually got an actor in the lead and gave some semblance of a story here it would have played better. But the thing was obviously made for very little and will absolutely make a profit on video.

  24. The trailer for Dance Flick has two bits that made me laugh so it’s already better than stuff like Meet the Spartans/Superhero Movie/etc.

  25. a_loco says:

    You know, I actually o envy IO. He has the amazing ability to enjoy every movie he expects to like. Imagine! It would be like living without ever being disappointed!

  26. Tofu says:

    Charlie’s Angels was surprisingly hip, and introduced the world to Sam Rockwell. Full Throttle, meanwhile, can’t be classified as a film.
    T3 was a unique abomination, nearly edging on made – for – television parody of the previous installment. T4 works less when compared to its prior installments, and works more when compared to other post-apocalyptic flicks.

  27. IOIOIOI says:

    Loco: you are talking — figuratively — out of your ass. I have repeatedly stated time and time again on this very blog, that expectations are for suckers. If you look back in the archives of this very blog. You will even read a response from that guy whose a spaz, that gets offended by a sentiment I have reiterated time and time again. Thanks for thinking you have me figured out. Imagine what would happen to this blog without Lex and I? You would probably have to deal with your own problems. Fucking hosers.

  28. IOIOIOI says:

    Tofu: you really need to post more. You have some pretty killer insights compared to the standard fare.

  29. So now IO is back on Lex’s side. Aagh, whiplash.
    Tofu, I’ve always said the first Charlie’s Angels was actually quite great fun whereas the sequel was a joyless bore. Nice to see others agree. Although I liked T3. My standards for Salvation are dropping by the day, so by the time it’s released here in two weeks I’ll be expecting a dog’s breakfast and I’ll probably end up thinking it’s alright. hmmm…

  30. jeffmcm says:

    I’ll agree with the idea of Charlie’s Angels 1 being fun (frothy, light, not to be taken seriously) but all I can remember about 2 was an incoherent mishmash and Demi Moore trying to stay relevant.
    IOI, you’re incoherent too.

  31. LexG says:

    A_loco’s question about IO and expectations is actually interesting and maybe worthy of moving over to BYOB at some point; But I’ll cop to the fact that in MY experience, there are certain configurations of actor, director and subject matter that, you know what? I know damn well I’m going to like it before I see it.
    I keep an open mind to most things, and there’s nothing more exciting than seeing a movie and having it exceed ALL expectations and just blowing you away. And yes, there are movies where a great director or star kinda tanks it; Especially prolific guys like Soderbergh or Woody Allen or Eastwood or the late Altman are bound to hit a clunker now and again. Even Scorsese has some (interesting) movies that at the end of the day just don’t quite work.
    But when one of my favorite directors pairs with one of my favorite actors on subject matter that excites me– say, crime, gangster, action, street-wise cop stuff in my case — I can all but GUARANTEE I will come out ranking it “great” or close to it. Michael Mann directing a gangster movie with Johnny Depp? I can almost skip seeing it because I know right now, that is to me a 3.5 star movie. If it was Cruise instead of Depp, it’d be a four-star movie. Taking of Pelham looks like Tony Scott in mainstream mode, which I like, and I love Denzel and Travolta. I can tell you a month out I’ll rank it a solid B-plus. A month before their respective releases last year, I knew to a 99.9% certainty I’d rate DARK KNIGHT either 3.5 or 4 stars, or that W. would be an amusing if inconsequential, HBO-movieish 2.5.
    Because it IS possible to know a director or star’s rhythms so wholly inside and out, for people who are ENTHUSIASTIC about film or their favorites, to practically have the movie in their head before ever setting foot in a theater.
    Once in a blue moon this backfires: I know expected AMERICAN GANGSTER to be way more of a frenzied, adrenalized, Scarfacian Scott Brothers blast of energy instead of a gauzy and sepia remake of season 1 of The Wire; Likewise, years back I went into CARLITO’S WAY expecting SCARFACE 2… and then of course there’s PHANTOM MENACE.
    In all cases, I’m enough of an earnest douche that I’ll go back and see it two, maybe three times, adjusting expectations and taking it on its own terms if I’m that much of an apologist for the people involved. I know that concept would repulse a “never see it twice” type like Pauline Kael, or… was it Siskel who liked to go into a screening room and not even KNOW what the movie was going to be? Those approaches are certainly valid, but they kind of reek of anthropological, passive curiosity rather than film-fanatic enthusiasm.
    Anyway, getting way the fuck back on point, if you told me right now that Tony Scott and Tom Cruise were reteaming for a 1983-set, synth-scored 3-hour action movie about the drug wars co-starring Kristen Stewart as his daughter and Anne Hathaway as his mistress and shot by Mauro Fiore with a 10-minute prologue supervised by Michael Bay? I’d tell you right this second with 100% accuracy that would be my favorite movie of that year, and actually sitting through it is almost a formality of confirmation.

  32. Tofu says:

    Thanks IO.
    Feedback on Salvation is damned interesting, since no critique is quite alike.
    My view is that its ultimate failing was the presence of only two acts.
    Act 1: Journey to The Resistance
    Act 2: Skynet! The Musical
    This comes about due to being jam-packed with chase scene after chase scene, filled with one new baddie to the next, further differentiating itself from the prior installments in which a singular villain is ‘developed’.
    The flick makes up for its limitations by equally balancing Connor, Reese, and Wright. Given a third act, these characters could have been memorable. Instead, they’re well costumed action figures, awaiting a sequel.
    This is not a star making role for Worthington, as he appears to be a figure in need of someone to play off of. If he ever finds his Robert Redford / Paul Newman counter-part, he’ll be in demand by actual audiences.
    The fact that Reese played a major role at all was a surprising delight, since the marketing only played up Connor & Wright, while going even further by robbing Wright’s big reveal. Due to the initial ending leak? Perhaps, but still a questionable decision on behalf of the marketing department. My mind still reels trying to guess my reaction if that particular tweest had remained secreted away until opening day.
    Yelchin’s turn as Reese is bittersweet, as we know the characters fate, and yet warm up to him all the same as a survivor that can’t even get his radio to work.
    Imagine following Reese (and Wright if you must) for the better part of ninety minutes, with Connor as a may-or-may-not-exist legendary background figure. The big reveal of Arnie (further spoiled by numerous reviews) occurs as is, BUT THEN SUDDENLY Connor/Bale appears out of nowhere to the rescue, with no prior appearance, marketing, or audience knowledge that C. Bale was even casted.
    That would be THE crowd pleasing moment of 2009, and would have folks demanding a continuation, as compared to now where they’re just wondering if the next one will be larger or not.

  33. leahnz says:

    tofu, spoiler warnings wouldn’t go amiss in the box office thread!
    don’t worry about worthington, he’s got ‘avatar’
    (i ADORE ‘carlito’s way’)

  34. Apart from the director and the cast and the Michael Bay bit that movie Lex describes sounds amazing. I actually mean that.

  35. Lex, have you seen King of New York? I’m sure it’s right up your alley (I thought it was excellent too).

  36. Stella's Boy says:

    I found T4 to be very so-so. Worthington and Yelchin are pretty good, but Bale and Howard are not. The emoting by the latter two is very poor at times and quite frequently Bale struck me as not giving the role his all. Overall the effects are great and the action fine, but McG’s directing is still rough around the edges. I don’t know if I can properly articulate this, but I’ll try. Many times a scene would begin or end with a character heard off screen explaining something, and it seemed like it was added late in the game. It felt awkward; the work of a director not quite comfortable putting together a coherent movie of this scale. A minor complaint, but something I noticed at least a few times. I was never bored, but that feels like damning with faint praise. It never really wowed me or made me sit up in my seat with anticipation, the things I look for in summer spectacles. I feel like I will have trouble remembering it a week from now, if not sooner. Just OK, no more or less.

  37. Stella’s Boy…
    I’m glad I’m not the only one who noticed the insane amount of ADR. In fact, the film resembled a childrens’ cartoon with all the expository audio to explain clearly obvious onscreen events (“It worked!” or “We have to get out of here!” or “If we don’t get in there, we won’t be able to stop them.”), stuff that you hear all the time in 1980s action cartoons. Much of the time, the characters’ mouths weren’t even moving, so you know this was a late in the game choice to (theoretically) make the story crystal clear to young kids that shouldn’t have been in the theater in the first place.
    I’d be more than willing to bet that this was another Incredible Hulk situation, where one of the distributing studios pressured/forced McG to make a complete action-drenched theatrical cut, with no plot or character development. And once again said director agreed, cutting copious relevant footage out of the film, only to get the blame from audiences and critics when the final product was an action-packed but hollow movie. Normally I’d blame Columbia (the worldwide distributor), but but I know Warner Bros. got burned by the R-rated, character-driven, and nearly action-less Watchmen, so maybe they violated their apparent hands-off policy on this one. Like Hulk 2.0, there are 40 minutes of deleted footage that will likely reveal a smarter, more character-driven film when they are viewed on DVD/Blu Ray in 5 months.

  38. IOIOIOI says:

    KC: it’s not about being on his side, but it’s an observational fact. What would you other posters be able to do without your WITTY OBSERVATIONS about Lex and I? Seriously, that guy whose a spaz does nothing else on this blog but question me and occasionally Lex. So excuse me for not taking a side, but wishing some of you would figuratively shut the fuck up about Lex and I.
    Scott: I do not buy the hollow movie part of your post, but I do agree a lot of Salvation hit the cutting room floor. It may have been Warners or Columbia, but this film should have an epic director’s/extended cut. If they decided to give it one. They should: Moonblood good got naked in this film for a reason! I demand to see that nudity!

  39. Stella's Boy says:

    Thank you Scott. You explained it much better than I did. That’s exactly how I saw it.

  40. gradystiles says:

    Eric, I have to disagree with you about the T4 marketing. Unlike Star Trek, the distributors did nothing to appeal to people who weren’t already fans of the franchise. Take a look at the trailers and TV spots and tell me how anyone not deeply versed in the Terminator ‘mythology’ could discern any coherent story.
    It was all mood, gloom, and ‘darkness,’ with flashes of action. The trailers gave away the big twist in the movie, and then the spots tried to hide that twist until the last week or so. It just felt like a confused, jumbled campaign that thought it could get away with being emo or something.

  41. Amblinman says:

    I think the biggest letdown of T4, for me, was McG blowing what everyone was waiting for: a badass cyborg-on-Terminator moment between Worthington and a machine a la Schwarzenegger and Patrick in the mall in T2.
    Beyond all that, after seeing the movie, I’m kind of perplexed as to what the point was. Yes, make money, I get that. But why bother making this an almost prequel by leading up to the creation of the T-800? I felt like I was watching a crappy version of Back To The Future 2. Will the next film feature the lead up to time travel? And then the trilogy ends with Robert Patrick squirting out of a tube of toothpaste and killing Bryce Dallas Howard? Just get on with it. Reboot, fine. Stop reminding me there were two much better films that are pretty old now.
    I could have lived without all the shout outs to the first two flims as a matter of fact. OMG YOU COULD BE MINE! HAHAHA! F-you, McG. I get it. We all get it. We all loved those movies too. Now give us something other than Matrix-squid-terminator-velociraptors.
    I did love the ending, though.
    “Give him my heart.”
    “Ooo – good call! Someone get me the one rusty knife we have STAT!”

  42. a_loco says:

    IO, I’m glad that you remember I’m Canadian, but you seem to forget that I’m a consistent defender of Lex. I also don’t want you to leave, I find your posts entertaining in their absurdity.
    Lex: I agree with you in that you might know what to expect from a film with a given actor, blah blah blah, but IO likes films because he wants to like them, not because he knows the material inside out.

  43. Minor spoilers-
    The Guns N Roses bit is apparently fleshed out in the prequel comic. Apparently Kate searched high and low for that CD because she knew that John had fond memories of it as it was what he was listening to before everything went to hell. But yes, some of the call backs were every bit as annoying as the ones in Star Trek. When Bale has to look at the camera and say ‘I’ll be back’, I swear he looks like he wants to cry in embarrassment/shame.

  44. Eric says:

    Grady, that could be, my reaction to the marketing apparently wasn’t universal. I’m not a Terminator enthusiast per se but I’m familiar enough with the material that I wasn’t lost by the trailers. Maybe I (and Warners?) took that familiarity for granted.

  45. Amblinman says:

    Scott, I appreciate that they may have laid the groundwork to indulge in that awful callback, but it doesn’t reduce the awfulness. Same with “I’ll be back” same with Arnie showing up. In fact, I’m somewhat thankful the movie sucked because if I were really enjoying it, the proceedings would have come to a crashing halt the minute we got to the Wayans Bros movie introduction to Arnold. It was an awful, awful choice.
    On another note, I loathe that the studio didn’t see fit to preserve Marcus Wright’s secret in their advertising. The reveal in the trailers and commercials doesn’t even add anything, it’s just sorta there. God forbid any portion of seeing the film in a theater is preserved for seeing it in a theater.

  46. IOIOIOI says:

    Loco stated; “Lex: I agree with you in that you might know what to expect from a film with a given actor, blah blah blah, but IO likes films because he wants to like them, not because he knows the material inside out.”
    Bullshit. Seriously, what proof do you have? Please: point it out to me. If not, you can be like those guys who are either a spaz or an asshole. Do you really want to be one of those guys?

  47. Joe Leydon says:

    Not to obsess on it — because, trust me, I didn’t really care for the film — but it looks like Ghosts of Girlfriends Past will top out at $50 million at the very least. Should this qualify it as, if not a home run, then a double? Maybe even a triple?

  48. LexG says:

    Re: Girlfriends, 17 Again and Obsessed all still being in the top 10 and chugging along:
    This really is a weird time of year. All the insiders and execs and prognosticators love the summer season because of the big, big home-run blockbusters, but I always think it’s the most boring time of year. Sure, you rush out and see Star Trek or Terminator, but after that, there aren’t many “doubles” or B-movies or potboilers or other Not Ready For Prime-Time star vehicles floating about as counterprogramming, especially for older audiences.
    In March or April, it seems like six studio movies come out every weekend, ranging from slasher remakes to Jason Statham to minor Wahlberg or Phoenix flicks… Maybe not the kind of movies that excite the big industry folk, but since I dig B-movies and like the variety, THAT’s a more exciting time for me. And shit is in and out of theaters in two weeks because there’s so much competition. In the spring or early fall, there wouldn’t even be ROOM to let a “Ghost of…” or “Obsessed” stretch its legs.
    But contrary to popular belief, I never think the summer season is that “frenzied” or overstacked. I’m just an everyday moviegoer who pays to see stuff on my own dime, and from May through late July, seems like I see one, maybe two movies on the weekend and that’s it. In December I had to see three, four things a week just to keep up, and stuff still fell through the cracks. Shit, I was seeing more (bad) movies in January and February than I’ve seen in May or plan to see next Month.

  49. IOIOIOI says:

    So you like the Fall/Winter movie season because you have to keep up? You have to keep up with the peeps? Huh. I hate that time of year. It’s just dead. The sooner it gets warmer. The more fun I have at the theatre.

  50. Hallick says:

    “Charlie’s Angels was surprisingly hip, and introduced the world to Sam Rockwell.”
    Apparently because “The Green Mile” and “Galaxy Quest” were so effing rude the year before when they just brought him along without so much as a hi there….

  51. Tofu says:

    It launched him from being a character actor to a name. Not that his performances prior were lacking.

  52. Hallick says:

    “It launched him from being a character actor to a name. Not that his performances prior were lacking.”
    I understood what you meant. But I don’t think it did what you say it did. To the world at large, he never really became a “name” in that sense. Mention him in most settings and the people will say, “Who?”. And sure, if you go with, “he’s that one guy in Charlie’s Angels”, a lot of them will reply, “oh yeah!”. But then a lot of people would get it just the same if you said, “he played the psycho dude in The Green Mile”.

  53. IOIOIOI says:

    Hal, you know The Green Mile was witnessed by 15 people. Galaxy Quest may be a better analogy to make, but Rockwell became Rockwell dancing like a creepy fuck in Charlie’s Angels. That’s the moment I took notice of the motherfucker, and have continue to be a fan of him from that VERY MOMENT!

  54. Joe Leydon says:

    “Hal, you know The Green Mile was witnessed by 15 people.”
    Pssst! IO! C’mere for a sec. OK, read this and weep:
    The Green Mile: $136 million US/$286 million worldwide.
    Charlie’s Angels: $125 million US/$264 million worldwide.
    You’re welcome.

  55. IOIOIOI says:

    Joe: you really do come at this like a guy from the past. Seriously, no one knew he was in Green Mile. They did know he was in Charlie’s Angels. Nice try. Please do not try again. It only hurts my fingers to type back such a cutting and snide reply.

  56. The Big Perm says:

    No one knows who Rockwell is NOW, certainly Charlie’s Angles didn’t put him on the map.
    I believe Joe just threw down some knowledge…which bounces off IO like bullets on Superman.

  57. Joe Leydon says:


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