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David Poland

By David Poland

Klady's Friday Estimates – May 2

What can one say?
Not quite an Iron Man start, more than the X2 start. Only the 2 “first weekend of summer” Spideys and Downey in suit will have opened the summer stronger. And it’s as much that slot as many other things.
Yes, the issue of legs will be an issue. But so far. Twilight is the only movie in history to have an opening day of more than $31 million to not get to $200 million domestic. (There are 19 such films in total. And btw, Watchmen remains the only film in history to open over $20 million to not get to $110 million.)
And this will be the worst Matthew McConaughey rom-com opening since he cracked that nut in 2001 with a $13.5m start for The Wedding Planner. None of those successes have been in the summer. Lesson learned.

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32 Responses to “Klady's Friday Estimates – May 2”

  1. Direwolf says:

    I avoided the crowds and hit Gomorra at the little village theater in Wilmette, IL. I found it fascinating and at the end when the brief history of the Comorra was was mentioned the movie’s impact on me grew. I liked the way it was shot and edited but I was a bit confused about the plot and who was at war with whom. That said, I think the point was to place the violence into a bit of a random perspective to show how all encompassing it is.

  2. bulldog68 says:

    Re your watchmen comment dave, it’s also holds the dubious honor of being the only movie to open overf $50m and fail to double its opening weekend gross.

  3. bulldog68 says:

    “overf” should be “over”.

  4. Hallick says:

    Has anybody seen “The Limits of Control” yet? I was watching X-Men 3 last night, and Halle Berry’s tribute to Jim Jarmusch’s hair reminded me that it was out there now.

  5. jeffmcm says:

    Another week, another template.

  6. Hallick says:

    “And this will be the worst Matthew McConaughey rom-com opening since he cracked that nut in 2001 with a $13.5m start for The Wedding Planner. None of those successes have been in the summer. Lesson learned.”
    Beside the skeezy Matthew McConaughy factor, given its theme, isn’t this the sort of movie that should be coming out around the holiday season and not the dawn of summer? And topping that even, isn’t this the sort of movie Lifetime or the ABC Family network would be offering up come December?

  7. LexG says:

    I might see Limits of Control just because that dude from MIAMI VICE and CASINO ROYALE and 24 and MANDERLAY is completely awesome.
    Here I thought he was some new, recent find who just started popping up in awesome movies… But that dude’s apparently been around since the mid 80s? I couldn’t believe it. I thought he was like 38.

  8. movieman says:

    I actually didn’t mind “Ghosts.” Garner is so insanely likable, she makes everyone around her look good (even MM–at least in the movie’s second half when he stops behaving like a total jerk). Considering the fever pitch of excitement at my promo screening on Tuesday nite (they literally turned hundreds away: go figure), I was actually thinking this was gonna open a lot bigger.
    Haven’t caught up with “Wolverine” yet; the Wednesday A.M. Cleveburg “screening” simply wasn’t practical, so I’ll just wait til midweek to catch up. Not being a fan of any of the previous “X Men”s doesn’t inspire a lot of confidence, though.
    I did see “Star Trek” this morning and was suitably impressed. The major reason the film works as well as it does is the spot-on casting. I’d be shocked if it doesn’t turn Chris Pine (yes, Chris Pine) into a major star. Was also amused at how Abrams managed to sneak in a little of his “Lost”-ian space/time continuum gobbleygook although it actually makes more sense in “ST” than it does on TV every Wednesday nite. I’d call it the best “Trek” flick yet if that didn’t sound like I was damning it with faint praise. It’s a terrific popcorn movie that deserves to cross the $200-million threshold; and launch a brand-new franchise, of course.

  9. leahnz says:

    maybe i’ll yet form a brigade

  10. Jeffrey Boam's Doctor says:


  11. jeffmcm says:

    That’s hyperbolic. I like that their implication is that all across America, people saw that AICN was on a boycott and said, ‘I was gonna go see The Limits of Control, but fuck Harry Knowles, let’s see Wolverine!”

  12. Jeffrey Boam's Doctor says:


  13. Joe Leydon says:


  14. Lota says:

    Terra was really a great picture in comparison to Wolverine, and Wolvie will make more money than it deserves.
    What’s new.

  15. Aris P says:

    As much as I am thrilled that the new ST might herald a new wave of well-crafted and successful Trek films, when I hear people say “it’s the best Trek film”, how can I take anything seriously anymore? Really, is it better that Khan? On what grounds? Are the actors more likable? Is the new villain more memorable? Is it b/c VFX in 2009 are more advanced than they were in 1982? Does it have more action?
    Let’s calm down with the comparisons, not to mention the over-exaggeration. It might be a good film, or a fantastic film, and I hope it makes a billion dollars — but it’s star trek only in name. It’s a completely new take, and therefore it can’t be compared to the films that starred 60 year old actors from a quarter century ago.
    I don’t care how good it is — it’s not the best trek.

  16. alynch says:

    I’m kind of disappointed that Keaton’s film didn’t bring in more people. It got some nice reviews.

  17. NickF says:

    LOL Jeffrey and Joe.

  18. chris says:

    Love it when folks have afirm opinion on a film they apparently haven’t seen, Aris. To answer your questions:
    Better story-telling, more humor, does more interesting things with the characters (utilizing things the audience can be expected to know), has more style, Nimoy’s acting has become sublime
    No (Khan is better)
    No (It’s not about the FX)
    Yes, way more

  19. leahnz says:

    if this trend of ‘listing answers without questions attached’ continues i’m going to need a bigger thinking cap

  20. Hallick says:

    “I don’t care how good it is — it’s not the best trek.”
    Wrath of Khan was a new take in its own right (and time), so how does being so new disqualify the 2009 film from possibly being the best Trek film yet?

  21. IOIOIOI says:

    The best trek is the one that makes you think, and not the ones where Kirk needlessly screams. Put that in your pipes and smoke IT ALL! SMOKE SMOKE SMOKIDDY SMOKE!

  22. That debut for Terra isn’t quite as bad as Delgo, but still… ouch.
    I wonder what publication will be the first to use “WOLVERINE SLASHES COMPETITION” as their headline. Sometimes there are movies that just write their own, isn’t there?
    Ghosts of Girlfriends Past probably didn’t do as well as other Maconaughey movies because it looked like complete and utter shite. Of all the classic tales to be twisted into a rom-com, A Christmas Tale is not the most enticing. In fact it’s kind of weird and creepy. Why are we meant to like Matthew’s character?

  23. LYT says:

    There is no such thing as Kirk needlessly screaming — provided Kirk is Shatner.
    We’ll have to see about the new guy.

  24. Chucky in Jersey says:

    Matthew McConaughey was once crowned “Sexiest Man Alive” by People magazine. That usually if not always spells doom for a career.
    “The Wedding Planner” was sold as a J.Lo movie and became a hit that way.

  25. I think Johnny Depp, George Clooney, Denzel Washington and Brad Pitt would beg to differ. And it’s not like Gibson’s (acting) career went down the gurgler for a long time after his ’85 “crowning”. Same goes for Tom Cruise (whose still very much popular).
    Stop implanting your bizarre theories on things that have absolutely nothing to do with it. Was it People’s fault that JFK Jr died? Nothing quite spells doom for a career like that!

  26. Hallick says:

    And People’s 2008 winner: Hugh Jackman. So the 2005 winner got beat this weekend by last year’s champion. So it goes in sports…
    If you look at the list of all the winners, there’s no curse at all to speak of (nothing like the Best New Artist curse at the Grammys – then again, Bob Newhart was the Best New Artist of 1961):
    1985 – Mel Gibson (did himself in MUCH later)
    1986 – Mark Harmon (has a hit TV show)
    1987 – Harry Hamlin (?)
    1988 – John F. Kennedy Jr. (dead)
    1989 – Sean Connery (retired after plenty of work)
    1990 – Tom Cruise (did himself in a little)
    1991 – Patrick Swayze (had a comeback, but dying)
    1992 – Nick Nolte (WTF!?! did anybody SMELL the guy?
    1993 – Richard Gere (w/Cindy Crawford for Sexiest Couple – divorced 2 years later)
    1994 – no winner
    1995 – Brad Pitt (oh yeah, he’s hurtin’)
    1996 – Denzel Washington (feel the pain, Dee!)
    1997 – George Clooney (movie career finally caught on right after)
    1998 – Harrison Ford (no harm done – no good movies…)
    1999 – Richard Gere again
    2000 – Brad Pitt again
    2001 – Pierce Brosnan
    2002 – Ben Affleck (iffy track record)
    2003 – Johnny Depp
    2004 – Jude Law (Jude Law’s his own problem)
    2005 – Matthew McConaughey
    2006 – George Clooney again
    2007 – Matt Damon
    2008 – Hugh Jackman

  27. the keoki says:

    $87 mil for the weekend is what Fox is reporting. Let the spin begin. Where does it top out? How big is the drop next weekend? It’s gotta drop at least 60% next weekend right?

  28. bulldog68 says:

    Wolverine made me nostalgic for Brett Ratner. Imagine that. At least IMO Ratner tried to be faithful to the Xmen, still giving us a story about what it means to be an mutant, how it feels, how divided they are about whether their powers are a blessing or curse, which I always felt was one the underlying themes of the xmen. This movie had me looking for the coin slots and the start button. It was empty, vacuous, a shell of a movie. It wasn’t even paint-by-numbers. Summer 2009: 0 for 1.

  29. Blackcloud says:

    “Stop implanting your bizarre theories on things that have absolutely nothing to do with it.”
    What’s next, Kami, you gonna ask the sky to stop being blue, grass being green, or the sun yellow?

  30. NickF says:

    I don’t think that complaint is completely valid here bulldog. Wolverine takes before mutants are exposed or it’s considered a problem. Why would a bunch of Mercs care about such an issue when their such an insular group? Xavier hasn’t even formed his school yet which can become a haven for their kind and put their plight out in the public.

  31. bulldog68 says:

    To NickF: In my mind, the fact that Stryker was engaging in the exercise of ridding the world of mutants and making one super mutant lends itself to that issue. It would be stupid of me to expect that a Wolverine movie would be a thesis on mutant psychology, but the very rounding up of these mutants, some children, could have made for a very interesting story and give you plenty of action to boot. Wouldn’t you have loved to have seen the mercs round up fellow mutants and be put through the paces, both action and emotional, I mean after all, Blob and Wraith seemed torn by it.
    Its ORIGINS for christ sake, give us the origin of the self conflicts as well, and not just predictable fight scenes that really showed nothing new, and in fact, were a notch down from the previous Xmen movies.

  32. Crow T Robot says:

    Just wondering, Dave…
    Does Wolverine’s big weekend tell us anything new about internet piracy?
    – It is a follow-up (sort of) to a $100 million weekend blockbuster. Expectations were big.
    – It’s safe to say everyone who regularly pirates movies online probably grabbed it.
    – Yet the opening weekend box office was big enough to greenlight its own follow-up a day or so later.
    So did I miss an entry this week or what? I thought surely this would lead to a bigger conversation for our resident Box Office John Nash.

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