The Hot Blog Archive for July, 2006

Box Office Hell – 7/28



Sex In Cinema… Not

“It’s really not that people are in desperate need of more sex in their summer movies, but it does seem to speak to a narrowing of ideas. And moreover, it seems that the relationship between the R and the PG-13 is getting more like the NC-17 and the R


40,000 Comments (Previously, 35,000 Comments)

I noticed that the comments on the blog were approaching 35,000 a couple of weeks ago. Then I noticed that I personally was responsible for over 1000 of those comments.
So I have now waited until there were 35,000 comments aside from my own. And just now, we hit that oddball landmark. (With this entry, we are 87 entries away from 1000… but I think I’ll let my verbosity birthday slip by.)
Just a note to say thanks for participating.
For me, the joy of being on the web has to do with the interaction with the readers. It is all too easy to forget, living in the media bubble, that we are the arbiters only of our own opinions. If we can agree, disagree, and accept that it is all part of a valuable communication, we are all the better for it.
I do regret the one entry in the history of this blog that was erased… on August 19, 2005. A Day That Will Live in Infamy. I should have just left it alone. What’s one dumb spoiler in 35,000 comments?
And so it goes. Play on, players.
12:07p – And of course, an edit already… looking for the first entry, I realized that I completely forgot about the old site of The Hot Blog, which is still there. There were 284 posts there and 5089 comments (excluding mine). That blog started on September 5, 2004 with “Do I Need a Blog?”. So I guess this post should really be called 40,000 comments… and now I feel like I should have waited for 50,000 to mark an anniversary.



I got one of those letters this morning


I Really Hope I'm Wrong, But….

I saw a clip from Infamous, the long delayed Warner Indie take on Truman Capote. And all I can say is, it looks like the exact imitation and the style of film that is my worst nightmare of a Truman Capote movie.
Maybe Toby Jones’ performance (twice refered to in the ET “trailer” as having the voice of a woman) and appearance (he looks like a turtle with a wig) will grow on my over 90 minutes. I sure hope so. Because the preview made the whole thing look laughable… and not in a good way.


The One You've Been Waiting For

Snakes On A TRAIN trailer


Can You Feel It?

We are moving into The Dead Zone for movie news.
August is the month of Toronto Film Festival announcements and changes in employment stature. And that


FGME Brought To Down To Earth?

If I am going to write about the success, I guess I have to write about the disasters…
Pirates of The Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest came in a stunning second all-time this Monday, the record being third week Monday non-holiday. The record of $4,308,824 was held by Spider-Man. P2 missed by a daunting $4613.00.
New Disney movie chief Oren Aviv was unable to speak


Crash Participants Apparently Suffering Standard Operating Procedures

I was so looking forward to reading a New York Times movie business story that just plain told the story


Ink Stained Wretch Fight Tonight!!!

An interesting kind of double team from Traditional Media, fighting for the value of the internet.
First, there is Cathy Seipp in the L.A. Times, writing in an Op-Ed piece titled,


Pictures On A MF-ing Blog

I have no idea of whether these are remotely worthy of conversation, but…
Package 1
Package 2
This image was left out of the package, presumably for focus issues, though I like the way it looks. In any case, this is the moment when Sam Jackson brought Carl Lee Hailey to the party…


The Foreigners

Variety reports
Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest raked it in over the weekend, bowing in 11 new markets to add $62 million to its coffers.
Pic, which has now grossed $217 overseas, became the 20th Buena Vista Intl. title to cross the $200 million barrier abroad and the 10th to plunder more than $500 million worldwide.
Perhaps the only real surprise over the weekend would have come had “Pirates” been bested in any of its new territories, which included Japan, Mexico and Brazil as well as a host of smaller ones (Hungary, Portugal, Poland) and some challenging terrain for Hollywood pics (India).
There are still major openings to come: Pic has yet to open in Spain, Germany, Italy and France.
In head-to-head square-offs around the globe, “Pirates” forced Warner Bros.’ No. 2 finisher of the frame, Superman Returns, to walk the plank every time.
With no major openings on its side, Warner Bros.’ Superman Returns flew in with $16.3 million from 5,900 prints in 40 markets. International cume is $110 million.
UIP’s Over the Hedge and BVI’s Cars continued Hollywood’s roll abroad with high-profile CG-animated fare: Both crossed the $100 million mark.


What Defines The Quality Of A Director?

In another thread, a comparison about “what makes one director worse than another” started up. And so, for all of you… the question.
Can you compare Brett Ratner, who makes big, fat studio monstrosities, and Kevin Smith or Jim Jarmusch, who make personally driven films? Is it how the movie looks or how the movie feels? Is it the effect or the performances?
How do you make the comparison


A Pirate-Free 2006 Record

In spite of what feels like a soft opening for Monster House, some acknowledgement should be given to Sony’s record-setting eighth $20 million-plus opener in one year, cracking the previous record held by Fox.
What is interesting is that it, like Fox’s record, comes at a time when a $20 million opening gets written off by a lot of people as mediocre.
But like the most $100 million movies in a year in an era where the blockbuster really starts at $200 million, it is a major achievement and should be touted. If just anyone could do it, everyone would.
There have been only 28 total $20 million openings this year. 8 by Sony, 5 from Paramount/DW Animation, 4 each from Fox & Universal, 3 from Warner Bros, 2 from Buena Vista, 1 each from Lionsgate & Dimension. (Sony would love to include The Benchwarmers‘ $19.7 million launch and Lionsgate Hostel


Sunday Estimates by Klady

The FGME (fug-me?) continues to break a record a day. According to estimates, sfter 17 days, it is the Fastest Grossing Movie Ever by $21.6 million, increasing its lead over Star Wars: Episode Three – Revenge of the Sith by about $8 million in the third weekend


The Hot Blog

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