This week:

G.I. Joe shoots up the top spot at the box office; Jennifer Aniston goes to prison; Gunsmoke rides again; The Losers begin and Renny Harlin goes to Russia.

Box Office

G.I. Joe: The Rise Of Cobra shot up the top spot with an estimated $56 million over the weekend. The film had a lot of bad buzz surrounding its release so this is seen as something of a coup. The $175 million price budget means that the film will need to do well abroad and sell a lot of toys before we see a sequel.

Meryl Streep shows that age isn’t a factor in her popularity as she scored her third $20 million-plus opener in three years with Julie and Julia. The film took $21.5 million over the weekend. If the film has the same legs as The Devil Wears Prada and Mama Mia then it could hit the $100 million mark.

Jerry Bruckheimer’s G-Force was third with a weekend take of $8.5 million giving the family film a strong $84 million total.

Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince banked more than $8 million giving the mega franchise film a huge $273 million total.

People just don’t seem to be finding Funny People funny. The Judd Apatow/ Adam Sandler film took just under $8 million this weekend. It’ll never see it’s $75 million production budget back on US screens.

The Ugly Truth banked another $7 million giving the R-rated comedy $69 million so far.

The Perfect Getaway failed to find an audience this weekend and made $6 million. It was cheap to make and should find an audience on DVD.

(500) Days Of Summer earned $4.3 million on just over 800 screens.

Orphan and Aliens in the Attic both took just under $4 million.

Movie News

1.  Jennifer Aniston will star in Goree Girls. The film is a true story of a female country band in a Texas prison in the 1940s

John Lee Hancock recently completed a draft of the script by Margaret Nagle.

Aniston will also produce.

I’m pretty sure that I’m not in the target demographic for this film.

Source: Variety

2. Hollywood is moving ahead on a new film version of long running western series Gunsmoke.

CBS Films has hired National Treasure: Book of Secrets writer Gregory Poirier to write the script for the film.

Gunsmoke holds the record for being the longest running scripted television drama.

There’s a shock – a film version of a classic TV show. I wonder what’s next for the remake machine.

Source: The Hollywood Reporter

3. Principal photography has started on Dark Castle Entertainment’s The Losers.

The film is based on the comic book  DC Comics’ Vertigo off-shoot. The adaptation is being directed by Stomp the Yard director Sylvain White.

The film stars Watchmen‘s Jeffrey Dean Morgan, Star Trek’s Zoë Saldana and The Fantastic Fours’ Chris Evans.

The film is shooting in Puerto Rico.

The Losers opens in April 2010

Source: Latino Review

4. Die Hard 2 director Renny Harlin will direct a currently untitled drama based on events that took place during the five-day Russia-Georgia battle.

“The drama involves an American journalist and his cameraman who get caught in the crossfire in Georgia and then have to deal with their obligation to be impartial journalists.”

Sounds like an interesting change of pace for the director.

Source: Variety

That’s it for now. See you at the movies.