Movie News Wrap Up: February 8th, 2009

Yes, we're a day late this week - blame it on flakey internet connections - moving on...

This week:

Brad Pitt plays Ball;  Mangold looks for thrills; does Nottingham have its Marian? Mickey Rourke attaches himself to St Vincent - with an old friend.

Box Office

Audiences were really into He's Just Not That Into You. The all-star movie featuring Ben Affleck, Jennifer Aniston and Scarlett Johansson grossed an impressive $27.5 million showing that female powered movies keep making money at the box office.

Liam Nesson's Taken continues to impress with a slight 18% drop with a gross of $20 million.

Coraline grossed a solid $16 million showing that stop motion animation isn't dead. The really good news is that The Pink Panther 2 crashed and burned managing a poor $12 million weekend. Considering that the first movie made $10 million more on its debut - it looks like we may have seen the last of Steve Martin in a trench coat.

Paul Blart: Mall Cop showed incredible legs arresting another $11 million for a $97 million total. It looks like the makers of Push will be kissing franchise hopes goodbye following a pretty low $10 million gross. DVD and foreign money is the films only hope.

Slumdog Millionaire continues to do well with more awards at the BAFTA's and a gross of $77 million it looks like this little film is a success on all levels.

1. Brad Pitt will re-team with his Ocean's director Steven Soderbergh for Moneyball. The film which is based on the book Moneyball: The Art of Winning an Unfair Game followsi:

"Billy Beane, the general manager of the Oakland Athletics who used a sophisticated computer analysis system to piece together a team that regularly contended for the World Series despite a payroll dramatically lower than such big-market rivals as the New York Yankees."

The film will replace Cleo as Soderbergh's next film following Hugh Jackman's drop out due to scheduling conflicts. Cleo will now shoot next year.

Source: Variety

2. James Mangold is attached to direct an untitled thriller for Bold Films.

According to Variety:

"The script, which is being penned by Sasha Jenson and Casey La Scala is based on the true story of a pair of New Orleans lawyer brothers who took on a multinational oil company and its heavyweight legal teams to rep the rights of the families of an oil rig that sank in a typhoon. "

It all sounds a bit generic.

Source: Variety

3. It looks like Cate Blanchett will be romanced by Russell Crowe in Nottingham. Mark Strong, who signed up to play Sir Guy of Gisbourne told The Telegraph:

"I think Cate Blanchett is set to take the Maid Marian part. She is a wonderful actress and it would make it a much classier film if she was in it."

Take that Sienna Miller!

Seems like a done deal.

Source: Telegraph

4. Mickey Rourke just gets busier and busier. The comeback kid who just nabbed a BAFTA will rejoining his Johnny Handsome director Walter Hill for St. Vincent. According to Variety:

"St. Vincent, scripted by Cameron Young, centers on a hit man returning to his former New York City neighborhood to finish off the botched killing of an informant. He's then forced to masquerade as a priest and finds himself taking the confessions of his target."

Hill used to be a director to watch and Rourke is on a comeback trail that seems to be very long - with Iron Man 2 (something he said he was doing last night at the BAFTA's) and a script that he's been working on for 18 years on the horizon along with Stallone's The Expendables it can be said that Rourke is truly back.

Source: Variety

That's it for now. See you at the movies!

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