Unstoppable is stoppable; Dune's future is looking bleak; Paramount readies some high-profile films; Warner Bros. want Tales From The Gangster Squad; Courtney Ford needs True Blood; will Merlin have magic? Women kick butt in The Athena Project; Robert De Niro, Michelle Pfeiffer, Hilary Swank and Ashton Kutcher get ready for New Year's Eve; and lots more.
Last week’s champion Megamind and the Denzel Washington flick Unstoppable (review here), directed by Tony Scott, fought it out for the top spot over the weekend. It looks like the animated superhero film came out on top, after grossing an estimated $30.1 million, upping its total to $89.8 million.
That doesn’t mean that Washington's film disappointed - as it grossed $23.5 million, which is business as usual for a Washington action effort.
Due Date dropped a rather large 51% and took in $15.5 million. The Robert Downey Jr. comedy has now banked $59 million. It won’t hit $100 million, but it should still turn a profit.
Morning Glory is underperforming. The Harrison Ford film has brought in $12.2 million since its mid-week launch ($9.6 million for the weekend). Rachel McAdams toplines the comedy from Roger Michell.
Tyler Perry’s For Colored Girls took a massive hit and dropped 65%. The drama has now banked $31 million, after bringing in under $7 million over the weekend.
Bruce Willis’ Red continues to do well. The action film shot-up another $5 million, upping its cume to a smidgen under $80 million.
Horror holdovers Paranormal Activity 2 and Saw 3D both grossed in the region of $3 million. The former has scored $82 million, while the latter has brought in $43.6 million.
Jackass 3D grossed $2.3 million and rounded out the top ten. The stunt-filled pic has now grossed $115 million.
1. If you’re waiting patiently for the new big screen adaptation of Frank Herbert’s Dune, then you might have to wait a while longer. Quite a while longer!
If the film doesn’t have a firm start date by the spring, then Paramount Pictures intends to end four years of development on the project and put the film into turnaround. In case you're unfamiliar with the term, turnaround means a film is put up for sale by a studio - and if another company picks it up, they pay for some of the development costs.
Chase Palmer wrote the latest draft of the script, and producers Kevin Misher and Richard P. Rubinstein are looking for a director - following the departure of Taken’s Pierre Morel.
It’ll be interesting to see what happens here.
2. While Dune may not be on the horizon for Paramount, it does look like they’ve firmed up production on a few forthcoming films.
Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick are writing G.I. Joe 2for the studio, while Art Marcum and Matt Holloway have been brought in to pen a new Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles movie.
Zoolander 2 is also on the way and Star Trek 2 is set for June 29, 2012, with J.J. Abrams considering directing again.
3. Warner Bros. appear to be thinking outside the box when it comes to choosing a director for Tales From the Gangster Squad. The film has been described as “The Untouchables on the streets of L.A”.
Zombieland’s Ruben Fleischer, Crazy Heart director Scott Cooper, and Jose Padilha, the director of the Portuguese-language film Elite Squad, are in the mix to direct the film.
Source: LA Times
According to Deadline:
“Ford will play Portia Bellefleur, a classic Southern beauty who runs her own law practice. The character is the sister of Bon Temps' bumbling detective Andy (Chris Bauer).”
5. The failure of Disney’s The Sorcerer’s Apprentice hasn’t stopped Working Title from developing a film based on the wizard Merlin.
Jay Basu has been hired to write a script for the film.
6. It looks like Warner Bros. will pick up the screen rights to the new Brad Thor novel The Athena Project.
“The Athena Project introduces an elite all-female Delta team made up of four agents who try to stop a terror attack on American soil. After a terror attack in Rome kills 23 Americans, the agents are sent to hunt down the Venetian arms dealer who supplied the explosives. This leads to a much larger terrorist conspiracy.”
So, it’s like The Expendables with chicks. Cool.
7. Robert De Niro, Michelle Pfeiffer, Hilary Swank, and Ashton Kutcher will star in New Year's Eve, the follow-up to Valentine's Day, for director Garry Marshall.
According to THR:
“The movie tells intertwining stories of a group of New Yorkers as they navigate their way through romance over the course of New Year's Eve.
De Niro will play a bitter dying man in a hospital, while Pfeiffer will be a frustrated executive secretary who decides to tackle her unfulfilled resolutions. Swank would play a producer of the famed Times Square New Year's Eve show. Kutcher would play a guy who hates New Year's Eve.”
That's $100 million in the bank right there.
- Want to see Daniel Radcliffe in The Woman in Black? Go here.
- We’ve had Kung Fu Panda- now Alien Rock Band.
- Hot Tub Time Machine director Steve Pink will helm The Toxic Avenger.
Just For Fun:
That's it for now. See you at the movies!