Weekend Movie News Wrap Up: May 31, 2009

In the Wrap Up this Week:

The box office is UP; Robert Downey Jr might still saddle up for Cowboys and Aliens; Lucy beats Nicole Kidman to the Punch; Natalie Portman, Danny McBride and James Franco salute Your Highness; Seann William Scott and Adam Brody are A Couple of Dicks and Chevy Chase dips his toes in the Hot Tub Time Machine and he may return as Fletch.

BOX OFFICE:The summer season is now well and truly here. Pixar's Up shows that family films and the Pixar brand are hugely profitable. The animated film banked a huge $68 million over the weekend. For a film that sells most of it's tickets in half price matinees that's a lot of attendance.

Last week's champion Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian had to settle for the runner up spot with a weekend take of $25 million. With a total now over $100 million it looks like we might be in for a third installment.

Sam Raimi's Spider-Man stop-gap, Drag Me To Hell, opened to a disappointing $16 million. It probably cost about $20 million to produce, so it'll be profitable, but I'm sure Raimi wanted more.

Speaking of more - will we ever get to see any more Terminator films? With a weekend take of just $16 million for Terminator Salvation it looks like McG might not get to finish his proposed trilogy. Maybe international grosses will help. It looks like the franchise needed Schwarzenegger's charisma and not just a grumpy looking Christian Bale.

Star Trek flew past the $200 million mark with a weekend gross of $12 million. Angels & Demons has crossed the $100 million milestone, but will the film be profitable to warrant a sequel? Doubtful.

Dance Flick made another $4 million giving the spoof a total gross of almost $20 million. Who pays money to see that?

X-Men Origins: Wolverine made just under $4 million this weekend bringing the Hugh Jackman starrer's total to $170.

Ghosts of Girlfriends Past hit $50 million and Beyonce Knowle's Obsessed is closing in on $70 million.


1. Everyone wants Robert Downey Jr in their movie these days. It's funny how times have changed. Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman have spoken about how they still hope to snag the Iron Man for their upcoming adaptation of Cowboys and Aliens.

Speaking to Sci-Fi Wire the duo said that they‘ve been speaking to Downey Jr about the film but that scheduling is the issue:

"We've been talking to him about that. He's one of the busiest men on the face of the Earth. If the schedule can line up, we'd absolutely love it."

The pair also said that they're finishing up scripting duties on the film:

"We are just about to finish our draft of Cowboys and Aliens, which we are writing with Lost's Damon Lindelof. For Cowboys and Aliens, we got an amazing first draft from Mark Fergus, who wrote Iron Man, and now we are continuing on with Damon. We are in the middle of the second draft."

*Please note that Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman do speak separately.They're also incredibly in demand with Transformers 2 and Star Trek out this summer alone!

Source: Sci Fi Wire

2. Nicole Kidman has dropped out of Woody Allen's forthcoming film. The Aussie star will be replaced by British actress Lucy Punch.

The plot and title for the film are unknown but sources believe:"Punch will play a high-priced call girl similar to Ashley Dupre, who was at the center of the scandal that brought down New York Gov. Eliot Spitzer."

The cast for the film is pretty darn good - even for a Woody Allen film. Josh Brolin, Anthony Hopkins, Antonio Banderas, Naomi Watts and Slumdog Millionaire's Freida Pinto have roles in it.

Source: Variety

3. Natalie Portman will join Danny McBride and James Franco in Your Highness for Pineapple Express director David Gordon Green.

According to Variety:

"McBride, who wrote the script with Ben Best, plays an arrogant lazy prince who with his brother (Franco) must complete a quest to save the kingdom and his brother's fiance. Portman will play a warrior princess that the lazy prince falls in love with."

The Princess Bride with pot anyone?

Source: Variety

4. Seann William Scott and Adam Brody know A Couple of Dicks. The pair will join Bruce Willis and Tracy Morgan in Kevin Smith's forthcoming detective comedy.

"Scott plays a thief known as the Sh**t Bandit for the souvenirs he leaves at his robberies. Brody is an abrasive detective not happy to be working with Willis and Morgan."

A Couple of Dicks starts shooting this Monday in New York.

Source: The Hollywood Reporter

5. Chevy Chase seems to be on the comeback trail. Not only has the 80's icon scored a role in John Cusack's Hot Tub Time Machine but the Weinstein Company have apparently approached him with a script for a third Fletch movie.

With regards to Hot Tub Time Machine:

"Chase plays a mysterious repairman who dispenses pearls of wisdom and may or may not be behind the metaphysical road trip."

Now, a Fletch film has been in the works for almost a decade. Kevin Smith originally wanted to make a Fletch film with Jason Lee, and then Scrub's Zach Braff was attached to the project for a while, but nothing ever came of it. This new script is passing of the baton-type film where Chase's Fletch advises his journalist nephew on his career.

With a bit of luck this will mean that we get to see more of the criminally underused Chase on the big screen.

Source: The Hollywood Reporter

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

Robert Downey Jr. in Iron Man 2008
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