Weekend Movie News Wrap Up: March 14, 2010

This week:

Alice still rules the box office while the Green Zone doesn't make enough green; Dustin Hoffman turns his hand to directing with Quartet; Hoffman’s also in Luck as he gets a 48 Hours to transform for Rome; don’t take the news that True Grit has added Pepper with a pinch of salt; Hemsworth has a genie in a bottle and it’s not Christina Aguilera in Arabian Nights; Ryan Reynolds gets Buried in September; Kirsten Stewart welcomes the Riley’s and might Keanu Reeves have another excellent adventure with Bill and Ted?

Box Office

Tim Burton’s Alice In Wonderland retained the top spot this week with an estimated weekend take of of $62 million. The Johnny Depp starrer has now banked a highly impressive $208 million in ten days.

Matt Damon's Green Zone had a lower than expected opening, grossing $14 million over the weekend. The film was expected to open with  in the $18 million range - even with the Bourne goes to Iraq press it looks like the US public just don't like Middle East based thrillers.

Comedy She's Out of My League had an so-so $9.5 million debut over the three days.

Robert Pattinson's Remember Me banked $9 million over the weekend. The films debut was again on the soft side, as it was expected to open in the region of $12 million. At least Pattinson has Twilight to fall back on.

Shutter Island crossed the century mark over the weekend, The thriller has now banked $108 million - not bad for an adult focused thriller.

Our Family Wedding had a $7.5 million start, while Avatar brought it's cumulative gross up to $730. The James Cameron film has now grossed more than $2.6 billion world wide!

Bruce Willis' Cop Out brought in just over $4 million, giving the film a total just short of $40 million. Fellow cop movie Brooklyn's Finest had a similar gross, for a $21 million total.

Movie News

1. At the age of 72, it looks like Hollywood legend Dustin Hoffman has no intention of slowing down. After news that the Oscar-winning actor was set to star in Luck for Michael Mann and HBO comes the news that the diminutive star is set to direct his first film.

Dustin Hoffman is currently in talks to replace Richard Loncraine (Firewall) as director of Quartet. The film which is about retired opera singers is based on a stage comedy by Ronald Harwood with a script by The Pianist scribe Finola Dwyer.

The not insignificant acting talents of Maggie Smith, Albert Finney and Tom Courtenay are signed to the project that is being produced by BBC Films.

Will Hoffman also star as the fourth member of the Quartet?

Source: Deadline

2. Speaking of Luck – the drama series has now found a few more cast members.

Transformers actor Kevin Dunn, Rome star Kerry Condon and Tom Payne are all signed to the show and Nick Nolte is also said to be circling the project.

According to The Hollywood Reporter:

“Dunn will play the prodigious misanthrope who is the ringmaster of a syndicate of misfits. Nolte would play the trainer of a top racehorse. Condon will play the exercise rider for the horse who is interested in Bug Boy (Payne), an apprentice jockey.”

The actors will be joining the aforementioned Hoffman and Dennis Farina and John Ortiz in the Michael Mann produced show.

Source: THR

3. Battlefield Earth star Barry Pepper has now joined the cast of the Cohen Brothers True Grit.

Pepper will star "Lucky" Ned Pepper, which is the role that Robert Duvall played in the 1969 John Wayne Western.

True Grit also stars Jeff Bridges, Matt Damon, Josh Brolin and Hailee Steinfeld.

Source: Variety

4. Liam Hemsworth is in negotiations to star Chuck Russell’s 3D adventure film Arabian Nights.

According to Heat Vision Blog:

“Written by Russell and Barry P. Ambrose, the period epic centers on a young commander (Hemsworth) who, after his king is murdered in a coup, joins forces with Sinbad, Ali Baba and the Genie from the magic lamp to rescue the queen, Scheherazade.”

The actor is the brother of Thor star Chris Hemsworth.

Source: Heart Vision Blog

5. Lionsgate will release the Ryan Reynolds starrer Buried on September 24th.

“In Buried, Paul (Reynolds) is a U.S. contractor working in Iraq. After an attack by a group of Iraqis he wakes to find he is buried alive inside a coffin. With only a lighter and a cell phone it's a race against time to escape this claustrophobic death trap.”

Get ready to have nightmares!

Source: Shock Till You Drop

6. The fall will also see the release of Twilight star Kristen Stewart’s non vampire starring film Welcome to The Riley’s.

The Jake Scott (son of Ridley) directed drama also stars James Gandolfini and Melissa Leo.

According to Deadline:

“Gandolfini and Leo play a couple whose marriage becomes a wreck following the death of their teenage daughter. On a business trip to New Orleans, the husband finds himself drawn to an underage prostitute, insinuating himself as her platonic guardian.”

Sounds like a barrel of laughs.

The film apparently got some great reviews at Sundance – most notably for Stewart’s acting.

Source: Deadline

7. When MTV caught up with Keanu Reeves on the red carpet of last week’s Oscars they couldn’t help but ask him about the chances of a potential sequel to Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure.

The star replied by saying:

"I'm trying, I'm trying."

The when asked if he was joking he said

"I'm not. We'll see."

MTV is unsure of the Matrix star is yanking their chain, or being serious. In Hollywood today anything is possible – so I wouldn’t be too surprised.


In the past Reeves has always said that it would be good to catch up with Bill and Ted in their forties. As that time is here, it  appears that we may not have seen the last of Bill and Ted.

So is this news Excellent?

Source: MTV

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

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