It might be a tale as old as time, but audiences have proven there’s still a few petals left on that old flower. Despite being projected to open at somewhere between $214–245 million worldwide, Beauty and the Beast knocked the pants off those projections, eclipsing $350 million at the international box office and setting a March record for domestic releases along the way. Let’s take a look at how things shook out this past weekend with some of the expected grosses.
While the giant ape in Kong: Skull Island may not climb any New York skyscrapers this time around, he certainly did climb the box office charts. The latest Warner Bros. monster movie shot all the way to the top spot in its opening weekend, with Logan and the surprising hit Get Out both shifting one spot down to accommodate him.
With Hugh Jackman’s Logan opening in theaters this weekend, the top spot of this list was never in doubt. The questions were always whether audiences would respond well to the first major R-rated superhero movie. Was the big opening of Deadpool an abberation or a sign of things to come? If today’s numbers are any indication, the answer is, maybe a little bit of both.
As a teenager in the ’90s, no actor better represented blockbuster movies than Bill Paxton. Although Paxton wasn’t typically a leading man in those movies — he would often play the brother, the second-in-command, or the comic relief — he served as a kind of talisman of quality. If you saw Paxton’s name in the opening credits of a movie, you knew that the film was going to be better for it.
Sometimes I wonder what it would be like if art house cinema had the same weird toy leaks as blockbuster movies. These days, we’re more likely to see a character’s design leak thanks to a brand new action figure than a behind-the-scenes photo; what if the same thing happened in the world of independent cinema? What if we’d encountered Moonlight spoilers thanks to a new line of beach toys? Or if La La Land’s third act was spoiled due to a fully posable Ryan Gosling action figure? Come to think of it, I’d probably buy the heck out of a Moonlight bath toy. No shame there.
While countless football fans — myself included — embark on a stomach and liver-related training regimen for next weekend, there is more to the Super Bowl than just the game on the field. The Super Bowl has always secretly been a big day for cinephiles as well, featuring big trailers for much-anticipated movies and clever commercials from some of the best filmmakers of our generation. Directors such as Doug Liman, Ridley Scott, and Judd Apatow have all directed Superbowl commercials, and now you can add two more big names to the mix: Joel and Ethan Coen.
Al Gore is one of those people who gets me thinking about legacy. When Gore’s time on the earth comes to a close, how will he be remembered? As a solid vice president who lost one of the most hotly disputed elections of all time? Or as a champion of environmental conservationism? From the outside, it certainly appears that Gore is angling for the latter. Just this past weekend, it was announced by Paramount Pictures (via Variety) that Al Gore has been working on a sequel to his 2006 documentary An Inconvenient Truth and that the film was set to be the opening night film at next year’s Sundance Film Festival.
File this one under ‘Least Surprising News Stories of the Day’: right on the heels of releasing the first trailer for Spider-Man: Homecoming, Sony has announced the release date for Spider-Man: Homecoming 2, proving that no title is so awkward as to prevent Hollywood from slapping the number ‘2’ on it and calling it a day.
It seems to me that Moana brought in two very different audiences this holiday weekend. For some, Moana was the newest entry in a long line of Disney princess movies and a step in the right direction for the studio in terms of inclusiveness and empowering young women. For others, it was a chance to cure their Lin-Manuel Miranda withdrawals after the turnover of the Hamilton cast and the end of the regular Ham4Ham sidewalk performances. That probably explains the odd mix of millennials and children at the recent matinee you attended.
While die-hard fans of the Harry Potter universe probably would have been happy if Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them simply gave some screen time to characters from the franchise’s vast lore, it turns out that author J.K. Rowling had something bigger in mind for her latest film. Fantastic Beasts retroactively raises the stakes by quite a bit, introducing a powerful enemy of wizards everywhere and hinting that the story of Newt Scamander and his companions had just begun.
After months of radio silence on final Wolverine movie, the past few weeks have been a flurry of activity. Not only did star Hugh Jackman confirm the film’s title (Logan) and producer Bryan Singer confirm the film’s villain (Mr. Sinister), the marketing team has twisted open the faucet a little and begun the slow drip of teaser photos leading up to the first trailers.
Last month, the Los Angeles Times began a six-part story on Kelli Peters, a school volunteer and PTA member in the community of Irvine, California who became the unwitting subject of a bizarre conspiracy to ruin her family’s name.
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