The Playlist

New Regency Picks Up Warren Beatty's Howard Hughes Film After Paramount Exits

  • By Simon Dang
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  • September 19, 2011 2:04 AM
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  • 2 Comments
A bit of a sea change is in place for Warren Beatty's Howard Hughes film, his return to the scene after over a decade in the wilderness. After being announced as a Paramount project with studio head Brad Grey expressing their enthusiasm at reuniting with the great actor-director, the partnership has evidently broken down with The Wrap reporting that the project has now been acquired by New Regency.

Who Were The Winners And Losers Of The Summer Of 2011?

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • August 30, 2011 4:08 AM
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  • 24 Comments
As the summer winds die down with a flat and uninspired whimper, the realization sets in: the summer of 2011 was for the birds. "Rise of the Planet of the Apes" was the last major tent-pole to open, followed by sleeper hits like "The Help" and the not-so-successful R-rated action comedy, "30 Minutes or Less." Many had forecast that the overstuffed summer would prove disastrous, with Jon Favreau predicting that, "There’s not a weekend where there won’t be teeth on the floor," but ironically it's Favreau's film that proved to be one of the biggest box-office disappointments. Financially, films did very well with three billion-dollar blockbusters – “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2,” “Transformers: Dark of the Moon” and “Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides”-- helping the industry set a summer box-office record and nearly rebound from a horrible start to 2011 (Currently, 2011 revenue is running only 4 percent behind 2010, but in March, things were looking grim – 19% lower than the year previous).

Weekend Box Office: Audiences Stay Home In Droves As 'The Help' Defeats Weak New Releases

  • By Gabe Toro
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  • August 21, 2011 4:53 AM
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  • 6 Comments
Credit a canny expansion strategy that nabbed “The Help” the number one spot at the box office in its second weekend of release. Disney wisely banked on the film having more buzz than the slate of underwhelming new releases (not all of it positive), and after two weekends, it’s easily one of the season’s big success stories, as the picture has crested $70 million after only twelve days of release. The establishment has been encouraged - stories of the struggles of minorities highlighted by the heroism of a plucky white person of higher social strata are surefire earners, particularly if you market to families. Institutionalized racism at its most efficient.

Weekend Box Office: Boy Wizard Trumps Batman As 'Deathly Hallows Pt. 2' Has All-Time Biggest Opening

  • By Gabe Toro
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  • July 17, 2011 5:19 AM
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  • 8 Comments
And so we have box office history.

Paramount Ups The Ante, Launches In-House Animation Studio

  • By Matthew Newlin
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  • July 7, 2011 4:49 AM
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  • 2 Comments
DreamWorks CEO Katzenberg Too Cocky To WorryYou have to give it to them: Paramount Pictures is not here to fuck around. The Wrap has reported that the studio will be opening its own in-house animation division -- Paramount Animation -- and expects to release its first film in 2014. Paramount Chairman, CEO and Certified Badass Brad Grey, has said that each film's budget will be in the $100 million range and that they anticipate releasing one film per year. Grey told The Wrap, "That's a price point we think is a smart business. The global market is vibrant for family fare, particularly if we stick to that price range."

Paramount Looking Likely As Backers For Darren Aronofsky's 'Noah'

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • June 28, 2011 1:45 AM
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  • 1 Comment
Despite being one of the best-loved directors around, Darren Aronofsky has always had to scramble to get his films financed. Even with an A-lister like Natalie Portman on board, the financing for ballet psychodrama "Black Swan" collapsed weeks before filming was due to start, only saved by the very skin of its teeth. Indeed, it seems that the man with the best mustache in Brooklyn only signed on to superhero tentpole "The Wolverine" because he thought it would be an easy breeze through pre-production.

Weekend Box Office: 'Cars 2' Continues Pixar Formula, 'Green Lantern' Plummets

  • By Gabe Toro
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  • June 26, 2011 5:27 AM
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  • 8 Comments
The numbers on “Cars 2” don’t actually matter, except for the stat-hounds regularly following the weekly box office noise (us!). “Cars 2” exists to facilitate Disney’s biggest merchandising cash cow, a multi-billion (annually!) property that needs no further justification. As Pixar seems like a studio that hopes to branch out into more ambitious directions (in theory), they will need something to keep the lights on when, and if, they should fail. Even if the reviews continue to be the worst ever received by a Pixar film, the “Cars” franchise will live on.

The Wanderer Returns: Warren Beatty Planning New Comedy For Paramount

  • By Sam Price
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  • June 21, 2011 1:22 AM
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  • 8 Comments
This is what they call a turn up for the books: Warren Beatty is returning to make an untitled comedy for Paramount after a decade-long absence from our screens. The timing seems a little odd. His wife since 1992, Annette Bening, has never had a healthier career, and he was subject to a lavish AFI retrospective three years ago that seemed as if the filmmaking community was finally putting the old dinosaur out to pasture. But Deadline announces that Beatty is to “come home” to the studio that he won numerous Academy Awards for with a "quintessential Beatty, elegantly written and wonderfully entertaining” script penned by the actor that is to go into production later in the year. Oh, Warren, what’s that Carly Simon song called again?

Weekend Box-Office: Is 'Green Lantern' The End Of The Superhero Gravy Train?

  • By Gabe Toro
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  • June 19, 2011 5:34 AM
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  • 14 Comments
Perspective is necessary. $53 million is a whole lotta money. $53 million could buy several houses, it could feed many people, it could save lives. $53 million is also a pretty good opening for a somewhat higher-budgeted film, provided advertising isn’t through the roof and there aren’t a massive amount of back-end benefactors involved. But for “Green Lantern,” which cost upwards of $200 million before a massive ad campaign even by superhero standards, this is not a strong opening.

Weekend Box Office: 'Super 8' Is A Super Performer For Paramount, 'Judy Moody' Has A Bummer Summer

  • By Gabe Toro
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  • June 12, 2011 6:53 AM
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  • 10 Comments
Call this one a victory for Paramount, and a big one at that. “Super 8,” which opened to $37 million, was advertised with only the slightest of peekaboos, an ad campaign that played less coy and more stubbornly mysterious. While the film was pitched on the name of Steven Spielberg, the filmmaker has his name on a lot of projects annually, and the wealth of offerings has become so consistent that it no longer tilts the needle.

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