The Playlist

Weekend Box Office: 'The Help' Defeats Tepid Newcomers And Hurricane Season For Another Week At #1

  • By Gabe Toro
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  • August 28, 2011 4:37 AM
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  • 10 Comments
Usually, studios will look for any possible reason to blame the weather for a film’s poor box office showing. Heat waves only mean audiences will seek the air conditioning of a theater, at least when something exciting is playing. And people will withstand non-apocalyptic snowstorms simply to get away from the cold while enjoying the blockbuster of their choice. But there aren’t a whole lot of options when almost half of a movie’s proposed locations are under siege by a vicious hurricane. Many large chains didn’t even bother to stay open during Irene’s reign, meaning that these quiet end-of-August releases could find no traction heading into the typically-comatose Labor Day weekend.

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: 'Apes' Dominates 'The Help'; One Franchise Reaches Its 'Final Destination'

  • By Gabe Toro
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  • August 14, 2011 4:27 AM
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  • 3 Comments
All is forgiven between the public and the “Planet Of The Apes” franchise. This relationship seemed on the outs as soon as Tim Burton gave us Apebraham Lincoln a decade ago, but “Rise Of The Planet Of The Apes” has healed all wounds. While not keeping pace with that last Apeventure, 'Rise' has still taken only two weekends to cross $100 million at a much lower cost, a total no one at Fox was expecting. When the dust settles, this offering, which held well-enough to suggest strong word-of-mouth, will have outdistanced many of its genre companions from this summer, particularly those benefiting from the 3D price bump.

Weekend Box Office: 'Apes' Rise With Massive $54 Million, Audiences Rise Against Ryan Reynolds

  • By Gabe Toro
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  • August 7, 2011 4:33 AM
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  • 12 Comments
“The Planet Of The Apes” saga is one of the healthier franchises in movie history. All the sequels occurred within a reasonable time frame, and while they were of varied quality, each one had their own separate reason to exist, and none were truly embarrassing. By comparison, the remake in 2001 was so far removed from the series’ original ethos that most won’t even acknowledge it as part of any continuity. Nevertheless, that atrocity opened to $68 million, which nears $100 million when adjusted for inflation. So while some may have been burned by the series thanks to Tim Burton, ten years might have been the appropriate time to reboot and still retain a base that remains aware of “The Planet of The Apes” as a sketchy form of “cinema history.”

In Theaters: 'Apes' Rise Against 'The Change Up' & 'Bellflower'

  • By Katie Walsh
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  • August 5, 2011 7:04 AM
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  • 0 Comments
What up, party peoples?! It's August y'all, the best time of year to seek solace from the heat in the cool climes of an air conditioned movie theater! I feel for those of you forced to choose "Rise of the Planet of the Apes" in order to bring your body temps down. I know, I'm being uncharitable but that's what I do. Pass judgment on works of art and commerce created by hundreds of people. I just don't care for those ape cartoons, okay? And raise your hand if a small part of you thinks this is a performance art piece by James Franco like the Oscars clearly were. If you're still jonesin' for Jason Bateman talking dirty after "Horrible Bosses," you can get a double dose with "The Change Up." Clearly though, the choice of the weekend belongs to "Bellflower," if you live in New York or LA, this festival hit has received a ton of buzz, in no small part due to the appearances made by the awesomely souped up vehicle, Medusa, at festivals, and the various drunken cricket eating contests that went along with it. It's also received rave notices, so do yourself a favor and check this one out this weekend, or soon when it hits a theater near you.

Review: 'Rise Of The Planet Of The Apes' Monkeys Around, Showcases Action Over Nuance

  • By Gabe Toro
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  • August 4, 2011 2:19 AM
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  • 3 Comments
When blockbuster films deal with conflict that poses a global threat, the question hangs over them: why is humanity worth saving? It’s the drug-film conundrum: 95 minutes of injections and hard-living make a stronger impression than the therapy and lessons of the remaining 10. Why bother presenting a human population worthy of life, love and discovery when the audience and filmmakers can take more pleasure in annihilating them?

Monkey Vs. Horse: Spoilerific Comic-Con Clip For 'Rise Of The Planet Of The Apes' Picks Up The Pace

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • July 22, 2011 1:42 AM
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  • 9 Comments
We're still on something of a knife-edge about "Rise Of The Planet Of The Apes," two weeks away from the film's release: talented director Rupert Wyatt and performance capture star Andy Serkis have talked a good talk so far, and elements of it have been intriguing, but the trailers for the most part have been a mixed bag. Unsurprisingly, Fox were out in force with the film on Day 1 of Comic-Con yesterday, with both Wyatt and Serkis on hand to talk up the film, and debuting a new clip, focusing on the third-act ape revolution that looks to hold most of the big action. That clip has now made its way online.

Watch: Brad Pitt Delivers His 'Field Of Dreams' In New TV Spot For 'Moneyball'

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • July 19, 2011 3:44 AM
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  • 3 Comments
'Friends With Benefits' & 'Conan' Go R-Rated In Clips Plus Extended Scene From 'Rise Of The Planet Of The Apes'It's going to be that kind of week. With Comic-Con gearing up to start in about 48 hours, studio marketing departments are tossing out clips and peeks at their films -- even if they're not going to San Diego -- to capture the attention of film fans who will be devouring everything than can get their hands on over the next few days. So here's a bit of a roundup of a bunch of (official) footage that's making the rounds.

Andy Serkis And 'Apes' Director Rupert Wyatt Want To Make Performance-Capture Take On 'Animal Farm'

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • July 1, 2011 2:30 AM
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  • 1 Comment
We're about a month from release, and "Rise of the Planet of the Apes" is still perhaps the biggest question mark of the summer. It's got a high-caliber cast, led by freshly-minted Oscar nominee James Franco and performance capture pioneer Andy Serkis as lead ape Caesar, a promising director, in Rupert Wyatt, who debuted with the little-seen-but-superb "The Escapist," and a script more effective than most tentpole flicks. But at the same time, we haven't really been feeling the trailers to date (the last was the best of them), the "Deep Blue Sea"-esque premise could risk looking silly, and the shunting of release dates (summer, then November, then summer again) has sent mixed messages.

Class Act: Shia LaBeouf Suggests Megan Fox Cheated On Her Boyfriend With Him During 'Transformers'

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • June 28, 2011 5:25 AM
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  • 31 Comments
Harrison Ford Says What We're All Thinking, Calls LaBeouf A "Fucking Idiot"It appears that Shia LaBeouf has a mouth that can't be stopped. Just a few weeks after the actor dumped on his former co-star Megan Fox, claiming her unforgivable "Spice Girl strength" and her inability to handle Michael Bay's meticulous directions on where to point her ass got her fired from this weekend's "Transformers: Dark of the Moon." Now, a new Details magazine feature on the actor finds him using the opportunity to throw Fox under the bus yet again, albeit this time in a wholly different way.

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