The Playlist

Weekend Box Office: 'The Grey' Sees Green, While Audiences Stay Away From The 'Ledge'

  • By Gabe Toro
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  • January 29, 2012 12:14 PM
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  • 3 Comments
Good ole’ dependable Liam Neeson. This is the third straight early-year period where the character actor turned badass leading man has scored a number one hit. While “The Grey” couldn’t pull in the same numbers as “Taken” or “Unknown,” it did top $20 million. Not a bad figure considering this was a much less commercial beast, with an R-rating, and it’s arguable that few leading men could have gotten a man-vs.-wilderness drama into an eight figure debut. This is distributor Open Road’s second ever release. Their first, last year’s “Killer Elite,” seemed like a surefire commercial proposition, but it pulled in half of what “The Grey” is looking to make on this opening weekend. You could argue this was a bait and switch, as the ads centered around spoiling, and misinterpreting, the film’s ending -- Cinemascore was a not-entirely-kind B-. But everyone got the opening they wanted -- this puts Open Road on the map, it gets Joe Carnahan out of Director Jail following “The A-Team” and it continues Neeson’s winning streak. Also worth noting: throughout each week in 2012 so far, the number one slot at the box office has been filled by R-rated fare.

In Theaters: Step Out With The 'Man On A Ledge,' Get Lost In 'The Grey' But Don't Spend 'One For The Money'

  • By Katie Walsh
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  • January 27, 2012 6:35 PM
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  • 1 Comment
Sundance, #sundance, SUNDANCE! 15 of your friends posted about Sundance! Retweet blah blah SUNDANCE! It's all anyone has on the brain this week. A welcome distraction from the travesty they call the Oscar nominations. Just when you think it's going to be a merry Oscar nominations morning, the Academy goes and rewards all the sappy sentimental crap and snubs its nose at anything remotely interesting and original. Too dark and icky! Showing your squareness, Academy.... Anyway, I don't want to talk about it, I'm still processing. Good thing we have all the shiny and new Sundance films to think about. Next year, next year my pretties.

Liam Neeson Talks Preparing For The Cold In 'The Grey' & His Plans To Do Some 'Die Hard' Style Movies Soon

  • By Jeff Otto
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  • January 26, 2012 1:02 PM
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  • 0 Comments
The career of Liam Neeson has taken an unmistakable shift in recent years. After a long stretch highlighted by acclaimed performances in epic-tinged material like “Schindler’s List,” “Rob Roy” and “Michael Collins,” Neeson took an unlikely turn in Pierre Morel’s 2008 actioner “Taken,” where he portrayed tough guy retired CIA agent Bryan Mills, kicking ass and taking names rather than delivering eloquent monologues.

Joe Carnahan Says 'The Grey' Will Head Back To Theaters For An Oscar Qualifying Run In October

  • By Jeff Otto
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  • January 25, 2012 10:00 AM
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  • 3 Comments
Writer/director Joe Carnahan has no regrets. The twists and turns many up-and-coming directors face during their first brush with a big budget studio project could leave anyone bitter and jaded. Instead, Carnahan took his ill-fated experiences on “Mission: Impossible III” (which was ultimately directed by J.J. Abrams) and began looking to the future. After proving he could blow stuff up with the best of ‘em on 2010’s “The A-Team,” Carnahan finished an adaptation of the short story “Ghost Walker” by Ian MacKenzie Jeffers and began casting.

Stare Right Back At Them: Liam Neeson Battles Wolves In Red Band Trailer For 'The Grey'

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • January 24, 2012 3:55 PM
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  • 0 Comments
With all the Sundance and Oscar hoopla, you may have forgotten "The Grey" is on its way to theaters, but to make sure it's fresh in your minds, Open Road has dropped a new red band trailer for the film. And as you might expect, it's got blood and f-bombs, but alas, this sausage fest has no boobs.
More: The Grey

Review: 'The Grey' Pits Stock Characters Against Cartoon Wolves

  • By Gabe Toro
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  • January 17, 2012 10:08 PM
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  • 12 Comments
It wasn’t long ago that Liam Neeson was considered a prestigious name in film. Though his early career was peppered with genre roles, “Schindler’s List” put him on the map as an awards-friendly leading man. But in the past few years, Neeson has reinvented himself once again, into the hardest of men, a proud warrior who will throw down with any on-comer. You no longer need exposition in a Liam Neeson movie, only his weathered, battered face.

Exclusive: Joe Carnahan Says Long-Gestating ‘Killing Pablo’ Likely Next, Hopes ‘White Jazz' Will Follow

  • By Jeff Otto
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  • January 9, 2012 6:38 PM
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  • 4 Comments
It seems as though we’ve been waiting forever (a decade to be exact) for Joe Carnahan to deliver on the promise set forth with 2002’s “Narc.” It’s not that the two films he’s directed since (“Smokin’ Aces,” “The A-Team”) were necessarily bad, but rather that Carnahan seemed to demonstrate with “Narc” that he was capable of much, much more. Of course, the director also spent a fair amount of time developing “Mission: Impossible III,” which was later flipped to J.J. Abrams. It was an unpleasant learning experience Carnahan openly tells Playlist he quit before he could be fired. Although he says learned a lot from the ordeal and has no regrets, though it has possibly compelled the director to play things a little safer since.

Watch: Liam Neeson Has A Special Set Of Skills To Fight Nature & Wolves In New Trailer For 'The Grey'

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • December 2, 2011 10:10 AM
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  • 1 Comment
Roles for older actors are tough to come by, so when Liam Neeson had a surprise smash hit with the low rent thriller "Taken," he took his new bad boy persona and ran with it. With roles in "The A-Team" and "Unknown" making the most of his new status as action star (of sorts) and a "Taken" sequel on the way, there won't be any shortage of Neeson kicking ass anytime soon. And in fact, you'll just have to wait until next month to see Neeson once again, throwing down. Only this time, it isn't dubious foreigners who are the source of his problems. It's wolves.
More: The Grey

Watch: It's 'Taken' With Wolves In Trailer For Joe Carnahan's 'The Grey' Starring Liam Neeson

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • September 21, 2011 9:15 AM
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  • 3 Comments
Okay, so maybe we're being flippant, but with Liam Neeson imposing a serious voiceover as he tries to stay alive in frigid conditions while fighting off kidnappers identity thieves wolves, we can't help but be reminded of the Luc Besson produced thriller. But that said, once you take away the hokey emotional stuff? "The Grey" looks like it could be pretty fun.
More: Films, The Grey

Joe Carnahan's 'The Grey' Hits On January 27, 2012 Though Oscar Run Considered For Liam Neeson

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • August 10, 2011 8:17 AM
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  • 2 Comments
So, a few adjustments to the release plans for Joe Carnahan's upcoming thriller "The Grey." When the film was picked up last month by Open Road for a cool $8 million -- in addition to a $25 million commitment for marketing -- it was expected to do a fall festival run before arriving in theaters by the end of the year. Well, both Venice and TIFF have unveiled their slates and "The Grey" is nowhere to be seen and the film won't arrive this year either with a January 27, 2012 now pegged. So what's up?

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