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The Playlist

Weekend Box Office: 'Think Like A Man' Back On Top, But No One Wants A 'Five-Year Engagement'

  • By Gabe Toro
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  • April 29, 2012 11:47 AM
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  • 10 Comments
Let this be a wakeup call. For the second straight weekend, “Think Like A Man,” cast with actors actresses usually stuck playing “ethnic sidekicks” to more marketable white stars, didn’t just lead the box office, it dominated. With the film in slightly over 2000 theaters, less than any other movie finishing in the top eight, “Man” played to solid box office, with a second-weekend per-screen average of nearly $9k almost tripling similar statistics from the week’s other releases. There were four major studio releases this weekend, and none came close to this.

In Theaters: 'Bernie,' 'The Five-Year Engagement,' And 'Pirates!' Are 'Safe;' 'The Raven' Not So Much

  • By Emma Bernstein
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  • April 27, 2012 5:57 PM
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  • 0 Comments
Happy Friday! It’s the last minute run-up to summer blockbuster season, and since no one wants to even contemplate challenging “The Avengers” next week (except for those pranksters over at DC Comics), a swell of smaller, independent, and foreign pictures are hitting theaters this weekend. And with the Tribeca and San Francisco International film festivals in full swing, we’re happy to go along. Despite the blockbuster-less slate, there’s still plenty of mystery, horror, and gun-filled action to (temporarily) sate any action lovers’ palate. Plus a romantic comedy and a maybe-for-children-maybe-for-adults animated feature. Enjoy!

Review: 'Pirates! Band Of Misfits' Is A Treasure Trove Of Visual Wonder

  • By Drew Taylor
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  • April 26, 2012 12:02 PM
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  • 0 Comments
In John Ortved's unauthorized oral history of "The Simpsons," he recounts how an edict was posted in the writers' room of the influential animated series. This had come down from on high, and was probably hard to follow for some of the zanier writers (Conan O'Brien, we're looking in your direction). The note said, simply: "One joke per joke." Clearly this is not something that the good folks at Aardman Animation, the Bristol, England-based animation studio behind "Wallace and Gromit in The Curse of the Were-Rabbit" and last year's "Arthur Christmas" follow, because their new film, "Pirates! Band of Misfits," crams in so many jokes – visual, verbal, and otherwise – that you sometimes feel like yelling at the projectionist: "Could you pause that? Or at least slow it down?"

'Pirates! Band of Misfits' Director Peter Lord Talks DreamWorks Animation, Batman & The Allure Of Pirates

  • By Drew Taylor
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  • April 25, 2012 5:01 PM
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  • 1 Comment
This Friday, "Pirates! Band of Misfits" opens, the latest whirligig stop motion contraption by the cracked geniuses at Aardman Animation, the studio that, over the years, has brought us such astounding wonders as "Wallace and Gromit in the Curse of the Were-Rabbit," "Chicken Run," "Arthur Christmas," and the underrated "Flushed Away." 'Pirates' is their second film in conjunction with Sony Pictures Animation, their new home after leaving a partnership with DreamWorks Animation ("The Croods," Chris Sanders' next movie for DreamWorks, was an idea originally developed by Aardman but retained by DreamWorks Animation after the split). We got a chance to talk with Peter Lord, director of "Pirates! Band of Misfits" and the co-founder of the studio (he's a kind of cuddly British John Lasseter proxy), about what drew him to this pirate world, what's next for stop motion animation, the split from DreamWorks, and his new Batman short films.

Watch: Another Chucklesome Trailer For Aardman Animations's 'The Pirates! Band Of Misfits'

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • October 25, 2011 1:42 AM
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  • 0 Comments
In the era of Disney's multi-billion dollar "Pirates of the Caribbean" franchise, it's easy to forget that, for most of the 20th century, the idea of a film revolving around swashbucklers and sea dogs was pretty much box office poison. Sure, Errol Flynn might have brought them in in droves in the early years of the talkies in "Captain Blood," but since then, disaster followed disaster, with the likes of Roman Polanski's "Pirates" and Renny Harlin's "Cutthroat Island" entering the all-time hall of train wrecks.

Empire Big Screen '11: Sony Reveals Footage From 'The Amazing Spider-Man,' 'Anonymous' & More

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • August 13, 2011 9:23 AM
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  • 2 Comments
Footage Reports On 'Kill List,' 'The Pirates,' 'Arthur Christmas' & 'Total Recall'After our report from the Warner Bros. and eOne panels earlier this morning at Empire Big Screen, things moved swiftly along with Optimum bringing along some homegrown hits and Sony a few hopeful blockbusters, including the weekend's lone glimpse of a superhero...

Watch: Aardman's 'The Pirates! Band Of Misfits' Gets Two Surprisingly Charming Trailers

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • July 14, 2011 2:37 AM
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  • 2 Comments
You would think by now that audiences were waterlogged by all the swashbuckling at their local mulitplex but with "Pirates Of The Caribbean: On Stranger Tides" a billion dollar earner -- and the only pirate movie game in town -- it's a little surprising that no one else has tried to get a piece of the action. Until now.

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