The Playlist

Weekend Box Office: 'Pirates 4' Scores Biggest Global Debut Of All-Time Despite Being A Shitty Movie

  • By Gabe Toro
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  • May 22, 2011 5:37 AM
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  • 17 Comments
This weekend, Disney pooled their resources with Jerry Bruckheimer and produced an insta-blockbuster. Apathy is the name of the game with “Pirates Of The Caribbean: On Stranger Tides,” which scored the biggest bow of 2011 despite being a piece of shit that grossed lower in its opening frame than its two predecessors. “Dead Man’s Chest” and “At Worlds End” both cracked $100 million in their first domestic weekend, but even with the elevated 3D pricing, “Pirates 4” couldn’t cross nine digits.

Weekend Box Office: 'Thor' Holds #1 With $34.5 million, 'Bridesmaids' Surprises

  • By Gabe Toro
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  • May 15, 2011 5:55 AM
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  • 21 Comments
If you enter the blockbuster business in Hollywood, you essentially enter the $80 million opening weekend business. Which is to say, it’s part of a pray/hope/accept/die model. Considering most blockbusters cost $150-$200 million, with marketing sometimes adding up to $100 million, a 3x’s multiplier after an $80 million opening ($240 million) might be the best-case scenario, unless you‘ve released a much-better-than-expected film (not likely). You double that number with overseas receipts, you’ve potentially got $480-$500 million worldwide on a possible $300 million expenditure. The studio earns 55% of that take, meaning that you’ve approached profit, with DVD and merchandising expecting to take care of the rest.

'Thor': The Good, The Bad & The Ugly

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • May 9, 2011 4:33 AM
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  • 21 Comments
"Thor" is waking up on Monday morning with a bit of a curious hangover. While most critics seemed to give the Marvel comic adaptation a shrug of approval (including us -- we gave it a B- and called it "mostly entertaining" though around the offices, most of us were split on the film, and audiences were a bit more cagey about seeing the mighty hammer up on screen. The film opened to a conservative $66 million. Yes, it was the second highest first-weekend gross this year so far, but for May, this is considered a soft summer opening if you look at the past ("Iron Man" movies and "X-Men Origins: Wolverine" both did higher numbers). This could make rival studios quiver in their boots about bringing lesser-known, expensive comic films to the big screen (you can bet Warner Bros. execs are meeting today to figure how to avoid a similar opening for "Green Lantern," again not a bad one, but not quite the numbers they want to see considering the expensive budgets).

Weekend Box Office: 'Thor' Soars, Romcoms Prosper, 'Beaver' Gets Plugged

  • By Gabe Toro
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  • May 8, 2011 5:59 AM
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  • 4 Comments
As far as blockbuster debuts go, “Thor” didn’t perform too badly. The first big release of May thundered its way to a $66 million weekend, slightly above what industry analysts predicted for the God of Thunder. The film benefited from the biggest 3D berth of any major release thus far as well as the mighty marketing team of Paramount and Marvel to nab numbers that, on the surface, show potential to be a franchise-starter.

In Theaters: 'Thor' Brings The Hammer Down On 'Something Borrowed'

  • By Katie Walsh
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  • May 6, 2011 6:27 AM
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  • 2 Comments
Guys, guys, guys, I KNOW. I know "Fast Five" is still in theaters and all we want to do is go back and watch it 5 million more times. Has there ever been another film that has latched itself into our nation's consciousness so firmly and so quickly? God bless and keep Justin Lin, and thank you baby Jesus they ripped "Terminator" out of McG's sweaty fists and handed it over to this true artist. Action movies have been saved! So if last weekend was the first official start of summer blockbuster season (ALREADY?) this weekend really cements it as "Thor" brings the hammer down in the First Comic Book Movie in the Summer of Comic Book Movies. Marvel is on the MOVE this summer, with "Thor" being the first of their babies to debut at the box office. For those ladies who don't love a Hemsworth sesh, there's the rom com "Something Borrowed," and on the urban wedding-com side, "Jumping the Broom," and a bunch of interesting and buzzworthy selections in limited release. So pick your Cinco de Mayo-hungover self up off the couch and deposit your ass into one of these theater seats.

Mark Ruffalo's The Hulk Will Be A Throwback To Bill Bixby's Portrayal

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • May 5, 2011 7:47 AM
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  • 1 Comment
And More We Learned From The Filmmakers Of 'Thor'"Thor" is swinging its mighty hammer into cinemas this weekend, and it may be a surprise to many moviegoers, proving to be a lighter, jauntier superhero film that the material might suggest. The cast and filmmakers did the press rounds, and as usual, bits and pieces about what might be in store for the future Marvel universe were hinted at, but also just as intriguingly, the process on making "Thor" was brought to the fore as well. Playlist writer Leah Zak spoke with Marvel guru Kevin Feige in an interview as well as participating in group conversations with the rest of the "Thor" team and here's what we learned.

Review: 'Thor' Is Overstuffed, But Still A (Mostly) Pleasant, Consistently Entertaining Surprise

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • May 5, 2011 5:07 AM
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  • 8 Comments
Note: Our U.K. writer saw the film early and this review was first published on April 26, 2011

Which Summer Films Won't Make You Feel Like You've Been Lobotomized? The May-August Movies: Part 1

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • May 3, 2011 6:03 AM
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  • 12 Comments
Something's in the air. The days are getting longer. The weather's getting warmer. Your IQ is dropping by the day. That's right, it's the start of the summer movie season! The critical darlings that get you through the winter moments are a thing of the past, replaced by CGI-packed blockbusters, comedies and the occasional kids' flick, designed principally as a way of tempting you into an air conditioned theater to spend money on ice cream and nachos.

Watch: Japanese Trailer For 'Thor' Has Some New Footage

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • April 28, 2011 10:49 AM
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  • 1 Comment
So, with the "Transformers: The Dark Of The Moon" trailer finally here, this latest Japanese "Thor" spot looks positively subtle by comparison. And in a bit of a way, "Thor" seems like old news. It's already open in Australia, and over the weekend it will hit more foreign territories. By the time it gets here the buzz will seem a bit dated.

Times Square Set Photos Reveals Nick Fury Will Be In 'Captain America: The First Avenger'

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • April 25, 2011 12:58 PM
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  • 1 Comment
In Semi-Related News, Sun Rises In East, Sets In WestBit by bit, we're moving towards the hugely ambitious endgame of the first wave of Marvel's self-produced pictures. We've had two "Iron Man" films and an "Incredible Hulk," and they're soon to be joined by "Thor" (look out for our review coming in the next 24 hours) and "Captain America: The First Avenger," while "The Avengers," the Joss Whedon-helmed epic that'll team the heroes of all four franchises, starts filming this very day, ahead of its release a year from now.

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