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The Playlist

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.

'The Dark Knight Rises,' 'Man Of Steel' & More Skip Comic-Con As Major Studios Stay Away This Year

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • June 13, 2011 3:09 AM
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  • 6 Comments
Warner Bros, DreamWorks, Disney & The Weinstein Company Pass On San Diego; Marvel On The FenceThe comic/geek crowd are either the most important group to court for genre films or their influence is overstated; it really depends on who you ask. In recent years, the very vocal contingent has generally been thought of as essential to making sure more challenging or niche fare finds an audience or least makes its budget back, but a series of disappointments and flops have the studios reconsidering. Last year, Edgar Wright's "Scott Pilgrim Vs. The World" was met with widespread geek acclaim only for the Universal film to sputter at the box office (though to be fair, the marketing for that film did little to embrace anybody outside the core of fans). "Sucker Punch" got major buzz and died on the vine this past spring, while "Tron: Legacy" played modestly despite nerds flipping for footage that Disney teased as early as 2008 (though yes, it has done enough to convince the studio get a sequel moving). And both "Skyline" and "Let Me In" faltered when they hit screens later in the year, after doing the San Diego Comic-Con rounds.

Will An In-Development 'Hawkman' Movie Be Part 'Indiana Jones,' 'Da Vinci Code' & 'Ghost'?

  • By Edward Davis
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  • May 30, 2011 5:27 AM
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  • 3 Comments
Super hero movies. You might be asking yourself, when will this hegemony end? Well, in case you haven't already guessed, as far as the box-office demand shows, they won't be going anywhere anytime soon. Case in point, while Marvel Films & Disney keep looking deeper into their archives to see which B-list or even C-list characters could warrant the excuse of their own film, so does D.C. Comics and Warner Bros.

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.

Darren Aronofsky Being Pursued By Warner Bros. And Disney For 'Moses' & 'Maleficent'?

  • By Cory Everett
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  • May 21, 2011 10:38 AM
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  • 3 Comments
After spending a decade scraping together financing on his films (only working with a major studio once on his passion project "The Fountain"), it seems like suddenly everybody wants to be in the Darren Aronofsky business. We guess that happens when your $13 million-budgeted ballet thriller goes on to make over $100 million dollars and wins an Oscar for its leading lady, despite, as the director has noted, every major studio passing on the film and financing being raised independently. Fox thought they'd get first crack at some of that Aronofsky "edge" giving him a 2-year development deal and hiring him to take on "The Wolverine," a standalone tale that was to take place largely in Japan and repair the damage caused by 2009's franchise killer "X-Men Origins: Wolverine." Unfortunately for them (and fans of the character), Aronofsky dropped out of the project shortly before filming when he realized he would be away from his family for nearly a year.

Uh-Oh: Keanu Reeves Passes On 'Akira'; Is The Film In Serious Trouble?

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • May 17, 2011 9:47 AM
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  • 4 Comments
Possible Cancellation of Project Devastates... Oh Right, Nobody Pretty much ever since its U.S. release in 1988, someone, somewhere has wanted to do an Americanized remake of "Akira." Sony was close to picking it up in the 1990s, and Warner Bros has had the rights for the best part of a decade now, without any real forward momentum. Until recently, that is: Albert Hughes, one half of the fraternal team behind "Menace II Society" and, more recently, "The Book of Eli," was hired to direct, "Harry Potter" writer Steve Kloves penned a rewrite, and the film went out to search for its lead roles.

Tim Burton's 'Dark Shadows' & 'Southern Rivals' Get 2012 Release Dates From Warner Bros.

  • By Edward Davis
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  • May 12, 2011 11:18 AM
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  • 2 Comments
The world has paused briefly for the Cannes Film Festival, but sorry, it has not stopped the tentpole studio gears from churning. Warner Bros., in particular, is not sleeping. They have dropped three new dates on an unsuspecting audience.

A Martin Luther King Movie Is Coming, But It's Not The One You Were Hoping For

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • April 29, 2011 8:37 AM
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  • 3 Comments
Well, the good news is civil rights leader Martin Luther King is going to get his due on the screen, but the bad news is that it won't be the mooted Paul Greengrass film "Memphis." As you might recall, funding on that film was yanked by Universal after the Martin Luther King estate raised concerns about some of the less-than-savory aspects of the MLK's personality that made their way into the script. But another film is moving full steam ahead.

$9 Million Added To Budget, More VFX Houses Hired To Finish 'Green Lantern' In Time For Release Date

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • April 26, 2011 3:47 AM
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  • 9 Comments
It seems completely against common sense, but as studios continue to turn toward making expensive tentpoles their bread and butter, they also seem to be shrinking the production timelines for these films with one year or less now becoming the norm. "X-Men: First Class" will be coming in under the wire to make it's June release date; "Hunger Games" is still casting and it's now eleven months until it's scheduled to hit theaters and "The Avengers" just started filming this week for a release date that will arrive almost exactly a year later. And with special effects usually dominating these films, filmmakers and effect houses are feeling the crunch and some hard lessons are being learned as a result.

'Crazy Stupid Love' Writer Earns Big Payday With Pitch Sold To Warner Bros. With Tom Cruise Attached

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • April 22, 2011 4:04 AM
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  • 0 Comments
Dan Fogelman and Warner Bros. seem to be cozy lovers. The writer behind "Cars," "Bolt" and "Tangled" but perhaps most importantly, this summer's highly anticipated "Crazy, Stupid, Love." has ridden the early buzz on that film all the way to a seven-figure payday for his next script which just happens to have a guy named Tom Cruise attached.

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