Click to Skip Ad
Closing in...
5 Things You Didn't Know About Lars von Trier, Who's Going Back to Work 5 Things You Didn't Know About Lars von Trier, Who's Going Back to Work Digging Into the Cannes Lineup: More Vet Auteurs and Women, No Netflix Digging Into the Cannes Lineup: More Vet Auteurs and Women, No Netflix Ryan Gosling in Talks for 'Blade Runner' Sequel, Damien Chazelle's 'La La Land' Ryan Gosling in Talks for 'Blade Runner' Sequel, Damien Chazelle's 'La La Land' You Can Now Read Over 200,000 Leaked Sony Emails and Documents You Can Now Read Over 200,000 Leaked Sony Emails and Documents Watch: The New 'Star Wars: The Force Awakens' Trailer Has Landed Watch: The New 'Star Wars: The Force Awakens' Trailer Has Landed Watch: This Exclusive Tribeca Trailer Promises a Vérité Southern Gothic in Malick Vein Watch: This Exclusive Tribeca Trailer Promises a Vérité Southern Gothic in Malick Vein 7 Things to Learn from 'Mad Men' Creator Matthew Weiner About Compelling Storytelling (EXCLUSIVE VIDEO) 7 Things to Learn from 'Mad Men' Creator Matthew Weiner About Compelling Storytelling (EXCLUSIVE VIDEO) 'Queen of Earth,' Starring a Gloriously Unhinged Elisabeth Moss, Goes to IFC 'Queen of Earth,' Starring a Gloriously Unhinged Elisabeth Moss, Goes to IFC Cary Fukunaga Takes Over Long-Stalled 'The Alienist' as TV Series Cary Fukunaga Takes Over Long-Stalled 'The Alienist' as TV Series Why the Istanbul Film Festival Cancelled Its 2015 Competition Why the Istanbul Film Festival Cancelled Its 2015 Competition MTV Movie Awards 2015: The Highs, the Lows and the Winners List (Videos) MTV Movie Awards 2015: The Highs, the Lows and the Winners List (Videos) Arthouse Audit: 'Ex Machina' Leads Four Big Openers, Kristen Stewart Opens 'Clouds of Sils Maria' Arthouse Audit: 'Ex Machina' Leads Four Big Openers, Kristen Stewart Opens 'Clouds of Sils Maria' From 'Boyhood' to 'Boy Next Door,' the 2015 MTV Movie Awards Noms Are All Over the Map From 'Boyhood' to 'Boy Next Door,' the 2015 MTV Movie Awards Noms Are All Over the Map 25 Years Ago I Wrote: "Hollywood's Female Stars An Endangered Species" 25 Years Ago I Wrote: "Hollywood's Female Stars An Endangered Species" The New Ladder: Anatomy of Indie Women's Picture 'Farah Goes Bang' The New Ladder: Anatomy of Indie Women's Picture 'Farah Goes Bang' Here's the First Image of Emma Stone and Joaquin Phoenix in Woody Allen's 'Irrational Man' Here's the First Image of Emma Stone and Joaquin Phoenix in Woody Allen's 'Irrational Man' Reese Witherspoon Nabs 'Luckiest Girl Alive' with Lionsgate, with "a wily, intelligent, complex narrator" Reese Witherspoon Nabs 'Luckiest Girl Alive' with Lionsgate, with "a wily, intelligent, complex narrator" Kristen Stewart Explains How She Held Her Own with Juliette Binoche in 'Sils Maria'--and Won a Cesar Kristen Stewart Explains How She Held Her Own with Juliette Binoche in 'Sils Maria'--and Won a Cesar Scientists Choose the 10 Best Sci-Fi Movies Ever Scientists Choose the 10 Best Sci-Fi Movies Ever Ryan Gosling Reveals How and Why He Shot 'Lost River' Ryan Gosling Reveals How and Why He Shot 'Lost River'

CinemaCon: Sony Relies on Low-Risk Sequels, Comedies, and Faithfuls Adam Sandler, Will Smith

Photo of Anne Thompson By Anne Thompson | Thompson on Hollywood April 23, 2013 at 9:56PM

After seeing several CinemaCon studio presentations in a row, you start to see the retreads coming. The requisite rehash of 2012 hits, adding up to $4.1 billion worldwide, did not reveal that both "The Amazing Spider-Man" and "Men in Black 3" cost too much to return serious profits, or that the global bounty from "Skyfall" was shared with Eon and MGM. As I watched Sony's dog-and-pony show, led off by studio star Adam Sandler trumpeted by Romans in tunics and breastplates, I was checking off a grid.
0
Jaden Smith in "After Earth."
Jaden Smith in "After Earth."

After seeing several CinemaCon studio presentations in a row, you start to see the retreads coming. The requisite rehash of 2012 hits, adding up to $4.1 billion worldwide, did not reveal that both "The Amazing Spider-Man" and "Men in Black 3" cost too much to return serious profits, or that the global bounty from "Skyfall" was shared with Eon and MGM. As I watched Sony's dog-and-pony show, led off by studio star Adam Sandler arriving on stage with trumpet fanfare from Romans in tunics and breastplates, I was checking off a grid.

Dystopian sci-fi adventure: Will and Jaden Smith play father and son marooned on a nasty Planet Earth in M. Night Shyamalan's cool-looking "After Earth" (May 31). Where's Tom Cruise when you need him? Even more promising is Neill Blomkamp's follow-up to "District 9," which earned him some independence on "Elysium" (August 9), which stars Matt Damon as a man struggling in a hellhole on Earth who sets out to fight for the medicine he needs to survive.

Apocalyptic comedy: The last remaining refuge of the original is comedy, and thankfully writer-directors Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg confront the apocalypse in their own raunchy way in L.A. showbiz comedy "This is the End" (June 12) starring a cast of friends playing their deranged selves, from James Franco and Michael Cera to Emma Watson and Rihanna. This looks hilarious.

President in danger thriller: "White House Down" (June 28) stars the ubiquitous Channing Tatum, who starred in more $100-million movies than any other star in 2012. And Jamie Foxx plays a remarkably athletic president under terrorist attack. Where's Gerard Butler when you need him?

Matt Damon in 'Elysium'
Matt Damon in 'Elysium'

Comedy sequels: Sandler's "Grown-Ups 2" (July 12) stars Salma  Hayek, David Spade and Kevin James. "It's a fucking four-quadrant movie, let's get it done motherfuckers," Sandler exhorted the theater owners. 

Low-risk concert movie: Morgan Spurlock directs young Brit band "One Direction: This is Us" (August 30) in concert and behind the scenes.

Animated family sequels: "Smurfs 2" (3-D, July 31), "Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2" (September 27).

Young adult fantasy bestseller movie: "Mortal Instruments: City of Bones" (August 23) stars Lily Collins ("Mirror Mirror") as a young teen whose mother Lena Headey ("Game of Thrones") admits she's born into a family of Shadowhunters who chase demons. Tag line: "There is a world hidden within our own." Where's Sarah Michelle Geller when you need her? The release date confirms my suspicion that Sony's expectations are low. 

This is the End

Reluctant coach turns team of losers into winners: In "Battle of the Year" "Lost" star Josh Holloway trains a ragtag team to battle for a world championship (3-D, September 13). See "Monsters University."

Low-risk horror remake: Inevitably, Stephen King's "Carrie" (October 18) has been recast with Chloe Moretz and Julianne Moore. At least Kimberley Peirce is at the helm. She's never dull.

'Stalingrad'
'Stalingrad'

Low-risk acquisition: One of the more compelling Sony pictures previewed in Las Vegas was an independently financed international pick-up from Russia, Fyodor Bondarchuk's World War II actioner "Stalingrad," about the infamous standoff waged in November 1942. It was shot with Red cameras in IMAX 3-D and does not yet have a domestic release date. (My set visit is here.)

Needless to say the last quarter brings the quality award season movies Sony chief Amy Pascal really likes to make, from George Clooney's period art heist thriller "Monuments Men" and Tom Hanks in Paul Greengrass's Somali pirate movie "Captain Phillips" to David O. Russell's Abscam comedy now titled "American Hustle."

And 2014 brings more of same: new film versions of "Annie," "Popeye" and "RoboCop" as well as sequels to "Think Like a Man," "21 Jump Street" and "The Amazing Spider-Man" (May 2).


This article is related to: Box Office, Box Office, Box Office, Sequel, Spider-Man, Elysium


E-Mail Updates