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Thompson on Hollywood

'Inbetweeners 2' Beats 'Guardians of the Galaxy' at UK Box Office; Why Can't the Comedy Get a US Release?

Every so often a local movie becomes a runaway local hit. But that doesn't mean it will work in North America. With an opening day gross of just short of US $5 million in the United Kingdom, "The Inbetweeners 2" yesterday broke the record for comedies in that territory and beat out "Guardians of the Galaxy" for the day (that film was #1 last weekend in the U.K. with $10.7 million).
  • By Tom Brueggemann
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  • August 7, 2014 2:08 PM
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  • 6 Comments

Box Office Top Ten: What Marvel's 'Guardians' of the Galaxy' Opening Means, Can 'Get On Up' Cross Over?

Marvel continues to rule the Hollywood roost. Origin myth "Guardians of the Galaxy" yet again shows the power of Marvel's unified vision of a comic-book universe whose characters inhabit a clearly defined and immersive world. Like "Iron Man," these Guardians are less widely known than Thor, the Hulk or Captain America. Even so, "Guardians" performed at the same level as Marvel's other summer films, and in August! That marks Marvel's most impressive achievement this year. Clearly, audiences are searching for something different than the pablum the studios are feeding them. And "Guardians" wound up with critical raves far above the norm for a tentpole/international-appeal movie. (See Top Ten Chart below.)
  • By Tom Brueggemann and Anne Thompson
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  • August 3, 2014 5:21 PM
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  • 5 Comments

Specialty Box Office: 'Calvary' Opens Soft, 'Boyhood' and 'A Most Wanted Man' Expand Well, 'Wish I Was Here' Another Focus Flop

Fox Searchlight's "Calvary" opened below expectations in its first theaters, given stellar reviews and TV ad support. "Boyhood" remains the standout as it quickly expands to over 300 screens, showing significant success with a promise of more ahead. Roadside Attraction's "A Most Wanted Man," starring the late Philip Seymour Hoffman, also widened with strong results. (It's one of three recent films to emerge with best actor contenders, along with Brendan Gleeson of "Calvary" and Chadwick Boseman of "Get On Up.")
  • By Tom Brueggemann
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  • August 3, 2014 2:04 PM
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  • 0 Comments

Top Ten Box Office Takeaways, as Action Star Scarlett Johannson in 'Lucy' Lays Out The Rock in 'Hercules'

Two new openings led by Number One Grosser "Lucy" stood out among this weekend's Top 10 grosses. But this fresh new blood wasn't enough to staunch the overall ongoing box office bleeding. The leading films grossed around $130 million, another significant shortfall ($22 million) from the same time last year. The year to date total now is almost 7% below 2013, and even worse, behind every year since 2008.
  • By Tom Brueggemann
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  • July 27, 2014 5:12 PM
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  • 1 Comment

'Maleficent' Crosses $700 Million Worldwide, Shining Jewel in Lackluster Summer

Disney's "Maleficent," which opened May 30, has topped $700 million worldwide, marking Jolie’s highest-grossing live action film of all time domestically, internationally and globally, as well as the highest grossing original film of 2014 worldwide. "Maleficent" is a shining jewel in a dull summer box office that has dipped 20 % so far. The year to date is down 6 %.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • July 22, 2014 2:49 PM
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  • 2 Comments

EXCLUSIVE: Harvey Weinstein Explains How 'Snowpiercer' Became a Gamechanger, We Crunch Theater vs. VOD Numbers

Thirty years in, Harvey Weinstein knows the distribution business. While he's a wily theatrical animal who knows when to spend big on a wide release and when to dump a movie, he took a radical route with Bong Joon-ho's action adventure "Snowpiercer," starring Chris Evans and Tilda Swinton, seizing the chance to try something new. Weinstein's decision to open the movie via subsidiary RADiUS with a video-on-demand release two weeks after its release in theaters is a seismic distribution event.
  • By Anne Thompson and Tom Brueggemann
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  • July 21, 2014 5:21 AM
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  • 25 Comments

Five Takeaways as 'Sex Tape' Flops, Summer Top Ten Box Office Continues Downward Spiral

The summer box office downward spiral continues, with another big drop. The Top Ten grossed $130 million compared to $174 million last year; 2014 is down 6% from 2013. What gives?
  • By Tom Brueggemann
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  • July 20, 2014 4:23 PM
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  • 20 Comments

Arthouse Audit: 'Boyhood' Is Breakout Hit, 'I Origins' Collapses

The big story at a specialty box office dominated by uneven Sundance 2014 openings and expansions is that Richard Linklater's word-of-mouth and critical success "Boyhood" (IFC) shows significant crossover potential.
  • By Tom Brueggemann
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  • July 20, 2014 2:16 PM
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  • 4 Comments

Top 10 Box Office Takeaways: 'Dawn' Rises While Limited 'Boyhood' Thrives

With summer grosses in a downward spiral, partly due to the releases' appeal this year but also because of intense World Cup competition, much hope had been extended to this weekend's opening of "Dawn of the Planet of the Apes" (20th Century Fox) to turn things around.
  • By Tom Brueggemann
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  • July 13, 2014 2:46 PM
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  • 1 Comment

Top Ten Box Office Takeaways: Holiday Box Office Suffers Worst Drop of the Year

This fourth of July weekend, the box office, led yet again by Michael Bay's latest "Transformers," suffered a serious collapse. The Top Ten grossed $113 million. That is $107 million less than last year (when the 4th fell on a Thursday). It's worse than that -- no June or July weekend has grossed this low since 2005, nor any grossed lower for the holiday weekend this century. Some anomalies contributed including the lingering effects of World Cup issues.
  • By Tom Brueggemann
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  • July 6, 2014 4:09 PM
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  • 4 Comments

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