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Thompson on Hollywood

Box Office Top Ten: Audiences Still Love 'Lego' and Kevin Hart, Snub Colin Farrell

Looking at the Box Office Top Ten this week, you'd think we were still in the 1980s. Four new openers include three remakes of '80s hits, and another adapts a major novel from the decade. Another familiar pop culture artifact from the period -- Legos -- returned as the top film this weekend, as Warner Bros.' animated 3D film continues its strong run in its second weekend.
  • By Tom Brueggemann
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  • February 16, 2014 2:06 PM
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Friday Box Office: 'LEGO Movie' Bests Valentine's Day Opener 'About Last Night'

With Valentine's Day falling on a Friday this year, three new films aimed at the dating crowd opened to varying results, but at the end of the night none quite topped the list. "The LEGO Movie" (Warner Bros.) stayed in front by a tiny margin (grossing $13,030,000) on its way to an easy full holiday weekend win ahead, fueled by matinees and strong word of mouth. Business overall was impressive, spread among several decent performers.
  • By Tom Brueggemann
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  • February 15, 2014 2:23 PM
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Arthouse Audit: Niche Docs Lead Specialized Openers, Oscar Contenders Tally

Art-house exhibitors eagerly await the Fox Searchlight stateside release of Wes Anderson's "The Grand Budapest Hotel," which premiered in Berlin to wide acclaim, but it's still a month away. In the meantime, award season releases continue to show uneven results, although non-nominated "Gloria" is expanding well. As was the case last week, the leading new openers are documentaries with more limited appeal. 
  • By Tom Brueggemann
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  • February 9, 2014 7:28 PM
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Box Office Top Ten: 'The Lego Movie ' Wins the Gold, 'Monuments Men' Settles for Silver

What Olympics? Led by a strong performance from "The Lego Movie" (Warner Bros.), this was the best non-holiday weekend of the year so far. The top ten grossed $136 million--$54 million and more than 60% better than last year--bringing the year to date increase to just under 9% so far.
  • By Tom Brueggemann
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  • February 9, 2014 1:12 PM
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  • 1 Comment

Best of the Week: 'Grand Budapest Hotel' Charms Berlin, Cate Blanchett Courts Santa Barbara and More

The top stories of the week from TOH!
  • By TOH!
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  • February 8, 2014 5:33 PM
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  • 0 Comments

Friday Box Office: 'Lego Movie' Has Robust Opening Day, 'Monuments Men' in Distant Second Place

Despite competition from the tape-delayed opening Olympics ceremony, box office was strong yesterday, with "The Lego Movie" (Warner Bros.) taking in a strong $17,140,000 ahead of what is likely to be a very strong matinee-fueled weekend, though not record breaking for February. "Lego" looks to be among Warners' most recent #1 films the third to open to over $50 million and will be the biggest opening of 2014 so far.
  • By Tom Brueggemann
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  • February 8, 2014 1:33 PM
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Arthouse Audit: 'Tim's Vermeer' Shows Life; 'Gloria' Expands Well

For the second straight week, a specialized release whose opening date was initially timed to follow a hoped for Oscar nomination that didn't work out opened to decent results anyway. "Tim's Vermeer" (Sony Pictures Classics) was thought to be a prime contender for the Documentary Feature award.
  • By Tom Brueggemann
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  • February 2, 2014 3:59 PM
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Super Bowl Weekend Saved by Strong Holdovers 'Ride Along' and 'Frozen;' 'Labor Day' Opens in Seventh Place

Despite two new disappointing films (Focus's "That Awkward Moment" and Paramount's "Labor Day"), holdovers sustained this typically low-grossing Super Bowl weekend. Universal sleeper hit "Ride Along" and Disney's unstoppable "Frozen" led the way to a Top 10 that totaled $67 million, up slightly from last year, and continuing the steady improvement so far in 2014.
  • By Tom Brueggemann
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  • February 2, 2014 1:44 PM
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Friday Box Office: 'Ride Along' Reigns Again, 'Awkward Moment' Connects, 'Labor Day' Lags

For theaters, Super Bowl Weekend is sometimes an early Valentine's Day, as the week's new releases tend to have a rom-com theme. This year is no different, with both new wide releases -- "That Awkward Moment" (Focus) and "Labor Day" (Paramount) -- meant as counter-programming against the football hoopla.
  • By Tom Brueggemann
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  • February 1, 2014 1:30 PM
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  • 0 Comments

Who Needs an Oscar Nod? 'Gloria' Scores Strong Initial Numbers Along with 'Stranger by the Lake' and 'Visitors'

The new year has its first subtitled success with the strong opening of Chile Oscar submission "Gloria" (Roadside Attractions), which did not make the Foreign Language shortlist. Opening with a higher per screen average than "No," Chile's nominee last year (starring Gael Garcia Bernal), "Gloria" benefited from strong reviews.
  • By Tom Brueggemann
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  • January 26, 2014 4:27 PM
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  • 1 Comment

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