Box Office: JACK slays first March weekend

JACK THE GIANT SLAYER will most certainly take the weekend, but will it flop like many other high budget March releases? Films like JOHN CARTER and 10,000 BC might’ve had even more going for them than JACK does at this point. Here’s what Box Office Mojo thinks:

Forecast (March 1-3)
1. Jack the Giant Slayer – $26.1 million
2. 21 and Over – $14.7 million
3. The Last Exorcism Part II – $12.5 million
4. Identity Thief – $10.1 million (-28%)

A considerable flop indeed. Check in on Sunday afternoon for the final numbers.

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Emma Watson in talks for lead in CINDERELLA!

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Emma Watson, best known as Hermione in the HARRY POTTER films, is in talks to star in CINDERELLA. Kenneth Branagh (THOR, HAMLET, the upcoming JACK RYAN) will be directing the film, which is currently projected for a 2014 release. I imagine this film will take cues from recent modern attempts by Disney to adapt fairy tales, for example Angelina Jolie’s MALEFICENT.

Watson was most recently featured in THE PERKS OF BEING A WALLFLOWER and will be seen in apocalyptic meta comedy THIS IS THE END on June 14, 2013. I’ve seen nothing but solid acting out of Watson and solid direction out of Branagh, so I have high hopes for this retelling of the classic story.

New trailer for OBILVION, starring Tom Cruise!

The newest trailer for Joseph Kosinski’s OBILIVION starring Tom Cruise and
Morgan Freeman is online and full of new footage! This trailer is more focused on the action aspects of the film and it still looks really beautiful. The cinematographer of this movie, Claudio
Miranda, won an Oscar on Sunday for his work on LIFE OF PI and his attention to detail really stands out in this trailer.

OBILIVION will be in IMAX on April 12 and standard theaters on April 19, 2013.

Release Date Frenzy: THE HOBBIT, KICK-ASS 2, more!

Hollywood has me busy tonight! After a slew of casting news (see below post) we now have a bunch of new release dates on our hands! Take a look:

– THE HOBBIT: THERE AND BACK AGAIN, the third and final HOBBIT film, has moved from July 18, 2014 (where it was in direct competition with the next X-MEN film) to December 17, 2014. That date is an unusual Wednesday release, two days before the Friday release of Disney’s TOMORROWLAND and Illumination’s MINIONS.

– KICK-ASS 2 moves back from June 29, 2013 to August 16, 2013.

– 2 GUNS, starring Mark Wahlberg and Denzel Washington, moves from August 16, 2013 to August 2, 2013.

– Martin Scorsese’s THE WOLF OF WALL STREET opens on November 15, 2013 against the triple threat of Wiiileaks drama THE FIFTH ESTATE, Ridley Scott and Cormac McCarthy’s THE COUNSELOR and Robert DeNiro/Sylvester Stallone boxing movie GRUDGE MATCH.

Awesome Casting News: Gary Oldman, Daniel Radcliffe, Johnny Depp

A boatload of casting news just went online! Here’s the skinny:

– Gary Oldman has been cast in DAWN OF THE PLANET OF THE APES as Dreyfuss, the leader of a colony of surviving humans. Oldman, known for his roles in THE DARK KNIGHT and HARRY POTTER and many others, is a astoundingly respectable actor and one of my all-time favorites. My already high expectations for this movie just became extreme. DAWN swings into theaters May 23, 2013.

– Daniel Radcliffe, Harry Potter himself, has been cast as Igor in Fox’s new FRANKENSTEIN film. An interesting role for the young actor for sure, but Daniel has been flexing his acting muscle for the last two years since HARRY POTTER. FRANKENSTEIN is one of several Mary Shelley adaptations in development right now, for example I, FRANKENSTEIN starring Aaron Eckhart will be in theaters September 13, 2013.

– Johnny Depp is now officially attached to director Wally Pfister’s directorial debut, called TRANSCENDENCE. He has been unofficially connected to the film for some time now, but today was the first official word from Warner Bros. Wally Pfister has gained some Hollywood clout for his role as Director of Photography for director Christopher Nolan’s films. Paul Bettany has also been confirmed for a role in the film. There is no release date set, but you should check out the intriguing synopsis over at Collider: http://collider.com/paul-bettany-transcendence/

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Science Fiction Preview: RIDDICK

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The long awaited third film of the RIDDICK trilogy is finally on its way, titled simply enough: RIDDICK. Director David Twohy and lead actor Vin Diesel have gathered quite a following in the 13 years since PITCH BLACK was released. Offering a unique and gritty take on science fiction, the RIDDICK movies are also a perfect action vehicle for star/producer Vin Diesel to show off some impressive stunts and set pieces. Not really in the same contention as say STAR WARS or STAR TREK, this smaller approach to science fiction brings a new perspective to the genre.
When the synopsis was released, I could tell that the third RIDDICK story was written by someone who understand the attraction of these films. When the events of CHRONICLES OF RIDDICK were concluded, the furious Furyian had inherited the throne of the Necromonger Empire. As stunning as that ending was, fans do not want to watch a movie about Riddick sitting on the throne. Even a throne of skulls. They want the fugitive, the man on the run; thus the events between films see the Furyian lose his Empire. He is now being pursued by lethal mercenaries and the man from which he stole the Necromonger throne.
Fans of the 2000 and 2004 films (can you believe it’s been nine years?) will love this movie, there is no doubt there. But I also think general science fiction fans should take the opportunity of this release to review the previous films and see how they stack up today. Action fans should also seriously consider diving into the RIDDICK franchise, it’s more substantial than you might know. I personally think RIDDICK is going to dominate the first two weeks of September 2013 at the box office. RIDDICK blasts into theaters September 6, 2013.

Rumor: David Goyer re-hired for MAN OF STEEL sequel

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Here’s a rumor I would love to see materialize. David Goyer, the writer of the BLADE trilogy, the DARK KNIGHT trilogy and MAN OF STEEL has been re-hired by Warner Bros. to write a sequel for the newest Superman movie. This news comes out of movie fan site Think McFly Think.

Goyer just finished a polish of the GODZILLA script and it currently working on his TV show, “Da Vinci’s Demons”. It’s entirely possible that his schedule would allow for work on the MAN OF STEEL sequel (MAN OF STEEL 2? LAST SON OF KRYPTON?). Given the positive response posted by Warner Bros. executives and fan scoops, this seems like a wise decision on WB’s part. Now all they need to do is get JUSTICE LEAGUE up and running…

MAN OF STEEL hits theaters June 14, 2013.