Tag: Alan Parker

“Cloudy” with a certainty of poor news for new releases

Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs

Never bet against family entertainment, especially when it’s in 3-D and generating strong word of mouth. “Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs” declined a very small 19% and collected an estimated $24.6 million over the weekend, which puts it at a $60 million “cume” or thereabouts according to Bruce McNary of Variety. Not bad.

I’m not one one bit surprised that the new Bruce Willis science-fiction tale, “Surrogates,” didn’t get the over-fluffed $20+ million that was expected, despite the help of costar Radha Mitchell. The movie hasn’t generated much excitement, is getting “meh” to bad reviews, and the appeal of older stars like Willis just doesn’t seem to be that powerful at the box office these days.  Does Bruce Willis even register that much with people under thirty? If it wasn’t for the success of the last “Die Hard” flick, I think this would have done significantly less than the non-terrible estimated $15 million it actually netted for the #2 slot. On the other hand, the film cost $80 million. How much of that was Willis’s salary?


The remake of Alan Parker’s “Fame” got mostly bad reviews, and the box office wasn’t too exciting either with a mere $10 million estimated. Though the film apparently attracted a youngish audience — a possible reflection of the film being perceived as not very good since it’s a well known property to we mid-lifers — apparently most of them were taken up with other films. The week’s other major new release, the Dennis Quaid sci-fi horror entry, “Pandorum,” did a predictably awful estimated $4.4 million.

In more positive news, “The Informant!” held better than expected with roughly $6.9 million in the #4 spot and a mere 33% decline according to the Box Office Mojo chart. An interesting real life story, a funny trailer, an imaginative director, and more youngish star power may still count for something.

The week’s highest per screen average was documentary superstar Michael Moore’s latest, “Capitalism: A Love Story,” earning about $60,000 each in four theaters before going wide next week. The French language biopic, “Coco Before Chanel” starring Audrey Tautou (“Amelie”), earned a stylish estimated $35,000 average on five screens.


Weekend box office? It’s anyone guess

Fame - 2009

I’m in the middle of some big stuff you’ll be seeing here before too long, so this is going to be an extremely short version of my usual long-winded pre-weekend box office previews.

Basically, this is a tricky weekend when it’s hard to see a clear box office favorite. It could be the remake of Alan Parker’s 1980 musical drama, “Fame“; it could be the Bruce Willis/Radha Mitchell virtual living science fiction flick “Surrogates” (a topic much on my mind as I work on a very long post about this movie); it could be a second #1 weekend for “Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs.” It almost certainly won’t be a second sci-fi flick, a horror/space opera with Dennis Quaid that was withheld from critics, “Pandorum.” Dave McNary of Variety goes out on a limb to say that “Surrogates” will win the weekend with something in the low twenty millions, but jolly Carl DiOrio of THR is honestly equivocal while leaning on his imaginary car horn. He’s probably not wrong when he says there’s just an awful lot of material out there chasing a limited number of autumn filmgoers. We shall see.

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