April 19, 2014

Tag Archives: Lions Gate films

The Hunger Games to be released in China

HollywoodNews.com: Lionsgate announced today that THE HUNGER GAMES, which has already grossed nearly $620 million at the worldwide box office, has been approved for release in China in the first half of June.
The film will be released nationwide in China with both dubbed and subtitled prints by The China Film Group in conjunction with Lionsgate’s promotional partner, Talent International. THE HUNGER GAMES will be one of the first Hollywood studio films to be released in China under the new blockbuster revenue sharing agreement announced in February that allows Western distributors to collect up to 25% of a film’s receipts in China.
“THE HUNGER GAMES juggernaut continues to gain momentum around the world, and we’re thrilled that we can now share the exciting first installment of THE HUNGER GAMES franchise with Chinese moviegoers in June,” said Lionsgate Motion Picture Group Co-Chairs Patrick Wachsberger and Rob Friedman. “China is already one of the leading territories at the international box office, and the launch of THE HUNGER GAMES in this key market is another sign of the franchise’s continuing emergence as a truly global phenomenon.”
THE HUNGER GAMES has already grossed more than $380 million at the North American box office where it ranks 13th among the highest-grossing films of all time. It has grossed nearly $620 million worldwide with upcoming launches in China and Japan.
“We view China as an increasingly important market for our content in Asia,” said Wendy Reeds, Executive Vice President of Content Sales & Distribution for Celestial Tiger Entertainment (CTE), Lionsgate’s venture with Saban Capital Group and Astro’s Celestial Pictures in Asia. “The Chinese box office grew by more than 30% last year to over $2 billion, and THE HUNGER GAMES’ approval for nationwide release in China is a major step in translating the enormous commercial potential of this huge market into reality.”
About THE HUNGER GAMES
Every year in the ruins of what was once North America, the evil Capitol of the nation of Panem forces each of its twelve districts to send a teenage boy and girl to compete in the Hunger Games. A twisted punishment for a past uprising and an ongoing government intimidation tactic, The Hunger Games are a nationally televised event in which “Tributes” must fight with one another until one survivor remains.
Pitted against highly-trained Tributes who have prepared for these Games their entire lives, Katniss is forced to rely upon her sharp [...]

The Avengers’ Smashes Records…$178 million

HollywoodNews.com:In the weekend before the official start of the summer season, four new releases, all of which were relatively smaller fare, all debuted to numbers ranging from not awful to genuinely awful (or example 4,321 on why comparing total weekend box office is stupid). The top film this weekend was once again Think Like A Man, which dropped a surprisingly decent 46%, earning another $18 million. The ensemble romantic comedy has now earned $60 million, putting it on track to be among the domestic bigger grossers of the first 1/3 of 2012.
If we’re specifically talking ‘black-films’, then the Tim Story picture is a few days from outgrossing every Tyler Perry movie save Madea Goes to Jail, which grossed $90 million three years ago (the second highest-grossing Perry film is the $63 million-grossing Madea’s Family Reunion). With a smaller drop and a larger second weekend off a $8 million-smaller opening weekend, it may pass that mark all the way to $100 million if it can hold onto screens as summer begins. It will soon surpass the $65 million gross of Barbershop 2, the $67 million gross of Waiting to Exhale, and the $75 million gross of Barbershop within the next full week. It’s also out-grosssed and/or will likely out-gross any number of higher-profile ‘white’ romantic comedies or dramas (the $81 million-grossing Dear John, the $84 million-grossing Stupid, Crazy Love, the $54 million-grossing New Year’s Eve, etc). Usually when a $12 million-budgeted film ends up flirting with $100 million, studios respond with sequels and/or star-vehicles for certain higher-profile cast-members. We’ll see if Hollywood again writes off this ‘unconventional’ smash hit as a ‘fluke’ or whether Kevin Hart, Gabrielle Union, and Meagan Good (among others) get any ‘bumps’ off this film’s unquestionable success.
To read more go to Mendelson’s Memo

The Hunger Games: The hunt for a new director is on

HollywoodNews.com: The Playlist doesn’t break news all that often, merely seeing fit to be a one-stop shop for the movie news that everyone else breaks during the day (I don’t mean that as an insult, The Playlist is the site I go to if I only have time to surf one movie news site in a given day), So it’s somewhat of a big deal that The Playlist has broken a pretty major story, confirming that director Gary Ross will not be back to helm the second and/or third films in the Hunger Games franchise. There have been rumblings all week about contract negotiations, and Ross has now politely passed. The site chalks it up to both Ross’s lack of desire to stay in the same universe for the next several years combined with a somewhat low-ball offer from Lionsgate. Whatever the case, Ross is gone and the hunt for a new director is now on. While editing my John Carter obituary a few weeks ago, I removed a large paragraph dealing with the trend of giving young white-male filmmakers with barely a feature credit to their name the keys to $100-300 million franchise films while seasoned pros and/or minorities remain noticeably absent from the ‘wish-list’ (yes, I was glad to see F. Gary Gray on the Marvel wish-list for Captain America 2). And while I wouldn’t consider The Hunger Games a ‘female film’, it would be a great opportunity to make a point that female directors can indeed handle the kind of big-scale filmmaking that studios are all-too willing to offer to mostly untested male directors as a matter of course. So, perhaps arbitrarily, perhaps to prove a point about how inaccessible the ‘wish list’ is for female directors, here are nine directors who happen to be women who also belong on ‘the wish-list’ as Lionsgate hunts for a second director. These are in alphabetical order, with the exception of the final entry, who would be my ‘top choice’.
Kathryn Bigelow
Duh. In fact, she’ll probably make the wish-list as a token nod to gender-diversity, and all she had to do was become the first female in history to win a Best Director Oscar. I don’t really have to explain this pick. She’s been directing hard action pictures for thirty years. She’s helmed the likes of Near Dark (a [...]

“Thor 2″ is supposedly going to be directed by Patty Jenkins

HollywoodNews.com: Variety has apparently confirmed that Marvel Studios is indeed in talks with Patty Jenkins to replace departing Kenneth Branagh in directing Thor 2, which is due for release on July 26th, 2013. I generally don’t comment on news about who is ‘in talks’ or who is ‘on the wish-list’, but Patty Jenkins inclusion on this specific wishlist is worth commenting on. Jenkins is best known for having helmed Monster, which won Charlize Theron a Best Actress Oscar in 2003 for her portrayal of serial killer Aileen Wuornos. Since that triumph, she has unfortunately been relegated to directing occasional episodes of television, most recently helming the pilot for the AMC series The Killing.
This is a pleasantly out-of-left field choice that plays to Marvel’s greatest strength as a studio, picking talented filmmakers who aren’t necessarily known for comic book spectacle and/or aren’t ‘the hip new flavor of the month’. While much of the coverage will focus on ‘YAY, Marvel is possibly hiring the first-ever woman to direct one of its superhero movies!’, there are two things worth noting. First of all, Lexi Aexander, who directed Punisher: War Zone in 2008 (review) is also of the female persuasion. Second of all, the lack of credits on Jenkins’s IMDB page brings up a troubling double-standard. Had a male, arguably any male, directed a critically-acclaimed and Oscar-winning drama like Monster, they surely would have been on every studio’s wishlist for every major project (see Hopper, Tom or Forrester, Marc). But, Jenkins has barely worked in the last eight years.
The problem is of course not there there is a fiendish conspiracy to keep female directors out of the big leagues. The problem is that there is an expectation that female directors cannot possibly helm the kind of pulpy, big-budget and special-effects-filled genre pictures that currently dominate the landscape. I joke about it quite a bit, but why couldn’t Sophia Coppola helm the next James Bond picture? For that matter, why can’t Drew Barrymore, who juggled a large ensemble cast with the dynamite Whip It, take over for the rebooted Fantastic Four franchise?
Why did it take Kathryn Bigelow winning a bloody Oscar for Hollywood to take her seriously? Hell, why has Mimi Leder, who helmed two big-budget genre pictures (the emotionally engaging Deep Impact and the ahead-of-its-time The Peacemaker) [...]

Weekend Box Office: Contagion

HollywoodNews.com: It was good news/bad news at the box office this weekend. Two critically-acclaimed adult entries squared off and only only came out shining. The winner for the weekend was Steven Soderbergh’s Contagion, grossing $23.1 million from 3,222 screens. The all-star pandemic thriller fits squarely into the realm of Soderbergh’s ‘commercial ventures’. With the exception of Erin Brockovich (which was a Julia Roberts vehicle), Soderbergh alternates between artier and sometimes experimental fare of varying quality (Bubble, The Limey, King of the Hill – good! The Girlfriend Experience, The Good German, Full Frontal – bad!) and all-star genre entries that are inherently populist and commercial even with their occasional artier sensibilities (Ocean’s 11, Traffic, Out of Sight, etc).
But even his commercial ventures are generally aimed at adults with adult sensibilities, so the solid opening weekend is to be celebrated. The well-reviewed film played mostly to the over-25 set, which means it has a chance at solid legs as the younger kids check it out over the next month. It earned a B- from Cinemascore, which is probably owed to the fact that it’s genuinely unnerving in its plausibility (audiences claim to love horror but don’t like to be actually disturbed or frightened). I haven’t seen it yet as my son had a contagious infection over the weekend. We considered taking him on Friday afternoon and hoping he would cough in all the right places for maximum comedy, but we thought better of it.
While Lionsgate’s Warrior (review) was never expected to win the weekend, as it was on just 1,800 screens, its mere $5.6 million opening weekend was somewhat of a shock. It was expected to capitalize on the rave reviews and solid buzz that Lionsgate had built through a number of ‘word of mouth’ screenings all around the country, as well as a national sneak preview last weekend. In hindsight, perhaps Lionsgate should have released the film last weekend, as the buzz seemed to have peaked then. There are two ways to look at this. One way is simply to say that the MMA-themed family drama was never that appealing to general audiences, and that the rave reviews and aggressive Lionsgate marketing campaign simply built up unrealistic expectations (unlike The Fighter, it lacked stars and a token romantic subplot).
And it’s just another sad commentary on the [...]

“Ghost Rider” sequel drops poster, new trailer

By Sean O’Connell
Hollywoodnews.com: UPDATE! The first official teaser trailer for Mark Neveldine and Brian Taylor’s “Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance” is online and posted, below!

From earlier:
Nicolas Cage returns to the demonic role of Johnny Blaze, the motorcycle-riding Marvel superhero who embarks on a new adventure against the devil in Eastern Europe. Ciaran Hinds, Violante Placido, Idris Elba and Johnny Whitworth co-star in this sequel, which we are expecting to be a gonzo as Neveldine and Taylor’s “Crank” films … because we know that Cage has the ability to crank it up to 11 when necessary.
We’ll have the trailer on the site once it hits. The film reaches theaters in 3D and 2D theaters next year. Until then, SuperheroHype has the film’s new poster. It’s below:

Follow Hollywood News on Twitter for up-to-date news information.
Hollywood News, Hollywood Awards, Awards, Movies, News, Award News, Breaking News, Entertainment News, Movie News, Music News

Paranormal Activity 3 Trailer

HollywoodNews.com: Considering how completely enshrouded in mystery the second film is, it’s a little surprising that Paramount basically ups and reveals the primary plot in this moody and effective teaser. This time around, it’s being helmed by Henry Joost and Ariel Schulman, who broke out last year with the somewhat questionable (in regards to its ‘non-fiction-ness’) documentary Catfish. I have no objection with the third film in this franchise being an 80s-set prequel, but I have to wonder where they will go after they’d allegedly explained much of the mystery in this alleged ‘here’s how it all began’ third chapter.

I am genuinely curious to see A) if they actually shot the film on old-fashioned VHS camcorders and B) whether this series can maintain the consistency of the Saw franchise, which was flying high for five straight installments before crashing with the sixth (and ironically best) chapter back in 2009. It took direct competition from the first Paranormal Activity to bring down Jigsaw. What will be the next October-scheduled franchise to take down the poltergeists/demons from this series in a few years? Anyway, this one opens on October 21st, which is the same weekend as the wide releases of the first two films. As always, we’ll see…
Photo by Paramount Pictures
To read more go to MENDELSON’S MEMOS
To see celebrity photo galleries click here
Follow Hollywood News on Twitter for up-to-date news information.
Hollywood News, Hollywood Awards, Awards,  Movies, News, Award News, Breaking News, Entertainment News, Movie News, Music News

Matthew McConaughey: “The Lincoln Lawyer” ONLY $6 per ticket

By Roger Friedman
HollywoodNews.com: EXCLUSIVE Here’s a first: Matthew McConaughey‘s new movie, “The Lincoln Lawyer,” is being offered at $6 a ticket for opening weekend through Groupon. Yes, that’s right. To stimulate box office, Lions Gate–the same company that can’t seem to make a deal to bring “Mad Men” back to TV– is deep discounting a major release. This is done all the time in the record business–labels deep discount new releases to get them to Number 1 on the charts. It’s just not happened before with a major studio movie.
In a press release, Lions Gate is all excited about this: “We are always looking for ways to reach our consumers with targeted, cost-effective and innovative campaigns,” said Lionsgate Vice Chairman Michael Burns. “Groupon is one of the most dynamic young companies in the world today, and their emergence as a digital commerce pioneer made them the perfect online partner for Lionsgate and THE LINCOLN LAWYER. We believe this agreement is the shape of things to come as Hollywood studios discover a natural alliance with smart, entrepreneurial digital partners in bringing our content to consumers with cutting edge promotional campaigns that harness the unprecedented reach of the online world. We’re delighted that our LINCOLN LAWYER partner, Tom Rosenberg at Lakeshore, shared our vision in helping us create this historic first.”
Tickets are on sale through Groupon the rest of today and all of tomorrow. “The Lincoln Lawyer” opens Friday. It does mean that in many places, “TLL” will sell at half price. Will that make people see it? Wait til Saturday morning for the results.
PS It’s two to a customer!
To read more go to www.showbiz411.com
Follow Hollywood News on Twitter for up-to-date news information.
Hollywood News, Hollywood Awards, Awards, Movies, News, Award News, Breaking News, Entertainment News, Movie News, Music News

Stallone not directing “Expendables” sequel?

By Sean O’Connell
Hollywoodnews.com: Sylvester Stallone has been talking up an “Expendables” sequel ever since his initial adventure opened – and opened big – last August. Most assumed Sly would return to the director’s chair when the next installment finally lensed, but that might not be the case.
David Agosto and Ken Kaufman have been hired to write a second “Expendables,” according to 24 Frames. Kaufman wrote Ron Howard’s “The Missing” and “Space Cowboys” for director Clint Eastwood, though Stallone co-wrote the first “Expendables” script with David Callaham.
But the big surprise in the 24 Frames piece was that Stallone “isn’t, at the moment, planning on helming the new movie” and, instead, has “been meeting with directors to tackle the sequel.”
There are a number of “Expendables” rumors floating around, some of which have been started by Stallone, himself. The biggest one involves Bruce Willis’s character from the first film expanding to become the main villain for the sequel. It’s all speculation at this point, but if Sly is meeting with potential directors, we might hear more very soon.
Follow Hollywood News on Twitter for up-to-date news information.
Hollywood News, Hollywood Awards, Awards, Movies, News, Award News, Breaking News, Entertainment News, Movie News, Music News

Michael Moore “should be ashamed” for “Fahrenheit 9/11″ lawsuit

By Sean O’Connell
Hollywoodnews.com: It was a controversial documentary when it was released back in 2004. Nearly seven years later, “Fahrenheit 9/11” has filmmaker Michael Moore back in the news for negative reasons.
The Oscar winner is suing Harvey and Bob Weinstein, claiming that the brothers used “Hollywood accounting tricks” to cheat Moore out of nearly $3 million in profits, THR reports. The lawsuit, filed in Los Angeles, sues for breach of contract and breach of fiduciary duty, and makes constructive fraud claims stating that the Weinstein’s agreed to split profits 50-50, but then diverted funds so that Moore would receive less.
The Weinstein’s lawyer, Bert Fields, dismissed the claims, telling THR, “The Weinsteins have paid everything they should have paid. Mr. Moore has received a huge amount of money from this film and we believe he is overreaching. He should be ashamed of himself.”
In response, Moore’s lawyer, Larry Stein, issued the following statement:
“An independent auditor came in and discovered that the Weinsteins had re-routed at least $2.7 million dollars that belonged to Michael Moore from “Fahrenheit 9/11.” This is the first time Michael Moore has ever sued anyone in his 20-yr career as a filmmaker. That should be some indication about how serious this is. It’s very sad it had to come to this. Michael believes the Weinsteins have been a force for good when it comes to championing independent film — but that does not give them the right to violate a contract and take money that isn’t theirs. The $2.7 million is just the floor of what we believe is owed. When this goes to discovery I wouldn’t be surprised if the amount of what was taken goes much, much higher.”
Follow Hollywood News on Twitter for up-to-date news information.
Hollywood News, Hollywood Awards, Awards, Movies, News, Award News, Breaking News, Entertainment News, Movie News, Music News

Page 1 of 41234