Happy Labor Day weekend folks. It’s been another interesting week of movie news, so lets get right into the best and worst of the week, with Notables.

NOTABLES

"Roberto Benigni to direct The Tiger and the Snow” – Monday, August 30

Now, to be honest, I’m not familiar at all with Benigni’s work. I never saw Life is Beautiful, and like most of the rest of the country, I didn’t see Pinocchio. This is bad news, because there might be a possibility of awards, and with that possibility comes his incredibly annoying speeches. This could be a good flick, but it’s a Worst News of the Week Nominee.

"Vince Vaughn and Owen Wilson to star in Outscored” – Tuesday, August 31

I’m a huge fan of Vaughn, and Wilson can be good when he’s around people like Vaughn. This story sounds pretty funny too, surrounding some axed factory workers who follow their plant that moved to Mexico, to get their jobs back. Sounds like a winner to me. Best News of the Week Nominee.

"James Caviezel the new Superman?” – Tuesday, August 31

Wow, how big can this guy’s ego be? It’s not enough that he played, you know, Christ, but Superman too? I don’t even think he has the right look for Superman at all, so this just sounds dreadful. Worst News of the Week Nominee.

"Eddie Murphy to start in untitled Dreamworks comedy” – Wednesday, September 1

Apparently this is supposed to be in the vein of Blazing Saddles, but with Murphy, who hasn’t really been funny in years, hopping on board, I hope this project just goes up in flames. Worst News of the Week Nominee.

"Producer Tom Rosenberg talks Underworld 2” – Friday, September 3

Did this even make enough to warrant a sequel? Was it good enough that people will actually care about a sequel? I think not. Worst News of the Week Nominee.

BOX OFFICE CORNER

Well, it was Labor Day weekend, and that means ultra-low box office receipts. Although there weren’t many high grossing flicks, a few movies actually posted moderate increases, although Hero prevailed for the 2nd week in a row. The Jet Li flick took the top spot again with an estimated gross of $11.5 million. The flick actually only dropped 35.9% from last weekend, and now has an overall gross of $35.2 million.

Without a Paddle jumped up to the second spot, with an estimated gross of $9.4 million. These numbers aren’t incredibly huge, but the flick increased 9.5% from last weekend. Collateral, at the 7th spot, increased 0.5% and The Bourne Supremacy, in the 10th spot, increased 15.6% from last weekend.

The 4 new flicks this weekend posted some fairly low grosses. Paparazzi took the 4th spot with an estimated gross of $7.8 million. Wicker Park took the 6th spot with an estimated gross of $6.7 million. Vanity Fair and The Cookout were very close in the 8th and 9th spots. Vanity Fair took in an estimated $6.121 million and The Cookout was right on its tail with $6.1 million. These new flicks could switch places when the actual numbers are released on Tuesday, but who really cares...

GOING LIVE

The Pink Panther: (www.thepinkpantherthemovie.com)

There isn’t a whole lot on this site, but it has a really cool Flash intro, with the familiar Pink Panther theme in the background. All that’s here is “The Case File” which is just a fancy name for the synopsis, and the trailer. It says the full site is coming soon, so I’d probably just check back later because there will probably be more to this site. The Pink Panther opens on July 22, 2005.

Taxi: (www.taximovie.com)

This site isn’t too bad, with a decent amount of content, even though the Intro is just some footage from the trailer. If you click on Story, there is a very brief synopsis, but you can click on some of the characters at the bottom. Each character has a very brief description, but you can watch a clip for each character as well. There is also a link to the Cast and Crew, with some “Behind the Scenes Pictures” There is also a photo gallery, some downloadable wallpapers AIM icons and a calendar of some sort. There is a “Game” link, but that is under construction. All in all, this is a pretty decent site, even though the movie looks like crap. Taxi opens on October 8.

First Daughter: (www.firstdaughtermovie.com)

This site starts out with a corny little intro, and Katie Holmes doesn’t even look that hot here, unfortunately. When you get through the intro, there isn’t a whole lot here. There’s a synopsis, photo gallery, the trailer and a “Goodies” section, but, alas, there are no “goodies” as of yet. Katie Holmes does look hotter in some of the photo gallery pics, but that’s pretty much the only reason to check out this site. First Daughter opens on September 24.

TRAILER PARK

The Final Cut:

Robin Williams sure is into those dramas lately, and his latest one, like most of his other dramas looks like a winner. There is a very interesting premise here, about a company that preserves every human memory with an implant, and the repercussions of one single memory. This looks like another good performance from Williams and the story sounds good to me as well. The Final Cut hits theaters on September 24 in limited release.

Paper Clips:

Looking for a good tug at your heart strings? This is surely the flick for you, although it doesn’t really look like the flick for me. This documentary is about some grade school kids who go on a crusade, of sorts, to collect paper clips...6 million of them to be exact, one for each victim of the Holocaust. I don’t know, it looks incredibly sappy and schmaltzy and while I understand what they were trying to do, I just don’t see the point to it. But, if this is up your alley, you can check it out on September 24 in limited release.

Beyond the Sea:

Ahh it’s GREAT to have you back, Kevin Spacey! It’s been 5 long years since his amazing performance in American Beauty and after a string of bombs (See: The Life of David Gale, The Shipping News, K-PAX) it looks like he’s finally back on top with Beyond the Sea. He plays legendary entertainer Bobby Darin here, and he looks better than ever. It will be interesting to see how Kate Bosworth holds up next to Spacey, but they’ve got my ticket just for Spacey. I really can’t wait for this one, folks. Beyond the Sea opens on November 24 in limited release.

Undertow:

This looks like a great one too, with Dermot Mulroney and Josh Lucas squaring off in a sibling rivalry taken to a new level. Lucas has a bunch of great yet overlooked performances under his belt in recent years, and it’ll be nice to see him in the spotlight for once. I’m not sure how this will pan out, but it very well could be a sleeper in the Oscar race. We’ll have to wait until October 22 to find out though when this flick comes out in limited release.

Evergreen:

Oh goody, another coming-of-age schmaltz-fest. The trailer is filled with praise from a bunch of critics, of course, but I just don’t know about this one. Evergreen opens September 10 in limited release.

BEST NEWS OF THE WEEK

It was a pretty bad week, as far as I’m concerned, and the only thing that qualified for this category is Vince Vaughn and Owen Wilson’s new project. This project does have a pretty nifty premise, and with Vaughn and Wilson playing off each other, it should be a winner. Sure, Owen Wilson can be kind of a tool sometimes, but with this story and Vaughn at his side, it sounds can’t-miss to me.

WORST NEWS OF THE WEEK

My pick for Worst News of the Week goes to Eddie Murphy’s new Blazing Saddles-ish project. Apparently, he brought this idea to Dreamworks himself, so that should spell trouble immediately. He just hasn’t had the good in years, and you can’t say anything about Shrek and Shrek 2, because it’s just a voice, and the kids were the best thing in Daddy Day Care, not Murphy, so there. I guess he must have figured he hasn’t had luck picking established projects lately, so why not come up with one on his own? If that isn’t flawed logic, I don’t know what is...