It's time for another The Week in Review column, and there was more movie news, websites and trailers that you could shake a big stick at. So lets get right into it, by lookin at the best and worst news bits of the week with Notables.
"Producer Rick Berman talks about a possible Star Trek prequel" - Monday, January 10
Nobody besides Trekkies has cared about this series for years. The last flick, Star Trek: Nemesis, only made $43 million on a $70 million budget. The Trekkies aren't as big as they used to be, eh? Anyway, the series is dying, and now they want to take away their visible stars in this series and replacing them with some other guys? Come on, Rick. Haven't you heard of bowing out gracefully? Worst News of the Week Nominee.
"Jeepers Creepers 3 coming soon?" - Tuesday, January 11
Speaking of a nobody-cares-about series, we have the possibility of yet another Jeepers Creepers movie. What the crap for?? The first movie made $37 million, and the sequel made $35 million. Sure, they both made money because they were filmed on cheapo budgets of $10 and $25 million, but how sad is it that you need a 3rd film for the ENTIRE franchise to break $100 milliion? What was that I said about bowing out gracefully... Worst News of the Week Nominee.
"Matthew McConaughey set for Failure to Launch" - Tuesday, January 11
This sounds pretty funny to me. Besides, McConaughey just looks like a guy who would still be living with his parents. I think the casting of the parents is crucial here, but if they get that right, this could be a pretty decent project. Best News of the Week Nominee.
"Bill Condon set to direct Dreamgirls" - Tuesday, January 11
Mr. Condon just can't seem to write or direct a bad movie these days. His last three pics were all wonderful: Gods and Monsters, Chicago and Kinsey. Now, I'm not a huge fan of Diana Ross and the Supremes, but with a supreme talent like Condon at the helm, this should be one to watch for. Best News of the Week Nominee.
"J.J. Abrams set to helm The Good Sailor" - Wednesday, January 12
All aspects of this project sound wonderful, and it could show the diversity of Abrams and the writer, Brent Hanley. Hanley wrote the phenomenal horror flick Frailty, which happened to be his first feature film. His writing was just incredible and this project will give him a chance to branch out into other genres. Abrams will make his feature film directorial debut with Mission: Impossible 3 and this sounds right up his alley. This could be a wonderful project, with these two on board. Best News of the Week Nominee.
"Vadim Perelman set to direct Truce" - Thursday, January 13
I wasn't a huge fan of Perelman's The House of Sand and Fog, but Perelman's direction wasn't too shabby. It needed help in the script department, and it looks like he'll get it with this project, and Stuart Beattie (Collateral, Pirates of the Carebbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl) handling the script. It sounds like a very interesting story, although I hope they don't drag it out seeing as there isn't a whole lot here. Still, this could surely be a winner. Best News of the Week Nominee.
"Seann William Scott and Billy Bob Thornton set to star in Mr. Woodcock" - Thursday, January 13
Everything sounds just great about this project. How perfect is the name Mr. Woodcock for a gym teacher? Seann William Scott and Billy Bob Thornton together just sounds perfect as well. They both have their own brand of humor, and they both sound like great choices for these roles. I keep thinking of a mix between Thornton's Bad Santa character and that gym teacher on Seinfeld that George hated with a passion for Thornton's character. I hope they get the ball rolling on this soon, because it sounds like comic gold. Best News of the Week Nominee.
BOX OFFICE CORNER
It took a hard-nosed basketball coach to finally dethrone the mighty Fockers. Samuel L. Jackson's Coach Carter took the number 1 spot at the box office this weekend, ending Meet the Fockers 3-week run at the top. Coach Carter took in an estimated $23.6 million in its debut weekend, besting the Fockers who took the 2nd spot with an estimated $19.01 million. The basketball drama took in an impressive $9,350 per-screen average, showing in 2,524 theaters. That theater count was 1,000 or so theaters less than Fockers and nearly 600 theaters less than the other 2 new releases, Racing Stripes and Elektra. With Coach Carter budgeted at $30 million, it looks like this surely will turn a profit sometime this week.
The other two new releases didn't fare quite as well. Racing Stripes took the 3rd spot, earning an estimated $14.03 million in its first weekend. The live-action/CGI hybrid kids flick earned a discouraging $4,405 per-screen average, and it will likely need a strong showing in the coming weeks to earn a profit.
Elektra had a dissapointing 5th place finish, even being outgrossed by the expanding In Good Company, which took 4th place with $13.8 million and was shown in only half the theaters Elektra was shown in. The Jennifer Garner flick suffered from some attrocious reviews (7% Fresh on Rotten Tomatoes), which surely had an effect on its grosses. Elektra took the 5th spot earning an estimated $12.5 million in its opening weekend. Budget figures weren't released for Elektra, but with this lackluster opening, you'd have to figure this flick would be a longshot to take home a profit.
They needed to take some web designers hostage for this site, because there just isn't much here. You can view the trailer, and there is also a brief synopsis, along with the tagline and a picture of Bruce Willis. Hoo frickin rah. We have some time before this flick is released, so hopefully there is some more goodies on this site before it hits the theaters on March 11.
These sites are all trying to trick me these days, I tell you...Now, usually, when you come to a site and they have an intro page with link that says "Enter Site" or something like that, you get the feeling that it's not a crappy teaser site. Then when you get through a slick little intro, you think this will be a good site. That's when you're wrong, at least when it comes to the Casshern site. After all that, all there is here is a synopsis and the Japanese trailer. What a load of crap... Casshern is still looking for a release date, and hopefully a new web designer...
The Honeymooners: (www.honeymoonersmovie.com)
There isn't much on this site either. The most notable thing here is a picture of what Cedric the Entertainer and Mike Epps will look like as Ralph Kramden and Ed Norton. You can also check out the trailer, a tiny synopsis, a list of credits and a link to register for updates. To the moon, for this website...The Honeymooners opens on March 11.
INSIDE Deep Throat: (www.insidedeepthroatmovie.com)
Man are these crappy sites just becoming the trend this week. There is nothing here besides the one-sheet, a synopsis, which is actually a fairly in-depth synopsis and the trailer. Next site, please...INSIDE Deep Throat opens February 11 in limited release.
OK, this is getting ridiculous. All there is here is a synopsis and a litle slideshow of production photos. Retarded. The Jacket opens March 4, so maybe there will be more added here before then.
King's Ransom: (www.kingsransommovie.com)
This one is a little bit better, but not a whole lot. The page loads up with the trailer automatically, and you can also check out some photos and, of course, sign up for updates. There is also a slideshow of photos on the top of the site, and the tagline scrolls over that slideshow. That's about it, but it's more of an effort than the rest made this week. King's Ransom opens April 22.
I didn't like Will Ferrell's Anchorman at all, and while Elf was decent, I guess, it didn't show the "comic genius" that all these people keep talking about, that I only see in bits and pieces. This flick, however, looks absolutely perfect for Ferrell's outlandish style. I haven't laughed that hard at his material since his turn in Jay and Silent Bob Strikes Back, and this looks like a simply hillarious movie that just might show a bigger dose of that comic genius to me that I've heard so much about. Kicking and Screaming opens on May 13.
This definitely isn't your run-of-the-mill Jet Li stomp-em-up flick. The story is intriguing, with Li as a fighter/slave with a primitive mind that needs a collar to be restrained and who encounters a blind man who teaches him about being a person. It looks very, well, odd, actually and while I can't say I like it right now, it definitely has me somewhat interested. Unleashed opens on April 8.
These medieval epics sure are trendy these days, aren't they? The newest in the genre is Ridley Scott's Kingdom of Heaven. For one, I was astonished to see how much Orlando Bloom looks like Hugh Jackman in this trailer. It looks like skinny little Legolas/Paris put some meat on his bones for this flick. There is a decent cast here, and Scott at the helm is always good news. I think the X-factor here will be the untested screenwriting of William Monahan, but this does look pretty good so far. Kingdom of Heaven opens May 6.
Even though this is essentially a movie about swimming, this looks pretty good. Geoffery Rush and Judy Davis are always solid performers and this true story sounds like a winner. The strict dad/rebelious son thing has been done before, but I think this still could work with Rush, Davis and newcomer Jesse Spencer. Swimming Upstream opens February 4 in limited release.
This looks just horrible. I can't believe Cedric the Entertainer would waste his talent on this project. Mike Epps has some talent, but he's wasted in on crap before, so it's not too much of a shock. Nothing looks funny here and Cedric should really look into his projects a little better, because this will probably be the worst move of his career. The Honeymooners opens on March 11.
Obviously, Anthony Anderson looks into his projects carefully, unlike Mr. the Entertainer, because this looks like a hilarious movie. Anderson has been splitting sides ever since his breakthrough role in Me Myself and Irene, and he won't stop with this movie. Anderson is perfectly cast here, with a great supporting group around him including Jay Mohr, Donald Faison and many others. I think this will be a great comedy, and it opens on April 22.
BEST NEWS OF THE WEEK
There was a lot to choose from this week, but I'm going with the wonderfully-titled Mr. Woodcock for my Best News of the Week. New Line boss Toby Emmerich compared this duo of Seann William Scott and Billy Bob Thornton to Robert DeNiro and Ben Stiller in Meet the Parents. Honestly, the Scott/Thornton team sounds even funnier than DeNiro/Stiller. They both play great a**holes on screen, and I think their styles will go together wonderfully. I get the feeling that Scott might have to play more of a timid character than he's used to, but he was great in his small part as a doofus in Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back, so I'm sure he can pull it off nicely. We could be looking at the next great comedy team here, folks. You heard it here first...well, second, I guess if you count Emmerich.
WORST NEWS OF THE WEEK NOMINEE
There wasn't a lot to choose from here, but I'm picking more of the Creeper for my Worst News of the Week. What really sucks about all of this is that the Creeper, as a character, is a pretty damn good one. But these hokey scenarios they put him in, with terrible characters, dialogue and plot, are just mind-numbing to watch. The first one wasn't totally bad, but the second one was just horrendous. Now they want to go 21 years into the future here. Is the Creeper going to be in floating cars or something? This kind of character in a futurisic setting is just a terrible idea, but Victor Salva dug his own grave there by having the Creeper only coming out every 21 years for 21 days. I just see nothing but bad things coming from this, and I hope they abandon it immediately.
Well, that's all for this week, folks. Surf on by next week for more of the newest box office goodies, websites, trailers and the best and worst news of the week. So, until next time, always remember, if it looks like a good time, sounds like a good time, and feels like a good time...it probably isn't free.