a pro script reader ponders movies, reading, writing and the occasional personal flashback

Friday, December 07, 2007

Weekend Box Office #61

The only thing opening wide this weekend is THE GOLDEN COMPASS, in 3528 theaters. It's obviously going to do well, but how well is the question.

I'm not sure enough people are familiar with the books, while since it doesn't come across as as much of a family movie as NARNIA, I'm not sure it is hitting any audience dead-on.

Still, a lot of theaters, a lack of new competition... call it $34.1 million for the weekend.

Opening in limited release is a slew of new movies, including ATONEMENT (32 theaters), JUNO (7 theaters) and GRACE IS GONE (4 theaters).


At 11:14 AM, Blogger Allen said...

Def. going to go see Juno...go Cody.

At 11:31 AM, Blogger Jeff said...

Word on the street is a disappointing start for Compass. Look for mid-20s on a movie that cost 200+. It also apparently doesn't end with closure, but as a clear set-up for the sequel, so if this bombs, the question is will the sequel ever get made.

At 6:39 PM, Blogger E.C. Henry said...

My aunt, who is a true saint, told me that story behind "The Golden Compass" is about killing God. Will definately skip it, based on that heresay.

Totally psyched about "Attonement." It got a GREAT review in the Seattle Times, AND I'm very currious to see how actor James Mcavoy does after how GREAT he was in "Becoming Jane." There's something about that actor. I think he may be destined for greatness.

Other than that, I'm really warming up to "No Country for Old Men" too. Up here in Washington they're really ramping up the commericals for it. And this may sound totally crazy, but that Texas landscape seems so inviting to me after having to endure another grey, drab, rainy, gloomy November and now early December in Western Washington. Hope y'alls weather in So. Cal is nicer than what I'm forced to endure.

- E.C. Henry from Bonney Lake, WA

At 8:50 PM, Blogger Patrick J. Rodio said...

EC, not being mean, but did your aunt actually read any of the books or is she just relaying passed along info??

I think one should let the film stand on its own, not just go by what some people assume it's about.

To me, it looks like a sub-par Lord Of The Rings with a polar bear, so I won't see it just because I think it looks lame.

But if it looked worth seeing, I wouldn't care who said it slams catholics or quakers or shoe salesmen. I have my own mind, thank you, and I'll make my own interpretation.

These damn Catholics are too freakin sensitive. And paranoid, as well as (in some caes - brainwashed). Yeah, and I was raised can't just confess your sins and they go away, not that easy, people.

At 8:54 PM, Blogger Patrick J. Rodio said...

Almost forgot:

The Golden Blasphemy (C'mon, I kid!) - Could go either way, it'll be either 18 million or 37 million.

At 11:57 PM, Blogger Allen said...

after ec's comment, i kinda want to see it.

At 10:47 AM, Blogger E.C. Henry said...

No, you're right, Patrick, my aunt hasn't read the books, but a major Christian organization, Focus on the Family, from Boulder Colorado, put out that warning. A lot of people heed what they have to say, and I'm one of them.

To you, Patrick, watching a show which has undercurrents which undermine God, may not be a big thing, but to a lot of people THAT IS a BIG issue, AND it's programs devoid of content which keep many Christians away from the movies and make Christians look at Hollywood with a jaded eye. Content matters. Values protrayed matters.

Of cource you should make up your own mind, Patrick. I'm amazed by how taken afront you are by my last post. It wasn't directed at you. Why do you feel the need to stick up for "The Golden Compass?"

- E.C. Henry from Bonney Lake, WA

At 11:57 PM, Blogger DDog said...


Re: religion, to each his own. If you don't wanna watch The Golden Compass based on the fact that it (appears to) conflict with a personal belief of yours: fine, knock yourself out.

But, from my understanding -- and, as somebody who has yet to read the complete series, so let me know if I'm off-base on this -- the book describes the heroes as turning their backs on God, rather than killing him.

My question to you: Why would you skip a movie that may very well result in God's death? If I were against a film depicting "God's death", I'd still check it out. Isn't that what being a screenwriter is all about? Facing challenges, which may be a positive force in one's growth as a writer, and learning from said challenges?

You're a screenwriter, right? (You're a regular poster on this screenwriting blog, so I would assume as much). As a writer, I think one should approach movies, and other things with which they disagree, and study and absorb them for what they are -- regardless of how much the content may offend you.

Somebody -- especially a screenwriter -- who says that they're going to skip a movie because they disagree with the flick's supposed message doesn't strike me as somebody who possesses the open mind; something which I believe to be a vital requirement of storytellers of any caliber.

And, if you re-read Patrick's post, he wasn't sticking up for The Golden Compass, per se, (and I don't want to speak for the guy, but I'm gonna attempt to), but I think he was bringing to light your lack of openmindedness resulting from not wanting to see a movie simply based on heresay.

And, oh yeah, TGC should pull $25-$30 mil.

At 3:13 PM, Blogger Jake Hollywood said...


Golden Compass = Movie.

Not to knock you beliefs or anything, but you must not see many films. I mean, think about it, almost every film violates the Ten Commandments in one form or another...and no good christian would want to involve themselves in watching a film about breaking the will of God, right?

So, you'll go see No Company for Old Man,
so it must be okay in your mind anyway, to kill mere men on film, but not some imaginary being?

Besides it's not as if you could actually kill God (if one actually exists, that is), right? There's no kryptonite for God, is there?

Repeat after me: "The Golden Compass is only a movie. Only a movie." And not a good one.

At 4:00 PM, Blogger Allen said...

juno rocked.

At 8:04 PM, Blogger Patrick J. Rodio said...

EC - I certainly didn't take personal offense, but it gets under my skin when some people, I won't name who but it rhymes with Matholic, tend to get all bent out of shape before they even understand or get all the info to make a decent opinion.

So, a character in the book wants to kill God, and he questions God and all that.

Well, that's okay. Can we not question things? To me, that is an interesting character (I hear a lot of that stuff is toned way down in the movie anyway).

I'm just saying, make up your own mind, don't let some close-minded organization make it for you.

Like I said, I never wanted to see the movie cause it looked pretty run-of-the-mill, starring a pissed-off bear from the Coke commercials.

At 9:51 PM, Blogger John said...

The religious opposition to Golden Compass is very relevant to Scott's box office estimates.

The religious community is a significant part of the market for "family films", and groups like Focus on the Family can have a meaningful impact on the market for a G, PG, or PG-13 film.

According to, "Pullman has left little doubt about his books' intended thrust in discussions of his works, such as noting in a 2003 interview that "My books are about killing God" and in a 2001 interview that he was "trying to undermine the basis of Christian belief."

At 4:57 AM, Anonymous Steve said...

Hey ho, religious debates, the bane of the Internet (along with political debates).

My daughter, who at 16 is been successfully trained to be a cut-throat cynic and rebel (we're so proud!) said the books are not really anti-religious so much as anti- "so-called 'religious' organisations attempting to rule the world and oppress everyone".

So it's hardly surprising that the established churches would try hard to undermine it. (Which also suggests that they would rather keep people unquestioning, obviously *their* faith is weak.)

As for how well it does as a screenplay, we shall see this weekend. But word on the streets is that it's not that good, and that reading the book is a pre-requisite.


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