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

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Weekend Box Office #162

Back in the day when I was a theater manager, Thanksgiving weekend was one of the all-hands-on-deck weekends of the year.

It was a pain in the ass to get people to work, but I had to, because everyone goes to the movies on Thanksgiving. Probably to escape their relatives.

I remember one year my Thanksgiving dinner was a turkey sandwich from 7-11.

This weekend is looking like it'll be busy, with holdovers New Moon, 2012, The Blind Side and Precious being joined by these newcomers:

OLD DOGS (3425 theaters). Terrible reviews, but sadly people probably won't care, because this is the kind of mindless comedy that's an easy family fallback. $49.5 million for the 5-day weekend.

NINJA ASSASSIN (2503 theaters). Something for the action fans. $32.7 million for the weekend.

THE FANTASTIC MR. FOX (2033 theaters, expanding from 4). It'll be interesting to see if this clicks with a wide audience, because it's a strange-looking film that doesn't slot easily into any box. Figure it'll do a little something, maybe $22.2 million for the 5 days.

THE ROAD opened in 111 theaters, but is supposed to be depressing as hell. THE PRINCESS AND THE FROG opened in a few theaters to good reviews.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Okay, Ouch --

TWILIGHT: NEW MOON made $140 million over the weekend, the third best opening weekend ever, after setting a single day record on Friday.

Apparently there are a lot of teenage girls with a lot of disposable income, even in this economy.

Time for everyone to write teen vampire movies....

Friday, November 20, 2009

Weekend Box Office #161

Theaters should be crowded this weekend --

THE TWILIGHT SAGA: NEW MOON (4024 theaters). Apparently this has to do with vampires, or werewolves, or something. I don't have any interest, but teenage girls everywhere do, and this will undoubtedly do a ton this weekend. Call it $51.2 million.

THE BLIND SIDE (3110 theaters). It's getting good reviews, which will help a lot. Prediction: $17.8 million.

PLANET 51 (3035 theaters). Reviews for this aren't as good, while the aliens look like Shrek ripoffs. Still, the kids have to see something. $12.4 million.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Computer Problems Suck, Especially For One-Eyed Men

So I missed a Friday posting last week for the first time in a long time, because my desktop died. Apparently it's the motherboard. I'm getting a new tower; should be delivered next week sometime.

Meanwhile I'm toiling on my laptop linked to the Internet, which doesn't have nearly the laptop my memory has. Which is a good thing; it means I'm spending less time on the Internet, which means I'm working more. And writing more.

I'm currently turning my Nicholl Fellowship into a one-hour pilot. It's keeping me off the streets.

Also keeping me off the streets is the fact that I had cataract surgery on my right eye two weeks ago, and I'm having the left one done in two weeks.

For anyone as unfamiliar as with cataracts as I was, it's a clouding on the lens of the eye, that usually hits much older people. I was getting it really bad on my right eye, and noticably on my left. It may be because of genetics, or the fact that I'm a type 2 diabetic, or maybe just from looking into a computer screen a lot, or a combination of them.

The surgery was quick and painless, and the right eye is doing great, while after taking a couple of says off it really hasn't curtailed my reading any.

But in this 4-week one-eye-done, the-other-not period, my eyes don't work together. because the lens they put in the right eye makes everything look about 10% bigger. Which is cool, but it makes my brain hurt to use both eyes, and there's no sense forcing my brain to learn how to deal with it if it's just temporary.

So I've been wearing an eye patch, which I switch back and forth from eye to eye during the day. Arrrrrr. Pain in the butt.

And I can't drive. So I sit, and toil.

Though when my other eye gets done, things should be great.


2012 made $65.2 million over the weekend, and like $250 million around the world. I have to admit that I'm not that thrilled about seeing a movie in which the world ends and I die.

PRECIOUS made almost $5.9 million in only 174 theaters, to finish third. Nice to see movies doing well because they are supposed to be good, though it'll also be interesting to see if it means agents and producers will be dusting off more sad tales of unhappy youth and trying to get them made.

Friday, November 06, 2009

Weekend Box Office #159

It's November, so the movies should be getting better. Theoretically.

A CHRISTMAS CAROL (3683 theaters). Do we really need yet another version of the same old story, this one with not-particularly-thrilling looking computer animation? It's an awful lot of screens, but I don't think it's going to be huge, especially since Christmas isn't for 8 weeks yet. Figure $18.6 million.

THE BOX (2635 theaters). I read this screenplay once upon a time for someone, and I don't remember much about it, other than it was okay. $12.4 million.

THE FOURTH KIND (2529 theaters). Reviews have not been good. $6.5 million.

THE MEN WHO STARE AT GOATS (2443 theaters). Interesting title, good cast, decent reviews, could do a little something. $15.6 million.


Last weekend, MICHAEL JACKSON'S THIS IS IT made $23.2 million.