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Box Office Breakdown: High School Musical at the Top of the Class

High School Musical 3: Senior Year

This past week, the multiplexes had a little bit of something for everyone: politics, animals, music, dancing, thrillers, Oscar contenders and even horror. Not surprisingly, this meant a lot of dollars were shelled out in return.

As expected, the big screen debut of had tweeners (and their loving parents) all atwitter. Thanks to a $42 million debut, the G-rated film officially became the best musical opener of all time. (Mamma Mia! - with its $27.8 million - was the previous leader.)

Meanwhile, a film on the other end of the ratings spectrum was scaring up some decent dollars of its own. , which probably could have waited to premiere on Halloween, took in approximately $30 million over the last three days. Although it was pitted against the highly-anticipated Disney sequel, the movie carved out its own audience and raised first place-worthy numbers. Although the series is currently on its fifth life, the 2008 installment came within $4 million dollars of Saw III, the franchise’s best performer to date.

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Box Office Breakdown: Max Payne Outvotes W for #1

Mark Wahlberg and Mila Kunis in Max Payne

Even though was the host of last Saturday’s SNL, it was Mark Wahlberg - a minor player on that same show - who ended up on top.

This past weekend, finally managed to do what no other movie has done yet: take Beverly Hills Chihuahua down. The video game adaptation earned $17.6 million putting nearly $6 million between itself and the family flick.

Surprisingly, a whole Oprah show dedicated to couldn’t provide that star-studded cast enough buzz. Despite a $10.5 million take, the drama still placed behind the four-legged film. (Bee did, though, earn more per theater than any Top Ten entry.) Meanwhile, Oliver Stone’s latest project did a respectable job for a politically-themed movie. W. also raked in $10.5 million this weekend, narrowly missing third place.

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In Theaters This Weekend: October 17, 2008


Here are some possible suggestions for your upcoming weekend:

  • Max Payne (PG-13): starring Mark Wahlberg, Beau Bridges, Mila Kunis (directed by John Moore)
  • The Secret Life of Bees (PG-13): starring Queen Latifah, Dakota Fanning, Jennifer Hudson (Gina Prince-Bythewood)
  • Sex Drive (R): starring Clark Duke, Josh Zuckerman, Amanda Crew (directed by Sean Anders)
  • W. (PG-13): starring Josh Brolin, Elizabeth Banks, Richard Dreyfuss (directed by Oliver Stone)

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Christian Bale Considered for George Bush Role

Christian BaleHaving seen Josh Brolin dressed up as George W. Bush, it’s hard to envision anyone else playing our Commander-in-Chief. But according to Oliver Stone, Brolin wasn’t the first person he had in mind for W..

In an interview with GQ, the controversial director admitted he originally wanted to land a much bigger star—for the movie and for the financing.

“Originally I went for . We did some rigorous prosthetic tests and spent a lot of dough—thousands and thousands of dollars—and then Christian said, ‘I just don’t feel like I can do it.’ I met Josh and liked him. He was more rural Americana. But man, he was scared s**tless.”

Wow. While I’m sure Brolin will do a fine job - his career has really peaked in the past year - I can only imagine that Bale would have taken the movie to an entire different level. I’m just surprised to hear that there was something out there Christian couldn’t do…

W. is scheduled to open this October 17—several weeks before the presidential election. Until then, a preview for the movie can be seen here.

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Pitt, Novak, and Roth Line Up For Bastards

Tarantino confirms casting for Inglorious Bastards

UPDATE: Funnyman Mike Myers has also been recruited! You can find the details here.

As promised, Quentin Tarantino has definitely not stopped working on his epic WWII film, Inglorious Bastards, ever since he completed the script. After years of speculation concerning casting, a few of the roles have recently been confirmed (finally).

What came as quite a shock to most (considering Tarantino’s usual taste in actors), Hollywood heavyweight Brad Pitt was cast as the lead role of Jewish soldier Aldo Raine. Then again, it is only appropriate that Pitt play a part in a real Tarantino film, considering he had a minor role in Oliver Stone’s Natural Born Killers.

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No Pablo for Javier Bardem

Posted by Veronica Santiago Categories: Drama, Casting, Celeb News,

Javier BardemIt’s been a while since I’ve taken Spanish, so please correct me if I’m wrong. Does the name “Pablo Escobar” loosely translate to “kiss of death”?

Just when it looked like a movie about the Colombian drug lord would finally get off the ground, two different projects have experienced setbacks. Although he was originally attached to star in Joe Carnahan’s Killing Pablo, recently chose to back out of the project. (This would be the second film Bardem has changed his mind on this year; he was once scheduled to play the lead in .)

The Oscar-winning actor told Entertainment Weekly that his decision was based on a matter of timing. “Joe has great material and it’s going to be spectacular, be we just couldn’t find a time when we could both work.” Unfortunately, this casting hole has left producers scrambling for a new actor to play Escobar. Now It’s hoped that a deal with Edgar Ramirez (The Bourne Ultimatum) can be struck in time for filming this October.

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Entertainment Weekly

W. Trailer Hits the Internet

Posted by K.C. Morgan Categories: Lionsgate, Drama, Political, Casting, Trailers,

Josh Brolin as W.The United States of America, to date, has had forty-three different men at the helm of control. The first to hold the highest office in the land - President - was a war hero named George. The most current incumbent to celebrate this role is also (albeit somewhat dubiously) a war hero named George.

And I happen to be one of those who believe this current George will have far more historical significance than even his very first predecessor. Thanks to a director/filmmaker named Oliver Stone, President will secure at least a place in cinematic history by virtue of Stone’s new biopic on the man, dubbed simply W..

One letter that somehow says so much. Stone has publicly said the movie will be a “fair, true portrait” of Dubya’s Presidency. Several Bush biographers looked over Stone’s script before production began, each agreeing that certain facts depicted in the film (including a drunken fistfight between Dubya and his famous daddy) are in fact true, as is Karl Rove’s supposed White House nickname “Turdblossom.”

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See Josh Brolin as George W. Bush

As we have reported, director Oliver Stone is currently filming his third piece about a U.S. Commander-in-Chief.  This movie, though, will be his first about a living president, and his first about one still in office.

In this week’s edition of Entertainment Weekly, we get our first glimpses of W‘s George and Laura Bush: (No Country for Old Men) and Elizabeth Banks (The 40-Year-Old Virgin).

EW, Elizabeth Banks and Josh BrolinJosh Brolin as George W. Bush

Although Stone denies he is any way trying to influence the upcoming election, many believe the timing of the film’s release is quite suspect.  (It could be released sometime this fall.)  You can read more of the magazine’s interview here and judge for yourself.

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Entertainment Weekly

Oliver Stone to Put W in George W. Bush

President George W. Bush , director Oliver Stone is going to take on the subject that has created strife, laughs, tears and terror - the presidency of a man named George W. Bush.

At that time (January), Stone said he was going to create “a fair, true portrait” of the man we all call Dubya. It’s now April, and the film is making ready for its start date (the 21st). The script has already been given to Bush biographers. Okay, I haven’t read it. However, according to some reports the script is said to depict Bush as “foul-mouthed,” “obsessed,” and shows a complicated relationship between himself and Bush, Sr.

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Yahoo! News

This Week on HD DVD and Blu-ray: February 05, 2008

Elizabeth The Golden Age HD DVDAs the 80th Annual Academy Awards inch ever closer, some of us are still scrambling to see the contenders in question before the big night. Those anxious to see their favorites before the inevitable acceptance speech or scowl-behind-forced-smile have the chance to watch a few in high-def this week.

On HD DVD is Elizabeth: The Golden Age, nominated for Cate Blanchett‘s performance and the opulent costumes. On Blu-ray are Across the Universe, nominated for its costumes, and The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford, nominated for Casey Affleck‘s supporting performance.

Look for other nominees, brought to you in crystal clear high definition, throughout the month.

Check out the full list of high-def releases after the jump.

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