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The 2010 Academy Awards: Live Commentary

Posted by Veronica Santiago Categories: Awards,

Oscar statues

When you throw in an extra host, add five more Best Picture nominees, take away the Best Song performances and nominate two formerly married directors—what do you get? A night that will surely be talked about.

Although many believe the will end with very few surprises, the possibility of an upset is still too great to ignore. Will the box office champ (Avatar) win Best Film as well? Or will The Hurt Locker - or even Inglourious Basterds - take the prize? Is Jeff Bridges a shoo-in for Best Actor…or could BAFTA winner Colin Firth sneak past him? Will Sandra Bullock have to deliver another acceptance speech, or will Meryl Streep take home her first Oscar since 1983?

To find out if the ceremony ends in a world of Hurt or Up in the Air, stay tuned here for the live results!

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Box Office Breakdown: Cop Out Misses Out

Cop Out

When is a second place finish considered good news? When it’s the biggest debut you’ve had in your career.

Despite recently being kicked off a Southwest Airlines flight and losing out to Shutter Island, Kevin Smith still has something to smile about. His latest directorial project, , opened to $18.2 million over the weekend. That figure surpasses his previous best of $11.1 million for 2001’s Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back.

And while Bruce Willis has clearly seen better days, he hasn’t in some time. Fortunately, his comedic partnership with Tracy Morgan raised over $3 million more than his last major outing, Surrogates, did last September.

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Box Office Breakdown: Shutter Island the Weekend’s Top Destination

Shutter Island

Avatar may have finally bested Titanic, but Leonardo DiCaprio still has reason to smile.

, Leo’s latest collaboration with Martin Scorsese, earned $41 million over the past three days—more than twice what it’s nearest competitor pulled in. The gross was not only the actor’s personal best (2002’s Catch Me If You Can earned $30.1 million) but Scorsese’s as well. (The Academy Award winner rang in $26.9 million with 2006’s The Departed.)

Another Oscar-winning helmer, , also had a bit of success at the box office this weekend. The director, who has been at the center of legal drama recently, saw his film The Ghost Writer rake in $183,009 while in limited release. That amount equates to a $45,000 per screen average.

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Box Office Breakdown: Valentine’s Day Has Rosy Four-Day Weekend

Valentine's Day

Despite receiving less than enthusiastic reviews, Valentine’s Day remained the point of attraction for many romance-minded ticket buyers this weekend. Garry Marshall’s romantic comedy wooed audiences over the holiday period while simultaneously breaking records in the process.

Warner Bros.’ ensemble cast combined their efforts to pull in $63.1 million over the past four days ($56.2 million for just the first three). The feature became the highest-grossing film during any President’s or Valentine’s Day frame while also topping the studio’s list of four-day debuts.

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Casting Corner: Marion Cotillard, Tim Robbins and More

Marion CotillardTim Robbins

Here’s a quick look at some of the casting announcements made recently:

Marion Cotillard: The Nine beauty and fellow Academy Award winner Kate Winslet are in discussions for Contagion, a project from Steven Soderbergh. The film, already featuring Soderbergh fave Matt Damon and Jude Law, will have multiple storylines centered around the threat of a deadly disease. Shooting should begin sometime this year.

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Box Office Breakdown: Dear John Brings Down Avatar

Amanda Seyfried in Dear John

Dear John—And they didn’t think we could do it. Take that, blue people! XOXO, Savannah

After an exhausting seven weeks at #1, found itself in entirely new territory: sitting back at #2. Although the film had broken nearly every record in the history books (and padded another $22.9 million to its domestic total), the 20th Century Fox feature ended its win streak nine weeks shy of E.T.‘s mark.

Taking the lead from James Cameron was the latest weeper from author Nicholas Sparks. - starring Channing Tatum and Amanda Seyfried - was the counterprogramming winner during Super Bowl weekend. The romantic drama earned an impressive $30.5 million and came narrowly close to besting the record set during the same sports frame in 2008. (That was when Hannah Montana/Miley Cyrus: Best of Both Worlds Concert Tour generated $31.1 million.)

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Box Office Breakdown: Avatar Has the Edge Over Mel Gibson

Edge of Darkness

Despite success in recent years as a director, Mel Gibson hasn’t been seen in front of the cameras in quite some time. Unfortunately, he couldn’t have picked a worse weekend to make a return.

Gibson’s new film, , debuted to a respectable $17.2 million over the past three days. While that may - may - have been enough for a first place finish at any other time, the Warner Bros. feature brought in approximately half as much as that other film.

, with its $31.3 million take, is now approximately $10 million shy of officially taking the domestic crown from Titanic. (The 20th Century Fox film finally become the worldwide leader during the past week.) If the sci-fi extravaganza remains at #1 for

nine more weeks,

it’ll officially tie E.T. for that record.)

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Box Office Breakdown: Avatar Just Hours Away from Worldwide Record

Posted by Veronica Santiago Categories:

Avatar

Are we there yet?

Despite six weeks of chart-topping numbers, still hasn’t brought down the Titanic. Yes - the movie did finally surpass The Dark Knight on the domestic charts. And yes - the 20th Century Fox feature is now the top international earner at $1.29 billion. But James Cameron’s earlier blockbuster is still slightly ahead - by approximately $2 million - as far as worldwide receipts are concerned. (Monday’s ticket sales should change that for Avatar.) The 3D-adventure is also approximately $49.1 million shy of becoming the domestic king of the world.

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Box Office Breakdown: Avatar Makes It a Five-Peat

Avatar's Michelle Rodriguez

The has slowly started to take on water.

Over the holiday weekend, added another $54.6 million to its domestic total ($505 million), bringing it that much closer to The Dark Knight‘s second-place spot. The Golden Globe-winning film, which now stands at approximately $1.6 billion internationally ($200 million shy of Titanic), also became the first film since The Sixth Sense to win five straight weeks in a row.

Meanwhile, - starring Denzel Washington and Gary Oldman - put up good numbers despite finishing in second place. Allen and Albert Hughes’ first movie since 2001’s From Hell raked in an impressive $38.4 million, giving Washington his second best debut ever. (American Gangster took in $43.6 million in 2007.) The receipts also made the film Warner Bros.’ best January opener to date.

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Box Office Breakdown: Avatar Leaps Further Up the Charts

Leap Year

Hear that sound? That’s knocking on Titanic‘s door.

Over the past three days, Fox’s sci-fi blockbuster padded another $50.3 million to its total, officially making it the top entry of 2009. (Sorry, !) The movie now stands directly behind Jim Cameron’s other film on the international charts ($1.34 billion compared to $1.84 billion) and is ranked 7th on the domestic charts. (The Dark Knight sits on that list at #2 with $533,345,358.)

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