Tag: Box-Office No. 1

Denzel Washington and Director Antoine Fuqua’s Remake of ‘The Magnificent Seven’ Hits Box-Office Bullseye With $35 Million Debut

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Denzel Washington in “Magnificent Seven” (COURTESY OF MGM)

article by Brent Lang via Variety.com

Denzel Washington hits the bullseye again. “The Magnificent Seven,” the Oscar-winner’s first Western, topped the box office this weekend, picking up a solid $35 million.

Hollywood’s star system has shriveled in the past decade, with few new talents emerging to reanimate the ranks and stand alongside Leo and Julia and Johnny and George and Brad. Some of those stars have dimmed as the years tick by, but Washington’s still shines brightly.  “He’s one of the last great action heroes,” said Jeff Bock, an analyst with Exhibitor Relations. “He’s so believable in those roles and he has a ferocity that works cinematically.”

Indeed, Washington hasn’t had a film open to less than $20 million since 2007’s “The Great Debaters,” a remarkable display of consistency. He’ll be back on screens at the end of the year in “Fences,” an adaptation of August Wilson’s play, that he directs and stars in alongside Viola Davis. It is expected to be an Oscar contender.

“The Magnificent Seven” easily snagged the crown from “Sully,” the retelling of the “Miracle on the Hudson” landing that topped the box office for two weeks. The drama slid to third place with $13.8 million, bringing its stateside total to a healthy $92.4 million. Like “The Magnificent Seven,” it is benefiting from the popularity of a veteran movie star. In this case, Tom Hanks, who plays the hero pilot.

“The Magnificent Seven’s” success is welcome news for Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, which was body checked this summer after “Ben-Hur,” its $100 million-plus Biblical epic, collapsed at the box office, resulting in at least $70 million in losses for the studio and its production co-financiers. Earlier this month, MGM reduced its annual profit projections by roughly $50 million because of “Ben-Hur’s” failure.

But “The Magnificent Seven” counts as a win for the company. It also proves the viability of remaking older films, provided there is some novel spin to apply. In this case, Washington and director Antoine Fuqua were able to stage balletic shootouts that rivaled those in John Sturges’ original 1960 film. They also played up the diversity of their cast, rounding out the band of mercenaries with South Korean actor Byung-hun Lee, Mexican actor Manuel Garcia-Rulfo, and Native American actor Martin Sensmeier. That multi-cultural aspect seemed to resonate in a post-#OscarsSoWhite era, and at a time when Hollywood blockbusters are faulted for offering few roles to people of color.

Sony Pictures distributed “The Magnificent Seven” and teamed with MGM, LStar Capital, and Village Roadshow to finance the $90 million production. “It’s a fun film that’s going to be around for awhile,” said Rory Bruer, Sony’s distribution chief. “Antoine Fuqua delivered an action-packed visceral ride with a great ensemble cast.”

To read full article, go to: http://variety.com/2016/film/news/denzel-washington-magnificent-seven-1201869863/

Idris Elba and Taraji P. Henson Thriller “No Good Deed” Easily Dominates at Friday Box Office

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According to Variety.com, Idris Elba and Taraji P. Henson’s “No Good Deed,” is poised to knock box-office leader “Guardians of the Galaxy” out of first place this weekend. The Sony Pictures thriller opened to $8.8 million Stateside on Friday and is headed for a $24 to $25 million launch that will provide a much-needed boost to the historically low U.S. box office earnings.

“No Good Deed” stars Elba as an escaped convict who terrorizes Henson (a DA-turned-stay-at-home) and her two children in their own house.

The film, which carries a modest $13 million production budget, stands to benefit from targeting under-served African American audiences. It reunites Elba with his “Luther” TV show director, Sam Miller, and “Obsessed” producer, Will Packer, who is also behind the “Think Like a Man” franchise, which stars Henson. Lee Clay co-produced with Packer.

Alcon Entertainment’s “Dolphin Tale 2”, which stars Morgan Freeman, also kicked past the competition with $4.3 million on Friday. The family film will likely debut to $15 million.

If weekend estimates hold, the sequel will be a bit behind the 2011 original, which opened to $19.2 million, then went on to earn $72.3 million domestic. Harry Connick Jr., Ashley Judd, Freeman, and Kris Kristofferson all returned for the sequel, along with director Charles Martin Smith.

This year’s box office champ and summer savior, “Guardians of the Galaxy,” made $2 million on Friday to place third after three consecutive wins. It’s set to gross $7.5 million by Sunday and pass $305 million.

article by Lori Lakin Hutcherson (follow @lakinhutcherson)

“Lee Daniels’ The Butler” No. 1 for 2nd Weekend in a Row with $17 Million in Box Office

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According to variety.com, three new wide releases, led by Sony-Screen Gems’ Y/A adaptation The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones, with an estimated $14.1 million in five days,  were no match for Lee Daniels’ The Butler, which only fell 31% in its second weekend, for a projected $17 million through Sunday. The Weinstein Co.-distributed movie has earned north of $52 million so far.

The holdover success of Lee Daniels’ The Butler can be largely attributed to its broadening audience: Last weekend, the film earned 76% of its gross from audiences over 35, while in its second weekend, that share shrunk to 63%. Moreover, African-Americans contributed a weighty 39% of the film’s opening; just 33% of its total this weekend came from black viewers.  The film’s playability mirrors the stronghold that The Help had on the box office this time two years ago.

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‘The Butler’ Serves Up Box-Office Success at No. 1, Earns $25 Million

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The butler did it.  Despite a clutch of new films in theaters this weekend, Lee Daniels’ The Butler topped them all, serving up $25 million, according to studio estimates.  The victory came as a surprise to some analysts, who expected summer’s latest superhero flick, Kick-Ass 2, to whip the competition.  But Butler trounced the newcomers among critics, and connected solidly with fans. About 73% of reviewers recommended the movie, while it scored an 81% approval rating among moviegoers, says survey site Rottentomatoes.com. The movie earned an “A” among audiences, says pollsters CinemaScore.

The Forest Whitaker drama also benefited from canny timing, says Box Office Mojo’s Ray Subers, who notes that similar August dramas including Julie & JuliaEat Pray Love and The Help all enjoyed August debuts above $20 million.  “One of The Butler‘s biggest advantages is its very strong release date,” Subers says. “After a few months of big-budget, male-skewing blockbuster fare, female-skewing adult dramas have consistently done good business” at summer’s close.

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