Canadian box-office stats — August 27

Here are the figures for the past weekend, arranged from those that owe the highest percentage of their take to the Canadian box office to those that owe the lowest.Bon Cop, Bad Cop — CDN $5,548,626 — N.AM $5,548,626 — 100%Step Up — CDN $5,917,411 — N.AM $50,419,000 — 11.7%Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest — CDN $40,776,823 — N.AM $407,571,000 — 10.0%Snakes on a Plane — CDN $2,557,377 — N.AM $26,012,000 — 9.8%Accepted — CDN $2,032,002 — N.AM… Read more

What has become of Walden Media?

Walden Media, the movie production company created by Christian billionaire Philip Anschutz for the express purpose of making “inherently educational” movies and “faithful film adaptations of great literature” (or so their home page says), had another flop this weekend. It seems How to Eat Fried Worms will rank 11th or 12th for the weekend, once the final figures are in — meaning, in other words, that it failed to even crack the top ten.This comes less than four months after… Read more

Facing the low production values

Terry Mattingly profiles Dick Staub and his negative assessment of Facing the Giants:”If this film DOES make tons of money, Hollywood may distribute more of them. Do we really want to send the message to Hollywood that the kind of films Christians want will be characterized by poor acting, low production values that are inoffensive, make us cry and also make tons of money? Is this truly how we want to influence Hollywood for God?”Hmmm, sounds not unlike those criticisms… Read more

Apocalypse Now — less and less “complete”

It’s bad enough that the so-called “Complete Dossier” edition of Francis Ford Coppola’s Apocalypse Now (1979) doesn’t include the documentary Hearts of Darkness: A Filmmaker’s Apocalypse (1991) or the bonus features from the earlier DVD editions. But now comes word that Paramount did re-issue most of those earlier bonus features … on a third disc that was only available at Circuit City … and which may have been recalled. Yeesh. Jeffrey Wells covers the story, here and here. Read more

Newsbites: Smoking! Teresa! Bon Cop!

Been busy with work lately, but here are a few quick items.1. Variety reports that Turner Broadcasting will recut more than 1,700 episodes of Hanna-Barbera cartoons, such as The Flintstones, to eliminate scenes of smoking. It notes: “They have yet to rule whether Homer Simpson will still get to drink beer.” Or whether the characters will still do anything, y’know, violent.2. The Times of London reports that Paz Vega, the star of Sex and Lucia (2001), will play St. Teresa… Read more

Color of the Cross — coming October 27

Color of the Cross, the new film which asserts that Jesus was black, now has a theatrical release date. Anne Thompson has posted the press release at her Risky Biz Blog; here are some excerpts: Los Angeles, CA, August 23, 2006 – Nu-Lite Entertainment has announced plans to roll out its controversial new theatrical feature film Color of the Cross in select cities throughout the country beginning October 27, 2006. The company, in association with Rocky Mountain Pictures, will initially… Read more

Pluto, the planets, and their cinematic effects

You may have heard that the list of planets in our solar system grew by three last week. People of my generation are so used to thinking that there are nine planets in our solar system that it’s always a little weird to look back and realize that there was a time, only a few hundred years ago, when people believed there were only six — or five, if you lived long, long ago and did not consider Earth itself… Read more

Vancouver Int’l Film Festival — coming soon!

The Vancouver International Film Festival will take place between September 28 and October 13 this year, and today they sent out their first press release. Among the highlights:Pedro Almodóvar’s Volver will play at the opening galaChicago Reader critic Jonathan Rosenbaum will be on hand to introduce the North American premiere of Jacques Rivette’s 12.5-hour film Out 1: Noli Me Tangere (1971)Stan Douglas’s Klatsassin will concern British Columbian history and take place in five different eras; “Projected directly off a computer… Read more

Bob Larson’s career to be dramatized on TV?

Reuters reports that Joan of Arcadia creator Barbara Hall and former Disney studio chief Joe Roth are producing a dramatic pilot for CBS based on “the real-life experiences of Bob Larson, an expert on cults, the occult and supernatural phenomena.”Gadzooks. I guess it would be too much to hope that this show will be all about a guy who fakes exorcisms (or, alternatively, is regularly conned by people who only pretend to be possessed)?(Hat tip to Jeffrey Overstreet.) Read more

Lucas: Indy is for me, not the critics or fans

George Lucas talks to Empire magazine about Indiana Jones IV:“We’re basically going to do The Phantom Menace”, says Lucas (stay with him here, he’s making a point). “People’s expectations are way higher than you can deliver. You could just get killed for the whole thing…We would do it for fun and just take the hit with the critics and the fans…But nobody wants to get into it unless they are really happy with it”.I have to say, in a world… Read more