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Frankly My Dear...

    Frankly My Dear...

    ‘Footloose’ limps, ‘Big Year’ is one of year’s biggest bombs

    Posted: 15 Oct 2011 05:11 AM PDT

    There’s at least one epic fail this weekend at the box office. “The Big Year” did so little business Friday that it may only pull in $3 million. That’s half of what the pessimistic predictions for the film suggested it would earn.

    Owen Wilson’s having a good year, otherwise, so no damage there. Jack Black’s on a bit of a losing streak, but he has promising projects in the can.

    But you have to wonder if Steve Martin’s funnyman days on the big screen are done. That’s a death blow.With all the acclaim he’s getting for his banjo playing, maybe a sitcom and concert appearances are Steve’s showbiz future. The writing’s been on the wall since those godawful “Pink Panther” movies came along. Yeah, they made money, but adults appear to have given up on him on the big screen.

    Unless folks with families can talk their children into a tame/sweet bird watching comedy on Saturday afternoon, this laugh-starved laffer is doomed.

    “Footloose” may fall short of the $20 million it was widely predicted to pull in. Good reviews had me wondering if word of mouth might round up the kids and get them to kick off their Sunday shoes. But it’s not blowing up. $17 million, after that Friday turnout.

    “The Thing” remake-prequel, the worst reviewed of the three big openings this weekend, is also bombing. It’s not even going to reach $10 million, based on Friday.

    “Ides of March” is doing very well at holding audience, and “Real Steel” is doing well enough that it could actually win the weekend.

    “Dolphin Tale” is closing in on $60 million, a very nice turnout for a family film. “Courageous” is plugging along toward that $33 million market that “Fireproof,” from the same filmmakers, hit a few years back.

    Movie star locomotive makes its way to Mount Dora

    Posted: 15 Oct 2011 05:00 AM PDT

    Mount Dora, the cute tourist town that is Florida’s home to all things rolling stock, has added a vintage steam locomotive that pulled railcars in films from “Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid” to “True Grit” (the remake).
    The Economic Development Commission press release is below. They mention the choo choo, but not the cars that carry passengers, but the Orange Blossom Cannon Ball appears to travel as a set.
    “The Orange Blossom Cannon Ball – an historic 1907 2-6-0 steam locomotive that appeared in award-winning motion pictures including: “True Grit,” “Appaloosa,” “3:10 to Yuma,” “There Will be Blood,” “Rosewood,” and “Oh Brother, Where Art Thou?” – rolled into Tavares’ Wooten Park on the edge of Lake Dora last week, the site of its new permanent home. Now movie buffs and sightseers alike can enjoy a 2 hour, 16 mile round trip aboard the Cannon Ball in the same seats once occupied by Robert Redford, George Clooney, Patrick Swayze, Jodi Foster, Ed Harris, Renee Zellweger, Vigo Mortensen, and Hailee Steinfeld.”

    Movie Preview: ‘Shame’

    Posted: 14 Oct 2011 08:28 AM PDT

    This could be Steve McQueen’s breakout film as a director.  Yes, “Hunger” drew attention and praise, but few saw it and many actively avoided it. “Shame” has that same over-the-edge quality, but in a more palatable story of sexual addiction.

    Michael Fassbender is the kink-addict, Carey Mulligan is the sister who wants to save him from himself.

    Expect “Shame” in December, maybe early Jan.

    Tupac bio-pic update, maybe John Singleton will direct it?

    Posted: 14 Oct 2011 04:59 AM PDT

    The Morgan Creek Tupac Shakur bio-pic was supposed to be in the can by now, but the best-announced plans of the prod company that gave us “Dream House” (7% on the tomatometer) and “The Thing” have come to naught, up until now.

    The have a script by people of some repute (Stephen J. Rivele and Chris Wilkinson of “Ali” and “Nixon” did drafts) , had a director, lost him, and have as of yet been unable to cast a well-known or an unknown as their star, which has been a big hangup for getting this thing off the ground. A nationwide search, and no luck.

    Yeah, you’d think finding a convincing Biggie Smalls would have been tougher, but “Notorious” was cast, shot, came out to some acclaim, etc.

    Antoine Fuqua was foiled in finding a charismatic, handsome young rapper to play ‘Pac, and he walked. Now John Singleton, who worked withe real Tupac on “Poetic Justice” is being considered.

    In the September under-achiever “Abduction,” Singleton kept Taylor Lautner on the move but couldn’t turn the “Twilight” into a star who can open a movie.

    And won’t he run into the same casting brick wall that Antoine Fuqua faced, as in there’s nobody they can find who could play Shakur?

    I’ve had a pen pal with the company ever since Morgan Creek shot “Sydney White” and a couple of direct-to-DVD movies here a few years back, and every time I update on this long-shot movie, he shoots me a note insisting on how close it is to shooting. Another update?