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Frankly My Dear...

    Frankly My Dear...

    ‘Puss in Boots’ kicks box office butt — big Friday, $40 million plus opening?

    Posted: 29 Oct 2011 04:59 AM PDT

    The terrific toon “Puss in Boots” is putting rumps in the seats this weekend, a big though not huge Friday points to at least $37 million for its opening, with the bigger family movie going day Saturday being the real measure. Maybe $40 million if it does super today and Sunday.

    “Paranormal Activity 3″ plunged over 70% and yet still looks to do well enough to come in second this weekend. I figured everybody who wanted to see it had seen it.

    “In Time,” the Justin Timberlake sci-fi parable, is looking like a $13 million hit. Not big, but after last summer’s “Friends With Benefits,” he seems pretty well established as Mr. Box Office.

    “The Rum Diary” is bombing. Decent enough reviews, but people don’t want to see Johnny Depp without eye makeup and a bandana, apparently.  Will it do $6 or $7, or manage a face-saving $9 million? It’s looking like $6 million will be the most the studio can hope for. He is not box office outside of those pirate pictures. Kind of sobering to think of how rich he’s gotten, but how bankable he still isn’t.

    “Courageous” is closing in on $30 million but may not get there before it loses all its screens as the holiday film season gears up next weekend.

    More on the limited release “Anonymous” and Regal Cinema’s dabble in movie releasing “All’s Faire in Love” later today when the full box office list comes out.

    Iranian film fest comes to Daytona State next weekend

    Posted: 28 Oct 2011 11:40 AM PDT

    LA’s Noor Iranian Film Festival has a touring “highlights” bundle of films that will be shown at Daytona State College the weekend of Nov.5 and 6.A feature film, “The Lost Journey,” and a couple of docs as well as a selection of Iranian short films will be shown

    The films are free and open to the public, screening in the

    Madorsky Theater of the Southeast Museum of Photography, located on the Daytona Beach campus of Daytona State College at 1200 West International Speedway Blvd., three miles east of I-95. The museum is located in the Mori Hosseini Center (Bldg. 1200). Visitor parking is available.

    The lineup is below.

    The Lost Journey – (Feature)
    Dir: Ant Horasanli (Canada, 2011/1390) 89 min.
    Saturday, November 5 at 3:00 pm

    Arriving in Toronto from Iran, 19 year old Pedram Abasi embarks on a journey shared by millions of people every year, adapting to a new language and culture. While making great progress to the delight of his aunt and uncle who have taken him in, Pedram’s life drastically changes course when he meets Nima and Chirssy who introduce him to a world of all night raves, promiscuous sex, and taking Ecstasy till sunrise. Before long, Pedram’s family begins to resent his irresponsible ways and regret ever taking him in. With his education in peril and his life on a downward spiral, Pedram must now regain control before all hope is lost.

    Fahimeh's Story – (Documentary)
    Dir: Faramarz K. Rahber (Australia, 2004/1383) 83 min.
    Saturday, November 5 at 8:00 pm

    Fahimeh's Story is an observational documentary about a vivacious 47 year old Iranian woman who migrated with her children to Australia after fleeing an unhappy, arranged marriage to a husband who she could not divorce under Iranian law. Five years on she has fallen in love with and married John, a 77 year old Australian ex-army officer and RSL member. John is now converting to Islam in order to better relate to his young wife. Both John's and Fahimeh's children are unhappy about the marriage. A few months later, Hossain, the Iranian ex-husband, arrives in Australia looking forward to seeing his wife and family again. He does not know his wife has remarried…

    Movie following 6:30pm Dinner at Café 101
    (For dinner reservations, please RSVP to by Thursday, Nov. 3)

    Sunday, November 6

    American Coup – (Documentary)
    Dir: Joe Ayella (USA, 2010/1389) 98 min.
    Sunday, November 6 at 1:00 pm

    AMERICAN COUP tells the story of the first coup ever carried out by the CIA – Iran, 1953. Explores the blowback from this seminal event, as well as the coup’s lingering effects on the present US-Iranian relationship. Includes a segment on the 1979 Iranian Hostage Crisis and its relation to the 1953 coup. Concludes with a section on the recent Iranian presidential election. Contains interviews with noted Middle East experts and historians and prominent public figures such as Stephen Kinzer (author, All The Shah’s Men), Prof. Ervand Abrahamian, Trita Parsi, Col. Lawrence Wilkerson, Ted Koppel and Rep. Ron Paul of Texas. With Iranian cinematography by James Longley.

    Contemporary Short Films
    Dir: various; 100 min.
    Sunday, November 6 at 3:00 pm

    A collection of seven provocative short films that deal with Iranian topics, themes and issues

    Another director bails on ‘Pride and Prejudice and Zombies’

    Posted: 28 Oct 2011 09:55 AM PDT

    “Fright Night” didn’t do nearly the business we should have expected. So perhaps the news that Craig Gillespie is now the third director to walk away from the film adaptation of “Pride and Prejudice and Zombies” has something to do with that, and not the notion that this cursed project is scaring filmmakers off– David O. Russell, Mike White and now CG.

    I would say this seems like a one-joke riff on Austen, but I haven’t read the book so I’ll just stop. Is it filmmable? Lionsgate seems to still think so.

    Bill Murray joins the cast of Charlie Sheen’s comeback film — ‘Charles Swan’

    Posted: 28 Oct 2011 09:47 AM PDT

    Here’s a coup for Tiger Blood Boy, Charlie Sheen.

    Variety says that Bill Murray is the latest illustrious name to join the cast of Roman Coppola’s “A Glimpse inside the Mind of Charles Swan III,” which stars Charlie Sheen himself.

    Patricia Arquette, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Jason Schwartzman, Aubrey Plaza and Katheryn Winnick are also in the film, currently shooting in LA.
    “Sheen stars as the title character, a successful graphic designer whose fame, money and charm have made him irresistible to women. When his girlfriend breaks up with him, his life swirls into a downward spiral of doubt, confusion and reflection. Through delirious fantasies involving his many failed romances, he begins the hard road of self-evaluation to come to terms with life without her.”

    Sean Penn directs DeNiro and Wiig in ‘The Comedian’

    Posted: 28 Oct 2011 09:43 AM PDT

    Stand-up comics fascinate me, and judging from the interesting documentaries and feature films on them over the years, they curry interest in Hollywood, too.

    Old comics are the most fascinating of all. How do they cope when TV, their lifeline, passes them by, when they’re too old to do clubs and not famous enough to fill concert halls? Every now and then, one kills himself.

    Sean Penn is slated to direct “The Comedian,” a drama about an aging/raging comic (Robert DeNiro) who is not going gently into that good night.He’s hanging on to the last threads of his fame and notoriety.

    “After being sentenced to community service for hitting an audience member in the head with his microphone, Jackie meets Harmony (Wiig), a dazzling and defiant redhead who turns his life sideways.”

    The always interesting Art Linson (“The Runaways,” “Into the Wild”) is producing it.

    ‘Puss in Boots’ will roar at the box office this weekend

    Posted: 28 Oct 2011 04:06 AM PDT

    Maybe it won’t set the record for an autumn movie opening, or even an October one. But “Puss in Boots” should roll out to a $40-50 million opening weekend. The Guru is aiming low, $44 million. Others are talking about closer to $50, which is where I see it landing.

    Quick show of hands, did everybody see “Paranormal Activity 3″ who wanted to last weekend? It’s one of those phenomena that you ideally catch at midnight on Thursday, Friday or Saturday with a theater full of like-minded fans.

    It should do enough business to come in second at the box office, but will it fall off 50% ($26 million), or as I figure closer to 65%? Maybe $20 million left in the tank? We’ll see.

    “In time” will be a test of Justin Timberlake’s drawing power, Amanda Seyfried’s sex appeal and the enthusiasm of science fiction film fans. Low teens say the guru and others and I buy that.

    Can Johnny Depp get fans to show up for a Hunter S. Thompson adaptation, now that he’s the biggest star in the world? He hasn’t shown enormous drawing power outside of the “Pirates” pictures. I’d hope he could pull in low to mid $teens. Decent reviews will help.