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David Poland

By David Poland poland@moviecitynews.com

Sunday Estimates by Klady

A huge congratulations is due Gerry Rich and the team at Paramount Pictures for turning a movie that was having some serious problems with interest among its core audience into a strong opener with a new campaign run over just a couple of weeks.
The big questions about the success of Failure To Launch are going to be about the value of Matthew McConaughey and Sarah Jessica Parker, who is in her second theatrical hit in three months. Fox focused on Parker first and foremost throughout the campaign for The Family Stone. Here, Paramount ended up going away from Parker to focus on the parents in order to explain the horrible title. But one could argue that they laid the groundwork for her (and McConaghey

14 Responses to “Sunday Estimates by Klady”

  1. b diddy says:

    After Failure to Launch and How to Lose a Guy, Matthew McConoughey better start lining up all the B-list actresses he can so he can prolong his career another 5 years.

  2. martindale says:

    I’m not sure why so many were predicting “Failure” to be a flop. Consider that there hasn’t been a romantic comedy since the holidays. Factor in McConoughey’s appeal and you have the recipe for a decent hit. Sure, it looks like an awful movie, but that hasn’t stopped other rom coms from doing well at the box office.

  3. David Poland says:

    It was so predicted because tracking was in the toilet, which is why the campaign changed so drastically.

  4. EDouglas says:

    Actually, Failure to Launch was tracking better than Shaggy Dog and Hills Have Eyes for at least two to three weeks before opening.. but I think the new ad campaign made the difference between a $15 million opening and a close to $24 million one. I thought the market was in desperate need of a strong rom-com… my sister who never goes to the movies was telling me how she wanted to see this weeks ago not realizing that it didn’t open until this past Friday.

  5. jeffmcm says:

    Is there a place where one can gain access to the great and powerful “Tracking” or is it something you have to, like, pay money for?

  6. KamikazeCamelV2.0 says:

    Can you imagine what might have happened if they had clicked into a better campaign earlier and released this at Valentine’s Day?
    Let’s not forget that other B-grade actress that has co-starred with Matthew lately. PENELOPE CRUZ! You know… the one that can’t speak english.
    The Hills Have Eyes’ lower gross is a bit disappointing. Why THIS one that didn’t go gangbusters? God, I don’t understand the people that go see these movies. SO finicky.

  7. frame24 says:

    Paramount ran ads on sport radio stations featuring Terry Bradshaw. GENIUS. How many times have guys ever gotten their ladies to go see a rom-com? GENIUS. Somebody in the marketing department just earned a Caribbean vacation.

  8. Kambei says:

    Saw Beowulf & Grendel up here in Canadaland. It’s pretty good in many ways–scenery, violence, most of the acting, decent storyline–but man, does Sarah Polley drag the whole thing down. :( Everyone sounds very “epic” and “legendary” with their Norse accents (and odd Scottish/Irish thrown in), but the Canuck accent just stands out…eek.
    Iceland does look like an amazing place to visit, though.

  9. Chucky in Jersey says:

    You know men went to see “Failure to Launch” when word got out that Terry Bradshaw bared his arse.

  10. EDouglas says:

    I’m jealous… been dying to see Beowulf & Grendel and no idea when it might open here. I love Iceland!

  11. KamikazeCamelV2.0 says:

    Wait, weren’t they making a huge Beowulf movie that was set to be a huge blockbuster? Why are they releasing it in limited Canadian release? Or is this another one of those two-at-once situations?

  12. jeffmcm says:

    You’re thinking of the Robert Zemeckis Beowulf movie, made in the same style as The Polar Express, due out next year.

  13. Kambei says:

    yeah…there’s no CGI in this one, that’s for sure. The monster is just some huge guy in heavy make-up. It’s not too bad, though, because the guy is very very large–and it makes the story somewhat closer to the realms of believability. The best special effect is Iceland, though. It fits the story so well, it’s on par with the New Zealand landscapes in LOTR. But I still don’t recommend the movie too highly.

  14. KamikazeCamelV2.0 says:

    I’m still so confused as to why they would make a Beowulf and Grendel movie and release it in limited release in Canada? It’s such a big tale, why did it only get a version like this? I thought the Sarah Polley version was meant to be BIG. Strange.

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“When Bay keeps these absurd plot-gears spinning, he’s displaying his skill as a slick, professional entertainer. But then there are the images of motion—I hesitate to say, of things in motion, because it’s not clear how many things there are in the movie, instead of mere digital simulations of things. It doesn’t matter. What matters is that there’s a car chase through London, seen from the level of tires, that could have gone on for an hour, um, tirelessly. What matters is that the defenestrated Cade saves himself by leaping from drone to drone in midair like a frog skipping among lotus pads; that he and Vivian slide along the colossal, polished expanses of sharply tilting age-old fields of metal like luge Olympians. What matters is that, when this heroic duo find themselves thrust out into the void of inner space from a collapsing planet, it has a terrifyingly vast emptiness that Bay doesn’t dare hold for more than an instant lest he become the nightmare-master. What matters is that the enormous thing hurtling toward Earth is composed in a fanatical detail that would repay slow-motion viewing with near-geological patience. Bay has an authentic sense of the gigantic; beside the playful enormity of his Transformerized universe, the ostensibly heroic dimensions of Ridley Scott’s and Christopher Nolan’s massive visions seem like petulant vanities.”
~ Michael Bay Gives Richard Brody A Tingle

How do you see film evolving in this age of Netflix?

I thought the swing would be quicker and more violent. There have been two landmark moments in the history of French film. First in 1946, with the creation of the CNC under the aegis of Malraux. He saved French cinema by establishing the advance on receipts and support fund mechanisms. We’re all children of this political invention. Americans think that the State gives money to French films, but they’re wrong. Through this system, films fund themselves!

The other great turning point came by the hand of Jack Lang in the 1980s, after the creation of Canal+. While television was getting ready to become the nemesis of film, he created the decoder, and a specific broadcasting space between film and television, using new investments for film. That once again saved French film.

These political decisions are important. We’re once again facing big change. If our political masters don’t take control of the situation and new stakeholders like Netflix, Google and Amazon, we’re headed for disaster. We need to create obligations for Internet service providers. They can’t always be against film. They used to allow piracy, but now that they’ve become producers themselves, they’re starting to see things in a different light. This is a moment of transition, a strong political act needs to be put forward. And it can’t just be at national level, it has to happen at European level.

Filmmaker Cédric Klapisch