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David Poland

By David Poland poland@moviecitynews.com

Hannah Montana Stampede

I normally consider Fandango’s releases about their ticket sales nothing but self-hype that should be allowed to linger, unpublished, in the inbox. Like 98% of internet stat-making, they are invariably irrelevant. But the details on the Hannah Montana concert movie are interesting.
From their press release:
If you are reporting on the HANNAH MONTANA concert movie phenomenon, here are some facts that might interest you:
*HANNAH currently accounts for 91% of all ticket sales on Fandango, the nation

18 Responses to “Hannah Montana Stampede”

  1. Wrecktum says:

    When Hannah hits $25 million this weekend on just 650 theaters, what are people going to say?

  2. brack says:

    I know where I’ll be this weekend. “To Catch A Predator,” where I come!

  3. David Poland says:

    The real question is whether Disney will be allowed to set up concert-esque vending at theaters… that’s where a lot of the money is in concert tours.

  4. Aris P says:

    Just like Harry Potter, this sounds like a cult to me.

  5. Wrecktum says:

    “The real question is whether Disney will be allowed to set up concert-esque vending at theaters… that’s where a lot of the money is in concert tours.”
    Disney did try something like that with their IMAX releases like Lion King and Beauty and the Beast. Don’t think it was entirely successful.

  6. Cadavra says:

    Anybody wanna bet that come next Friday, there’ll be huge ads screaming “HELD OVER BY POPULAR DEMAND!”?

  7. Direwolf says:

    1000 sold out shows ought to be about 200,000 tickets at $6 per ticket that is $1.2 million. Not sure how high it can go on 630 theatres. Borat did $26 million in 837 periods with what will certainly be a higher average ticket price. $20 million I guess is possible. Is this realistic?

  8. Tofu says:

    Aris, as a Potter fan, I have to ask… Do you consider Star Wars a cult?
    Also; One of us. ONE OF US. ONE OF US.

  9. LYT says:

    Both Star Wars and Potter have serious cults, but there are plenty of casual fans too.
    I don’t know any casual Hannah Montana fans. But then again, I only know one Hannah Montana fan, period.

  10. Aris P says:

    I don’t know dude, Star Wars has become a cult now, yes, mostly by people my age (mid-30s). I know that when I and my friends were kids, being prime age for the star wars trilogy, we didn’t camp out on the streets to catch the first showing, like kids on the floor of Borders Books stores at midnight, to BUY A BOOK. I’m all for kids reading, but isn’t it odd that a 7 year old MUST MUST MUST have that book at midnight? Something creepy about that; feels like more than being a “fan” to me. I guess part of this is the age of cultural hysteria we live in.
    And if ONE OF US is some cultist recruiting chant, i say to you, good sir, NEVER.

  11. scooterzz says:

    aris – ‘star wars’ had a cult following in 1977… granted, a smaller cult following but only because of lack of internet access and conventions….believe me, those of us who stood in line on hollywood blvd. for the first show knew we were part of a movement…..and if, as you claim, the the cult is now mostly people your age, it’s only because many of the people my age are dead……
    and re: potter — the reason those kids ‘must, must, must’ have that book at midnight is because the stores have made it an event…it’s a great, big party for kids….nothing creepy about it…the book is just the ‘mc guffin’ to get kids to respond to kid lit…..

  12. Aris P says:

    I read books that I discovered myself and liked, when i was a kid. stephen king, terry brooks, whoever. by myself. sorry but “kid-lit” rubs me the wrong way.
    Also, why are many people your age dead?? That seriously sucks.

  13. I would believe a Hannah Montana: The Movie type would make big bucks, but a concert film? The 3D gimmick though could help. Still, sitting in a theatre ain’t the same as going to an actual concert so will little girls even wanna go?
    I guess I won’t be surprised either way, really.

  14. scooterzz says:

    Also, why are many people your age dead?? That seriously sucks.
    yes, it does…..and it will happen eventually to you too……
    you realy are a dick….

  15. doug r says:

    Once again, no Canadian theat(re) chain has a digital projector west of Ontario, so HM fans around here are going to be driving at least 2 hours south of the border.
    Makes my decision easier. Since there was no pressure to go to HM, I took my 13 year old to U23D instead. She loved it.

  16. gradystiles says:

    Direwolf: Tickets aren’t $6. They’re generally $15 since it’s considered a “special event” showing in 3-D, etc. The El Capitan and The Bridge are selling tickets for even more, although I’ve heard some theaters in the midwest are lower.
    But, the point is, the “average” ticket price for this movie will be well north of $10. I think it gets $20 million easily.

  17. Aris P says:

    Scooterz, I really didn’t want to offend you. I am a dick, this is true, but I wasn’t trying to be one here.

  18. Kim Voynar says:

    Kamikaze,
    As the mom of one tween girl who has been counting down the days until she goes to see Hannah Montana at the theater tomorrow night, I’d say the answer is “yes, absolutely.” Among my girlie and her friends, while they would have rather seen the live show, they also get why we wouldn’t shell out several hundred dollars per scalped ticket to go to it, and as far as they’re concerned, seeing it in a theater is way better than not seeing it at all.
    We bought tix for this back in December, as soon as they went on sale, and many of the shows here are sold out now. BTW, here at least, they went for normal ticket prices — $10 for adults, $7 for kids.

Box Office

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This is probably going to sound petty, but Martin Scorsese insisting that critics see his film in theaters even though it’s going straight to Netflix and then not screening it in most American cities was a watershed moment for me in this theatrical versus streaming debate.

I completely respect when a filmmaker insists that their movie is meant to be seen in the theater, but the thing is, you got to actually make it possible to see it in the theater. Some movies may be too small for that, and that’s totally OK.

When your movie is largely financed by a streaming service and is going to appear on that streaming service instantly, I don’t really see the point of pretending that it’s a theatrical film. It just seems like we are needlessly indulging some kind of personal fantasy.

I don’t think that making a feature film length production that is going to go straight to a video platform is some sort of “step down.“ I really don’t. Theatrical exhibition as we know it is dying off anyway, for a variety of reasons.

I should clarify myself because this thread is already being misconstrued — I’m talking about how the movie is screened in advance. If it’s going straight to Netflix, why the ritual of demanding people see it in the theater?

There used to be a category that everyone recognized called “TV movie” or “made for television movie” and even though a lot of filmmakers considered that déclassé, it seems to me that probably 90% of feature films fit that description now.

Atlantis has mostly sunk into the ocean, only a few tower spires remain above the waterline, and I’m increasingly at peace with that, because it seems to be what the industry and much of the audience wants. We live in an age of convenience and information control.

Only a very elite group of filmmakers is still allowed to make movies “for theaters“ and actually have them seen and judged that way on a wide scale. Even platform releasing seems to be somewhat endangered. It can’t be fought. It has to be accepted.

9. Addendum: I’ve been informed that it wasn’t Scorsese who requested that the Bob Dylan documentary only be screened for critics in theaters, but a Netflix representative indicated the opposite to me, so I just don’t know what to believe.

It’s actually OK if your film is not eligible for an Oscar — we have a thing called the Emmys. A lot of this anxiety is just a holdover from the days when television was considered culturally inferior to theatrical feature films. Everybody needs to just get over it.

In another 10 to 20 years they’re probably going to merge the Emmys in the Oscars into one program anyway, maybe they’ll call it the Contentys.

“One of the fun things about seeing the new Quentin Tarantino film three months early in Cannes (did I mention this?) is that I know exactly why it’s going to make some people furious, and thus I have time to steel myself for the takes.

Back in July 2017, when it was revealed that Tarantino’s next project was connected to the Manson Family murders, it was condemned in some quarters as an insulting and exploitative stunt. We usually require at least a fig-leaf of compassion for the victims in true-crime adaptations, and even Tarantino partisans like myself – I don’t think he’s made a bad film yet – found ourselves wondering how he might square his more outré stylistic impulses with the depiction of a real mass murder in which five people and one unborn child lost their lives.

After all, it’s one thing to slice off with gusto a fictional policeman’s ear; it’s quite another to linger over the gory details of a massacre that took place within living memory, and which still carries a dread historical significance.

In her essay The White Album, Joan Didion wrote: “Many people I know in Los Angeles believe that the Sixties ended abruptly on August 9, 1969, ended at the exact moment when word of the murders on Cielo Drive traveled like brushfire through the community, and in a sense this is true.”

Early in Once Upon a Time in Hollywood, as Leonardo DiCaprio and Brad Pitt’s characters drive up the hill towards Leo’s bachelor pad, the camera cranes up gently to reveal a street sign: Cielo Drive. Tarantino understands how charged that name is; he can hear the Molotov cocktails clinking as he shoulders the crate.

As you may have read in the reviews from Cannes, much of the film is taken up with following DiCaprio and Pitt’s characters – a fading TV actor and his long-serving stunt double – as they amusingly go about their lives in Los Angeles, while Margot Robbie’s Sharon Tate is a relatively minor presence. But the spectre of the murders is just over the horizon, and when the night of the 9th finally arrives, you feel the mood in the cinema shift.

No spoilers whatsoever about what transpires on screen. But in the audience, as it became clear how Tarantino was going to handle this extraordinarily loaded moment, the room soured and split, like a pan of cream left too long on the hob. I craned in, amazed, but felt the person beside me recoil in either dismay or disgust.

Two weeks on, I’m convinced that the scene is the boldest and most graphically violent of Tarantino’s career – I had to shield my eyes at one point, found myself involuntarily groaning “oh no” at another – and a dead cert for the most controversial. People will be outraged by it, and with good reason. But in a strange and brilliant way, it takes Didion’s death-of-the-Sixties observation and pushes it through a hellfire-hot catharsis.

Hollywood summoned up this horror, the film seems to be saying, and now it’s Hollywood’s turn to exorcise it. I can’t wait until the release in August, when we can finally talk about why.

~ Robbie Collin