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David Poland

By David Poland poland@moviecitynews.com

Weekend Estimates by Lenwreck

Weekend Estimates 2015-07-19 at 8.51.24 AM

Considering the challenges of Ant-Man, there is nothing wrong with this opening, even though it is the weakest Disney opening of a Marvel film so far. It’s comparable to the Universal opening of the second Hulk, which went on to “just” $135m domestic and $263 million worldwide. Of course, that was not seen as a financial success because it wasn’t doing a Spider-Man or X-Men level of business.

Fox should be a big help to Marvel before their next second-tier character film, Doctor Strange. Fox has four Marvel movies on the schedule (Fantastic Four, Deadpool, X-Men: Apocalypse, and Gambit) and Marvel/Disney only one (Captain America: Civil War) before Strange is due next November. Two of the Fox films are named for and focused on second or even third tier Marvel characters. It’s very important to Marvel that the Fox films succeed, especially the two offbeat titles. Non-industry-watchers aren’t don’t carefully distinguish which studio is making which film. Either there is going to be some fresh excitement about comic book movies, which expands audience interest… or there is going to be some ennui, lading to more dangerous opening days.

By the way… Real-D is very excited that Ant-Man is one of four 3D films in the Top 5 this weekend… and that its the sixth film this summer to sell 40% or more (high being 48%) of its tickets to 3D buyers. This celebration of success is also a reminder of how marginalized 3D was getting in the last couple of years… and how small a percentage of tickets 3D has represented since the explosive moment of Avatar. We seem to be settling into a pattern, at least for now. 43% or so of tickets sold in 3D for spectacles.

Minions had a good hold, considering last weekend’s massive number.

Trainwreck was anything but, the estimate just over the $30 million mark, which notably puts it just ahead of the opening of Spy, which is not just another female-led comedy, but is the #2 non-animated comedy of the summer so far, behind only Pitch Perfect 2. Somewhere between 3 and 4 million people paid to see this film this weekend, which is a bigger audience for the film than Schumer has ever had for an episode of her show. This is a great success for Schumer, Apatow, and Universal marketing. It also, for better or worse, shows the power of wall-to-wall publicity, as Schumer seemed to eat the media landscape in the last couple of weeks. The good news here is that the movie is strong and will likely have good holds as it heads for the $100m mark.

By the way… I imagine I will be disappointed if I expect to see a single story about the number of Originals doing well this summer. The Trainwreck opening means that 50% of the Top 12 summer openings are Originals. Two more are the first sequels to Originals. Do we still have to read endless pieces about the sky falling because of sequels, spin-offs, and comic book movies?

Great holds continue for Inside Out and Jurassic World.

Mr. Holmes is king of the indies for the weekend, with $2.4 million on 363 screens ($6580 average). The new Woody Allen, Irrational Man, picked up steam over the weekend, estimated at $36,460 per screen on 5 after a $10k per-screen launch on Friday, but it’s still n the low end of Woody openings. Also flexing some muscle was The Stanford Prison Experiment, with $19k per on two.

96 Responses to “Weekend Estimates by Lenwreck”

  1. JS Partisan says:

    Marvel had a bad date for Ant-Man, but it’s fucking Ant-Man. It’s not like every Marvel film is Guardians.

  2. PcChongor says:

    Donald Trump’s campaign manager couldn’t have said it any better.

  3. JS Partisan says:

    Pic, that’s bullshit and here’s why:

    1) Marvel films need women, and most of them saw Trainwreck.

    2) Minions had a decent hold, and that took away the kids. Another demo any Marvel movie has.

    3) Inside Out and JW hanging out there making damn there 25m.

    You can post your snarky ass comment, but this shit is obvious. Excuse me for being brief, and thinking you could figure it out for yourself. You also made a sorry ass joke, because Trump is too damn stupid to even have a campaign manager.

    That aside, David, those aren’t Marvel films. The only one featuring characters not killed off by Ike, is Deadpool. Those bastard movies, live or die on their own. How they rise or fall, has nothing to do with the MCU. What does have something to do is Civil War, and that film will
    Be huge.

  4. PJ says:

    Funny how the narrative changes so sharply from Marvel can do no wrong to Its just ant man, bro! Im pretty sure that Marvel wasn’t planning on needing Fox to help them with the sequel to their boffo box office hit on the schedule.

  5. JS Partisan says:

    Pj, that’s what David is writing, and it seems to ignore reality. There’s Marvel, there’s Dc, and then those fox movies. The fox movies, that feature characters marvel has gone out of their way to eliminate from having any meaning what so ever.

  6. Tracker Backer says:

    “The fox movies, that feature characters marvel has gone out of their way to eliminate from having any meaning what so ever.”

    You mean like Quicksilver, who was just in the Avengers movie, even though he’s also in the Marvel world? And you mean like the Fantastic Four, who Marvel has been trying to get back for years?

  7. martin says:

    I’m usually in agreement with Poland’s view, but Universal Hulk was a flat bomb. and fatigue has set in.

    What hurt Hulk was Daredevil opened Feb ’03 and caught the Spidey/X2 Marvel high. Expectations were now set as Hulk’s i.d was three times DD. Then Hulk came out in June and dropped like a rock. DD’s second week down about 50%, where Hulk was at 70%. And the P&M for Hulk was a raging flood compared to DD. Then add in the costs, DD/80M, Hulk/140, and it was over by Sunday night.

    The comparable model for Ant-Man is Iron Man ’08. Same producers, budget and mid-level recognition character. Iron Man was a surprise to some, but to me it was always golden because it’s a marquee name beyond the character and part of the language before the movie. Ant-Man does not have that, so it was dependent on the Marvel branding.

    …and Ant-Man itself is not the only recent Marvel bomb. The ABC shows are half-life programming. No audience growth but a slow, steady, decline ep-to-ep, season-to-season. The gaming front has been a disaster, and DC will officially crush them with the Arkham-inspired JLA game. Then you have “that will not be spoken of”, the utterly disastrous live tours.

    Marvel likes to now act as if these were larks, but that’s a crock. The investment in the “Marvel Experience”, the Titanic it was, and the lack of coverage, really shows the state of industry journalism. How has there not been a deep look into how Disney with their touring experience, combined with Crique and WWE, the other two big live event monsters, could release a rolling Hindenburg?

    So take all that, throw in the cartoons and Netflix, then bake it into the never-ending Disney hype machine, where you can’t watch any Disney channel without a Marvel noisemaker appearing, like the NBA playoffs, which were saturated in crap cross-promotions.

    Build all of that for two straight years, then release Age of Transformers, an Avengers film truer to Whedon’s usual craptastic ideas than the first one, which still had Favreau’s imprint. And the universal shrug to Ultron, after two years of sound and fury, of “it all connects”, and the payoff is blather. All that goodwill Favreau started, has now been reset, and that’s what you see with Ant-Man’s opening.

    If Marvel was brand bulletproof, Ant-Man would have been over 75Mil. Pratt is not a 40Mil difference. Ultron was a success despite itself and the hunger for JWorld over Ant-Man is chartable to show how hyper-extension can do more damage than good.

    It’s also wrong to say Marvel needs Fox to do well. Marvel needs to kill their ABC shows, now. They need to roll everything back to the movies and Netflix only. If the ’15/16 ABC bloat is as bad as usual, plus the Disney marketing tactic of drowning your audience, Marvel is dependent on BvS. Either to be a godsend which spills over to Civil War or they need BvS to implode and hope people run back to Marvel.

    Industry people need to consider that BvS and Civil War are nearly the same goddamn movie, and the P&M is going to overlap in a way I cannot recall. Two movies with the same selling points and the largest ad buys for 4-6 months.

    And this is all without the WB/DC programming. And whatever impact Star Wars has.

    Strange is the only sure thing. Womenz love Cucumberbatch and the premise lends itself to be SuperHolmes.

  8. Bulldog68 says:

    “…and Ant-Man itself is not the only recent Marvel bomb. ”

    Really? Already?

    These chicken little proclamations are tired and old and bereft of any type research or god forbid, a little analysis.

    How about waiting a bit before declaring something a bomb, particularly when the audience & critical reception can provide enough fuel to power this to a decent gross.

    And the budget on Ant-Man was way smaller. Marvel did not expect, though of course, they would have liked..a $70m debut or more, but everyone knew this was a small player in a larger universe. People compare this opening to the Hulk, but everyone and their grandmother knew who the Hulk was. Who the fuck is Ant-Man? Ant-Man could even be described as a C Level hero. The mere fact that a movie was made, far more open to this level to me is a success.

    Just four short years ago, X-Men First Class, a movie I really like, debuted to $55m and went on to gross $146m. All this with the benefit of years of previous X-Men released. So this is a win. Not a huge win, but one nonetheless. Give it time to play before you declare Time of Death.

    And yes there is competition to come, but hasn’t this summer already proven that well liked properties can coexist. Jeeez.

  9. EtGuild2 says:

    Yeah….ridiculous. The overseas performance is far better than HULK, and the budget is small. Give me a break…I’ll be so happy once F4 comes out so I don’t have to stop scrolling past what seems like a blog on Collider.

  10. brack says:

    So we now live in a world where $57.8m domestic and $114.4m worldwide in its first weekend is a bomb for a film like Ant-Man? It’s doing better overseas than the first Thor and Captain America so far, so I’d hardly call this bomb territory. It’s getting good word of mouth, and the film is solid entertainment, even if it suffers from a weak villain like so many of MCU movies have, which I almost think is intentional at this point.

  11. Geoff says:

    Martin I agree with a lot of what you said above but…..Disney/Marvel will be fine if they just roll this thing back a bit and PROBABLY rein in Feige’s ego in the process: JS is also right above, this WAS a shitty date to launch Ant-Man and it should have been launched in the fall as originally planned. It was all bullshit boastfulness to take on the original date of Batman V. Superman that caused them to move this movie into mid-July and it’s NOT a mid-July film…..part of the reason that Guardians and Winter Soldier took off like they did last year was minimal competition and this film was surrounded on all sides by Minions, Pixels, you name it….the same exact audience.

    Let’s face it, this just has not been Feige’s year outside of the continuous financial rewards……the way Whedon came out fiercely against him right BEFORE ‘Ultron came out in the States was just bizarre but it was obviously a long time coming….and these latest headlines from Ava Duverney are not helping either. Considering they just HAD to stick to launching Ant-Man before Black Panther and Captain Marvel….they HAD to bring in a pre-teen Peter Parker (instead of Miles Morales) back into the fold…..compared to the their corporate siblings at Lucasfilm lead by Kathleen Kennedy who are just ALL about diversity (at least on the surface….still kinda pisses me off that they hire Lupita Nyongo fresh off an Oscar win and just stick her performance capture suit), all of it is combining to make them look like Donald Trump’s favorite studio.

    But despite all that, it’s pretty damn impressive that they got almost a $60 million opening for a 3rd tier property like Ant-Man. The movie’s not gonna flop by any means but it cost almost $150 million and you know the overseas is not going to be gangbusters, so it’ll probably break even. My opinion is last summer after Wright walked and they had like three other directors turn them down, they should have sucked it up and pushed the film back in favor or ‘Marvel or ‘Panther…..but that would have gone against their venerated Phase 2 slate announced two years ago. It’s just silly….it’s nice to have a long-term plan, but these are still movies and they still have to be good on their own. Hoping that DC/Warners doesn’t fall into this trap – if it’s not gonna work on paper to deliver a Shazam even though Duane Johnson will have been talking it up for years, then just say fuck it and pull the thing.

  12. Warren says:

    All these people with their advice for Marvel are hilarious.

  13. Spacesheik says:

    Saw ANT-MAN at the Odeon Leicester Square and was pleasantly surprised at how entertaining & charming it was, following the bombastic, disjointed & dour AGE OF ULTRON (a film I won’t bother seeing again, unlike the first film which had high replay ability).

    ANT-MAN had some really effective scenes in (aided by Michael Douglas) & the film was brisk, Paul Rudd was top notch as well. If anything it reminded me of the first IRON MAN in that it left me wanting more.

    The audience I saw it with loved the flick and I think word of mouth might take this to $200 million – overseas it has opened strongly it seems.

    I really enjoyed the flick and it is a great family picture.

  14. js partisan says:

    Tracker, you love running off about things, when you can use google. Marvel is Perlmuttering the Fantastic Four, and are putting Mutants in their own little corner away from most of their important properties. They are still using Ben Grimm, but that movie pisses them off. It pisses them off enough, that Ike put the hammer down.

    Quicksilver isn’t a mutant anymore. You would know this. If you used google.

    Geoff, it cost a 150m, because of all of the pre-vis work. The funny thing is: they probably wiped that off the back a few years back, because Ant-Man has been in production for that long.

    Martin, that’s some nice alternate reality shit you got going on, but Civil War and Bats versus Supes ARE NOT THE SAME STORY ON ANY FUCKING LEVEL! Not even close.

  15. Jon says:

    Disney demanded that 60% of all showtimes of Ant Man be shown in 3D. That is why the 3D gross was high. It took 60% of showtimes to make 40% of the gross which is inflated due to surcharges. People do not like 3D as much as the studios still try to milk it for all it is worth.

  16. martin says:

    Marvel’s decelerating because they’re overexposed, gang. They passed on SDCC for this very reason even with Ant-Man opening a week later.

    As for “bomb”, I’m using it in context of Marvel. The tactic of MCU interconnection is to make each successive property a sequel by proxy.

    While I would never expect Ultron numbers, Ant-Man should have been above Cap/Thor due to audience brand awareness, but below Guardians since that had the Avengers tailwind. Put Ant-Man around 75M and I’d say Marvel Films are unaffected by the rest of Marvel. 58 says mediocrity plus overhype is now effecting the film division.

    62% of Ant-Man’s tickets came from 3D/Imax/PLF and it still didn’t hit Cap or Thor from 2011.

    JS – I said marketing for BvS and Civil War will blend together. Commercials don’t sell plot details. They sell big ideas, which in this case is hero v hero plus a cast of surprise guest appearances.

  17. brack says:

    “Ant-Man should have been above Cap/Thor due to audience brand awareness, but below Guardians since that had the Avengers tailwind.”

    Audience brand awareness? Ant-Man was always going to be a harder sell than Captain America or Thor based on concept alone. Your idea that each movie in the MCU is going to do better with each successive movie is not taking into account the property being sold. Plus the movie is doing better than Thor/Cap 1st movies overseas, so there’s that.

  18. Bulldog68 says:

    “While I would never expect Ultron numbers, Ant-Man should have been above Cap/Thor due to audience brand awareness,”

    You’re putting the cart before the horse. Marvel is a powerhouse brand, no doubt about it, but it’s still 2nd to Pixar.

    People while lining up for the latest Marvel movie are still more interested in the particular property a bit more than it just being the next Marvel movie. No one really says they’re going to the latest Marvel movie. On the other hand, I know a few who couldn’t remember the name of the latest Pixar movie, anecdotal yes, but Inside out was such a nondescript name, as well as Up, or Ratatouille, but the name Pixar, is what sells, and their track record with untested works is unblemished.

    Ant-Man is by every standard a smaller scale Marvel movie, and it performed like that. There is always the possibility that it would break out but that didn’t happen. GotG on the other hand, was given the full Marvel treatment because it was highly important that their first relatively unknown film property be a success. Ant-Man is in almost every sense, a $130m introduction of a new Avenger, and it wasn’t much of a gamble. A $58m debut, with this budget, and barring massive collapses gets this in the black. $125m is a flop. $150m is slight disappointment. $175m is a win. $200m and it is free BJ and cunnilingus time for all concerned.

  19. Pete B says:

    “Quicksilver isn’t a mutant anymore. You would know this. If you used google.”

    Well we know what everyone will be looking up on search engines now.

    JS, I get that you’re a huge comic book fan. Me too. But the average moviegoer isn’t aware of whether the characters are mutants or miracles or whatever. And they certainly can’t list off their “real” names. Its the average moviegoer that’s going to help keep the big bucks flowing in. If they get superhero fatigue, its going to dry up the well. I certainly hope I get to see a big budget Doctor Strange. Otherwise I’ll have to still settle for this gem from ’78 when I was 14.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DR9Q0uQcnMQ

  20. Monco says:

    I agree with martin. Ant-Man was mediocore crap. Nothing lasts forever and AoU is the beginning of Marvel’s downfall. They have bled these characters for everything they are worth and the only place to go is reboots which is insane because these movies are so young or adding the x-men to an avengers movie. I realize that saying a movie that made a billion dollars is the beginning of the end sounds absurd but fans have to tire of this shit eventually especially if it’s the crap Marvel released this summer.

    Disney will also destroy Star Wars.

  21. Steven Kaye says:

    The Marvel brand is without a doubt in decline. But what the hell is going on behind the scenes? When their most popular and iconic hero gets entrusted to the writers of Horrible Bosses and Vacation, then something is very, very awry.

  22. EtGuild2 says:

    “All these people with their advice for Marvel are hilarious.”

    It was hilarious back in May. Now it’s sad…a $1.5 billion grosser is a sign of desperation and decline apparently. A movie more profitable than “Godzilla” or the “Star Trek” movies is now a bomb. And the saddest part is, this is all we talk about anymore here…the fact Kevin Feige only has a 10 story high pool of cash to bathe in instead of a 20 story high pool is being discussed as if it’s some existential crisis for American cinema.

  23. Christian says:

    $$$$$$$$??
    $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$!!!!!

  24. Jim K says:

    I don’t know, these comparisons seem tenuous. While I’m not a teenager, these comic book films do exceptionally well because my generation theoretically likes this stuff as well as the younguns. And I swear to God, while my brand awareness of IRON MAN, CAPTAIN AMERICA and THOR is high, I didn’t know what the hell ANT-MAN is. I don’t know what their expectations were, but almost 60 mil for a movie called “Ant-Man” starring Paul Rudd seems all right to me.

  25. amblinman says:

    “When their most popular and iconic hero gets entrusted to the writers of Horrible Bosses and Vacation, then something is very, very awry.”

    Actually, it’s the Marvel way. Ultimately they don’t care who is behind the camera because they have a strict template that no one is allowed to deviate from. If you have competent genre filmmakers, this can be overcome to a degree (Cap 2). These are cookie cutter movies, some a little tastier than others.

    The B v S and Civil War ad campaigns being similar is interesting. Hadn’t thought about it but I can totally see the DC stuff, good or bad, adding to the potential for super hero fatigue. I wouldn’t go near suggesting Marvel is in decline yet, can’t know that until the next couple of releases. Ant-Man certainly isn’t a bomb, just isn’t a big deal which is the point. AOU made a ton of money but no one gives a shit about it now, and I doubt people will be rushing to re-watch.

  26. amblinman says:

    “It was hilarious back in May. Now it’s sad…a $1.5 billion grosser is a sign of desperation and decline apparently.”

    No, but the aftermath might suggest a trend. Listen, BlackBerry was the biggest cell phone company on the planet until they weren’t. Their decline started well before the profits started dropping. Sooner or later the train comes to a stop.

  27. Greg says:

    “Martin, that’s some nice alternate reality shit you got going on, but Civil War and Bats versus Supes ARE NOT THE SAME STORY ON ANY FUCKING LEVEL! Not even close.”

    Two popular DC Heroes disagree about stuff and try to beat each other up.

    Two popular Marvel Heroes disagree about stuff and try to beat each other up.

    Actually, the thread of these films is EXACTLY the same. Period.

  28. EtGuild2 says:

    “the aftermath might suggest a trend.”

    The…aftermath? What is that, exactly? One weekend of a third-tier movie that fell slightly short of second-tier comparisons domestically, but ended up ahead of those comparisons overseas? Are we really comparing Research in Motion to Marvel Entertainment? Oy.

    Cue the F4 mess being held up as further “proof of a trend.”

  29. amblinman says:

    “The…aftermath? What is that, exactly? One weekend of a third-tier movie that fell slightly short of second-tier comparisons domestically, but ended up ahead of those comparisons overseas? Are we really comparing Research in Motion to Marvel Entertainment? Oy.”

    No, I wasn’t directly comparing. I was making the point in response to the idea that money alone proves something has no downturn in store. In fact I just said in the post previous that there’s no proof of anything yet, we’d have to wait and see. The Ant-Man numbers are a bit of a let down, especially if you follow the success of AOU and overwhelmingly positive reviews. Paul Rudd is a well known and liked actor. This should have been more of a slam dunk.

    And yeah, F4 might be proof of a trend. What if it gets great reviews but fails at the box office?

    P.S. is the third-tier movie you’re referencing Ant-Man? If so, mazel tov! I’m happy you decided it was a third tier film! Disney will be pleased.

  30. Doug R says:

    I don’t think we have to worry about FF getting great reviews.

  31. leahnz says:

    if only people were keen to analyse every film and facet of Michael pena’s career this ardently

  32. EtGuild2 says:

    “I’m happy you decided it was a third tier film! Disney will be pleased.”

    Maybe I live in an alternate universe, but for if you were born from 1975 onward, you had an idea of who Superman, Spider-Man, Hulk, Batman and the X-Men were. If you were a casual comic book fan, you knew Iron Man, Thor, Captain America, Wonder Woman, maybe Green Lantern, The Flash, Fantastic 4 and a slew of villains.

    No one I’ve met in my entire life who didn’t grow up with the Pym character in the sixties or is a walking caricature of hard-core nerdom had more than a vague idea of who/what Ant-Man is. But maybe in your town kiddies carried their Ant-Man lunchboxes and backpacks to school, and in the cafeteria boys hotly debated over Hank Pym vs. Scott Lang while girls brainstormed ideas for Wasp Halloween costumes.

    Anyway…yes, Michael Pena stole the show! Excited for “Vacation” I have to admit.

  33. martin says:

    Logic from Amblinman.

    Audience brand awareness? Ant-Man was always going to be a harder sell than Captain America or Thor based on concept alone. Your idea that each movie in the MCU is going to do better with each successive movie is not taking into account the property being sold. Plus the movie is doing better than Thor/Cap 1st movies overseas, so there’s that.

    The general populous had no idea what Marvel until “Phase 1″ was in effect. The gen pop didn’t even know Batman and Spidey were not apart of the same company. That’s not my opinion, that was a marketing research from the 1999 until 2011.

    So all the brand building Marvel/Disney had successfully engaged in was supposed to pave the way for lesser tier characters to be accepted in the mainstream. The business proof was touted as GoTG; the Marvel name carried a title that had zero recognition for decades into a smash hit.

    And it’s not succession. I said I didn’t expect Ant-Man to do Ultron numbers. But Ant-Man’s marketing showcased it’s Marvel/Avengers connections. They made spots with the Avengers in them and promos with Ant-Man on IM’s shoulder. In the end, they even let loose with Falcon’s appearance. Marvel openly connected Ant-Man right back even more directly than GoTG and got results that only equal four years ago due to the Premium tickets.

    As for overseas, the market has changed for Marvel since 2011.

    Bulldog – I agree with the Marvel/Pixar analogy. Marvel and Disney do not. I’ll let Iger make my case.

    http://variety.com/2015/film/news/disney-ceo-bob-iger-dismisses-comic-book-movie-competition-were-marvel-1201535689/

    I see your GoTG/Ant-Man comparison, but don’t totally agree. You’re right about the GoTG concerns, but the after-effect of that has been hubris.

    As pointed out earlier, moving the Ant-Man date to mid-July is not a vote of no confidence. It was over-confidence. They’re buying their own press, because nobody challenges them. Go read Mendelson; he might as well sign off with “Excelsior” and that’s gddman Forbes.

    And that’s where the “Third-Tier Gamble” is a canard. This had a decade of development. It was slated as a priority over Cap and Thor, as Arad and Lionsgate felt it had the best chance to piggyback on Spidey ’02, but it was always too expensive to make. That’s why Ant-Man and Wasp were cut from the original Avengers scripts and replaced by Hawkeye and Widow.

    But post-GoTG it wasn’t a risk as they had established a formula. What changed was Arad to Fiege/Disney, who has no interest in directors with signatures. So all that work was jettisoned for a formulaic ROI because the belief is in the brand.

    I know we’re just talking film, but Marvel is whiffing in every other field and the audience has begun partitioning their products know based on the talent involved. That’s bad news for their centralized approach. It gives more authority to RDJ, Evans, Hemsworth, now Pratt, which brand-focusing was supposed to overcome. Ant-Man needed Mathew Vaughn as the lead.

  34. brack says:

    Ant-Man is doing better in some overseas markets than Guardians last year, if your only argument is that overseas is different than 2011, fine, but it’s not that different than 2014.

  35. Amblinman says:

    “No one I’ve met in my entire life who didn’t grow up with the Pym character in the sixties or is a walking caricature of hard-core nerdom had more than a vague idea of who/what Ant-Man is. But maybe in your town kiddies carried their Ant-Man lunchboxes and backpacks to school, and in the cafeteria boys hotly debated over Hank Pym vs. Scott Lang while girls brainstormed ideas for Wasp Halloween costumes.”

    The above probably happened way more than the kiddies in any town arguing whether Star-Lord or Rocket is a better hand to hand combatant. Post GOTG this is a reeeeeallly not-very-well-thought-out argument. Calling the character itself 3rd tier, fine. But marketing, schedule placement, stars, etc don’t support that Disney shares your world view. And what, you think people know who the Inhumans are? We’re going to get nothing but third tier characters here on out, Marvel already emptied the cubbard of their A-Listers save Spidey. Doesn’t mean the movies are going to be released with third tier expectations.

    PS: Martin beat me to it, and did a much better job.

  36. EtGuild2 says:

    “Calling the character itself 3rd tier, fine. But marketing, schedule placement, stars, etc don’t support that Disney shares your world view. And what, you think people know who the Inhumans are?”

    This is the lowest budget MCU movie ever supposedly, something that Disney thew out like a Tourette’s-addled child whenever given the chance, months before release. The last three Marvel-based movies to claim a lower budget were PUNISHER: WAR ZONE, GHOST RIDER: SPIRIT OF VENGEANCE, and THE WOLVERINE, the latter a reborquel to what’s considered the most mis-guided major Marvel movie of modern times. They were willing to hire the director of BRING IT ON: SASSY BLACK CHICKS to rush this to screen. They have been in a constant defensive posture from the get-go when it comes to the production of this flick. If ANT-MAN isn’t 3rd-tier, then I guess Disney lives by some weird new adage where MARS NEEDS MOMS is practically as high-profile as THE FORCE AWAKENS.

    The GOTG argument is exactly my point. What was indisputably the best trailer in a summer with the weakest competition of any summer in 15 years, and delirious, masturbatory buzz only made half as much as JURASSIC WORLD and opened to less than TRANSFORMERS: JUMPING THE SHARK AGAIN. No one in their right might would go into INHUMANS or CAPTAIN MARVEL with much more than 50-60 million expectations unless such movies have the winds of extraordinary circumstances at their backs like the best tentpole trailer of the year, fantastic buzz and/or jaw droppingly weak competition, and/or come out after Vin Diesel plunges to his death off the Empire State Building when he takes his delusions of actually being a living superhero too far.

    The problem with this whole thread is that 50-65 is being treated by one group as a big failure, while the other group is acting like this is a bizarre outlier, when in fact it should and will be the norm for STRANGE, Cap MARVEL, INHUMANS, PANTHER etc. You’re 100% correct; Marvel has reached the bottom of the barrel in terms of introducing new characters, but as long as they keep the budgets in check, that barrel bottom has some pretty sweet dregs of candy in it, and maybe, with a little luck, the horse and carriage cracker-jack prize will occasionally surface.

  37. amblinman says:

    Making fun of Payton Reed to prove Marvel had limited expectations for for Ant-Man is a non-starter. They don’t have a track record of hiring big name directors for their films. Branaugh was probably the highest profile guy, and it’s not like “A Kenneth Branaugh Film” gets butts in the seats.

    Marvel-based movies aren’t the same as Marvel movies. One group is a collection of characters used for films from disparate studios. The other is an ongoing one-universe brand that has a gigantic marketing machine behind them. The expectations for Ghost Rider and Ant-Man are two completely different beasts. Punisher: War Journal? You’re almost literally comparing apples to oranges, so I really dont’ know what the point was. Paul Rudd = Ray Stevenson? Like, for serious? (Although man o man would I take War Journal over virtually any of the current crop of Marvel movies. Hysterical, fun movie.)

    Maybe your plan for Marvel’s prospects going forward is exactly Marvel’s plan. I don’t think so, and I do think Ant-Man might be the start of a decline. Part of that is a rooting interest because I find these films mediocre and I’d like more interesting shitty popcorn movies during the summer.

  38. Stella's Boy says:

    Ant-Man should have done better because Paul Rudd is well-liked? I’m not sure that argument is sound. Yes he is well-liked, but what does that have to do with his ability to open a movie on his own? Does he have a track record of huge openings that would render this one a disappointment? Before this movie was announced I had never heard of Ant-Man, and I follow movies more closely than most (like everyone who posts here). What is a reasonable expectation for an opening weekend for a second-tier superhero? I don’t even like Marvel movies, and I have no desire to see this. At all. But still, claiming a $55 million opening weekend is a letdown is weird. I don’t understand that. I also don’t think Marvel has anything to worry about because of it.

  39. amblinman says:

    “Ant-Man should have done better because Paul Rudd is well-liked? I’m not sure that argument is sound. Yes he is well-liked, but what does that have to do with his ability to open a movie on his own?”

    He was one of several factors listed, sure. Same as Pratt with JW, he wasn’t the sole reason but certainly a factor.

    Reasonable expectation for a Disney-backed Marvel movie with a tremendous amount of advertising opening smack dab in the middle of July following a monster Avengers movie just a couple of months prior? Better than $55m would be my guess. 😉

    And can we please dispense with the nonsense about “second tier, third tier heroes” as though this has any relationship with public awareness about a *movie”? That you hadn’t heard of Ant-Man prior to the movie being announced and then became quite familiar with him *after* the movie was announced is the point. There are any number of iP’s that don’t have great public awareness prior to their becoming films.

  40. Stella's Boy says:

    Didn’t Pratt have a lead role in a huge Marvel movie before JW was released? Is the same true of Rudd? And I don’t see why that is nonsense, nor did I become quite familiar with him. I’ve seen a couple TV spots, that’s it. I’ve hardly become well-versed in Ant-Man.

    What’s a good comp for what Ant-Man should have opened to? What are you thinking of when you say it should have opened to much more than $55 million?

  41. amblinman says:

    I didn’t say “much more”. And the Rudd argument is dopey, I simply offered that he is a well known, likeable actor added to a laundry list of reasons the movie had high expectations. I’m not sure why you keep slamming him down on the table screaming “DOMINOS” as some giant, big gotcha point. “SEE, RUDD ISN’T 1980’S HARRISON FORD!!!” Like, yeah, okay.

    The reason it’s nonsense is that it’s not relevant to Disney/Marvel in terms of their own expectations. Their belief is that the Marvel brand is what drives people to these films.

  42. Stella's Boy says:

    I don’t think Rudd is as well known as you say he is. Well-liked by those aware of him, yes, but not exactly a household name. I’m certainly not screaming here either. Easy tiger. No need for all caps or exclamation points. I’d say the Marvel brand is exactly why something like Ant-Man opened to $55 million. But hey man call it nonsense all you want. I really don’t care that much about it. Certainly not enough to get the all caps treatment.

  43. amblinman says:

    The all caps were in quotes to illustrate a point. You’re struggling with context, it seems. On Rudd, we’ll have to agree to disagree. I would absolutely argue he’s a household name.

  44. Stella's Boy says:

    Rudd a household name? I don’t know. Maybe if you’re under 30-35? It seems a stretch. I know, I know it’s only anecdotal, but I know a lot of people who would shrug at the mention of his name and have no idea who you’re talking about.

    I know what the caps were for. They just weren’t necessary. You’re struggling to not be a condescending ass when talking about Paul Rudd and Ant-Man.

  45. amblinman says:

    Sure, it’s all the kids who are flocking to movies like “This is 40.”

    It absolutely was a struggle. I think I lost. :(

  46. EtGuild2 says:

    “Making fun of Payton Reed to prove Marvel had limited expectations for for Ant-Man is a non-starter.”

    How DARE I make fun of BRING IT ON:SASSY BLACK CHICKS! In the immortal words of Gabrielle Union’s Isis (not to be confused with the Middle Eastern Jihadist org), “That ho don’t know what she done started.” Michael Douglas himself couldn’t have summed up my underestimation of Reed more eloquently. I mean, hiring the guy who spawned the BCU, a mainstay of Redbox for years to come on two weeks notice, is the perfect show of confidence in the viability and appeal of a 9-figure feature, and a willingness to let the material breathe.

    Amblin; on the latter, the point wasn’t to say ANT-MAN is the same as GHOST RIDER: SPIRIT of VENGEANCE. The point was to illustrate that this Paul Rudd starrer is closer in terms of financial commitment to a movie where Nic Cage urinates while he’s a immolating as a cackling skeleton than it is ULTRON. And it’s a point Disney brings up every chance it gets.

  47. Hallick says:

    “They were willing to hire the director of BRING IT ON: SASSY BLACK CHICKS to rush this to screen.”

    “How DARE I make fun of BRING IT ON:SASSY BLACK CHICKS!”

    I’m not getting why you keep adding “SASSY BLACK CHICKS” to that movie title like it’s a thing that makes any sense. And isn’t being the director of “Yes Man” more damning anyway?

  48. amblinman says:

    “I mean, hiring the guy who spawned the BCU, a mainstay of Redbox for years to come on two weeks notice, is the perfect show of confidence in the viability and appeal of a 9-figure feature, and a willingness to let the material breathe.”

    Verses the guys who brought us “You, Me, And Dupree”? I guess Marvel didn’t believe in Captain America’s viability either.

    “Amblin; on the latter, the point wasn’t to say ANT-MAN is the same as GHOST RIDER: SPIRIT of VENGEANCE. The point was to illustrate that this Paul Rudd starrer is closer in terms of financial commitment to a movie where Nic Cage urinates while he’s a immolating as a cackling skeleton than it is ULTRON. And it’s a point Disney brings up every chance it gets.”

    Well, okay, sure. But no one was suggesting Ant-Man was supposed to financially be equal or even close to the sequel of one of the biggest films of all time. Saying it’s “closer” to Ghost Rider is completely disingenuous, you really want to argue the advertising spend on GR 2 is even in the same ballpark as Ant-Man?

    GR 2 was released in February. Ant-Man was released in July. It’s silly to keep invoking it or War Journal or any of the other dogs you keep beating as some kind of template that Ant-Man was following.

  49. EtGuild2 says:

    Hallick, are you not a connosseur of the BCU? In the original, Kisten Dunst’s uptight Type A white girl squad faces their greatest challenge yet when Gabrielle Union brings her team’s sass, fab dos and street-sensibilities into conflict in the greatest showdown to hit high school gymnasiums this millenium. You won’t believe what happens next!!! (basically I just love that the director that spawned a long series of hilariously dumb/borderline racist and sexist cheerleading movies went on to do this).

    As for the Russos, it might not seem like “Community” is a great setup for CAP 2, but if you’re a series fan you’ll recognize that the whip-smart, fast moving comedy/slapstick fits much better into what Marvel shoots for than you’d think.

    Amblinman, I’m mostly being humorous, but to me it’s disingenous to keep comparing “Ant-Man” to other MCU movies outside of upcoming head scratchers like the Sorcerer Supreme and King T’Challa. Perhaps, at one time 10 years ago it was a contender for real status. But you don’t go around brandishing how cheap your movie is in comparison to all your other movies if that’s still the case. If Ant-Man was anything more than insurance policy filler to use once Evans or Hemsworth or RDJ decide not to renew their contracts and they’re down an Avenger, they would have kept the original ending, hired a higher caliber filmmaker, spent more, etc.

  50. amblinman says:

    “As for the Russos, it might not seem like “Community” is a great setup for CAP 2, but if you’re a series fan you’ll recognize that the whip-smart, fast moving comedy/slapstick fits much better into what Marvel shoots for than you’d think.”

    No, it really doesn’t when you look at the finished product. There is nothing in Cap 2 that suggested those guys, it just worked out great for Marvel that they apparently are terrific filmmakers.

    “If Ant-Man was anything more than insurance policy filler to use once Evans or Hemsworth or RDJ decide not to renew their contracts and they’re down an Avenger, they would have kept the original ending, hired a higher caliber filmmaker, spent more, etc.”

    They don’t hire higher caliber filmmakers though. That’s been the point and why your Payton Reed schtick hasn’t hit it’s target. I just can’t take this line of argument seriously. We’re not talking about an end of season dump. The studio “bragging” about spending less money is not uncommon, that’s what they do – insist they haven’t spent that much on a movie.

  51. EtGuild2 says:

    wow, some serious venom for James Gunn, Shane Black, Joss Whedon, Jon Favreau et al.

    The difference between Reed and those guys is he doesn’t ,to my knowledge, have a single movie or TV work on his resume that rises above pure mediocrity or outright hackery. That’s a first for Marvel, your outright dismissal of some seriously talented filmmakers aside. To each his own I guess.

  52. Stella's Boy says:

    “The difference between Reed and those guys is he doesn’t ,to my knowledge, have a single movie or TV work on his resume that rises above pure mediocrity or outright hackery.”

    Except for Down With Love I think you meant to say.

  53. amblinman says:

    “wow, some serious venom for James Gunn, Shane Black, Joss Whedon, Jon Favreau et al.”

    Nope, not serious venom, just they weren’t on *anyone’s* radar as “high caliber filmmakers” at the time they went into production on the films in question. Gunn had previously made “Slither”, Shane Black had “Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang” which was really good but not necessarily something that suggested him for the 3rd film in Marvel’s flagship franchise (Yes, I”m aware of his history as a big game screenwriter but that doesn’t translate into being a big time director). I know Whedon had serious geek cred but as a major filmmaker he had…Serenity?

    Look, you keep ducking and diving between different arguments. You want to argue that Director A is talented vs Director B, which is fine but that’s not what we’re talking about (which, incidentally, is a matter of opinion anyway). If you’re going to base Marvel’s intentions towards Ant-Man by insisting they’d have hired a big name director vs Payton Reed, none of the guys you listed would have passed that test save maybe Favreau who at least did something like Jumanji prior to Iron Man. Reed is at least as good a bet as Scott Derrickson, in example. And they’re both along the same Marvel line as guys who have had some success but not a really strong career as directors as of yet.

    “The difference between Reed and those guys is he doesn’t ,to my knowledge, have a single movie or TV work on his resume that rises above pure mediocrity or outright hackery. That’s a first for Marvel, your outright dismissal of some seriously talented filmmakers aside. To each his own I guess.”

    Reed made Down With Love, which is excellent. So again, you’re right – to each his own.

  54. Bulldog68 says:

    Time for an absolutely random observation: anyone else notice that The Dark Knight remains the only movie to gross between $500m and $600m. Every other movie is either under or over. It has that whole $100m category all to itself.

    Also, unless Pixels breaks out, the only movie that I think is guaranteed to be in the $200m club for the summer is MI5. I don’t think F4 will get there either. Last year there was a plethora of $200m-$300m summer grossers. This year thus far, none.

    Random thought over.

  55. EtGuild2 says:

    Every point you make is a pivot on the point you previously made. Gunn, Black, Ava DuVernay and Favreau now aren’t high caliber filmmakers because they hadn’t directed a successful action blockbuster. Joe Johnston and Leterrier wouldn’t fit your bill I guess because they don’t make usiversally loved blockbusters. By your own insane and bizarre standard there are only a few high caliber filmmakers in all of Hollywood.

    You also like to argue against straw men that spring up in a direction entirely opposite from my point, and then imagine this straw man was the point I was trying to make and I’m somehow ducking your ever-changing line of reasoning. My point is: Reed was positioned as a for-hire hack who may share the fact that he’s directed mid-level studio fare….but his mid level studio fare is comparative garbage. He’s not a high caliber lenser, which to me doesn’t mean you have to have directed a $10,000,000 grosser that swept the Oscars.

    He was an emergency stand-in that Marvel used in order to avoid dumping $10 million+ by having to halt pre-production. Aka they cared so little about this movie they threw it at whoever they could get in order to avoid spending any extra dough. Plus they knew he would bow to their demands without hesitation because he liked reading comics as a teen so this was a dream job.

    Reed’s previous filmography positions him as a hack of the highest caliber compared to everyone else, Derrickson included. I assume you aren’t Mike LaSalle’s wife and you’re joking about DOWN WITH LOVE…or at least are self-aware enough to realize a throwaway rom-com in the full “Squinty” era of Zellweger isn’t on the same level as Marvel’s other hires’ previous work.

  56. Stella's Boy says:

    For the record I was joking about Down With Love. My wife likes it and watches it on occasion. It’s pretty grating.

    “He was an emergency stand-in that Marvel used in order to avoid dumping $10 million+ by having to halt pre-production.”

    That seems about right.

  57. YancySkancy says:

    I didn’t like DOWN WITH LOVE, but I thought THE BREAK-UP was great, and YES MAN was a solid rom-com. Both of the latter were big hits, which is more than many of the other Marvel directors mentioned here could say.

  58. EtGuild2 says:

    Yes Man and The Break Up were “big hits?” So much revisionism going on I’m getting dizzy. Did the Texas Board of Education sponsor this thread?

  59. Hcat says:

    How can anyone be that down on Bring It On, seriously this is like watching someone yell at a puppy. Does Bring It On lack some Gravitas required for a marvel movie? Was it not about a cutie pie that gets the rug pulled out from under them, finds their by golly gumption becomes a team leader pulling a rag tag group together? There’s plenty of light humor and lots of acrobatics and everyone leaves the theater pleasantly entertained while not blown away. Though Bring it On probably had more of a libido than the Marvel films Reed fits perfectly with the requirements.

    And as far as the guess what happens next comment, I’m sure to a lot of people the end of Bring it On was a complete surprise. Going the Rocky/Bad News Bears route lifted the films quality a bit.

  60. palmtree says:

    Down With Love may not be your cup of tea (it’s basically a pastiche of screwball comedies like Pillow Talk), but hackery it is not. It’s a cult film, loved by a devout few, and was certainly good enough to play calling card to his future career.

  61. EtGuild2 says:

    I totes <3 Bring It On. It's hilariously light and entertaining, but watching it 10 years later it's also hilariously dated in the way it exploits feminine and racial stereotypes for all they're worth. But yeah it doesn't do it in a mean spirited way, just an affable and mildly disconcerting in retrospect way. I'm picking on it because I actually consider it Reed's high water mark and that there's a gulf of difference between Reed's high point and that of his Marvel peers in terms of making good, or clever product. (With the exceptions of the tentpole specialists who simply had experience with massive productions). And it's because Reed was a last minute puppet fill in to keep Marvel from losing money.

    I really see a change in pattern between Bring it On and Swingers, Super, Kiss Kiss Bang Bang, Community, Game of Thrones, Firefly/Buffy, Hamlet, Shaun of the Dead Selma etc. Maybe I'm alone in that regard.

  62. Pete B says:

    How can people discuss Bring It On and not mention Eliza Dushku? Between that film and her turn as Faith On BTVS, she owned my soul for a good portion of time.

  63. Hcat says:

    Wait a minute Favreau didn’t direct Swingers he directed Elf, that’s what got him the job (plus proving he could handle effects with Zathura). Black was Disney bowing to Downey thinking they could hire anyone and not screw it up as long as the oversight is there. Which is why you keep seeing TV directors hired. They do what they are told.

  64. Greg says:

    It’s AntMan. Opening weekend gross is a miracle. Period. Movie will be profitable because it’s actually kind of good.

    Next.

  65. leahnz says:

    now wait a minute, this thread is kind of hilarious

    – and fair warning: i intend to add the word ‘reborquel’ to my future arsenal as i’m running out of words to describe remakes/boots/imaginings, and i’m not even sure i get the complete syllabic reference but who cares –

    but i draw the line at a mention of ‘vintage dushku’ without the words ‘Wrong Turn’ in very near proximity to her name (unrated version of course ha haaha hahahaha ha ha — just for any fans of ‘the turn’ because nobody laughs like a mutant hillbilly)

  66. Pete B. says:

    Didn’t know there was an unrated Wrong Turn. Hmmmm.

  67. leahnz says:

    i assume the OG theatrical cut must have been trimmed with quite a bit of disgusting ick restored for DVD, i have a WT dvd that says ‘unrated version’ on the cover but might be some tinpot distribution because it doesn’t include a rated theatrical version to compare, so just assuming

  68. Bulldog68 says:

    I just yelled at two women in a movie theater who were actually taking pics of themselves while the movie was about to start.

    THAT FELT GOOD!

  69. Hcat says:

    Not a fan of wrong turn but did enjoy tucker and dale vs.evil which turns the evil hillbilly premise on its head.

    But as far as hot young things being pursued by danger I am going to have to go with Joyride as my all time favorite.

  70. Stella's Boy says:

    Wrong Turn 2 is vastly superior to Wrong Turn. One of the best direct-to-DVD horror flicks ever. I think they’re up to like part 6 or 7 in that series. Hard to believe a movie that grossed $15 million spawned that many sequels.

  71. EtGuild2 says:

    Saw PIXELS. So depressingly calculated…but I’m eagerly awaiting Armond’s review.

  72. Bulldog68 says:

    I remember the days when I used to like Adam Sandler. I turned 47 this year, so maybe it’s the age thing. I grew up, still liking my toys mind you, but I still grew up. I just wish he’d actually play a character for a change instead of himself in the same movie told in slightly different ways.

    I was looking forward to Pixels with muted expectations. Like the concept. It’s the type of disposable movie that everyone has thought of, that “What if video games came to life” thing, so it’s a no brainer.

  73. Stella's Boy says:

    By virtue of watching some kids shows thanks to my 7-year-old, I’ve seen a bunch of Pixels TV spots. You wouldn’t even know that Adam Sandler and Kevin James are in it. The spots I’ve seen have displayed Gad and Dinklage and the video game characters. Weird to see a big budget summer Sandler movie not show Sandler in ads. Guess that’s why he’s moved on to Netflix.

  74. Bulldog68 says:

    I think it’s smart marketing though. The game characters are the real stars I think. That’s what you’re going for, not to see just another Sandler movie.

    Even the main posters don’t feature Sandler’s face.

  75. Stella's Boy says:

    Yeah I guess that’s true. But I think it also reflects his current career status.

  76. EtGuild2 says:

    It is a little strange to me given this is Sandler’s/Happy Madison’s last picture for Sony (aside from his Transylvania 2 voice work), with whom he enjoyed most of his career success and became a de facto lucrative franchise for Columbia. Sandler only has one non-Sony wide release this decade, and 16 of his last 20 are through it. And that doesn’t include James’ flicks…Blart, Zookeeper, Here Comes the Boom etc. Overall Sony has distributed 25 of 35 Madison productions since 2000.

    Given that Sony has released a single $100 million grosser in the last 14 months (The Equalizer, which barely made it), I guess they gotta do whatever they think gives them a much needed hit.

  77. Hallick says:

    “Yeah I guess that’s true. But I think it also reflects his current career status.”

    If he still had all or even half of his old superstar clout, he would have been all over those ads. The marketing is trying its damnedest to hide him.

  78. brack says:

    Sandler is doing fine. Grown Ups 2 made $247m worldwide just 2 years ago. I’ve seen him on talk shows and all the trailers for Pixels. Acting like the studio is “hiding” Sandler is laughable when he’s making all the late night rounds, and he and the rest of the cast are in every TV ad I’ve seen. I’m not saying he or any of his recent movies are good. I really liked Zohan and Funny People, but haven’t seen any of his stuff in a long time, so I’m not defender of Sandler by any means.

  79. leahnz says:

    i’m a fan of ‘joy ride’ (called ‘roadkill’ here) too hallick, one of my fave little action thrillers, taught and tight, effectively written, well-paced with good action sequences and some genuinely harrowing moments, plus endearing, natural charisma perfs from the walker/zahn/sobieski trio (not to mention the bonza uncredited vocal-only turn as the villain rusty nail from ted levine). my fave paul walker movie, and everything is better with the zahn, the type of movie that doesn’t really get made anymore (not well anyway), a straight-up effective thriller. weirdly i was actually wondering the other day what had become of john dahl (the director) when i saw his name in the credits of an ep of BSG, which i’ve been re-watching on a fluke, i guess he’s been busy getting his tv groove on

  80. Stella's Boy says:

    They are hiding him in the TV spots brack, at least all the ones I have seen. Not only do they not mention his name, he’s not even visible in some of them, whereas Gad and Dinklage are featured prominently. I’m not suggesting his career his over, or that the studio is pretending he doesn’t exist (he’s always been a popular late night guest right?). But I have seen quite a few TV spots in the last couple weeks, and he isn’t in any of them.

    I saw the premiere of Joy Ride at TIFF, then I stood next to Zahn and his family at the airport the next day. Dahl has been doing spectacular work on television, especially Justified & The Bridge (how I miss thee) and The Americans (how I love thee).

  81. John E. says:

    Why do movie sites almost never talk about Eros movies?

  82. brack says:

    The ads for Pixels don’t mention ANYONE starring by name. I have yet to see an ad without Sandler’s face shown, and some of them have him yelling “shoot for the head” or “Donkey Kong”. I YouTube searched “Pixels TV spots” and have watched numerous spots, and haven’t found one without him. Clearly they’re selling this movie with concept alone, which probably means the film is crap, and nothing about the ads or trailers have been that funny. If you want to provide links to those non-Sandler ads, feel free, I’m not too proud to be proven wrong.

  83. brack says:

    “Why do movie sites almost never talk about Eros movies?”

    Because most sites probably don’t talk about Indian movies period.

  84. palmtree says:

    Donkey Kong and Pacman are the real stars of this.

    But from what I gathered in the early reviews, a very good reason they might not be featuring Sandler is that his performance feels very phoned in and barely there. So in light of that, the energy of Gad and Dinklage’s characters are preferable.

  85. Stella's Boy says:

    I really don’t care enough to search for Sandler-free ads in an effort to prove you wrong. To me it seems like he’s being severely downplayed in a way he normally isn’t in a movie like this.

  86. Bulldog68 says:

    I’m gonna make a bold prediction and state that on it’s current trajectory, JW will definitely finish above the domestic $658m total of Titanic, finally breaking the 1-2 position that Cameron has occupied for the past 6 years.

  87. YancySkancy says:

    “Yes Man and The Break Up were ‘big hits?’ So much revisionism going on I’m getting dizzy.”

    ETGuild2: I realize the phrase “big hit” leaves a lot of leeway, but here are the stats:

    Yes Man: Domestic gross $97,690,976; Foreign $125,550,661
    The Break-Up: Domestic $118,703,275; Foreign 86,296,411

    Seems reasonably “big” to me. I didn’t say “blockbuster” or “record-breaking.”

  88. brack says:

    “To me it seems like he’s being severely downplayed in a way he normally isn’t in a movie like this.”

    That I do agree with.

  89. Bulldog68 says:

    Not to mention the fact that there was another Adam Sandler movie out this year that practically no one heard of called The Cobbler, that basically went straight to VOD. And imagine it also had Steve Buscemi, Dustin Hoffman, and Ellen Barkin in it.

    http://www.imdb.com/title/tt3203616/

  90. holy shit says:

    Absolutely no one in this thread spells Peyton Reed’s name correctly. This sums up everything.

  91. YancySkancy says:

    Well, only amblinman got Peyton Reed’s name wrong, unless you also count ETGuild2’s copying and pasting of an amblinman quote.

  92. michael bergeron says:

    if you liked JOY RIDE you will like COP CAR

  93. David Poland says:

    Martin… not sure I disagree with anything you wrote.

  94. David Poland says:

    Love you all…

  95. movieman says:

    Who’s Martin?

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