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DP/30: Moonlight, Barry Jenkins

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Moonlight, Mahershala Ali

MCN Originals

Smashing Wide-Release Theatrical Windows: Murder or Suicide?


The theatrical business is not dying. There are no actual stats that suggest it is.

Perhaps distributors are not foolishly chasing new revenue, but are consciously aware that sipping the Kool-Aid may lead to the death of a significant portion of this industry. Maybe they just want to be in a different business.

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The Weekend Report

Weekend Est 2017-03-26 at 10.01.20 AM

Beauty and the Beast diminished by half but nonetheless towered over the competition with an estimated $89 million weekend. That left the incoming Power Rangers securely in second spot with a $40.1 million debut. The session’s two other newcomers had meh results with the Alieneque sci-fier Life opening to $12.4 million and the TV staple CHIPS puttering on the big screen to $7.5 million.

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Friday Box Office Estimates

Friday Estimates 2017-03-25 at 9.31.22 AM

The second weekend of a tale as old as time not only beating out two space-y films, but beating the two combined. The Beauty is looking at the #4 all-time slot for best second weekend to boot. Power Rangers, which spent a ton on advertising, is not a bust. But box office prognosticators are flying blind on where this one is going. Will it play on Saturday and across the globe? Life is a brutal opening, given its ambition. And CHiPs is another waste of Dax Shepard and Michael Pena and of WB’s time.

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The DVD Wrapup: Julieta, Sing, Kind of Murder, Nightless City, Multiple Maniacs, Cinema Paradiso, 45RPM, Ali & Nino, American Princesses, Split and more

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The Weekend Report

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Friday Box Office Estimates

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The DVD Wrapup: Fences, Elle, Passengers, Solace, Film/Not Film, Robert Flaherty, Drunk History and more

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“Exhibitors around the world lose billions of dollars each year to movie theft, and the losses would be much greater if not for a coordinated war on piracy.”
NATO’s John Fithian Speaks On Free Trade

“Amazon might be getting rid of numerous ‘extreme’ indie horror titles from their free queue but the rent or buy option is still available to all filmmakers, and it means more revenue.”
Amazon Streaming Cracks Down On “Extreme” Content “Included With Prime”

“Both UK and US box office reached record levels. This year already promises to be even better. 2016 saw a record 900 titles arrive in UK cinemas. If Netflix poses any threat (and we’d be hard pressed to know, given its unwillingness to publish revenue figures), it is to the rest of the home entertainment sector and not to one offering an immersive out-of-home experience.”
So Sez Phil Clapp, Chief Exec, UK Cinema Association


“At any rate, adding at least some of Milch’s voice into the ‘True Detective’ universe could be very cool for fans of both franchises if this newfound alliance between two strong voices works out.”
David Milch Boards Possible “True Detective” Third Season, Inspires Peak Blogginess At EW

NY Times

“In the early 1960s, hobbled by cost-cutting and the release of contract players following the forced sale of its theater chain, Paramount was nearly shuttered and sold for the real estate value of its lot. Instead, a new corporate boss, having little to lose, brought in a brash, untested producer — Robert Evans — to run the place. The result was a creative rebirth that led to seminal hits like The Godfather, Rosemary’s Baby and Chinatown.”
Brooks Barnes Reaches Back

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Quote Unquotesee all »

“Let me try and be as direct as I possibly can with you on this. There was no relationship to repair. I didn’t intend for Harvey to buy and release The Immigrant – I thought it was a terrible idea. And I didn’t think he would want the film, and I didn’t think he would like the film. He bought the film without me knowing! He bought it from the equity people who raised the money for me in the States. And I told them it was a terrible idea, but I had no say over the matter. So they sold it to him without my say-so, and with me thinking it was a terrible idea. I was completely correct, but I couldn’t do anything about it. It was not my preference, it was not my choice, I did not want that to happen, I have no relationship with Harvey. So, it’s not like I repaired some relationship, then he screwed me again, and I’m an idiot for trusting him twice! Like I say, you try to distance yourself as much as possible from the immediate response to a movie. With The Immigrant I had final cut. So he knew he couldn’t make me change it. But he applied all the pressure he could, including shelving the film.”
James Gray

“I’m an unusual producer because I control the destiny of a lot of the films I’ve done. Most of them are in perfect states of restoration and preservation and distribution, and I aim to keep them in distribution. HanWay Films, which is my sales company, has a 500-film catalogue, which is looked after and tended like a garden. I’m still looking after my films in the catalogue and trying to get other people to look after their films, which we represent intellectually, to try to keep them alive. A film has to be run through a projector to be alive, unfortunately, and those electric shadows are few and far between now. It’s very hard to go and see films in a movie house. I was always involved with the sales and marketing of my films, right up from The Shout onwards. I’ve had good periods, but I also had a best period because the film business was in its best period then. You couldn’t make The Last Emperor today. You couldn’t make The Sheltering Sky today. You couldn’t make those films anymore as independent films. There are neither the resources nor the vision within the studios to go to them and say, “I want to make a film about China with no stars in it.”Then, twenty years ago, I thought, “OK, I’m going to sell my own films but I don’t want to make it my own sales company.” I wanted it to be for me but I wanted to make it open for every other producer, so they don’t feel that they make a film but I get the focus. So, it’s a company that is my business and I’m involved with running it in a certain way, but I’m not seen as a competitor with other people that use it. It’s used by lots of different producers apart from me. When I want to use it, however, it’s there for me and I suppose I’m planning to continue making all my films to be sold by HanWay. I don’t have to, but I do because it’s in my building and the marketing’s here, and I can do it like that. Often, it sounds like I’m being easy about things, but it’s much more difficult than it sounds. It’s just that I’ve been at it for a long time and there’s lots of fat and security around my business. I know how to make films, but it’s not easy—it’s become a very exacting life.”
~ Producer Jeremy Thomas