The Hot Blog Archive for December, 2008

DP/30 – Elsa Zylberstein, Co-Star of I Have Loved You So Long

Available on GoogleVideo
or in QT, after the jump…

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Mamma Mia! Manly?

Great tv spots for the DVD of Mamma Mia! during football yesterday.
“You know she wants it! Be man enough to buy her a musical!”
Love that.
(And on a less manly tack, did anyone notice Oprah failing to do much promotion of Ben Button while milking Mr Pitt in a Ben Button episode, taped November 5? Odd. Did she like the film? I hate to be doggin’ Da Button, but when Oprah can’t get in her normal frenzy for your Oscar movie… well… “It’s like nothing you’ve seen before” is not “I love this movie.” Just noticing.)


The Superstar Studded Thundercats Movie


Imitation… The Sincerest…

Frost/Nixon took the lesson from Doubt this weekend and have come out swinging with new, much more aggressive spots for the film. Forget the subleties of Nixon trying to manage Frost and decided just how much he wanted to fall on his sword. This is now a mano-a-mano street brawl!!!
it aint the movie… but it might be a better sales choice.
It is one of the real problems with awards season. Marketers become respectful of the films. Too respectful. And they sell to too small an audience… a group of about 6000.
So good for you, Universal. Sell that dead president out. Make Frost look like he had some control of the situation. The movie works. Audiences will forgive you.
Next up, Milk. Wait for the gunshot… wait… wait…


Buh-Bye Strike… Buh-Bye SAG

The question for SAG is now

DP/30 – Ellen Kuras – Director, Nerakhoon (The Betrayal)

Available on GoogleVideo
or in QT, after the jump…

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BYOB – Brave New Week


DP/30 – Matteo Garrone, director of Gomorrah

The director of the 2008 Italian submission for Oscar sits for a chat with David Poland.


Weekend Estimates by Klady

The weather outside is a popular cliche’… really.
Estimates may defy accuracy today. We’l see. Klady has Yes Man slipping well under 3x Friday… the other two openers right around there. At least one premature e-estimacator has retracted estimates a couple of times over the weekend.
People sometimes ask why some of this premature stuff irritates me so. It’s 3-fold. One, it’s often inaccurate. But more importantly, the sense of mining movie grosses like they are baseball stats is something that has irritated many for years, as box office has become assured of a Sunday night slot on every news show (and now, ever scroll). But we are getting to the point where we won’t wait for the news to happen before insisting we have the answer. This is not a situation where Traditional Media is doing a single bit of perspective reporting either. And those who are positioning themselves as experts are either completely ignorant of what they are really writing about or they are so busy trying to be first that they are doing a disservice to people who have a legitimate interest in what is going on out there.
And 3… the reason we have incredibly unclear and often no verifiable numbers in areas of new media is that there are so many irresponsible monkeys swimming around the pool in box office these days that the industry is dedicated to hiding every single number they can from her on in.
With due respect, this is AICN Syndrome. Reviewing test screenings has led to a test screening system that no longer works for filmmakers or the foolish execs that overvalued the numbers that came out of those screenings. And we don’t know the real numbers on anything other than box office now because “analysts” dipped too deeply into the well and misunderstood the numbers they did have, creating problems for every studio.
And by the way… here is a touch of what may become news in the days to come… purchasing a web business should require a lot of due diligence work, as word around the box office moat is that a lawsuit for stolen proprietary information is being seriously considered now that one web entity has grown deep pockets. As I have written before, domestic box office that studios hand out each week is not proprietary information. If you have a website or newspaper, you can get on the weekend phone list. But when you are digging past the first 20 or 30 grossers, it is likely that you are using numbers from just one or two actual hands-on box office information brokers aka reporting services


Friday Estimates by Klady

One has to go all the way back to 2003 to find a pre-Christmas weekend that was not right on top of Christmas, creating a 4-day or 5-day weekend and that entails. Now, 2003 did have Return of the King burning things up. That level of film has not entered the market this month. But after that, grosses were $11.5m, $11.4m, $7.8m, $5.5m


Confusion Abuse-ion

Crazy-Like-A-Buzzard Nikki Finke and her


BYOB – Friday 121908

Ev’rybody’s workin’ for the weekend…
(Corrected, 5:52p, by the good lyrical graces of one of Hollywood’s good guys.)


Life With Baz


11 Weeks To Oscar

The Greatly Settled
Every year, I quote Bill Condon’s notion – which has more resonance with his Oscar gig this year … and less – of The Great Settling.
All the critics’ awards and nominations are laid out. Screeners are in every Oscar voter’s stockings. People go on their annual big vacations to wherever with the family and the discs in tow. And as the pressures from the hard push of the studios and press are relieved, cooling the situation, the films themselves creep into perspective. Nomination ballots go out right at Christmas and are returned en masse when people get back from their holiday to their lives.
But this year … not so much.
The Rest…
The Charts…


SAG Strikes… With Nominations!!!

Dan sag it!!!
Razum frazum foon ba!


The Hot Blog

Quote Unquotesee all »

It shows how out of it I was in trying to be in it, acknowledging that I was out of it to myself, and then thinking, “Okay, how do I stop being out of it? Well, I get some legitimate illogical narrative ideas” — some novel, you know?

So I decided on three writers that I might be able to option their material and get some producer, or myself as producer, and then get some writer to do a screenplay on it, and maybe make a movie.

And so the three projects were “Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep,” “Naked Lunch” and a collection of Bukowski. Which, in 1975, forget it — I mean, that was nuts. Hollywood would not touch any of that, but I was looking for something commercial, and I thought that all of these things were coming.

There would be no Blade Runner if there was no Ray Bradbury. I couldn’t find Philip K. Dick. His agent didn’t even know where he was. And so I gave up.

I was walking down the street and I ran into Bradbury — he directed a play that I was going to do as an actor, so we know each other, but he yelled “hi” — and I’d forgot who he was.

So at my girlfriend Barbara Hershey’s urging — I was with her at that moment — she said, “Talk to him! That guy really wants to talk to you,” and I said “No, fuck him,” and keep walking.

But then I did, and then I realized who it was, and I thought, “Wait, he’s in that realm, maybe he knows Philip K. Dick.” I said, “You know a guy named—” “Yeah, sure — you want his phone number?”

My friend paid my rent for a year while I wrote, because it turned out we couldn’t get a writer. My friends kept on me about, well, if you can’t get a writer, then you write.”
~ Hampton Fancher

“That was the most disappointing thing to me in how this thing was played. Is that I’m on the phone with you now, after all that’s been said, and the fundamental distinction between what James is dealing with in these other cases is not actually brought to the fore. The fundamental difference is that James Franco didn’t seek to use his position to have sex with anyone. There’s not a case of that. He wasn’t using his position or status to try to solicit a sexual favor from anyone. If he had — if that were what the accusation involved — the show would not have gone on. We would have folded up shop and we would have not completed the show. Because then it would have been the same as Harvey Weinstein, or Les Moonves, or any of these cases that are fundamental to this new paradigm. Did you not notice that? Why did you not notice that? Is that not something notable to say, journalistically? Because nobody could find the voice to say it. I’m not just being rhetorical. Why is it that you and the other critics, none of you could find the voice to say, “You know, it’s not this, it’s that”? Because — let me go on and speak further to this. If you go back to the L.A. Times piece, that’s what it lacked. That’s what they were not able to deliver. The one example in the five that involved an issue of a sexual act was between James and a woman he was dating, who he was not working with. There was no professional dynamic in any capacity.

~ David Simon