‘Justice League’ Storms to Top of DVD, Blu-ray Disc Sales Charts

Warner’s “Justice League” led a slew of newcomers that debuted in the top 20 of the national home video sales charts the week ended March 17. The superhero team-up adventure, which earned $229 million at the domestic box office, came in at No. 1 on both the NPD VideoScan overall disc sales chart, which tracks […]

Warner’s “Justice League” led a slew of newcomers that debuted in the top 20 of the national home video sales charts the week ended March 17. The superhero team-up adventure, which earned $229 million at the domestic box office, came in at No. 1 on both the NPD VideoScan overall disc sales chart, which tracks […]

Evolution of John Cena, from WWE’s Doctor of Thuganomics to ‘Blockers’ (Photos)

John Cena has risen through the professional wrestling ranks to become not just one of the sport’s most popular and bankable stars, but one of the most recognizable faces in entertainment today. With “Blockers” set to open soon, let’s take a look back at the rise of Cenation.

1999

Cena first appeared as The Prototype, a semi-robotic character, in the Ohio Valley Wrestling organization (essentially, WWE’s minor league system).

2002

Shortly after being called up to WWE’s main roster, Cena adopted a new persona: Doctor of Thuganomics, a white rapper who often spat rhymes before his matches and had a penchant for backwards baseball caps and jersey combos. This also served as the beginning of a secondary career for Cena, who recorded a rap album in 2005 (which debuted at 15 on the U.S. Billboard Top 200) and was featured on the WWE soundtrack album “WWE Originals.”

2005

After winning the WWE United States Championship the previous year, Cena defeated John “Bradshaw” Mayfield at WrestleMania 21 to win his first World Championship, solidifying his status as a wrestling star.

2006

Cena made his feature acting debut in WWE Studios’ “The Marine” opposite Robert Patrick. Along with his new wrestling persona as a marine private who sports flags and denim shorts, the movie helped make Cena the new American hero of the WWE.

2010

After a guest appearance on “Saturday Night Live,” Cena was allowed to display his comedy chops on an episode of USA Network’s “Psych,” serving as a sign of things to come. Cena would return in 2017 for “Psych: The Movie.”

2012

After several years of losing and regaining the WWE Championship title, Cena entered into one of the biggest feuds in wrestling history against Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson. After Johnson “screwed” Cena out of a match, Cena issued a challenge against Johnson for WrestleMania 28, exactly one year later. The highest-grossing event in WWE history ended with Johnson defeating Cena with his patented “Rock Bottom” move.

2013

Cena challenged Johnson to a rematch at WrestleMania 29, a challenge that Johnson accepted. This time, Cena emerged victorious. After the match, the two stars publicly shook hands and embraced, ending their feud.

2015

2015 turned out to be a breakthrough year for Cena, who appeared in the comedy films “Sisters,” “Daddy’s Home” and “Trainwreck.” He also made a memorable guest appearance as himself in the final season of “Parks and Recreation.”

2015 (cont’d)

In addition to his wrestling fans, Cena is known and beloved for his philanthropy, particularly his work with the Make-A-Wish Foundation. Cena began his relationship with the organization in 2004 and has since granted over 500 wishes.

2016

In 2016, Cena began hosting the Fox reality series “American Grit,” which pitted civilians against each other in grueling physical challenges under the guidance of seasoned military vets.

2017

Leaning into his image, Cena opened the year by playing a soldier in Doug Liman’s war thriller “The Wall” opposite Aaron Taylor-Johnson. He then appeared in “Daddy’s Home 2” before voicing a gentle bull with a big heart in “Ferdinand.”

2018

Cena will soon appear in his first comedic lead role opposite Leslie Mann and Ike Barinholtz in “Blockers.” He will also co-star in the “Transformers” spinoff “Bumblebee” with Hailee Steinfeld this Christmas.

John Cena has risen through the professional wrestling ranks to become not just one of the sport’s most popular and bankable stars, but one of the most recognizable faces in entertainment today. With “Blockers” set to open soon, let’s take a look back at the rise of Cenation.

1999

Cena first appeared as The Prototype, a semi-robotic character, in the Ohio Valley Wrestling organization (essentially, WWE’s minor league system).

2002

Shortly after being called up to WWE’s main roster, Cena adopted a new persona: Doctor of Thuganomics, a white rapper who often spat rhymes before his matches and had a penchant for backwards baseball caps and jersey combos. This also served as the beginning of a secondary career for Cena, who recorded a rap album in 2005 (which debuted at 15 on the U.S. Billboard Top 200) and was featured on the WWE soundtrack album “WWE Originals.”

2005

After winning the WWE United States Championship the previous year, Cena defeated John “Bradshaw” Mayfield at WrestleMania 21 to win his first World Championship, solidifying his status as a wrestling star.

2006

Cena made his feature acting debut in WWE Studios’ “The Marine” opposite Robert Patrick. Along with his new wrestling persona as a marine private who sports flags and denim shorts, the movie helped make Cena the new American hero of the WWE.

2010

After a guest appearance on “Saturday Night Live,” Cena was allowed to display his comedy chops on an episode of USA Network’s “Psych,” serving as a sign of things to come. Cena would return in 2017 for “Psych: The Movie.”

2012

After several years of losing and regaining the WWE Championship title, Cena entered into one of the biggest feuds in wrestling history against Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson. After Johnson “screwed” Cena out of a match, Cena issued a challenge against Johnson for WrestleMania 28, exactly one year later. The highest-grossing event in WWE history ended with Johnson defeating Cena with his patented “Rock Bottom” move.

2013

Cena challenged Johnson to a rematch at WrestleMania 29, a challenge that Johnson accepted. This time, Cena emerged victorious. After the match, the two stars publicly shook hands and embraced, ending their feud.

2015

2015 turned out to be a breakthrough year for Cena, who appeared in the comedy films “Sisters,” “Daddy’s Home” and “Trainwreck.” He also made a memorable guest appearance as himself in the final season of “Parks and Recreation.”

2015 (cont’d)

In addition to his wrestling fans, Cena is known and beloved for his philanthropy, particularly his work with the Make-A-Wish Foundation. Cena began his relationship with the organization in 2004 and has since granted over 500 wishes.

2016

In 2016, Cena began hosting the Fox reality series “American Grit,” which pitted civilians against each other in grueling physical challenges under the guidance of seasoned military vets.

2017

Leaning into his image, Cena opened the year by playing a soldier in Doug Liman’s war thriller “The Wall” opposite Aaron Taylor-Johnson. He then appeared in “Daddy’s Home 2” before voicing a gentle bull with a big heart in “Ferdinand.”

2018

Cena will soon appear in his first comedic lead role opposite Leslie Mann and Ike Barinholtz in “Blockers.” He will also co-star in the “Transformers” spinoff “Bumblebee” with Hailee Steinfeld this Christmas.

All the Oscar-Nominated Movies You Can Watch at Home Right Now

Oscars: A Look At The Nominees For Best Animated Feature Film

Like Lee Unkrich’s vibrant Day of the Dead-themed Coco and Nora Twomey’s The Breadwinner, the annual Academy Awards are an affair marked by the collision of two worlds.
In Coco, there’s contemporary Mexico and the land of the dead; in The Breadwinner, early 2000s Afghanistan and a world of imagination. At the Oscars, there are waves upon waves of contenders passing through, and those precious few who make it all the way to the big show.
Once again, the Oscar fields have…

Like Lee Unkrich's vibrant Day of the Dead-themed Coco and Nora Twomey's The Breadwinner, the annual Academy Awards are an affair marked by the collision of two worlds. In Coco, there's contemporary Mexico and the land of the dead; in The Breadwinner, early 2000s Afghanistan and a world of imagination. At the Oscars, there are waves upon waves of contenders passing through, and those precious few who make it all the way to the big show. Once again, the Oscar fields have…

Oscars 2018: How ‘Ferdinand’ Became a Surprise Animated Oscar Nominee

Carlos Saldanha’s passion project swayed the Academy with a sensitive message of identity and inclusion. Not to mention a bull in a china shop.

Animation

The nomination of Blue Sky’s “Ferdinand” was the biggest surprise among animated features (yes, even bigger than DreamWorks’ “Boss Baby”). The presence of both, however, was due to the Academy opening up the nomination committee more widely to all members, and, perhaps more significantly, the adoption of preferential voting. This resulted in the inclusion of three studio nominees for the first time in four years.

Still, “Ferdinand” represented a marked improvement for Blue Sky in ambition and achievement. A passion project for director Carlos Saldanha (“Rio”), it offered a sensitive portrayal of identity and inclusion.

“Ferdinand”

Inspired by the 1936 children’s book (“The Story of Ferdinand”) and the 1938 Oscar-winning Disney short (“Ferdinand the Bull”), “Ferdinand” addresses “being true to who you are,” said Saldanha. “With that said, though, there’s another message about peace and not having to do violence to prove your point. The quick way out when you’re oppressed is to fight back. But Ferdinand is a gentle, agile animal.”

The Gentle Giant Factor

Thus, the bullring becomes an arena of individual freedom and expression for the animal. All the better that Ferdinand was voiced by John Cena, the wrestler, actor, and rapper. “I don’t like to typecast, but this was a perfect combination for me,” Saldanha said. “I needed somebody who could embody that personality and understand why. I didn’t want an angry bully himself. I wanted someone who was a gentle and caring giant. So it was a no brainer to create the character on top of it.”

Meanwhile, “Ferdinand” offered more of a watercolor look for Spain than the explosion of Brazilian colors for “Rio.” It’s colorful in an earthier, warmer tone, which took the director out of his comfort zone. “It’s all in the detail,” he said. “And flower and cape for me were used as a contrast for red with opposite intents: peace and war.”

“The Black Stallion” Influence

Despite having mastered fur simulation at Blue Sky, Saldanha wasn’t happy with the results for Ferdinand. He looked at “The Black Stallion” and was swayed by the metallic sheen. “I wanted that glistening feel you get when the fur is wet,” said Saldanha. “And fur was actually not allowing us to get that texture.”

FERD_Juanes_Still_v1.0_sRGB Ferdinand (voiced by John Cena) stops and smells the flowers Juan (voiced by Latin music star Juanes) is holding. In front of Ferdinand are Lupe and Juan’s daughter Nina, and on top of Ferdinand are his hedgehog pals Una, Dos and Cuatro. Photo Credit: Blue Sky Studios

“Ferdinand”

Photo Credit: Blue Sky Studios

So Blue Sky developed a new texture mapping software just for Ferdinand, emulating fur but providing the “Black Stallion” look the director was after. They applied it to the other bulls with distinct texturing. “It gave us the richness of the black and the sheen of the light,” he added.

A Bull in a China Shop

The biggest indulgence for Saldanha, though, was having the proverbial bull in the china shop. And he justified it by creating a tense moment set off by a flower and a bee sting. Causing panic, the bull hides in a shop surrounded by china and his only way out is through his agility. However, the elderly proprietor gets in the way of that.

“Ferdinand”

“It was one of his most satisfying moments, just to play with the contrast of the rough and the sensitive,” Saldanha said. ” What’s interesting is that I timed every beat of the sequence to ‘Carmen.’ I removed it at the end, but I wanted to get that tension you find in that music.”

The Dance Off

But the most difficult sequence to choreograph and animate was the last they worked on, a funny dance-off between the haughty horses and the downtrodden bulls. “We knew that the bulls had to figure out a way to bond, to team up and break free and do something unexpected,” said Saldanha. “And, of course, we had the horses, which looked down on the bulls. “It was the beginning of realizing they could be more than just bulls.”

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Oscars 2018: ‘The Shape of Water’ Dominates Crafts, But Cinematographer Rachel Morrison Makes History

“The Shape of Water” landed seven craft nominations, but the “Mudbound” DP become the Academy’s first-ever female cinematography nominee.

Best Picture favorite “The Shape of Water” dominated the Oscar craft categories with seven nominations — Cinematography, Production and Costume Design, Editing, Original Score, Sound Editing, and Sound Mixing. Guillermo del Toro’s period-fantasy romance only failed to snag a Visual Effects nomination.

“Dunkirk,” Christopher Nolan’s experimental Best Picture nominee, captured six craft noms (Cinematography, Production Design, Editing, Score, Sound Editing, and Sound Mixing); Denis Villeneuve’s brutalistic “Blade Runner 20149” scored five (Cinematography, Production Design, Visual Effects, Sound Editing, and Sound Mixing); and Joe Wright’s surprise Best Picture nominee, “Darkest Hour,” grabbed four (Cinematography, Production and Costume Design, Makeup and Hairstyling).

Making History

But the biggest crafts story was Rachel Morrison making Oscar history as the first female cinematographer to secure a nomination for her poetic work on “Mudbound.” She was joined by frontrunner Roger Deakins, who grabbed his 14th nomination for “Blade Runner 2049″ in search of his elusive win; Bruno Delbonnel, who collected his fifth for “Darkest Hour”; and Dan Laustsen and Hoyte van Hoytema, who got their first for “The Shape of Water” and “Dunkirk.”

"Mudbound" DP Rachel Morrison

“Mudbound” DP Rachel Morrison

David Bomba

The timing couldn’t be better with the Academy striving for greater diversity
and the emergence of the #metoo and #timesup movements.

Speaking of which, the production and costume design team of Sarah Greenwood and Jacqueline Durran both scored double nominations for their work on “Beauty and the Beast” and “Darkest Hour.” That makes six noms for Greenwood and five for Durran, who previously won for “Anna Karenina.”

Surprises and Snubs

Visual Effects offered a surprise with Industrial Light & Magic’s outstanding work on “Kong: Skull Island” making the cut.  The other nominees were “Blade Runner 2049” (split primarily between MPC and Double Negative); “War for the Planet of the Apes” (led by Weta Digital’s four-time Oscar winner Joe Letteri and Oscar winner Dan Lemmon for “The Jungle Book”); “Star Wars: The Last Jedi” (led by ILM’s Ben Morris); and Marvel’s “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2” (which included Weta’s Guy Williams). Nudged out for supporting work were both “The Shape of Water” and “Dunkirk.”

"Kong: Skull Island"

“Kong: Skull Island”

Warner Bros./REX/Shutterstock

Some pleasant surprises included Costume Designer Consolata Boyle getting her third nomination for Stephen Frears’ “Victoria and Abdul” (which surprisingly also got a Makeup/Hairstyling nod); and John Williams getting his 51st nomination for “The Last Jedi” rather than Steven Spielberg’s “The Post,” which got totally left out of the craft races, as did Jordan Peele’s “Get Out.” Both were Best Picture nominees.

In Animation, meanwhile, the big story in the feature category was the inclusion of both “The Boss Baby” (DreamWorks) and “Ferdinand” (Blue Sky), thanks to the Academy opening up voting to all members and instituting preferential voting. However, The LEGO franchise from Warner Bros. was once again snubbed, since “The LEGO Batman Movie” failed to make the cut. As expected, though, Pixar’s frontrunning “Coco,” GKids’ “The Breadwinner,” and the innovative indie, “Loving Vincent,” were also nominated.

“Ferdinand”

In addition, Animated Short noms went to Pixar’s “Lou” (directed by Dave Mullins); Kobe Bryant’s “Dear Basketball” (directed by hand-drawn Disney legend Glen Keane); the stop-motion “Negative Space” from France (directed by Max Porter and Ru Kuwahata); “Revolting Rhymes,” the British-German CG adaptation of Roald Dahl poems (directed by Jakob Schuh and Jan Lachauer); and the surprising “Garden Party,” a CG amphibian heist romp made as student film from MOPA (directed by Victor Caire and Gabriel Grapperon).

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New Year’s in NYC: On the Scene with Nick Jonas, Sugarland, the Voice of Times Square

Although the sub-zero temperatures in New York City may have had revelers wishing they were somewhere warm — like, say, “Havana” — performances by Mariah Carey, Camila Cabello, Nick Jonas and Sugarland, along with the always cheery banter of “Dick Clark’s Rockin’ New Year’s Eve with Ryan Seacrest” hosts Ryan Seacrest and Jenny McCarthy kept […]

Although the sub-zero temperatures in New York City may have had revelers wishing they were somewhere warm — like, say, “Havana” — performances by Mariah Carey, Camila Cabello, Nick Jonas and Sugarland, along with the always cheery banter of “Dick Clark’s Rockin’ New Year’s Eve with Ryan Seacrest” hosts Ryan Seacrest and Jenny McCarthy kept […]

Weekend Box Office: Gentle talking bull embarks on noble suicide mission against Star Wars

Before getting to the galaxy-shaking box-office results everyone saw coming from several lightyears away, let’s hear it for the counterprogramming that almost could. Ferdinand, a new animated movie based on the beloved children’s book, opened wide this weekend against a certain eighth chapter in a certain popular…

Read more…

Before getting to the galaxy-shaking box-office results everyone saw coming from several lightyears away, let’s hear it for the counterprogramming that almost could. Ferdinand, a new animated movie based on the beloved children’s book, opened wide this weekend against a certain eighth chapter in a certain popular…

Read more...

‘The Last Jedi’ Opens to $220 Million, No Matter What Disappointed Fanboys Say

While fans may have a discrepancy of opinion, Disney took Rian Johnson’s film to $450 million worldwide in its opening weekend.

Star Wars: The Last Jedi” lived up to its very high expectations with a domestic weekend gross of $220 million. Foreign territories (with China not yet opened) added another $450 million to the total so far — a strong number, to state the obvious, at anytime; even more so for the pre-Christmas date.

This is a decided improvement over last year’s franchise sidebar “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story” which opened to $157 million, and only 15 percent below what “The Force Awakens” did two years ago. That was the reboot of the series, and opened to almost unprecedented interest and demand.

This number is a terrific performance for a franchise now providing annual entries, with normal attrition usually meaning to lower grosses. “The Empire Strikes Back,” the second of the “Star Wars” series, opened in an era when initial grosses aren’t really comparable. But the film ultimately grossed about three quarters of the first. That makes the higher relative start here even more impressive.

Also of note was the furious noise on Friday from social media and movie site ratings that suggested hardcore fans might have some issues with the film. The sustained grosses, with Saturday and Sunday performances better than initially expected and an “A” Cinemascore (the same as the last two films), suggests naysayers don’t speak for most of the audience. Whether it affects repeat viewing and longer-term play remain to be seen, but it’s an amazing start.

"Star Wars: The Last Jedi"

“Star Wars: The Last Jedi”

Of note: Since the best way to compare grosses is adjusting to current ticket prices, the opening ranks as #4, not second as Disney and most others claim using numbers as though they all mean the same thing. “The Avengers” ($228 million adjusted) and “Jurassic World” ($226 million adjusted) all barely edged out “Jedi.” And that came with prime May and June dates, which gave them both an extra edge.

Ultimately, whether “Jedi” is second or fourth matters little: It is an incredible gross. And unlike those other films, it comes in a year that has otherwise been down. “The Last Jedi” suffers from that malaise not at all.

In a week when the game-changing Disney and 20th Century Fox deal was announced, the two companies combined totaled about $250 million of the $275 million reported gross. That’s a coincidence that would rarely occur, but it does indicate the potential combined strength of the two companies — and a reason for others to have concern. Expect those who might challenge the sale to cite this as an argument against it.

Ferdinand” from Fox Animation took second spot. $13,325,000 is enough to be viable going into the kids and family-rich Christmas period ahead. It is slightly below what their “Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Road Chip” did two years ago versus “The Force Awakens.” That film went on to $84 million domestic, $150 million more worldwide.

With a reported cost of over $100 million, Fox will likely need (as they usually get) disproportionately better results overseas. It could get them; it is Spanish-set, and Fox, like Universal, has shown in their animated franchises the ability to score strong worldwide. An initial good sign was its particularly good, even for animation, 52 percent improvement Saturday over Friday.

MORE TAMALES -- In Disney•Pixar’s “Coco,” Abuelita—Miguel’s loving grandmother—runs the Rivera household like Mamá Imelda did two generations before her. Their philosophy is simple: Work in the family shoemaking business, eat more tamales and, most importantly, “No music!” Featuring the voices of Renée Victor as Abuelita and Anthony Gonzalez as Miguel, Disney•Pixar’s “Coco” opens in U.S. theaters on Nov. 22, 2017. ©2017 Disney•Pixar. All Rights Reserved.

“Coco”

Pixar

Among the studio wide releases, the two expected to continue on at least 2,000 screens came through well enough. “Coco” took a hit from “Ferdinand,” dropping 46 percent. That’s still credible. Last year saw no new animated film to compete with “Moana,” which dropped 31 percent. It took in over $2 million more than “Coco” this year, with the same opening date. But it is a much better hold than the fourth weekend of “The Good Dinosaur” in 2015, which fell 58 percent. It should remain a high-grossing film for the next few weeks.

Wonder Jacob Tremblay

Wonder

Coming through very well is “Wonder” (Lionsgate). Now at $109 million, it dropped only 36 percent for fourth spot. With Lionsgate opening no new film, its current gross and its certain appeal for families over the holidays, they look positioned to add substantially to its total.

“Justice League” dropped 57 percent, and though Warners would like its latest D.C. Comics release to hold on, both its trajectory and their opening of the comedy “Father Figures” this Friday stand in the way. “Daddy’s Home 2” still has some strength, but Paramount also has Alexander Payne’s “Downsizing” to release wide this weak. The rest of the Top 10 will either struggle to survive, fight for justified holds — or, retreat to fight again when the Oscar nominations are announced next month.

 

Opening

1. Star Wars: The Last Jedi (Disney) NEW – Cinemascore: A; Metacritic:86 ; Est. budget: $200 million+

$220,047,000 in 4,232 theaters; PTA (per theater average): $51,996; Cumulative: $220,047,000

2. Ferdinand (20th Century Fox) NEW – Cinemascore: A; Metacritic: 58; Est. budget: $110 million

$13,325,000 in 3,621 theaters; PTA: $3,680; Cumulative: $13,325,000

3. Coco (Disney) Week; Last weekend #1

$10,025,000 (-46%) in 3,155 theaters (-593); PTA: $3,177; Cumulative: $150,811,000

4. Wonder (Lionsgate) Week 4; Last weekend #3

$5,400,000 (-36%) in 3,047 theaters (-472); PTA: $1,772; Cumulative: $109,257,000

5. Justice League (Warner Bros.) Week 5; Last weekend #2

$4,170,000 (-57%) in 2,702 theaters (-806); PTA: $1,543; Cumulative: $219,456,000

6. Daddy’s Home 2 (Paramount) Week 6; Last weekend #

$3,800,000 (-36%) in 2,493 theaters (-770); PTA: $; Cumulative: $

7. Thor: Ragnarok (Disney) Week 7; Last weekend #5

$2,981,000 (-52%) in 1,895 theaters (-1,152); PTA: $1,524; Cumulative: $306,375,000

8. The Disaster Artist (A24) Week 3; Last weekend #4

$2,637,000 (-59%) in 1,010 theaters (+170); PTA: $2,611; Cumulative: $12,932,000

9. Murder on the Orient Express (20th Century Fox) Week 6; Last weekend #7

$2,470,000 (-%) in 1,923 theaters (-1,116); PTA: $1,284; Cumulative: $97,253,000

10. Lady Bird (A24) Week 7; Last weekend #9

$2,108,000 (-39%) in 947 theaters (-610); PTA: $2,226; Cumulative: $25,978,000

 

 

 

 

Box Office: ‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’ Soars to $220 Million Opening Weekend

The Force dominated at the box office as Disney-Lucasfilm’s “Star Wars: The Last Jedi  opened with a stellar $220 million weekend at 4,232 North American sites — the second-highest opening weekend of all time. “Star Wars: The Last Jedi” trails only the $248 million launch of 2015’s “Star Wars: The Force Awakens.” The tentpole opened with […]

The Force dominated at the box office as Disney-Lucasfilm’s “Star Wars: The Last Jedi  opened with a stellar $220 million weekend at 4,232 North American sites — the second-highest opening weekend of all time. “Star Wars: The Last Jedi” trails only the $248 million launch of 2015’s “Star Wars: The Force Awakens.” The tentpole opened with […]

Disney-Fox Films Controlling 92% Of Weekend Box Office Spurred By ‘Last Jedi’

While it will take two years or less until Disney fully controls Fox, here’s a current statistic to give you a taste of their combined box office power during a blockbuster weekend, post merger news. Currently, total domestic ticket sales look to gross $271.5M this weekend, and Disney and Fox films combined are generating 92% of that total or $249.1M.
Even though total weekend ticket sales are -13% from when Star Wars: The Force Awakens was in the marketplace two years…

While it will take two years or less until Disney fully controls Fox, here’s a current statistic to give you a taste of their combined box office power during a blockbuster weekend, post merger news. Currently, total domestic ticket sales look to gross $271.5M this weekend, and Disney and Fox films combined are generating 92% of that total or $249.1M. Even though total weekend ticket sales are -13% from when Star Wars: The Force Awakens was in the marketplace two years…

Box Office: ‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’ Rockets to $215 Million Opening Weekend

Disney-Lucasfilm’s “Star Wars: The Last Jedi” is set to take over the box office in its opening weekend, raking in around $215 million from 4,232 North American sites. Including $45 million from Thursday previews — the second-largest Thursday night preview total ever, below “Star Wars: The Force Awakens’” 2015 total of $57 million — the […]

Disney-Lucasfilm’s “Star Wars: The Last Jedi” is set to take over the box office in its opening weekend, raking in around $215 million from 4,232 North American sites. Including $45 million from Thursday previews — the second-largest Thursday night preview total ever, below “Star Wars: The Force Awakens'” 2015 total of $57 million — the […]

‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’ Speeds Toward $200 Million-Plus Weekend in the U.S.

The box office Force is with Disney-Lucasfilm’s “Star Wars: The Last Jedi,” which is heading for more than $200 million at 4,232 North American sites in its opening weekend, early estimates showed Friday. The tentpole opened with $45 million on Thursday night — the second-largest Thursday night preview gross ever in North America, trailing only […]

The box office Force is with Disney-Lucasfilm’s “Star Wars: The Last Jedi,” which is heading for more than $200 million at 4,232 North American sites in its opening weekend, early estimates showed Friday. The tentpole opened with $45 million on Thursday night — the second-largest Thursday night preview gross ever in North America, trailing only […]

The mediocre Ferdinand mostly fails to bring a beloved kid-lit bestseller to life

The children’s book The Story Of Ferdinand was a commercial success upon publication in 1936, outselling Gone With The Wind to become the No. 1 bestseller in the United States. Written by Munro Leaf and illustrated by Robert Lawson, the book follows a peaceful bull who would rather smell flowers than battle matadors,…

Read more…

The children’s book The Story Of Ferdinand was a commercial success upon publication in 1936, outselling Gone With The Wind to become the No. 1 bestseller in the United States. Written by Munro Leaf and illustrated by Robert Lawson, the book follows a peaceful bull who would rather smell flowers than battle matadors,…

Read more...

CAA Signs ‘Ferdinand’ Scribe Tim Federle

EXCLUSIVE: CAA has signed new client Tim Federle, a co-writer of Blue Sky Studios/20th Century Fox’s animated film Ferdinand, which will bow in theaters this week.
Based on the popular children’s book, The Story of Ferdinand, the pic stars John Cena as Ferdinand, a bull with a big heart who, after being mistaken for a dangerous beast, is captured and torn from his home. Determined to return to his family, he rallies a misfit team on a Spain-set adventure.
Federle is the…

EXCLUSIVE: CAA has signed new client Tim Federle, a co-writer of Blue Sky Studios/20th Century Fox’s animated film Ferdinand, which will bow in theaters this week. Based on the popular children’s book, The Story of Ferdinand, the pic stars John Cena as Ferdinand, a bull with a big heart who, after being mistaken for a dangerous beast, is captured and torn from his home. Determined to return to his family, he rallies a misfit team on a Spain-set adventure. Federle is the…

From ‘Lego Batman’ to ‘Ferdinand’ to ‘Boss Baby,’ These Actors Inspire the Animators

From “the Lego Batman Movie” and “The Boss Baby” to “Ferdinand,” theaters are full of animated films showcasing premiere acting talent. Will Arnett, Rosario Dawson, John Cena and Miranda Cosgrove are just a few of the actors who’ve entered the booth this year to give a vocal performance that will inspire animators as they create […]

From “the Lego Batman Movie” and “The Boss Baby” to “Ferdinand,” theaters are full of animated films showcasing premiere acting talent. Will Arnett, Rosario Dawson, John Cena and Miranda Cosgrove are just a few of the actors who’ve entered the booth this year to give a vocal performance that will inspire animators as they create […]

Can ‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’ Top ‘The Force Awakens’ in Box Office Debut?

After two weeks of no wide releases, the box office is ready for the big one: “Star Wars: The Last Jedi,” Rian Johnson’s sequel to J.J. Abrams “The Force Awakens,” which made a then-record $529 million worldwide in its opening weekend and grossed over $2 billion by the end of its theatrical run.

“The Last Jedi” is expected to provide a similar final jolt to 2017 box office totals, though it’s unlikely to match the $248 million domestic opening “The Force Awakens” made off the hype of being the first new “Star Wars” film in a decade. Independent trackers currently have the film making an opening weekend of at least $190 million, which would put it on the same level as the $191 million made by “Avengers: Age of Ultron” in 2015.

Also Read: ‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’ Reviews: ‘Triumph,’ ‘Explosive Sugar Rush of Spectacle,’ But Has Flaws

But analysts who spoke with TheWrap say that it’s very likely that “Last Jedi” will become the fourth film to gross a $200 million-plus opening, joining “Force Awakens,” “The Avengers,” and “Jurassic World.” The film has received glowing praise from critics this week, with the Rotten Tomatoes score currently sitting at 94 percent and expected to finish above 90 percent after the flurry of reviews are registered. There’s also the additional draw of the late Carrie Fisher, whose fans will flock to see her last performance as the Alderaan Princess turned Resistance General Leia Organa.

Today, the total domestic box office revenue for 2017 will hit the $10 billion mark, putting it just under 4 percent down from this point last year according to comScore. “Star Wars” will provide a final big jolt to domestic and worldwide totals, with a worldwide opening weekend of $400-425 million expected. On the domestic side, “The Force Awakens” made $652 million by the end of 2015, and analyst estimates say “Last Jedi” will make at least half a billion by New Year’s Eve.

Estimates from comScore based on December performance from 2015 and 2016 have the final total for 2017 sitting somewhere between $10.9 and $11.1 billion, for a year-to-year drop-off of 2-3.5 percent. That would be a smaller drop-off than 2011, when domestic totals fell 3.7 percent, and 2014, when totals fell 5.2 percent.

Also Read: ‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’ Movie Review: The Thrills Are Strong with This One

“Star Wars: The Last Jedi” follows Rey (Daisy Ridley) as she tries to convince Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill) to help the struggling Resistance survive against The First Order, led by Supreme Leader Snoke and Kylo Ren (Andy Serkis and Adam Driver). Meanwhile, Finn and Poe Dameron (John Boyega and Oscar Isaac) hatch a desperate plan with the help of a maintenance worker named Rose (Kelly Marie Tran) to save the remnants of the Resistance as the First Order plan a final assault to wipe them out. Rian Johnson wrote and directed the film.

Also getting a release this weekend is Blue Sky’s “Ferdinand,” which earned two Golden Globe nominations this week for Best Animated Feature and Best Original Song. Based on the classic children’s book “The Story of Ferdinand” by Munro Leaf and Robert Lawson, the film stars John Cena as the titular Spanish Fighting Bull who yearns to live a pacifist life but is forced into bullfighting in order to earn his freedom. As “Star Wars” will be taking up much of the air this weekend, expectations are low for “Ferdinand” with projections in the high teens.

The film is directed by Carlos Saldanha (“Ice Age”) and also stars Kate McKinnon, David Tennant, Bobby Cannavale, Peyton Manning, Gina Rodriguez, Anthony Anderson, and Daveed Diggs. Robert L. Baird, Tim Federle and Brad Copeland wrote the script.

Related stories from TheWrap:

‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’ Reviews: ‘Triumph,’ ‘Explosive Sugar Rush of Spectacle,’ But Has Flaws

‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’ Movie Review: The Thrills Are Strong with This One

What the Hell Is It About ‘Star Wars’ That Makes Us All Crazy? (Commentary)

After two weeks of no wide releases, the box office is ready for the big one: “Star Wars: The Last Jedi,” Rian Johnson’s sequel to J.J. Abrams “The Force Awakens,” which made a then-record $529 million worldwide in its opening weekend and grossed over $2 billion by the end of its theatrical run.

“The Last Jedi” is expected to provide a similar final jolt to 2017 box office totals, though it’s unlikely to match the $248 million domestic opening “The Force Awakens” made off the hype of being the first new “Star Wars” film in a decade. Independent trackers currently have the film making an opening weekend of at least $190 million, which would put it on the same level as the $191 million made by “Avengers: Age of Ultron” in 2015.

But analysts who spoke with TheWrap say that it’s very likely that “Last Jedi” will become the fourth film to gross a $200 million-plus opening, joining “Force Awakens,” “The Avengers,” and “Jurassic World.” The film has received glowing praise from critics this week, with the Rotten Tomatoes score currently sitting at 94 percent and expected to finish above 90 percent after the flurry of reviews are registered. There’s also the additional draw of the late Carrie Fisher, whose fans will flock to see her last performance as the Alderaan Princess turned Resistance General Leia Organa.

Today, the total domestic box office revenue for 2017 will hit the $10 billion mark, putting it just under 4 percent down from this point last year according to comScore. “Star Wars” will provide a final big jolt to domestic and worldwide totals, with a worldwide opening weekend of $400-425 million expected. On the domestic side, “The Force Awakens” made $652 million by the end of 2015, and analyst estimates say “Last Jedi” will make at least half a billion by New Year’s Eve.

Estimates from comScore based on December performance from 2015 and 2016 have the final total for 2017 sitting somewhere between $10.9 and $11.1 billion, for a year-to-year drop-off of 2-3.5 percent. That would be a smaller drop-off than 2011, when domestic totals fell 3.7 percent, and 2014, when totals fell 5.2 percent.

“Star Wars: The Last Jedi” follows Rey (Daisy Ridley) as she tries to convince Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill) to help the struggling Resistance survive against The First Order, led by Supreme Leader Snoke and Kylo Ren (Andy Serkis and Adam Driver). Meanwhile, Finn and Poe Dameron (John Boyega and Oscar Isaac) hatch a desperate plan with the help of a maintenance worker named Rose (Kelly Marie Tran) to save the remnants of the Resistance as the First Order plan a final assault to wipe them out. Rian Johnson wrote and directed the film.

Also getting a release this weekend is Blue Sky’s “Ferdinand,” which earned two Golden Globe nominations this week for Best Animated Feature and Best Original Song. Based on the classic children’s book “The Story of Ferdinand” by Munro Leaf and Robert Lawson, the film stars John Cena as the titular Spanish Fighting Bull who yearns to live a pacifist life but is forced into bullfighting in order to earn his freedom. As “Star Wars” will be taking up much of the air this weekend, expectations are low for “Ferdinand” with projections in the high teens.

The film is directed by Carlos Saldanha (“Ice Age”) and also stars Kate McKinnon, David Tennant, Bobby Cannavale, Peyton Manning, Gina Rodriguez, Anthony Anderson, and Daveed Diggs. Robert L. Baird, Tim Federle and Brad Copeland wrote the script.

Related stories from TheWrap:

'Star Wars: The Last Jedi' Reviews: 'Triumph,' 'Explosive Sugar Rush of Spectacle,' But Has Flaws

'Star Wars: The Last Jedi' Movie Review: The Thrills Are Strong with This One

What the Hell Is It About 'Star Wars' That Makes Us All Crazy? (Commentary)

The Global Box Office Awakens: ‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’ Could Power To $440M Opening

For a third year in a row, Disney is rejuvenating the year-end holiday box office with a Star Wars movie. This time it’s Star Wars: The Last Jedi, which is poised to clear between $424 million-$440 million worldwide by the end of its first frame. In the U.S. and Canada, industry projections have had The Last Jedi around $200M for quite some time, and it will be playing in more theaters than last year’s 4,157 for the franchise’s first spinoff Rogue One

After a sluggish…

For a third year in a row, Disney is rejuvenating the year-end holiday box office with a Star Wars movie. This time it’s Star Wars: The Last Jedi, which is poised to clear between $424 million-$440 million worldwide by the end of its first frame. In the U.S. and Canada, industry projections have had The Last Jedi around $200M for quite some time, and it will be playing in more theaters than last year’s 4,157 for the franchise’s first spinoff Rogue One After a sluggish…

Listen to the Five Original Songs Nominated for a Golden Globe

Nominations for the 75th annual Golden Globes were announced Monday morning, and along with nods for the year’s best in film was recognition for their musical accompaniments. Among those acknowledged in the original song category were Nick Jonas (“Ferdinand”), Mariah Carey (“The Star”), and Mary J. Blige (“Mudbound”). Songwriting duo Benj Pasek and Justin Paul, […]

Nominations for the 75th annual Golden Globes were announced Monday morning, and along with nods for the year’s best in film was recognition for their musical accompaniments. Among those acknowledged in the original song category were Nick Jonas (“Ferdinand”), Mariah Carey (“The Star”), and Mary J. Blige (“Mudbound”). Songwriting duo Benj Pasek and Justin Paul, […]

‘Ferdinand’ Director on Why John Cena Was Perfect for Title Role

It was a beautiful, warm morning Sunday, a perfect day to stop and smell the flowers at the Zanuck Theater on the 20th Century Fox lot during the premiere of Fox and Blue Sky’s “Ferdinand,” the tale of a pacifist bull who’d rather smell flowers than fight. The film was a longtime passion project for […]

It was a beautiful, warm morning Sunday, a perfect day to stop and smell the flowers at the Zanuck Theater on the 20th Century Fox lot during the premiere of Fox and Blue Sky’s “Ferdinand,” the tale of a pacifist bull who’d rather smell flowers than fight. The film was a longtime passion project for […]

Carlos Saldanha On Expanding The World Of ‘Ferdinand’

The director of a number of films in the Ice Age and Rio series—the latter taking place in his native Brazil—Carlos Saldanha knows his animals. With his latest, Ferdinand, Saldanha gives his take on the classic story of a pacifist fighting bull, first told in Munro Leaf’s classic 1936 children’s book, and later, in an Oscar-winning Disney short. A 2004 Oscar nominee for his Gone Nutty animated short, Saldanha would take Blue Sky Studios to its fourth Oscar nomination if…

The director of a number of films in the Ice Age and Rio series—the latter taking place in his native Brazil—Carlos Saldanha knows his animals. With his latest, Ferdinand, Saldanha gives his take on the classic story of a pacifist fighting bull, first told in Munro Leaf’s classic 1936 children’s book, and later, in an Oscar-winning Disney short. A 2004 Oscar nominee for his Gone Nutty animated short, Saldanha would take Blue Sky Studios to its fourth Oscar nomination if…