Well, welcome to what is shaping up to be a scary weekend here at the Reject Report, what with ghosts, hunchbacked mad-scientist’s assistants and everyone else.
I just have to say in advance, though: I’m not into it this week. I really am not. I look at the movies that are rolling out, and I’m sure some of them are good, but that isn’t the issue here. The issue for me is that I am still kind of zonked out after a busy summer at the movies and as far as I can tell, so are you. I believe most of us are more worried about other things at the moment, like the new fall TV season. Or politics. Or how about this: the stock market!!! Who freaking cares about movies when bankers are jumping out of windows?!
As a result this weekend’s grosses look to be very modest, though admittedly not as modest as two weeks ago when the box office REALLY went in the tank. Talk about theaters looking like ghost towns (pardon the pun)! Let’s face facts: more people are worried about where their money is these days as opposed to whether to spend it on the latest movies.
Anyway there are four new flicks going wide and I’ll go into each of them right now, starting with Ghost Town. Here, Ricky Gervais of The Office fame plays dentist Bertram Pincus, who goes in for a colonoscopy and ends up dying for seven minutes. during the procedure. Afterwards he discovers he can see ghosts, and these ghosts look to this dentist as a sort of intermediary, interacting with the living. One of the ghosts, Frank Herlihy (Greg Kinnear), wants him to break up the marriage of his widow Gwen (Téa Leoni) to some another guy.
This flick has been on the festival circuit and played at Toronto, and rolls out in about 1,400 theaters. Which does not sound like blockbuster territory if you ask me. Still, a lot of movies that roll out on 1,500 screens do only $3 to $4 million in business, and I think this will do better than that. This sounds like a flick that should get something in the $7.5 million range.
Next up is a thriller from the folks at Screen Gems called Lakeview Terrace starring Samuel L. Jackson. Samuel L. Jackson!!! Jackson plays this creepy, overbearing cop neighbor who likes to butt into the lives of his new neighbors and make their lives miserable. But what can you do if you can’t call the police? This guy IS the freaking police!!! Patrick Wilson and Kerry Washington also star.
Well, the fact that Samuel L. Jackson is in this flick should be enough to get it to $13 million, but I haven’t heard good things about the flick, to be honest. Lots of negativity out there about this one. This WILL make some money, though.
Next up for animation fans is Igor, in which your traditional horror-cliche hunchback evil scientist’s assistant who aspires to become a Mad Scientist himself! It features voices from the likes of John Cusack, John Cleese, Eddie Izzard, Steve Buscemi, Jay Leno, Molly Shannon and everyone else.
This is looking like something that will be interesting for a lot of people, but not likely to grab a mass audience. I say $8 million for this one.
Finally, from Lionsgate we have My Best Friend’s Girl, which has the widest release of any of the new movies this week into 2,600 theaters. It stars Dane Cook, Jason Biggs and Kate Hudson.
Whoa — back up a second: Dane Cook is in this movie? Then this DEFINITELY is a movie in trouble, because Dane Cook is notorious for appearing in pieces of junk (Employee of the Month, Good Luck Chuck, etcetera). So a lot of people are going to avoid this movie like the plague just because of his involvement.
It’s too bad, because when he’s not making movies he’s funny as heck — like when he was ranting and raving on his MySpace page about how bad the movie poster was for this flick. Cook was ripping the photoshopping and said the guy who did the poster for My Best Friend’s Girl did so “at taser point”! Funny stuff. Maybe that rant will sell a few tickets.
Anyway, Cook plays a guy hired by Biggs to go out on a date-from-hell with this hottie Kate Hudson, in order to prove what a great guy Biggs is so they can get back together. That’s assuming Cook doesn’t fall in love with this woman first.
Anyway, the fact that box office poison Dane Cook is in this movie raises red flags for me. If this flick had, say, Matthew McConaughey in it instead of Cook, maybe it would have more of a chance. I think it’s only going to make $12 million, though.
You know what that means– it means Samuel L. Jackson wins the weekend!
Here’s my rundown of how I see the weekend unfolding:
Anyway, we know who to blame if My Best Friend’s Girl flops: the clod who did the movie poster! There you have it, my predictions for what is sure to be yet another slow weekend at the theaters. See you at weekend’s end when we count up the loot here at the Reject Report — which shouldn’t take too long, since there’s not going to be much money made at theaters this weekend.