15 Answers to the Questions Keeping Hollywood Awake in 2012

9. Can Relativity survive?

Answer: Yes.

Ryan Kavanaugh and company have made some bold choices for their production company, and some have cost them stability. However, as HitFix points to the potential box office flops of Act of Valor and Mirror, Mirror, it’s just as easy to call them potential moneymakers based on the reverence and curiosity for Navy SEALs and for the mash-up of Julia Roberts, Tarsem Singh and a fairytale everyone can recognize. Plus, they hardly have nothing in the pipeline. Granted, Relativity spread itself thin in 2011, it’s time for a rebuilding year, a new focus, and fewer films like Tower Heist.

10. Can 20th Century Fox open The Three Stooges?

Answer: No.

The Farrelly Brothers may see The Three Stooges as a passion project, but it’s got C-list talent, and the trailer felt like watching your dentist do stand-up comedy at the church talent show. Unless they can find one funny scene from the shoot and milk it into an entire new trailer, this thing is sunk.

11. Which 3D re-release is the bigger hit: Star Wars: Episode 1 or Titanic?

Answer: Titanic

Is this even a question? The crappiest Star Wars movie up against the second highest grossing movie of all time?

12. Will The Dark Knight Rises outgross The Dark Knight?

Answer: Yes.

Despite the usual questions surrounding a movie that’s this greatly hyped, Christopher Nolan has yet to disappoint. It’s also the last chapter in a series that’s been incredibly loved, and like Harry Potter before it, it stands to break its own records. At any rate, whether it breaks $1b or not hardly matters as it will undoubtedly make a metric ton of cash for Warners.

13. Is Hunger Games the next blockbuster franchise?

The Hunger Games movie

Answer: Yes, but the block won’t be as big as Batman, and that’s okay.

This is the most difficult question to answer because everything that goes into calculating its possible success is speculation. The only thing that seems most likely is that it won’t nearly be as big as Harry Potter but it might be as big as Twilight. It has a shot of catching fire with general audiences by delivering a thoughtful story and excellent action, but judging solely from book sales places its success more in the Dragon Tattoo range. Unlike the foreign smash that pulled in over $100m, this has the Hollywood benefit of being an American export, which means if the movie is genuinely good (and audiences embrace it), it could easily see numbers north of $400m. If it’s a mess or is too fan-favoring, it will stall out far below it.

14. Will Akira ever move forward?

Answer: Not unless Christopher Nolan wants to direct it.

Come to think of it, that’s not a bad idea except it would prevent him from making his Howard Hughes biopic. In reality, this movie is just too risky. Studios are starting to see the formula of name recognition falter, remakes aren’t working and putting the money necessary to bring this kind of scope to life for a cult anime project would be harder than coming down from a government mandated nuclear test that turns you into a giant monster.

15. Can Melissa McCarthy become a bona fide movie star?

Answer: Maybe, but not this year, and movie stars don’t exist anymore.

Melissa McCarthy should have gotten this kind of attention when she tripled co-starred in The Nines, but fortunately her time in the spotlight has come. 2011 was good to her, she was good to audiences, and she’s lined up projects like Judd Apatow’s This is 40, she’ll co-star with Jason Bateman in ID Theft soon, and she’s got the starring role in Tammy – a movie about a woman who loses her job and her man before hitting the road with a grandmother who swears like a CGI teddy bear. She has some solid stuff lined up, and her talent will continue to find her work, but “movie star”? What’s the criteria here? Is Jason Bateman even a “movie star”? More likely, McCarthy will smartly build a steady career that showcases a range that people don’t even seem to know about yet. Isn’t that good enough?

The Real Question: Will Studios Focus More on Story and Less on Flashy Gimmicks and Inflated Prices?

Answer: Outlook Hazy

What movie questions keep you up at night?

A veteran of writing about movies for nearly a decade, Scott Beggs has been the Managing Editor of Film School Rejects since 2009. Despite speculation, he is not actually Walter Mathau's grandson. See? He can't even spell his name right.

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