Business

You know all of those gift cards that family members got you at Christmas because they knew you loved movies but didn’t quite know what that meant or know you well enough to get you something more personal? The ones they snagged from Blockbuster are now worth 0% of their original value. Or they will be starting Wednesday. And have been for a month apparently. According to the Sun Sentinel (via Hi-Def Digest), the bankruptcy that has rocked Blockbuster down to the core has now taken the gift cards as a victim, which is fairly unsurprising. Businesses use gift cards to inflate revenue anyway (since a healthy percentage go unused or not used to the full potential), and with the financial straits the company finds itself in, gift cards were an expected casualty. So, if you have a blockbuster gift card, use it today or tomorrow or forever hold a worthless piece of plastic. If you see blockbuster gift cards for sale in the future, don’t buy them. If you have movie-loving friends who might have them, spread the word sorry about your bad luck. Correction: We originally got the date wrong, so it turns out that the gift cards are already useless. Our deepest, sincerest apologies to anyone who even still has a blockbuster to shop at.

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The Reject Report

Just as expected, DreamWorks Animation proved once again they are a force to be reckoned with in the world of animated feature films. Their latest outing, Megamind, led the charge this weekend, the largest opening weekend to the Fall movie season in box office history. When compared to other films in the DreamWorks Animation camp, Megamind topped the openings of such massive successes as the first Shrek, Madagascar, and How to Train Your Dragon. When also comparing these opening numbers, it seems a fairly safe bet that Megamind will both end up topping out around $200 million domestic and garner a sequel in the coming years.

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The Reject Report

Halloween has past. October is no more. We have now entered the cool, gray month of November, and with it comes the Fall holiday movie season. They’re kicking it off early this year, right here at week number one with two big releases. Both of them, Megamind and Due Date, will surely come out of the gate full force. Even Tyler Perry’s new film will add to the collective change being pulled in this weekend. The theaters are going to be jammed packed this weekend, and it probably won’t matter who comes out on top. Everyone’s sure to be a winner.

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The Reject Report

It wasn’t exactly a return to the form of its youth, but the Saw franchise was able to come back to the top of the box office this weekend. The third lowest opening in the series’ history (ahead of the first film’s $18.2-million opening and last year’s $14.1-million opening for Saw VI), Saw 3D was able to pull in its reported $20-million budget and then some. On top of the $22.5 million it made over the weekend, it was able to pull in an addition $1.5 million in late night ticket sales from Thursday. The idea of Saw 3D being the finale of the franchise might be flying out the window quicker than a projectile buzzsaw, and Lionsgate will surely be analyzing in the coming days and weeks whether they want to jump back in for Halloween 2011.

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The Reject Report

As Admiral Ackbar so phlegmingly exclaimed, “It’s a trap!” You sit down in your seat at the movie theater to see the latest (last?) Saw film, you put on your 3D glasses, this triggers a wire to pull which drops a marble down a shoot which knocks over a pin which falls onto a switch which turns some gears which opens a doorway which allows a bowling ball to roll out which bumps into and starts a lawn mower which blows up and pops a balloon which causes a chicken to lay an egg which turns some more gears which opens Mikey’s front gate which turns some levers which opens a trap door which drops millions upon millions of dollars into Lionsgate’s pockets. That’s how that works. At least, I think it’s how it works. Maybe I shouldn’t be covering box office reports.

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The Reject Report

Holy bungee jumping outhouse, Batman. $50 million can buy a lot of stitches for the painful stunts and soap for the gross ones. That’s how much money Jackass 3-D made this weekend, a new record for any October opening. We knew it was going to be big, and there was all likelihood it would end up coming out on top this weekend. However, now, in 2010, a decade after the original show premiered on MTV, the Jackass boys are riding stronger than ever. This could say so much about our nation. Do we like watching people humiliate, hurt, and horrify themselves for 90 minutes? Or is Jackass 3-D a welcomed release, the ultimate form of escapism that only comes our way every four years? This raises another question. Would the Jackass films be this successful if they were to come fast and furious like the Saw or Twilight series? Does that four-year gap between Jackass films help build the excitement for the next all the more, or does the gap stifle the sating of a public that would feast on it 24/7 if offered to them? The underlying, real-world implications and what this says about our culture (along with how this makes other countries view us) aren’t my forte. I’ll leave that to Landon. I’m just here to talk numbers, thank you.

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The Reject Report

Now I lay me down to sleep, yadda yadda yadda, Wes Craven’s still making movies. His latest hits this weekend, it’s in RealD, so you know it’s good, and it’s headed up against two films that probably have 100% less dismemberment and graphic violence against teens. Those movies, Life As We Know It and Secretariat (okay, there could be a subplot about that horse trampling some teens, and that would win it a few more fans), will more than likely favor better than My Soul to Take, but the real question is if any of them have the strength to take Fincher’s The Social Network off its friend-requesting mountaintop.

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The Reject Report

Okay, that’s just silly. If that headline were true, The Social Network would have pulled in something like $3 billion this weekend, and not even James Cameron could pull off those kinds of numbers. The way it stands, more like 4 million friends went to see David Fincher’s latest film, but that’s not a number to scoff at. It’s not groundbreaking by any stretch. It’s not even Fincher’s best opening to date. That remains the $30 million Panic Room was able to pull in its opening weekend. Nonetheless, The Social Network drew solid numbers, and the film is going to look like anything but a bomb once the awards considerations start rolling in.

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The Reject Report

While the Fantastic Fest festivities continue in Austin, the real world, the one not waiting on the edge of its collective seat to see Tim League get punched in the face by Michelle Rodriguez, carries on. With it, the Hollywood box office and all the money it made this weekend. It wasn’t as profitable a weekend as was anticipated, but something had to come out on top. This weekend, Michael Douglas, Oliver Stone, and The Beouf were able to soar higher than those 3-D owls. While it wasn’t able to pull in $20+ million this weekend, Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps was able to give Oliver Stone his biggest opening to date. It’s also the second highest opening for a film featuring Michael Douglas and the highest opener he’s had in the lead. It didn’t live up to potential, but it’s hard to throw the “bomb” label at Wall Street. $19 million is a respectable opening even if Shia LaBeouf has had better days.

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The Reject Report

That Ben Affleck kid’s got a future here. We pretty well knew his second endeavor into the world of directing (the first film he has directed himself in) would come out in the #1 spot, but The Town pulled in better numbers than anticipated. In fact, the film made more this opening weekend than Affleck’s directorial debut, Gone Baby Gone, made in its entire run. The Town also had the biggest opening for an Affleck starring role since 2003’s Daredevil, and that film definitely had more powering its box office take than just its star power. With as well as The Town did this weekend, and with the amount it is sure to make in the coming weeks based off the positive buzz, it will be interesting to see how quickly Affleck jumps back into the director’s chair.

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The Reject Report

The Machete Spanish title worked so well a few weeks back, we figured we should probably stick to a dialect a little closer to home this time around. Therefore, in honuh of The Town, as well the othuh fine films in contention this box office weekend, we’re shipping up to Boston, Dropkick Murphys style. It should be a fairly close race between the newbies. M Night is producing a horror film about some people in an elevator. Lionsgate’s got a new animated flick to drop bomb on us. Easy A is a nice throwback to John Hughes’s comedies. Some of them will hit the Green Monster (this week, that title denotes cold, hard cash) solid, and some will slip into the Charles River without so much as a whimper. Let’s see how it shapes up. It’s about to get wicked retahded in he-uh.

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So some guy in Austin just became CEO of his company again. Why should you care?

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Paramount especially might be moving toward consolidation in the coming year according to at least one financial analyst.

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Canada’s last domestically owned music chain has filed for bankruptcy. Damn you iTunes!

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That’s right, you heard it here… Last. It is official, The Writers Guild of America announced late last week that its 12,000 members will go on strike Monday at 12:01am.

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published: 10.30.2014
B-
published: 10.29.2014
D+
published: 10.27.2014
C-
published: 10.24.2014
C-


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