Like cockroaches lurking in the darkness waiting for their chance to attack the fruits of someone else's labor, writer/directors Jason Friedberg and Aaron Seltzer ('Date Movie,' 'Epic Movie,' 'Disaster Movie,' et al.) sit quietly, antennae twitching, primed for their attack. Their targets this time around: 'The Hunger Games' and 'The Avengers.'
The Hunger Games
We're only a couple months away from the shooting of 'Catching Fire,' Lionsgate's hot in pre-production follow-up to this spring's smash hit 'The Hunger Games' and it looks the film needs a new writer. Simon Beaufoy has been the credited writer for a while, and we know that Francis Lawrence is attached to direct, but it looks like they're bringing in 'Little Miss Sunshine' scribe Michael Arndt to polish the script.
Normally, the Weekend Box Office Report tends to shy away from covering the international box office. However, we're making an exception this week, mainly because the domestic box office was hopelessly anemic and 'The Avengers' opened everywhere not called the United States and took in an absolutely absurd amount of cash. Between 39 territories, Marvel's hotly anticipated Superhero Team-Up Extravaganza earned an astonishing $178.4 million, shattering opening records across the globe.
After a month of domination, 'The Hunger Games' has finally been displaced from the number one position on the box office top ten. Considering its theme of the little guy taking on the establishment and emerging victorious despite the odds, it's appropriate that it wasn't a major Hollywood blockbuster that snatched that spot. Show us someone who predicted that 'Think Like a Man' would win the weekend and we'll show you a certified box office predicting master. Or a liar. One of the two.
This week we've got the continuation of the Lionsgate 'Catching Fire' director search saga -- and spoiler alert, it doesn't have a happy ending. Disney decides that Hasbro shouldn't have all the fun adapting games, so they're adapting another ride. And Shia LaBeouf -- always reliable for a big dose of, "Um, what?" -- has decided he's a comic artist. We don't think he knows what that means.
‘The Avengers’ took over Hollywood last week, hosting its world premiere at the El Capitan Theatre in Los Angeles, conducting hoards of interviews with the world’s top journalists, and bringing Joss Whedon’s film to 10 markets that proved themselves as fan-friendly through a Facebook campaign. According to tracking results, the ‘Avengers’ initiative is working.
Despite a handful of brand new wide releases, 'The Hunger Games' continued to thoroughly squash its competition without anything remotely resembling mercy, taking the top spot at the box office for the fourth week in a row. With a weekend gross of $21.5 million, the violent, dystopic science fiction flick (but you know, for kids) continued its march to the coveted $400 million mark with no signs of stopping, slowing or giving anything else in the multiplex a break.
In this week's dose of ridiculous we've got some news from those jokers at Lionsgate and promises of progress on long-gestating film projects. Batman tours America in the worst thing to happen to the caped crusader since Joel Schumacher, and 'The Office' just won't die already.
Lionsgate seems to have gotten a bit full of themselves after tapping into some of that tween gold with 'The Hunger Games.' With the recent departure of director Gary Ross from the franchise, Lionsgate is scrambling to find someone to replace him that can please both the fans and series author Suzanne Collins.