Despite a bunch of new releases with all kinds of wide and varied appeal, this weekend's box office top 10 looks suspiciously like last week's. Apparently, none of the newcomers could match Lee Daniels' 'The Butler,' which effortlessly claimed the top spot once more.
'The Expendables 3' began filming in Bulgaria today, and Lionsgate marked the occasion by sending out a press release that not only confirms most of the crazy ensemble cast but teases a plot that sounds just nutty enough to earn back our attention after the mediocre second film. If you aren't on board the 'Expendables' bandwagon (and we totally wouldn't blame you if you're not), just know that Mel Gibson is playing a character named Conrad Stonebanks. Conrad Stonebanks.
There's something thematically appropriate about a movie telling the story of a butler who quietly influenced the United States taking the number one spot at the box office over its flashy, bigger rivals. Lee Daniels' 'The Butler' took multiplexes by storm this weekend, taking down last week's competition as well as a handful of seemingly strong newcomers.
Anyone who has been following superhero movies knows that Robert Downey, Jr. has signed on to return as Tony Stark in 'The Avengers 2' and 'The Avengers 3,' but his future as Iron Man beyond that is up in the air. It's unlikely that Downey (who will be 53 when the third 'Avengers' film hits) will occupy the role forever, and Marvel hasn't been shy about recasting the character should the need ever arise.
And that brings us to the weird news bit of the day: Mark Wahlberg wants to takeover the part.
In a weekend with four new major releases but no definitive frontrunners, the Matt Damon sci-fi action flick 'Elysium' snagged the top spot over some seemingly powerful competition. Director Neill Blomkamp's film continues this summer's trend of R-rated fare opening big ('The Purge,' 'The Conjuring,' '2 Guns') and proves that there's plenty of box office success to be had in the typically slow final weeks of the season.
Dennis Farina, the hugely recognizable veteran of film and television, has passed away at the age of 69. Over the course of his 32-year career, Farina specialized in playing cops and other authority figures, utilizing his background in law enforcement to springboard into acting.
There was a lot of buzz surrounding James Wan's 'The Conjuring' going into this weekend. "Scariest movie of the year." "Best horror movie in a long time." And so on. But it paid off. 'The Conjuring' not only won the box office, it won the box office in a way that R-rated horror movies often don't. Between this and 'The Purge,' R-rated horror is officially back in a big way.
The 2013 Emmy nominations have arrived and at first glance, it's more of the same. Of course 'Breaking Bad,' 'Mad Men,' 'Homeland' and 'Downton Abbey' seem to be dominating the drama category! Of course '30 Rock,' 'Louie' and 'Veep' are contenders in the comedy category! However, the big surprise with this year's nominations is that one of the most nominated shows wasn't even on TV at all.
What's more powerful than a bunch of giant robots and giant monsters? What's more powerful than Adam Sandler and all his buddies? This weekend gave us a definitive answer: a lovable supervillain voiced by Steve Carell. 'Despicable Me 2' triumphed at the box office for the second week in a row, beating out newcomers like 'Grown Ups 2' and 'Pacific Rim' and making it look easy.
At the end of the day, 'The Wolverine' has one job and one job only: to be better than 'X-Men Origins: Wolverine.' Thankfully, that shouldn't be too difficult of a task. In fact, the latest clip from director James Mangold's film is more impressive than anything seen in Wolverine's previous solo adventure, even if it all feels a little familiar.
Which would you expect to win the Fourth of July weekend: the Disney-produced, Johnny Depp-starring revival of an iconic American hero or the sequel to a French-made, Steve Carell-starring animated movie about a lovable supervillain? Well, it looks like American audiences simply aren't interested in westerns, even the uber-expensive ones starring Captain Jack Sparrow with a bird on his head. 'Despicable Me 2' destroyed 'The Lone Ranger' over the holiday weekend. Like, totally wrecked it. Mercilessly.
What happens when two new releases that look like sure-things smash into the unstoppable wall that is a Pixar movie? Well, you get one second place hit and one severe disappointment. 'The Heat' still looks good next to the continued success of 'Monsters University,' but it made 'White House Down' stumbling at the starting line look all the more horrible.
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