11
Sep
2013

Pirates of the Caribbean logo

Pirates of the Caribbean 5 has vacated its slot on July 10, 2015 to an unannounced date in 2016.

According to a report from Deadline, Disney has decided to move the fifth Pirates of the Caribbean movie to 2016 due to budget and script needs. To meet its July 10, 2015 date the film would have needed to start filming in Feb. 2014, with pre-production beginning now. The problem is that Jeff Nathanson, the writer of the film, is only up to the advanced outline stage and the budget and other work would have needed to be based on that, and it can change drastically along the way. Additionally, Joachim Roenning and Espen Sandberg have been hired to direct, but they have never done a big budget film, so it would have been difficult for all parties involved to pull this off in time properly.

There is also a chance the various arms of Disney may have also finally realized they had Avengers: Age of Ultron, Pixar’s Inside Out, Star Wars Episode VII and Ant-Man all scheduled for 2015. That’s a lot of money heading out the door in the hopes of even more flowing back in. Shifting this film back one year was probably the best course of action Disney could have taken.

Sean Bailey, Disney production president, said of the decision, “Like audiences around the globe, we have high expectations for Jack Sparrow’s next adventure and we want to have all the right elements in place.” He went on to add, “We’re not there yet and we want to make sure this project is everything these wonderful characters and of course the fans deserve.”

[ Source Deadline ]

8
Aug
2013

Pirates of the Caribbean logo

If things look a little less grand in Pirates of the Caribbean 5 when you see it, you can thank The Lone Ranger.

Disney, to be blunt, is currently running scared. While its Marvel movies are doing well, its own films are having a very painful run of it. Last year John Carter tanked, and tanked hard, bringing in $282.7 million globally off of a $250 million dollar budget. While to the untrained eye that may look like a profit, in Hollywood that is a very large loss. And now the golden team of Jerry Bruckheimer, Johnny Depp and director Gore Verbinski – the team that brought you the first three Pirates of the Caribbean films – have delivered a massive bomb to the doorsteps of the House of Mouse in the form of The Lone Ranger.

A little over a month since its release, The Lone Ranger has brought in $175.6 million globally off of a reported $215 million dollar budget. In the U.S. the film doesn’t even look like it will break $100 million. In short, this is a train wreck for Disney, and someone will have to pay. That’s what happens when a studio says it will have to take between a $150 to $190 million dollar loss on a film.

According to The Wrap, Disney is slashing the budget for Pirates of the Caribbean from $250 million to $200 million and looking at taking away Bruckheimer’s “final cut” rights. This means that Bruckheimer is being punished, and he’s being punished hard. Disney has clearly lost its faith in him, and after the critical hit Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides took, and the financial disaster that is The Lone Ranger, you can’t really blame them.

Will it makes Pirates of the Caribbean 5 a stronger or better film? I guess we’ll find out when it hits theaters on July 10, 2015.

Depp, meanwhile, still has all of his projects under development with Disney, so it appears you can choose to wear a dead bird on your head and still go about doing whatever you like.

[ Source The Wrap ]

28
Jul
2013

Avengers Age of Ultron logo

2015 is setting itself up to be potentially the craziest year ever in films.

As movie studios move more and more towards building franchises, we’re growing a more crowded marketplace for films. It appears that 2015 may be a taste of what is to come as new franchises attempt to launch alongside other already established series and it is creating a traffic jam of content headed our way. Check out this table to see what I mean.

Film
Release Date
Director
Fantastic FourMarch 6, 2015Josh Trank
CinderellaMarch 13, 2015Kenneth Branagh
Avengers: Age Of UltronMay 1, 2015Joss Whedon
Assassin's CreedJune 19, 2015TBA
Inside OutJune 19, 2015Pete Docter
TerminatorJune 26, 2015TBA
Pirates of the Caribbean 5July 10, 2015Joachim Rønning, Espen Sandberg
Miss Peregrine's Home For Peculiar ChildrenJuly 31, 2015Tim Burton
Ant-ManNov. 6, 2015Edgar Wright
Bond 24Nov. 6, 2015Sam Mendes
The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 2Nov. 20, 2015Francis Lawrence
Finding DoryNov. 25, 2015Andrew Stanton
PeanutsNov. 25, 2015Steve Martino
Star Wars: Episode VIIDec. 18, 2015JJ Abrams
Kung Fu Panda 3Dec. 23, 2015Jennifer Yuh
Mission: Impossible 5Dec. 25, 2015Christopher McQuarrie
The Adventures of Tintin 2TBAPeter Jackson
Avatar 2TBAJames Cameron
InfernoTBARon Howard
Pitch Perfect 2TBATBA
Superman vs. BatmanTBAZack Snyder
WarcraftTBADuncan Jones

Yep, 2015 is going to be insanity. While it looks like it could bring in tons of money, you have to also remember that moviegoers have limited budgets. Will it be possible for them to support this many “must see” films? Only time will tell.

I will say, I am imagining some of these films are going to slip back possibly to 2016 or later. Avatar 2, for instance, I can almost guarantee you will slip because James Cameron is notorious for being slow. I also think with Assassin’s Creed and Terminator not yet having directors, it is quite possible those will move back a ways. Even with those three potential movers, there is still a lot of movies coming at us, and there are sure more to be added as there are some holes in the summer for sure. (Weekend of July 17, all of Aug.)

It’s going to be an interesting year, and one that I don’t think we will see the likes of again as the studios learn that you can release too many films in a short span of time. Of course, there are a lot of lessons I’ve thought the studios could learn in the pass and they didn’t, so who knows.

[ Via HitFix ]

29
May
2013

Pirates of the Caribbean logo

Joachim Ronning and Espen Sandberg have landed the directing duties on Pirates of the Caribbean 5.

Ronning and Sandberg may not be household names as of yet, but they did receive a Best Foreign Film Oscar nod recently for Kon-Tiki, another story that happened to be set on the water. For those of you unfamiliar with the rigors of directing stories involving a lot of water, it can quickly reduce a directo to tears, so having experience definitely helps.

No word yet on what the plot of the fifth film will be, but Johnny Depp is set to reprise the roll of Capt. Jack Sparrow, so it’s sure to be… something? Who knows. The fourth film was panned pretty harshly, but it still went on to earn $1.043 billion globally off of a $250 million dollar budget.

Pirates of the Caribbean 5 will hit theaters on July 10, 2015.

[ Via The Hollywood Reporter ]

5
May
2013

Walt Disney Pictures logo

In 2015, Disney will account for half of the films released… give or take a couple.

Geeks of Doom ran a post the other day that spelled something out for me that I hadn’t noticed: Disney is going to make a run at decimating the box office results in 2015. Here is just a partial list of what the House of Mouse has planned for that year.

  • The Avengers 2 – May 1, 2015
  • Inside Out – June 19, 2015
  • Pirates of the Caribbean 5 – July 10, 2015
  • Ant-Man – November 6, 2015
  • Finding Dory – November 25, 2015
  • Star Wars Episode VII – Unknown
  • Cinderella – Not announced as certain for 2015 yet
  • Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day – Not announced as certain for 2015 yet

The few names on there that you may not recognize are easily explained such as Inside Out being Pixar’s 16th film, and Finding Dory being the sequel to Finding Nemo. Cinderella and Alexander haven’t had a release year attached to them yet, so 2015 is just a general target.

The big sticking point I see in this 2015 list is Star Wars Episode VII. The films have traditionally come out in May, but with The Avengers 2 already slated there, does Disney want to cannibalize its own ticket sales? That part may be tricky, and I could see Star Wars moving later in the year or possibly to 2016. The 2015 date has always seen a bit optimistic to me as work is not that far along on the production.

Any way you slice it, Disney is not leaving much breathing room for anyone else in 2015. Just from the films with announced dates, other studios are going to have a hard time working around these gigantic releases. No one is going to want to go up against The Avengers 2, and while Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, the fourth film, was the lowest performing of the series so far, it still brought in $241 million at the domestic box office.

The question is if Disney can pull off this many “tent pole” releases in one year. One has to imagine that even for a company the size of Disney this will be a bit of a strain. From marketing to potential audience fatigue, this could be a rough year for the company, but if it does pull it off successfully, no other studio will come close to touching it in the box office results.

[ Source Geeks of Doom ]

15
Jan
2013

Guardians of the Galaxy logo - 640

Disney has announced some updates to its 2014 schedule including new synopsis briefs on upcoming Marvel movies.

A new press release went out on Monday for all of Disney’s upcoming 2014 films, and even a bit in to 2015. Nothing super shocking here, but a couple of revelations we haven’t seen before.

THE MUPPETS 2 is now dated on 3/21/14.

  • MUPPETS 2 is produced by Todd Lieberman and David Hoberman and directed by James Bobin. The screenplay is by Bobin and Nick Stoller, who will also serve as executive producer. The cast includes Ricky Gervais and Ty Burrell – and of course, the whole Muppets gang.

CAPTAIN AMERICA: THE WINTER SOLDIER (Marvel) will be available in 3D.

  • Releases on 4/4/14.
  • CAPTAIN AMERICA: THE WINTER SOLDIER will pick up where “Marvel’s The Avengers” leaves off, as Steve Rogers struggles to embrace his role in the modern world. The film stars Chris Evans in the title role and will be directed by brothers Anthony and Joe Russo.

MALEFICENT is now dated on 7/2/14 (from 3/14/14).

  • MALEFICENT, the untold story of Disney’s most beloved villain from the 1959 classic “Sleeping Beauty,” reveals the events that hardened Maleficent’s heart and drove her to curse the baby, Aurora.
  • MALEFICENT will be released in 3D and is produced by Joe Roth and directed by Robert Stromberg, from a screenplay written by Linda Woolverton. The film stars Angelina Jolie as Maleficent, Sharlto Copley, Elle Fanning, Sam Riley, Imelda Staunton, Miranda Richardson, Juno Temple and Lesley Manville.

GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY (Marvel) will be available in 3D.

  • Releases on 8/1/14.
  • GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY, based on the Marvel comic books of the same name, features an unlikely cast of characters who must team up in order to defeat a cosmic force of epic proportions. James Gunn will direct.

(Sean – Sounds like this is definitely the set up of Thanos before The Avengers 2.)

1952 is now dated on 12/19/14 in 3D.

  • 1952 will be produced by Damon Lindelof and directed by Brad Bird, from a script by Lindelof and Bird. George Clooney will star.

(Sean – Damon Lindelof has made it clear this will not be in 3D despite what Disney PR said)

PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN 5 is now dated on 7/10/15.

  • PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN 5 will be produced by Jerry Bruckheimer and will star Johnny Depp as Captain Jack Sparrow. Jeff Nathanson is writing the screenplay.
  • The “Pirates of the Caribbean” films have earned over $3.7 billion at the worldwide box office. Most recently, “Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides” earned over $1.043 billion.

(Sean – Despite multiple attempts, I couldn’t make it through Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, and I loved the first three movies. This one had better be an improvement.)

Disney has some interesting projects coming up, and I for one welcome my Mouse overlords.

13
Aug
2011

Lone Ranger logoDisney has halted production on the upcoming Lone Ranger film that was due to start filming this fall with Johnny Depp in the role of Tonto.

Slated for release December 21, 2012, the new Lone Ranger film was due to tell the story of the character from the vantage point of Tonto, hence why Johnny Depp had been cast in the role.  The film has already signed Armie Hammer as the Lone Ranger and Ruth Wilson, Dwight Yoakam, Helena Bonham Carter, James Badge Dale and Barry Pepper in various other roles.  (Depp and Carter in a film not directed by Tim Burton … is that allowed?)  Gore Verbinksi was to helm the film, and is best known for directing the first three Pirates of the Caribbean films, all of which starred Depp and made a tremendous amount of money for Disney.

It seems the production was halted due to ballooning production costs which had hit $250 million.  Verbinksi had gotten it down to $232 million, but Disney is looking to spend around $200 million due to the number of other expensive productions has on its plate currently.

$250 million for what is essentially a cowboy movie?  Heck, even the $200 million Disney is looking to spend, how in the world do you hit those numbers on a film that is essentially a bunch of people on horses?  Verbinksi is known for his huge budgets with the third Pirates film, Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End, clocked in at $300 million.  I think that perhaps this is a director that need to go take some sort of class on learning how to manage his finances because the budgets he is turning in are just outlandish.  You can somewhat understand them on the three Pirate films because any time you involve water in a film the budget shoots way up, but, again, this is a movie set in the Old West … on horses … all on dry land.  How is he spending this much money?  Oh, I know, the Lone Ranger is famous for his silver bullets, Verbinksi must have gone for “realism” and ordered them cast in real silver.  Silly me.

Apparently Disney will be going forward with this movie, but only once the budget has been brought down into a range they find acceptable.  There is no word on how long that may take, nor what it may due to the targeted release date as of yet.

13
Jul
2011

KolchakApparently Johnny Depp and Disney are ready to deepen their relationship even further, and it includes one of the best properties of the 1970’s: Kolchak, the Night Stalker.

Considering the current success of Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, Disney is sure to be even more in love with Mr. Depp.  He’s already signed for a Lone Ranger movie with the studio, and he’s in talks for Pirates of the Caribbean 5. Now it seems his development studio, Infinitum Nihil, has sold them two more projects. The first is a movie based around Paul Revere’s midnight ride that may see him playing the famous American.  It’s the second project that made me go, “YES! MAKE THIS NOW!”

While I am not a fan of remakes or re-imaginings, Kolchak, the Night Stalker was a series that lasted half a season and two TV movies, and may be one of the greatest tragedies of short lived series ever.  (Yes, even more so than Firefly.)  Just about anyone in horror today lists this series as an influence, and it impacted X-Files so deeply they even tried to integrate the character into the mythos.  They were never able to get the character into the show, but they did get Darren McGavin, the man who played him,  to play a role in the series as a nod to its influence.

There was a horrible remake on ABC a few seasons ago, but the idea of Depp as Kolchak?  I’ll buy my ticket now.  Why will I break my hatred of remakes in this case?  That is how badly I want more of this character in my life.  While a goodly portion was the wonderfulness of McGavin, the series was so well written, and the stories so original that pretty much anyone who watched it still gets misty-eyed just thinking back on it.

Deep down I know I will probably end up disappointed, but I will give it a try.  I have faith in Depp, and I can totally see him in this roll … oh please let this happen, and please let it not suck.

And if you’ve never seen the original series … run, do not walk, and watch it.  It is truly amazing and special.

5
Jul
2011

Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger TidesPirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides has passed into the history books as only the eighth film to ever cross the $1 billion dollar global box office benchmark.

While Transformers 3 was conquering the box office all over the world this weekend, history was being made quietly in the background.  Despite the fact the fourth Pirates of the Caribbean met mixed reviews and income here in the United States, globally it has been tearing up the box office receipts.  It is now the seventh biggest money maker ever, standing at $1.008 billion dollars.  But the history doesn’t end there.

Disney currently holds the fourth, fifth, sixth and seventh spots on the list; two of those films are from the Pirates series, and three of them star Johnny Depp.

Why do I think Mr. Depp is going to be cast in every Disney movie from now until his death?

The moral of the story is, while the American box office is still important, 76.8 percent of this film’s revenue came in from foreign markets.  While pundits here have scoffed at this film, the foreign numbers alone make it worth making a fifth film in the series, and even if it had done $0 here, it would still be in the realm of being worthwhile to go again.

This is not an isolated case either. Kung-Fu Panda 2 has not done well domestically, but 70.7 percent of its worldwide total has come from foreign markets, and it now stands at $536.5 million.  Once again, people have commented on its poor performance here, but globally it’s raking in a very healthy amount.

While the lion’s share of these hauls still comes from the U.S., perhaps it’s time to realize just how important the foreign markets are and pay them the respect they are due.

With that in mind, get ready for Pirates of the Caribbean 5.

21
Jun
2011

Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger TidesPirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides may not be tearing up the domestic box office, but it’s doing something right overseas. As a matter of fact, it’s doing a whole lot of things right.

The fourth installment in the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise has been disappointing in the U.S. box office, bringing in only $221.5 million thus far.  While some movies would kill for that number, that is not so great compared to the other three films in the series.  What is making everyone take notice, however, is how it is doing in the foreign box office.

To date it has brought in $753.2 million making for a combined total of $956.7 million.  This is enough to make it the tenth highest grossing film worldwide, putting it only $6.7 million behind Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End, the third film in the series.  It has a real shot at becoming only the eighth film to ever break the $1 billion dollar global mark, and the third time for Disney.

The other Disney films to do it?  Alice in Wonderland and Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest … both of which happen to star Johnny Depp.

Yep, Mr. Depp currently has the honor of having starred in four of the top 10 grossing films of all time across the world.  Three of them were films in the Pirates franchise, and the other was the afore mentioned Alice. His highest spot right now is with Dead Man’s Chest, which is at the number four spot with $1.066 billion.

Normally everything is judged by domestic box office because it is more expensive to distribute films internationally, but there is no way that you can turn a blind eye to these numbers.  A lot of people are making money off of this film, and no one is going to really care where it came from.

There is no doubt some people will wonder why Pirates of the Caribbean 5 is in our theaters some time down the road, and there will be a very good reason why … the world still loves Capt. Jack even if American’s are tiring of him.

23
May
2011

Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger TidesIt’s a sad day when Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides making $90 million in its opening weekend is somewhat of a disappointment.

The fourth installment in the Pirates of the Caribbean film series has gone to show that there is definitely a law of diminishing returns when it comes to some sequels.  Opening on a whopping 4,155 screens, the film brought in $90.1 million this weekend, a $21,685 per-screen average, which is nothing to crow about.  Adjusting for inflation, the attendance was way off for this entry in the series, but the true test will be how it holds up in the coming weeks.

Oddly enough, according to Box Office Mojo, the film did really well in the foreign markets, bringing in $256.3 million, and setting records in multiple countries for an opening weekend.  Despite the lower than expected domestic opening, the franchise still has some life in it, and a fifth film in the series seems almost guaranteed when you count in home video sales and television rights.

In the interesting realm this weekend, Bridesmaids held on to second place, bringing in $21 million this weekend, only dropping 19.8% from its opening weekend.  A normal drop in the second weekend is more in the range of 50%, so it looks like this all female comedy may have the makings of a sleeper comedy hit, especially when you factor in its $32.5 million budget.

Thor fell to third place, bringing in $15.5 million, bringing its total to $146 million domestically.

In fourth place was Fast Five with another $10.6 million, bringing its total to $186.2 million, and it became the most successful of the series as of this past week.  The Fast and the Furious series has shown that some series can go on to be even bigger as it goes on,which makes the Pirates of the Caribbean performance this weekend that much more stark in contrast.

Some days the mysteries of the film industry are just astounding.

7
May
2011

In general I’ve been excited for Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides … and then I saw this clip.

While the entire Pirates of the Caribbean series has been unrealistic with zombies, squid-headed villains and more, this clip from the fourth in the film series is just so silly as to actually turn me off to it somewhat.  It is just unbelievable moment after unbelievable moment.  Are we to believe the muskets fired just right to sever the rope?  That Capt. Jack (Johnny Depp) knew a guard would rush him in such a way that he could use them as a counter-weight?  That the chandelier would swing in such a way that he would be able to reach it?  (And I have no clue why food is on it)

Again, I get the films are filled with wild stunts and mystical moments, but when you’re trying to lure me into a film, could you have picked a worse scene to release as the first clip?  Why not show us something a little less ridiculous?  It does note bode well for the overall tone of this film.

At least even Depp told The Hollywood Reporter that they need to wait on Pirates of the Caribbean 5, and I couldn’t agree more at the moment.