3
Jan
2012

cinemaIt wasn’t a very happy year at the box office in 2011, and while the total for the year dropping was bad enough, some movies suffered more than others.

While there are always certain to be films each year that don’t fare well at the box office, some did spectacularly bad this year. Even bankable stars like Johnny Depp showed that not everything he touches is guaranteed to turn to gold.

As you look over this chart, keep in mind that a movie is considered successful when it doubles its production budget domestically to account for marketing costs.  Foreign box office loses a larger chunk due to international distribution deals, so even though some films have a higher total gross than their budget, it still doesn’t mean they made money.

 
Domestic Box Office
Foreign Box Office
Total
Production Budget
Mars Needs Moms$21,392,758$17,600,000$38,992,758$150 million
Sucker Punch$36,392,502$53,400,000$89,792,502$82 million
Arthur$33,035,397$12,700,000$45,735,397$40 million
Green Lantern$116,601,172$103,250,000$219,851,172$200 million
Cowboys & Aliens$100,240,551$74,581,774$174,822,325$163 million
Conan the Barbarian$21,295,021$27,500,000$48,795,021$90 million
I Don't Know How She Does It$9,662,284$20,889,211$30,551,495$24 million
The Thing$16,928,670$10,500,000$27,428,670$38 million
The Big Year$7,166,399$244,247$7,410,646$41 million
The Rum Diary$13,109,815$8,482,023$21,591,838$45 million
Anonymous$4,463,292$10,308,400$14,771,692$30 million
Tower Heist$76,756,000$57,500,000$134,256,000$75 million
Happy Feet Two $60,817,000$61,500,000$122,317,000$135 million
New Year's Eve$46,372,000$45,400,000$91,772,000$56 million
Glee: The 3D Concert Movie$11,862,398$6,800,840$18,663,238 $9 million

Even though Mars Needs Moms was the biggest loser by dollar amount, I’m really focused on The Big Year.  The latter crashed and burned in such a way that it is mind boggling.  When you factor in it wasn’t even that large of a budget, to see it bring in just over $7 million worldwide, you really have to wonder how it went so horribly wrong.  We’re talking nearly art house film money here it did so badly, and its widest release point in the U.S. it had 2,150 screens.  True, huge films now come in at over 3,000 screens, but 2,150 isn’t exactly small and that means total per screen average domestically was $3,333.20.  That, by Hollywood standards, is a total disaster.

The list of films definitely has some large budget disasters, it’s also interesting to see how “modestly” budgeted films also didn’t fare all that well.  The Rum Diary was probably risky to begin with, but seeing it not even bring in its $40 million dollar budget is surprising when Depp has more billion dollar movies under his belt than anyone else.  I Don’t Know How She Does It has probably shown that the love affair with Sarah Jessica Parker has definitely come to an end.

When you add in how Happy Feet Two performed with Mars Needs Moms catastrophic failure, it also looks like the age of animated films being easy hits is quickly drawing to a close.  There was a time where every animated film brought in just insane amounts of money, but their performance has been dropping more and more lately, and these two have definitely set a new bar.

I’ll try not to laugh at how Conan the Barbarian performed, but it’s difficult to not to.  And Green Lantern … for having the biggest budget, this may actually end up being the flop that sticks in most people’s minds when they think back on 2011.

It’s obvious that even after all these years that the film studios don’t have a clue as to what they’re doing, and when a film is a “hit,” it really just has to be pure luck.

One note: New Year’s Eve is still in release, but it doesn’t look like it’s going to do a lot more.

7
Nov
2011

Puss in BootsApparently people who missed going to the theaters last weekend due to the weather made up for it this weekend by keeping last week’s top contender rolling in the catnip.

Falling a mere 3.1% from last weekend, Puss in Boots brought in another $33 million. This is probably a little bit of an oddity due to the weather, but hey, when you set a new record, you set a new record for the smallest drop ever for a wide release.

The new Ben Stiller comedy Tower Heist came in second with $25.1 million, a lower than usual opening for one of his movies, and definitely lower for Eddie Murphy, his costar.

Stoner comedies might be falling in popularity somewhat judging by the performance of A Very Harold & Kumar 3D Christmas, coming in below Harold and Kumar Escape from Guantanamo Bay, and seeing as 95% of the attendance was at 3D locations, that means attendance was even lower due to the higher ticket prices.  The true story will be told in the coming weeks.

Paranormal Activity 3 came in fourth with another $8.5 million bringing the domestic gross to $95.3 off of a $5 million dollar budget.  That puts it only $12 million behind the original film, and it seems like it could easily surpass it.

In Time, the new Justin Timberlake action vehicle , slipped into fifth place with $7.7 million, not leaving thins to hopeful this ending up being a big film. I can’t say I’m overly surprised.

The only big release for next weekend is J. Edgar, so don’t expect to see too many changes in the line up of what folks are going to see.

31
Oct
2011

Puss in BootsAn unseasonably early snow storm in the upper northeast put a damped on the box office this weekend, but that couldn’t keep the first spin off film from the Shrek series from scoring a nice chunk of change.

Snow in the northeast kept the box office receipts a bit lower than expected this weekend, but Puss in Boots, the first spin off film from the Shrek series still brought in around $33 million this weekend.

Falling to second place with a 64% slide was Paranormal Activity 3 with $19 million.  This brings its domestic total to $81 million, and considering the $5 million dollar budget, I would hazard to guess we can expect a Paranormal Activity 4 in our futures.

The new Justin Timberlake action vehicle In Time came in third with a pretty soft $12 million.  Not too surprising to be honest, the trailers read much more as a home viewing experience to me than a must see in the theaters.

Footloose feel to fourth place with $5.5 million bringing its cumulative total to $38.5 million. Off of a $24 million budget this film is still clearly in the red, and it isn’t looking too good for making it to the black during its theatrical run.

Rounding out the top five was the new Johnny Depp film, The Rum Diary, once again proving that not everything he touches turns to gold.

This week sees everything going heavy on comedy with the release of A Very Harold & Kumar 3D Christmas and Tower Heist.

24
Oct
2011

Paranormal Activity 3Apparently the movie going audience hasn’t yet tired of the “found footage” horror film genre as the third film in the Paranormal Activity series set records for an October opening.

Paranormal Activity 3 scared up $54 million in its opening weekend to set a record for the biggest opening ever for October and the largest premiere for the series.  However, not all was rosy as nearly 49% of that came in on Friday, but considering the film only cost $5 million to make, it’s highly doubtful anyone is going to be horribly upset about how the money came in.

Coming in second was Real Steel with a 30.5% decline to $11.3 million.  That brings its domestic total to $67.2 million, but with no data released yet on its budget it’s difficult to judge how it’s doing.

Third place saw Footloose slide a respectable 30.3% in its second weekend to bring in $10.85 million. It’s not exactly burning up the box office, but it is holding its own for sure.

Swasbuckling its way into a disappointing fourth place opening, the 318th version of The Three Musketeers brought in a disappointing $8.8 million. It’s doubtful this is the amount the studio was hoping for in its opening weekend.

The Ides of March fell to fifth place to bring in $4.9 million.

Opening next week will In Time, Puss in Boots, The Rum Diary and Anonymous.

I Don’t Know How She Does It? $8,000 this weekend bringing its domestic total to $9.594 million off a $24 million budget. Here’s a funny moment for you, Captain America, which was released in July and comes out on home video this week, brought in another $165,000.

23
Oct
2011

cylonsYep, Battlestar Galactica is making its way to the theaters. Before you get too excited, it’s based off the original 1970’s version and not the far superior reboot.

Rumors have circulated for some time that Glen A. Larson, the creator of the original TV series, has been trying to get a movie together that follows the mythos of that version.  As opposed to the rumors that have floated around for some time, this time it looks like it’s really happening.

Bryan Singer, who directed the first two X-Men movies and Superman Returns, has signed on to direct, and this will be his next project after he finishes Jack, the Giant Killer.  The latest addition is to the production is John Orloff, an Emmy nominated writer for Band of Brothers and penned the upcoming Anonymous about the works of Shakespeare, as the script writer.

Speaking to Deadline, Orloff said, “I have wanted to write this movie since I was 12-years-old, and built a Galactica model from scratch out of balsa wood, cardboard, old model parts and LEDs,” Orloff said. “I love BSG, and I would pass on the job rather than frak it up.”

While it’s always nice to see someone live out their childhood dream, the original series was incredibly weak when it came to its underlying story.  “Robots bad, humans good … stock footage space fights!”  Yes, you ended up caring for some of the characters, but overall it was very simplistic and it was amazing the reboot ended up being as good as it was, but to go back to the original?  I have a really, really bad feeling about this.

29
Sep
2009
Written by  |  under Blogging  |  No Comments

2000Hard to believe it, but this is the 2000th post on this blog.

Now, that isn’t 2000 consecutive days (I’m at 1,662 days), but it is a total of 2,000 separate posts that I’ve made, some of them even before I started this non-stop run attempt.  It really isn’t that large of an accomplishment compared to most big blogs, some that can do that many posts a month, but when you are the lone writer on a blog, I think it’s worth some form of acknowledgement.

So I thought I would do a quick walk down memory lane of a few of my favorite posts.

Who Is The Best James Bond?

No clue why, but I really liked doing this post, and people seem to like it also as it continues to get new visitors every day.  It was just kind of nice to discuss something that has been a part of pop culture for so long, and is something just about every one has some sort of an opinion on.  I don’t think any two commenters had the exact same order of which actor played the role the best, but that was half the fun.

It also led to me doing Who Is The Best Doctor Who and Who Is The Best Star Trek Captain.

Who Is The Best James Bond?

Anonymous Takes On Scientology

It’s nice to do something on here once in awhile that actually feels like it might open someone’s eyes to the things going on in the world around them. If I can ever get even one person questioning the motivations of the Church of Scientology, then I’ll feel like I’ve accomplished something.

Anonymous Takes On Scientology

Sarah L. Tolzien

Teacher Sex Scandals

I know, I’m cheating by just listing a group of posts, but it’s my blog, and I can if I want!

A lot of friends have asked me privately if there is something in my past that causes me to write about the teacher sex scandals, as in have I ever been sexually assaulted by a teacher.  I can tell you without hesitation that absolutely nothing like what these teachers have done has ever happened to me.  I simply write about these stories because I have known a great number of teachers in my life, and in general I just find it disgusting that any teacher would betray the trust of the student, their family and the community.  So, if they do it, they should be talked about.

I have actually pondered spinning those stories off into their own blog, but that is something I am weighing the pros and cons of at the moment.

Teacher Sex Scandals

susan boyle

47-Year-Old Susan Boyle Wows The Judges On Britain’s Got Talent

For all of the negative things I write about on this site, it is nice sometimes to write about a positive, uplifting story. Susan Boyle was definitely one of those stories, and kudos to her. And, yes, I did actually spin stories about her off into their own blog at SusanBoyleFandom.com which I am still updating with various tidbits about her and her upcoming album entitled “I Dreamed A Dream”.

47-Year-Old Susan Boyle Wows The Judges On Britain’s Got Talent

On To The Next 2,000

I know my favorites seemed heavy on recent posts, but that is partially because I think I am finally finding my voice as a blogger.  One would certainly hope I have after this many posts!

I am excited about the future, and have no intentions of stopping blogging any time soon, so here is to 2,000 more posts of my rambling!

1
Jan
2009
Written by  |  under Blogging  |  2 Comments

2009As we start another year, it’s time for me to take a look back at what struck a chord with my readers.

2008 was very good to this blog, and I have to take a moment to thank you, my readers, for an amazing year of growth!  Unique visitors grew by almost 600%, and total page views was darn close to 700%!  I hoped for a year of growth, but I could have never dreamed readership would be up that much!  Don’t get me wrong, this blog is still a long ways away from the major leagues… a long, long, LONG way… but it is still a nice amount of growth.

So, without further ado, the 10 entries that helped me see this growth.

Who Is The Best James Bond? – Who knew people were this interested in who made the best James Bond? Published in September, this post brought in more page views in three days than this blog got total in the year of 2007.  It is still getting viewed every day, some days only 1 or 2 views, but it is still looked at on a constant basis.  Quite surprising, I must say.

Anonymous Takes On Scientology -This post came in second with a very healthy showing (the Bond post has about 4 times the page views), and it was also one that took me by surprise in how it took off.  It didn’t hurt that members of Anonymous put links to it all over the Web, and with that in mind, I am sure I am now on the Scientology watch list.  -waves-  Hail, Xenu!

The Music Industry Vs Net Neutrality -This post was from January of last year, and was my biggest success to date at the time.  Net Neutrality is always a touchy subject, and the music industry seemingly want to wage war on it is not sitting well with anyone, and understandably so.

How To Watch Internet Videos On Your TV -This is a very popular post, and one on plan on revisiting soon as a lot has changed since I published this last February.  This was also part of the inspiration for the launching of StarterTech.com.

Olympic Beach Volleyball Uniforms -This was my second article about my anger over how women’s beach volleyball athletes were treated by the medie at this past Summer Olympics.  The first article, Olympic Beach Volleyball, was only a few hundred views behind this one, but I am counting them as one entry on this list.

I will admit, from analyzing the search traffic on these two posts, they are found for all the wrong reasons, and that being mainly people looking for pictures of the athletes asses.  Somehow I doubt they read the accompanying articles that say that is what I’m talking against…

Who Is The Best Doctor Who – Okay, I am not too proud to admit this was an obvious attempt to copy the success of the James Bond post, but apparently I went a little too obscure with the subject matter.  It obviously still did well as a post as it made this list.

JJ Abrams Unveils The New Enterprise From Star Trek – This is another one that surprised me with how well it did.  I guess people really, really wanted to see how the new Enterprise looked!

Dancing With The Stars Band – My dislike for the Dancing With The Stars band, and it’s conductor, Harold Wheeler, has turned this in to my most controversial post ever. I have received numerous nasty comments and emails about me and my opinion of these… “musicians”… and all I can say is… Keep it up! I always need more laughs in my life!

New The Dark Knight Trailer Hints At Joker Greatness – The massive upswing I saw in traffic to this post in October prompted me to write a post entitled “Just Put Down The Clown Makeup!” as I could see it was mainly being found by people looking for pictures of the Joker.  Sure enough, it was all about people trying to dress as him for Halloween.

Weighty Issues For Cheryl Burke of Dancing With The Stars -Poor Cheryl Burke took a real pounding for her non-existent weight issues on the fall season of Dancing With The Stars.  It was a whole lot of hype over a woman gaining a meager 5 lbs, and I personally found that the fact anyone was even calling her “fat” just silly.

Honroable Mentions – Somehow my review of a Combichrist/K.M.F.D.M. concert from 2006 was technically in my top 10 viewed posts… I have no clue why.  Also, my post on Armando Montelongo also made it into the top ten, but I like to keep this list about posts published in 2008.

So, there you have it, the top 10 posts of the year for this blog.  Just like last year, this list tells me entertainment related posts do well, but I will probably continue to talk about just whatever is randomly on my mind at any given time.  I will say that the increased readership has made me a lot more self conscience about my posts, and what I tend to pick as the subjects, but at the end of the day, this is still just a personal blog… filled with a lot of ranting.

Thank you all so very much for making 2008 such a great year here at SeanPAune.com, and I only hope I can keep you all as interested in 2009!

20
Aug
2008

Regular readers of my blog will know that I am no great fan of the Church of Scientology.  I have nothing against your every day followers of the organization, but I have large problems with the actual Church itself and their practices.

All that being said, this leads me to the business card pictured to the right that my parents recently found hidden in some of our merchandise at a convention.  Someone had stuck it in one of the coffee cups on display, and a customer showed it to my dad.  Knowing my love for the church, he brought it home for me to check out.  As soon as I saw the Guy Fawkes mask image from V For Vendetta on the far right, I knew it was from Anonymous.

If you head over to YouFoundTheCard.com you’ll see it is a site run by the latest anti-Scientology group that is simply referring to themselves as “Anonymous”.  They started off with a few YouTube videos describing what they were about, which led to some old school service attacks on Scientology websites, but now they are calming their tactics down and going with street protests that they launch globally at multiple church sites.  You can ready more about the timeline of how this developed on the Project Chanology Wikipedia page.

The Guy Fawkes masks started popping up with the first street protests because Scientology is well known to take videos of protestors and then harass them with legal papers, send threatening mail to their homes and more.  So protesters have chosen to conceal their faces and more (Anon has a whole list of suggestions of how to protect your identity), why they chose the mask from V For Vendetta hasn’t really been made clear, but Alan Moore, creator of the series, approves of it.  He said in a recent interview with Entertainment Weekly, “That pleased me. That gave me a warm little glow.”  If you’ve seen the movie, you can draw your own conclusions to the parallels between the end of the film and why they use the mask, but I will leave that for everyone else to figure out.

It seems they will be having another worldwide protest on September 13th, hence why they are passing out these cards, and trying to drum up interest again.  It is encouraging to see not only a whole new group of people enter in to the fight with the church, but a group that seems motivated and full of ideas.  I can’t say I have ever been a very active player in the whole thing due to my location, but I do care deeply about the wrong doings of this group being exposed.

That brings me to something I’m not sure I have ever really discussed is why I dislike the Church of Scientology so much.  To be clear, it has nothing to do with the religious aspects of the group, I feel all people should be free to worship in any way they see fit, but I do disagree with the tactics of the Church of Scientology.  They have been linked to deaths, threats, suing their critics, making false police reports and much much more.  It is the tactics of the organization of the church hierarchy I have problems with, and not the beliefs of the followers.  I want to be 100% clear in that I am not attacking anyone’s religious beliefs here.

If you want to learn more about the tactics of the church, and credible evidence of all their actions, I suggest the following sites to start you off.

Enturbulation.org – An unofficial organizational site for the world wide protests. (suggested by a commenter)

WhyWeProtest.net – Also suggested by an “anonymous” commenter, is a smaller, easier to breeze through rundown of what it is about the Church of Scientology that drives people to protest.

Xenu.net – Also known as Operation:Clambake (it’s a loooong story, and a Scientology reference), this was the site that really started to wake me up to just how far their vileness ran.  I had always heard mumblings about it until I found this site.

XenuTV.com – Run by journalist Mark Bunker, it was his videos that calmed the original tactics of Anonymous down, and they now refer to him as “Wise Beard Man”.  He is a long time critic of the church and has produced numerous videos with documentation.

YouFoundTheCard.com – Linked above, but here it is again.  They have a good breakdown of some of the more egregious actions of the church.  An excellent primer.

I always encourage people to do their own research into a subject such as this, but do read up on it, you will be amazed what this so-called church gets up to.

As for September 13th… no worries, I’ll be at home.  I’m not even sure where the closest Scientology office is to me, actually… and I kinda like it that way.